'Star Wars' Stormtrooper costumes not artistic, says court
8:17 AM PST 12/16/2009 by Eriq Gardner
George Lucas should have used the Force rather than lawyers to pursue a British designer who sculpted the original Stormtrooper helmets in the first "Star Wars" film.
A British appeals court has ruled that these helmets are not copyrightable works of art and therefore, Lucasfilm can't prevent Andrew Ainsworth from selling replicas of the helmets. The $20 million lawsuit against Ainsworth has dragged on for five years and may continue still as Lucasfilm says it is prepared to appeal the case up to Britain's Supreme Court.
In the decision yesterday, a judicial panel ruled that the helmet and armor of the Stormtrooper costumes had a "utilitarian," rather than an artistic, purpose, so "neither the armour nor the helmet are sculpture."
Previously, Lucas won a $20 million judgment against Ainsworth in a California court in 2006. He's been unable to get British courts to enforce the decision.
Maybe the helmet isn't art. But how about this image of a Star Wars "last supper" from freakingnews.com?
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