Warren Miller Entertainment Sues Level 1 (Updated 09/28)

Warren Miller Entertainment Sues Level 1 (Updated 09/28)

Tuesday, Setpember 29 Update

Read our full, in-depth coverage, updated today.

Monday, September 28 Update

As of Friday, September 25, Warren Miller — the person, not WME — has joined the party by filing to include himself as a “third party intervenor.” Miller is effectively supporting Level 1, stating the the lawsuit is misdirected and the case at hand is between him and WME, not Level and WME.

Full details of this and a ton more information is on the way shortly.

Past Updates

Rumors have been flying around the ski industry for several days, but on Monday it became official: Warren Miller Entertainment is suing Level 1 Productions for trademark infringement due to Warren Miller’s participation in the new film “Refresh.”

As the case is just getting started, information is limited right now, but there’s a good recap of what’s going down at Examiner.com.

And another good one at The Denver Post.

When more details become available, or parties are available for comment, we’ll let you know.

3:50 PM Update:

Level 1 Productions Founder and President, Josh Berman:

Level 1’s interview, and subsequent inclusion of Warren Miller in our new film, “Refresh,” was motivated by our desire to create a meaningful film that helped to bridge the generation gap and do something good for the sport of skiing.

Level 1 has never, nor will ever, have any intention or desire to deceive our audiences into thinking that our films are in any way related to Warren Miller Entertainment, or further, that we are trying to capitalize on the brand and image created and purveyed by Warren Miller Entertainment. To the contrary, we have always gone out of our way to promote the Level 1 brand and our films, as entirely unique within the skiing community.

Its disappointing that Warren Miller Entertainment would seek to put a stop to something that in all reality should serve to increase the reach and scope of the Warren Miller name, and in turn, the value of their own brand and films.

We’re very pleased by the Judge’s denial of Warren Miller Entertainment’s Motion for Temporary Restraining Order.

-Josh Berman

09/24: Warren Miller Entertainment

Freeskier has received a statement from Warren Miller Entertainment.

BOULDER, CO (September 23, 2009) — On September 21, 2009, Warren Miller Entertainment (WME) filed a lawsuit against Level 1 Productions seeking to stop Level 1’s intentional misuse of WME’s registered trademarks to promote its latest film release.

Beginning with the pioneering work of ski and film icon Warren Miller, and for the last 20 years under WME’s stewardship, WME has invested significant resources in the development and preservation of the Warren Miller brand. The careful and creative use of that brand, and the annual Warren Miller ski films that form the centerpiece of WME’s business, have played an integral role in establishing and defining the ski film industry. Under the trademark laws, but even more critically under a common sense of fairness, WME believes it imperative to retain control of the use of the Warren Miller brand.

WME will continue its longstanding support of the ski film industry and its affinity with the community of outdoor enthusiasts, and assures its fans and followers that the regrettably necessary legal steps taken will not adversely affect WME’s support of, and collaboration with, independent film companies and filmmakers.

Update September 25

Denver Post writer Jason Blevins has a little more info this morning.

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