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Jesse Eisenberg Sues Over 'Camp Hell' DVD

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By Stephanie Rabiner, Esq. on December 01, 2011 5:56 AM

Jesse Eisenberg has your back.

Or so it would seem. Despite only having about 5 minutes of screen time, the Oscar-nominated actor appears solo on the cover of the DVD release of 2010's Camp Hell. Ticked off that the studios are misleading fans and capitalizing on his newfound fame, Eisenberg has filed a lawsuit against Lionsgate and Grindstone Entertainment.

He's asking for $3 million--more than it cost to make the movie.

Eisenberg appeared in the film back in 2007 as a favor to friends, according to the filed complaint. He was paid $3,000 to shoot a few flashback scenes--a rate significantly less than what he was earning at the time.

Nonetheless, when released in August 2011, the cover of the Camp Hell DVD featured only Eisenberg's face and name. Pointing to online complaints, the lawsuit calls the cover an "attempt to fraudulently deceive and mislead the public."

In legal terms, Jesse Eisenberg is accusing Lionsgate and Grindstone of misappropriating his image and of engaging in unfair business practices.

The stronger of these claims would be the allegation of unfair business practices. Eisenberg is accusing the companies of engaging in false advertisement. Arguably, the DVD cover implies that he is the star of Camp Hell, when in reality he's seen for only a few minutes.

If he can prove that the DVD cover is a method of false advertising, he may be able to succeed on the misappropriation claim. Even if he did give permission to use his image, he didn't give permission to use his image to perpetuate a fraud.

Because of the disparity between what he's asking for and what the Camp Hell DVD is really worth, chances are this lawsuit will settle. Plus, Jesse Eisenberg has already accomplished what he set out to do--warn his fans about the movie.

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