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HBO cleared it with WME topper Ari Emanuel before co-opting his persona for the Ari Gold character on “Entourage.” The makers of a new iPhone app called “SuperAgent” are learning the hard way what happens when you don’t ask Ari nicely.
In “SuperAgent,” players assume the identity of a high-powered tenpercenter named “Ari” and manage the career of a mischievous actor named “Vince,” just like on “Entourage.”
But Emanuel and WME weren’t pleased with the game’s references to “Ari” and “William Morris.” So the agency’s pitbull lawyer Patti Glaser sent a cease-and-desist letter to Dublin-based mobile software development firm Factory Six, demanding the company remove the references from the game and its promotional materials.
Factory Six says “SuperAgent” isn’t based on the real-life super-agent.
“Ari Emanuel is not that famous outside of Hollywood,” Factory Six co-founder Rick Larkin told Forbes.com. “[The lawyers] are the first people to have made the link.”
Really? Factory Six names the characters Ari and Vince and pitches the game as taking place at “William Morris” but nobody thought the real-life agent that inspired the HBO show would be pissed?
Forget Ari. We’d guess HBO has an even stronger case against the game. Larkin wouldn’t reveal whether the show is based on “Entourage,” but that seems pretty obvious. We’ll see to see whether HBO says “game over” on this one.
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