The BBC is just finishing up production of a film about the development of Grand Theft Auto. The new movie stars Daniel Radcliffe as Sam Houser, the man who created the record-setting hyper-violent video game series. Sources say the film is about Houser and Rockstar Games’ struggles with an American lawyer named Jack Thompson (played by Bill Paxton) who was trying to get violent games banned.
However, Rockstar Games wants to ensure its “trademarks are not misused in the BBC’s pursuit of an unofficial depiction of purported events,” and has therefore filed a lawsuit to stop the production of the movie.
The BBC notes it has a firm policy of not commenting on legal matters.
Statement from Rockstar Games
In a statement on the matter released on Thursday, Rockstar wrote: “Take-Two Interactive (Rockstar’s parent company) has filed [a] suit against the BBC for trademark infringement based on their movie currently titled Game Changer as it relates to Rockstar Games’ Grand Theft Auto video game series.
“While holders of the trademarks referenced in the film title and its promotion, Rockstar Games has had no involvement with this project. Our goal is to ensure that our trademarks are not misused in the BBC’s pursuit of an unofficial depiction of purported events related to Rockstar Games.
“We have attempted multiple times to resolve this matter with the BBC without any meaningful resolution. It is our obligation to protect our intellectual property and unfortunately in this case litigation was necessary.”
More on Grand Theft Auto
Grand Theft Auto is an extremely popular video game series where players have the option to act like criminals, and are encouraged to hijack cars and shoot bystanders, including police officers to get more points.
Despite criticism from a variety of organizations on both sides of the political spectrum, the mega violent series remains a huge bestseller, with GTA V bringing in more than $1 billion in sales in its first three days, earning the record for the biggest-selling entertainment product in history.