Lucasfilm Calls Copyright Infringement on Wicked Lasers’ Non-Lightsaber Lightsaber
Wicked Lasers are the makers of a $199 retail laser that can burn flesh and cause blindness, and two weeks ago, Lucasfilm Ltd. sent them a letter that threatened legal action if the company did not alter the design of its Pro Arctic Laser or stop selling it altogether. According to Lucasfilm, “it is apparent from the design of the Pro Arctic Laser that it was intended to resemble the hilts of our lightsaber swords, which are protected by copyright.”
The letter doesn’t accuse Wicked Lasers of promoting the lasers as lightsabers, but instead cites media coverage that frequently drew parallels between the two.
Steve Liu, CEO of Wicked Lasers, told CNN:
Most people feel it’s kind of ridiculous… We would never use any comparison like that to ‘Star Wars’ or a lightsaber or anything like that.
Now, after an initial gut reaction to be exasperated with anything that resembles George Lucas trying to get money out of people, we reconsidered, and decided that it’s actually only natural that Lucasfilm doesn’t want one of their most popular children’s toys to be associated with a device that “can possibly cause cancer,” blindness, and burns. But… can a company really take the fault for a bunch of sci-fi nerd bloggers who say that their stuff looks like Star Wars?
They can when their lasers look like lightsabers. And they look. Like. Lightsabers.
For comparison, here’s what the company’s other pointers look like:
Oh, and how does Liu feel about Star Wars in general?
Personally, they’re some of my favorite movies.