Prince’s estate in legal battle with makers of ‘Purple Rain’ wine

The late hitmaker's estate is demanding the cancellation of the 'Purple Rain' trademark awarded to L’uva Bella Winery

Prince‘s estate is currently locked in a legal battle with an Ohio winery which is selling a “Purple Rain Concord” wine.

The late hitmaker’s estate sued L’uva Bella Winery last summer, demanding the cancellation of the ‘Purple Rain’ trademark awarded to the beverage company back in 2019. It argued that a “likelihood of confusion” and “false suggestion of a connection” with Prince were grounds for its petition.

In a new filing obtained by Rolling Stone, the winery has put forth a bold new defence, claiming that the late musician’s famed disdain for alcohol means that consumers would never link the singer or his legacy to its product.

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“To the extent Prince was famous, he was equally famous for his disdain of alcohol,” lawyers for L’uva Bella Winery wrote in a new motion filed with the US Trademark Trial and Appeal Board.

“Prince was a teetotaler who despised alcohol,” the filing continues. “Prince never lent his name to any product or enterprise during his lifetime, and never endorsed or promoted any products, let alone any products bearing the name ‘Purple Rain.’ The fans of Prince, knowledgeable about his beliefs and views, would never associate an alcohol-containing product with the artist.”

A decision is yet to be made in the dispute previously reported by Billboard.

In January, the singer’s estate asked the federal board to grant its cancellation request without a trial. L’uva’s lawyers responded by saying they deserved a chance to proceed through discovery.

In a statement shared with Rolling Stone, lawyers for Prince’s estate said: “The estate protects the intellectual property Prince created during his lifetime, including his image and the trademark ‘Purple Rain,’ which is strongly associated with him. Comerica, as the court-appointed personal representative [of the estate], has a fiduciary duty to protect the estate’s intellectual property and brought this proceeding pursuant to that duty.”

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“‘Purple Rain’ is Prince’s most famous song, album, tour, movie, etc., and there can be no doubt that ‘Purple Rain’ signifies Prince. Prince is also undisputedly one of the most famous musicians of all time,” they espouse in their filings.

L’uva Bella Winery’s “Purple Rain Concord” wine is currently available on the company’s website for $7.99 per bottle.

Meanwhile, an unreleased Prince album under the late star’s alter-ego Camille, is set to be shared with the world by Third Man Records.

In 1986, Prince wrote and recorded a self-titled album called ‘Camille’ under his short-lived feminine alter-ego, but it was scrapped shortly after test pressings of the finished album were produced.

In a new interview, Third Man co-founder Ben Blackwell revealed that the label are going to make sure ‘Camille’ finally sees the light of day.

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