The Walt Disney Co has filed an objection to musician Deadmau5's use of stylized ears, claiming they are too similar to its iconic signature logo. Filing with the U.S Patent and Trademark Office, the company said that Deadmau5's logo is "nearly identical in appearance, connotation and overall commercial impression to Disney's Mouse Ears Marks."
Deadmau5 laughed off Disney's legal action [Getty/Steve Lawson]
Disney noted that "both parties marks are comprised of a round head with prominent round mouse ears in silhouette," and that the trademark designation was likely to cause confusion.
Deadmau5, aka Joel Zimmerman, is one of the world's most popular electronic musician and has long used the mouse-head logo.
Deadmau5 tweeted, "Disney thinks you might confuse an established electronic musician / performer with a cartoon mouse. That's how stupid they think you are."
Any resemblance? [Getty/Janette Pellegrini]
Later, with tongue firmly in cheek, Zimmerman tweeted, "im sorry frozen f*cking tanked huge.... i really am. but cmon" - a reference to the studio's monster hit that is now the biggest grossing animated movie of all time.
Though Disney has been using the mouse ears as far back as 1928, Deadmau5 holds trademarks on the ears in other countries - which could mean that this lawsuit will run and run.
The musician has until October 12 to answer Disney's objections, with an extended period for discovery and trial, according to Variety.
Deadmau5's seventh studio album while(1<2) was released on June 17, 2014 by mau5trap, Astralwerks and Virgin EMI Records. It debuted at No.1 on the US Billboard Dance/Electronic Albums and No.9 on the US Billboard 200.