All the way back in 2019, WWE Hall of Famer Booker T filed a lawsuit against Activision, alleging that the video game publisher had created a character in Call of Duty: Black Ops 4 that resembled the likeness of a previous wrestling persona that he had used known as GI Bro. The lawsuit itself has since been going through the standard legal processes since that time, and as of this week, the result of the case has finally come about in favor of Activision.
In a trial that took place in Texas on June 24, a jury found that Activision did not infringe on Booker T's GI Bro character when creating its own character, known as David "Prophet" Wilkes, for Black Ops 4. The main argument from lawyers representing Activision over the course of the trial is that Booker T lacked any sort of evidence that those at the company had access to a promotional poster that featured GI Bro prominently and was used to promote a comic book. In addition, this poster of GI Bro was also said to contain a physique based on Dwayne "The Rock" Johnson, which was very much in Activision's favor. "We had a lot of confidence that the jury would see things our way, and we're really happy that they did," said Activision attorney Daralyn Durie in a statement given to Reuters.
As a whole, the similarities between Booker T's GI Bro character and Call of Duty's David "Prophet" Wilkes are easy to see. Both characters notably contain dreads and are quite large in stature, as you might expect. However, just because they might look alike doesn't mean that Booker T is deserving of being rewarded with a sum of money, according to the decision of the jury in question.
At the end of the day, this case seemed to be more of an annoyance for Activision than anything. In fact, one lawyer representing the company referred to the entire situation as "frivolous". "Activision creates games with the utmost integrity and is extremely proud of everyone involved with the development and creative process for all of our games including Call of Duty: Black Ops 4, including the incredible talent like William Romeo who helped bring our vision to life," said E. Leon Carter, who served as a trial counsel to Activision. "Today, the jury validated that process."
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