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Nike files trademark lawsuit over Lil Nas X’s “Satan Shoes”

The shoes were created by Brooklyn company MSCHF as a tie-in with Lil Nas' latest track, ‘Montero (Call Me By Your Name)’

Lil Nas X CREDIT: Mike Coppola/FilmMagic
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Nike has filed a trademark infringement lawsuit against the company that produced a line of “Satan Shoes” in collaboration with Lil Nas X.

The shoes are customised Nike Air Max 97s and were allegedly designed without the sportswear giant’s permission.

Brooklyn-based MSCHF is responsible for the footwear, which features a drop of human blood mixed with ink in an air bubble on each shoe. According to The New York Times, six MSCHF employees donated blood for use in the project.

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Each shoe also contains a pentagram ornament, an inverted cross and the inscription “Luke 10:18”, referencing the Bible verse in which Satan falls from heaven.

Appropriately enough, each pair were available for $1,018. All 666 units sold out in under a minute.

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Lil Nas X released the shoes as a tie-in with his latest track, ‘MONTERO (Call Me By Your Name)’. The shoes emulate the satanic theme of the song’s music video, which sees the rapper sliding into hell via a pole and giving Satan a lap dance.

The clip was met with criticism upon its release last week, to which Lil Nas X responded, “me sliding down a CGI pole isn’t what’s destroying society.”

Nike filed suit against MSCHF in federal court in New York on Monday (March 29).

“Nike files the lawsuit to maintain control of its brand, to protect its intellectual property, and to clear the confusion and dilution in the marketplace by setting the record straight – Nike has not and does not approve or authorize MSCHF’s customized Satan Shoes,” the lawsuit reads, per Business Insider.

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According to the BBC, Nike’s lawsuit asks the court to stop the company from selling the shoes and using the brand’s swoosh design mark.

“MSCHF and its unauthorised Satan Shoes are likely to cause confusion and dilution and create an erroneous association between MSCHF’s products and Nike,” the lawsuit reportedly reads.

“In fact, there is already evidence of significant confusion and dilution occurring in the marketplace, including calls to boycott Nike in response to the launch of MSCHF’s Satan Shoes, based on the mistaken belief that Nike has authorised or approved this product.”

Lil Nas X has not been named as a defendant in the lawsuit, but has poked fun at Nike’s decision to sue on social media.

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