In yet another bizarre turn that looks to hamper Acclaim Entertainment and its interesting relationship with its extreme sports franchises, long-time Acclaim partner and pro BMX rider Dave Mirra has filed a lawsuit against the Long Island, NY-based company claiming that the "pornographic" game BMX XXX has damaged his image.
Filed in a federal court last week in New York, Mirra's $20 million suit claims that Acclaim used his name and likeness to promote BMX XXX after both sides agreed to disassociate his name with the product. The suit comprises 11 claims in all, including unfair competition and injury to business reputation and dilution.
Mirra explained that he and Acclaim began discussions in March 2002 about attaching his name to BMX XXX, a title that he felt was to be more of a tongue-in-cheek, mature game, sort of like the spoof movie Airplane. But soon after, Mirra alleged that BMX XXX's focus was altered after he signed an agreement to lend his name to it.
"During the ongoing development of (BMX XXX), but after obtaining Dave Mirra's approval of the initial concept, Acclaim changed the concept of the game to become more sexually explicit and pornographic, ultimately settling on nudity as a major selling point," the suit said.
Acclaim, however, feels that Mirra's claim has little merit. "It's a baseless lawsuit and we're going to vigorously fight it," said Acclaim PR Director Alan Lewis.
BMX XXX performed worse than any of the previous BMX games Acclaim has published to date, and was banned from several major retails outlets, including Wal-Mart, K-Mart and Toys R Us. BMX XXX was shipped to PS2, Xbox and GameCube in November 2002.
©2003, IGN Entertainment, Inc. All Rights Reserved
12:00 am PST February 14, 2003