Los Angeles celebrities who please the public are rewarded with lavish attention and fabulous incomes. Entertainment law attorneys know praise can turn to criticism and condemnation quickly when well-known individuals misbehave. Advertising agencies and sponsors, who once vied for long-term sponsorship and merchandising agreements with movie, television and sports stars, are now hedging their bets.
Some of our more frequent blog readers may remember an April post in which we explained the legal ramifications of using someone’s image and likeness, particularly that of a celebrity, without their permission. In that post we explained that a company can suffer legal consequences if it claims a celebrity endorsement when in fact one does not exist. And as our readers will soon see, this happens more often than you may think.
While some celebrities do endorsement deals because they sincerely approve of a product, others simply do it for the paycheck. Whatever the reason though, these contracts should be taken incredibly seriously. Even the smallest misinterpretation of terms in the agreement can mean litigation for both the celebrity and the company down the road.
Some celebrities and athletes are lucky if they get one endorsement deal during their career. Others, however, are able to cash in time and time again thanks to their star power. Russell Wilson, the quarterback of the Super Bowl winning Seattle Seahawks, is a rising star. Thanks to his performance in the big game, endorsement deals may begin to pick up.
In today's era, more consumers than ever are following in the footsteps of celebrities and sports stars when it comes to the products they purchase. While some companies don't have enough money to bring celebrities on board, others rely on this to push sales and profits to new heights.
Celebrities should be careful when they endorse products. Some products are going to be more controversial than others, especially products that claim to produce results of one kind or another. Weight loss supplements are one of those products.
Of course, entertainers get paid for making appearances on the stage, screen or field, but many of them also maintain other sources of income. Obtaining an endorsement deal can be a way to develop and improve one's public image. Not only that, it can be a very important and reliable source of additional income.
Endorsements by high profile athletes are the bread and butter for many companies. Unfortunately though, celebrities are constantly under the watchful eye of the paparazzi and fans. If they do something that draws negative attention to themselves, undesirable consequences can arise for not only the celebrity but also their sponsor. If that occurs, the celebrity can lose their endorsement contract and the income that goes along with it, and the sponsors can lose millions of dollars.
It is fair to assume that most entertainers in Los Angeles would welcome lucrative endorsement deals. But according to a lawsuit recently filed against her, Lil Kim is not one of those entertainers.
Los Angeles residents are used to seeing celebrities of all stripes, but much of the rest of the world is not. For them, it is as if celebrities move only in the rarified world of magazines and gossip websites, always looking freshly touched-up and perfectly poised.