MÖTLEY CRÜE has been sued by photographers Neil Zlozower and Barry Levine over photographs the duo took of the band three decades ago, claiming CRÜE never got their permission to use the photos on merchandise in connection with the group's "The Final Tour".
The lawsuit, which was filed on Tuesday (September 6) in the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York, states: "In the 1980s, Zlozower and Levine photographed the members of the MÖTLEY CRÜE band at Zlozower and Levine's respective studios in Los Angeles. Zlozower and Levine used their own cameras, lighting equipment, film, batteries, backdrops, and accessories. Zlozower and Levine directed the band members as to where to stand, how to pose, and where to position.
"In January 2014, MÖTLEY announced that they will be touring for the very last time before their retirement during their Final Tour. The Final Tour started on July 2, 2014 and ended on December 31, 2015.
"On the information and belief, The Final Tour consisted of one-hundred and thirty concerts around the United States, sixteen shows in Europe, five shows in Asia, six shows in Australia region, and one in South America.
"The Final Tour grossed approximately eight-six million dollars.
"Upon information and belief, in 2014, Motley, Motley Touring, Global Inc., Global Ltd., Live Worldwide, Live Concerts, Live Entertainment, and Live Merchandise copied the Zlozower Photographs and Levine Photographs and placed them on merchandise to sell to the public.
"Upon information and belief, the merchandise was sold on their websites, at
concert venues, and third-party merchandise websites.
"Levine's Photographs have appeared on clothing and merchandise including but not limited to the Whisky A Go-Go Vintage T-Shirt (Regular and Slim Fit), Girls Girls Girls Bodysuit, Motley Crue Shout at the Devil Tour Baseball Shirt, Girls Girls Girls Poster Flag, Band/Girls Woven Patch, Girls Girls Girls T-Shirt, Motley Crue Shout At the Devil Japan TShirt, Motley Crue Shout at the Devil Crop Tank Top, Motley Crue Shout at the Devil Tour Girls T-Shirt, Motley Crue Vintage Shout At the Devil T-Shirt (Regular and Slim Fit), Motley Crue Shout Wire T-Shirt, Motley Crue Shout at the Devil Band Mens T-Shirt, Girls Girls Girls Sepia Poster, Shout at the Devil Wire Long Sleeve Shirt, Motley Crue Shout at the Devil Wire World Tour T-Shirt, Motely Crue Warhol Band Mens T-Shirt, Motley Crue Girls Girls Girls Women's Vest, Girls, Girls, Girls Sticker, and Sharp Sticker.
"Zlozower's Photographs have appeared on clothing and merchandise including but not limited to the the Shout at the Devil Women Tank Top, World Tour Coaster, World Tour Magnet, World Tour Coffee Mug, Shout Wire Long Sleeve Shirt, Shout Wire T-Shirt, World Tour Vintage T-Shirt, Vintage World Tour Devil T-Shirt, World Tour Women Tank Top, Final Tour Lace Vintage Women Tank Top, Final Tour Vintage T-Shirt, Vintage Shout at the Devil TShirt (Slim and Regular Fit), Motley Crue Shout at the Devil Tour Girls T-Shirt, Theatre of Pain Vintage Girls Soft Tee, Motley Crue Japan T-Shirt-Sheer, Motley Crue Vintage Santa Monica TShirt, Motley Crue Classic Live In Concert Girls Pullover Top, and Motley Crue Chuck Taylor High Top Shoes.
"Motley, Motley Touring, Global Inc., Global Ltd., sold the merchandise on their websites and sold the merchandise in concert venues around the world during the Final Tour in the United States, England, Germany, Switzerland, Italy, Monaco, Sweden, Finland, United Arab Emirates, Japan, New Zealand, Australia, Austria, Canada, Mexico and Brazil.
"Defendants infringed Plaintiff's copyright in the Photographs by reproducing, publicly displaying, and selling the Photographs on merchandise. Defendants are not, and have never been, licensed or otherwise authorized to reproduce, publicly display, distribute, sell and/or use the Photographs on merchandise."
Zlozower and Levine are seeking profits from the sale of the merchandise featuring their photographs, as well as damages and attorney's fees.