A Los Angeles judge has thrown out former Nicaraguan dictator Manuel Noriega’s lawsuit against Santa Monica’s Activision Blizzard Inc. for using his likeness in its Call of Duty video game without permission.
Former New York City Mayor Rudy Giuliani represented the video game publisher along with Kelly Klaus of Munger, Tolles & Olson LLP in downtown L.A.
Storylines in the “Call of Duty” franchise are fictional, but grounded in historical events.
Superior Court Judge William H. Fahey’s ruling noted that the Noriega character appears in the game for a matter of minutes and utters fewer than 30 lines.
“The Court concludes that the marketability and economic value of the challenged work in this case comes not from Noriega, but from the creativity, skill and reputation of the defendants,” Fahey wrote in his order granting Activision’s motion to strike.
Activision Chief Executive Bobby Kotick voiced his approval following Fahey’s order.
“Today's ruling is a victory for the 40 million dedicated members of our Call of Duty community and global audiences who enjoy historical fiction across all works of art,” Kotick said in a statement.
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