SANTA ANA, CA (CN)- It’s a story about a celebrity, oral sex, and a back tattoo.
A fight between a tiger and a snake is carefully drawn on the back of a man named Kevin Michael Brophy.
It’s a jury trial in federal court in Orange County that started on Tuesday over who owns the rights to the tiger, the snake, and the tattoo — who can use them and for what purpose.
Cardi B, the Grammy-winning, multi-platinum-selling rapper, and songwriter were unknown to Brophy in 2016.
The album cover for “Gangsta Bitch Music, Vol. 1” featured parts of Brophy’s back tattoo, which surprised Brophy. The rapper was in the back of a limo, according to the album cover.
At the same time, a shirtless man with a tattoo similar to Brophy’s did cunnilingus on him while he drank Corona and looked at the camera with his hand on his head.
“As a father of two, I would never sign off on an image like this,” Brophy testified on Tuesday. “Nobody ever asked for my permission. This was just a random image that appeared in my life. ”
Brophy appeared in court with his head shaved and numerous tattoos visible on the back of his head, neck, and sleeves, as well as his 11-year-old wife, with whom he has two children.
Brophy was the first person to testify. He said that his wife asked him a lot of questions about the album cover and that his kids also asked him about it.
Brophy has been suing Cardi B, whose real name is Belcalis Almanza, for nearly five years. In it, he said that the album cover was an invasion of privacy and a theft of Brophy’s identity or likeness.
In his opening statement, Brophy’s lawyer, Barry Cappello, told the eight-member jury, “This lawsuit is simple.” ” This was not hers to accept. This was his resemblance. “Personal identity is a private citizen’s personal property.”
The tattoo, which covers Brophy’s entire back and is known as a “back piece” in tattoo parlance, took 50–60 hours to complete over the course of a year and a half. It was created by Brophy and Tim Hendricks, well-known tattoo artists.
Brophy told the court, “This was my Michelangelo.” “‘I can’t believe you own that piece,’ people would say. ‘Can I look at it?’ It’s one thing to get a single small tattoo.
This was an adventure. It took a great deal of pride. I want to protect it as much as possible. He said, “Once I saw it on the raunchy album cover,” “It simply felt devalued. My Michelangelo had been stolen from the wall. ”
The original shoot featured Cardi B and an African American model.
However, his back tattoos, one of which depicted a cartoon animal with his finger in his mouth, was deemed insufficient — not the appropriate tone for a “Gangsta bitch.” As a result, the graphic designer working on the cover substituted a tattoo of a tiger fighting a serpent that he found on the internet — Brophy’s.
Cardi B’s lawyer, Peter Anderson, told the jury in his opening statement that the graphic designer had used a small section of Brophy’s tattoo and transformed it. He described the tattoo as “commonplace,” one of many tiger tattoos he found on the internet.
“He did not use the easily visible tattoos that appear in Mr. Brody’s photo,” Anderson explained. “He did not imitate the tattoos on Mr. Brody’s neck or head. He took a bite out of the tiger. And he slapped it on a photo of a toned, muscular black man—the model, who has a full head of black hair. ”
“While they claim that’s Mr. Brody’s likeness,” Anderson added, referring to the album cover, “that’s a black man with hair, and this is a white man with a shaved head,” he motioned to Brophy.
Brophy, according to Anderson, was unable to identify anyone who recognized him from the album cover. Anderson said that Brophy would always be linked to “Gangsta Bitch Music, Vol. 1” because of the lawsuit, which got a lot of attention in the media.
“That’s when [Brophy and his wife] began receiving texts,” Anderson explained. “There were remarks and jokes. That, however, is a self-inflicted wound.
He contributed to this by identifying himself when no one else had. Brophy will take the stand again on Wednesday morning, the second day of a four-day trial.
What does Cardi B’s tattoo mean?
Cardi B’s tattoo on the underside of her left wrist is an example of this. It features the name Tommy G in red lettering. Cardi B’s ex-boyfriend Tommy Geez, whom she dated when she first rose to fame on VHS’s reality show Love & Hip Hop: New York, is represented by Tommy G.
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