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MGM ATTEMPTS TO KO TRADEMARK FILING FOR HULK HOGAN'S ROCKY CHARACTER

By Steven Fernandes & Mike Johnson on 2017-08-09 23:31:00

Metro Goldwyn Mayer Studios are opposing Big Blondes LLC's application for a 'Thunderlips' trademark that Blondes filed in September 2016 for various merchandise purposes. 

Big Blondes LLC also has trademarks filed on the terms on "Hogan's Hangout", "Hogan's Beach Tampa, Florida" and "Hogan's Beach", name of the now-shuttered restaurant and club located on West Courtney Campbell Causeway in Tampa.

In their notice of opposition, MGM stated they have "information and belief" that Hulk Hogan is "a principal or otherwise controls and directs the activities of Applicant." 

MGM claimed there would be a likelihood of confusion if Blondes were given the Thunderlips trademark as MGM owns the rights to everything associated with The Rocky film franchise including the Thunderlips character.

Thunderlips was the name of the character Hulk Hogan portrayed in the film, a role that kicked off his massive opopularity and rise to iconic fame in pro wrestling and pop culture.   MGM provided photographic proof of that ownership with photos from Rocky III featuring Hogan in character.  MGM is (rightfully) pointing out that they owned the rights to the name and character long before Big Blonde LLC stated that they started using the "Thunderlips" name in commerce.    

MGM is also alleging fraud, noting, "At the time Applicant filed the Application, Applicant knew that the verified statement it made to the United States Patent and Trademark Office (“USPTO”) – that it was entitled to use Applicant’s THUNDERLIPS Mark and that no other party had the right to use the mark THUNDERLIPS – was false, since Bollea and Applicant knew of MGM’s prior rights in the THUNDERLIPS Mark for identical and related goods."

Big Blondes LLC also applied to trademark 'Thunderlips' for Entertainment use in March 2017.  This past June, the USPTO refused initial registration because Blondes did not show the mark being used in connection with identified services which was "Entertainment, namely, services rendered by a professional wrestler in the nature of personal appearances, wrestling matches and acting."

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