Lee Evans sues Jongleurs

£50,000 claim for using his image

Lee Evans is suing Jongleurs Comedy Clubs for £50,000 for using his image to promote their clubs without permission.

His lawyers have lodged papers in the High Court seeking damages as well as an injunction to stop the company using any photographs of him to promote its venues and falsely implying the business has been endorsed by him.

The row stems from earlier this year, when pictures of Evans, Michael McIntyre and Jimmy Carr were used on a 15ft billboard to promote the launch of a new Jongleurs night at the Waterfront Complex in Bournemouth.

At the time, Evans’s agent Addison Cresswell, who also represents McIntyre, raged: ‘I’m livid. They are exploiting my acts. This is shocking behaviour, and I’m not having it.’

Now media industry lawyers Swan Turton have filed papers claiming that Jongleurs’ actions are particularly damaging because, as a point of principle, Evans has never performed at any corporate event nor endorsed any product.

According to the Daily Telegraph, Evans is seeking additional damages under the Copyright Designs and Patents Act 1988 after accusing the company of flagrant infringement and of benefitting from his fame.

After the initial row, Jongleurs owner Maria Kempinska immediately agreed to remove the billboards, but offered as a defence: ‘We have, like most other promoters, used images of all comedians who have performed at Jongleurs over the past 27 years.’

However, Cresswell said: ‘‘It would be like a pub advertising music nights with pictures of the Rolling Stones if they played there when they were just starting. It’s bogus advertising – punters expecting those acts will be ripped off.’

Published: 9 Sep 2010

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