March 29, 2017
Dan Aykroyd Breaks Down Booze Bottle Angles In IP Trial
Law360, Los Angeles (March 23, 2017, 10:03 PM EDT) — Comedy legend Dan Aykroyd on Thursday told a California federal jury that a tequila company had ripped off his Crystal Head Vodka brand’s unique skull-shaped bottle, pulling out a ruler to dissect what he said are obvious similarities between the two bottles.
In the afternoon of the fourth day of the trial in downtown Los Angeles, Globefill Inc., maker of Crystal Head Vodka, called to the stand its co-founder, former SNL cast member and ”Ghostbusters” star Aykroyd. Under examination by his attorney David Berg of Berg & Androphy, Aykroyd described in detail the origins of his vodka brand and its unique glass skull-shaped bottle, and about how he discovered defendant Elements Inc.’s KAH brand tequila, which also comes in skull-shaped bottles that are meant to resemble Mexican Day of the Dead sugar skulls, or calaveras.
Aykroyd said the similarity between the bottles created “the kind of confusion a manufacturer fears,” where he was worried that bottle would trick consumers into thinking it came from Crystal Head, noting he once bought a bottle of KAH and found a chip of glass floating inside the tequila.
“I thought, even more reason for me to be concerned about source. What if someone got hurt? And for someone to think we have a product on the market that’s inferior to our vodka, that’s unacceptable,” he said.
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Globefill Inc. is represented by David Berg and Michael M. Fay of Berg & Androphy, and Hernan D. Vera of Bird Marella Boxer Wolpert Nessim Drooks Lincenberg & Rhow PC.
The case is Globefill Inc. v. Elements Spirits Inc., case number 2:10-cv-02034, in the U.S. District Court for the Central District of California.