LATEST: Director Spike Lee's petition to stop an upcoming station from being named SPIKE TV has been temporarily granted by a New York judge.

STATE SUPREME COURT Justice WALTER TOLUB ordered Lee to post a $500,000 (GBP330,000) bond yesterday (12JUN03) to cover parent company VIACOM's losses in case the company wins.

Viacom announced the name change from TNN to Spike TV in April (03) as part of its transformation into a "men's channel".

DO THE RIGHT THING director Lee, real name SHELTON JACKSON LEE, says he sued Viacom to protect his name from a deliberate attempt to capitalise on his image and prestige.

Viacom's lawyer, VICTOR KOVNER, had asked the judge to let the name change proceed, saying there is no evidence the public would assume a connection between the network and the film-maker.

Lee included in court papers affidavits from former Senator BILL BRADLEY and actors Ossie Davis and Ed Norton, saying they thought of Lee when they heard about Spike TV. Some said they believed he had become affiliated with the network.

13/06/2003 09:19