‘Fortnite’ studio Epic Games is being sued over a copyrighted dance move

Footage maps the 'Fortnite' emote directly onto the dance move

Epic Games is being sued by choreographer Kyle Hanagami due to a Fortnite emote that resembles one of his dances.

As reported by Dexerto, the “It’s Complicated” emote from Fortnite bares an incredibly strong resemblance to a dance copyrighted by Hanagami. The dance move can be seen in a YouTube video from Hanagami, set to Charlie Puth’s ‘How Long’. The video has just under 36million views.

Hanagami’s suit alleges that the Fortnite emote copies the hook of his dance and without any kind of permission to do so, after the emote was released in August 2020. The suit also asks for a court order to prevent the emote from appearing in Fortnite, as well as seeking legal fees and unspecified compensatory damages, according to GamesIndustry.biz.

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In the video above, which was posted by Hanagami’s lawyers Hecht Partners, a direct comparison is made between the dance move and emote in question. The dance and the Fortnite emote are presented side by side, as well as overlapping one another. The video also shows a drawing outlining the Fortnite emote, which is placed directly over the dance, mapping it almost perfectly over the footage.

While the Fortnite wiki is unofficial, it shows that fans have also spotted the similarity, as it notes that the “It’s Complicated” emote appears to be based on the dance move from Hanagami.

This is not the first time that Epic Games has been sued over a dance appearing in Fortnite. Alfonso Ribeiro previously sued the developer for allegedly stealing the Carlton dance from Fresh Prince of Bel-Air. Though Ribeiro later went on to drop the suit.

In other news, Valve has confirmed that a banking issue means it cannot pay developers based in Ukraine, Belarus, or Russia.

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