Fresh Prince's Carlton Sues Fortnite

Alfonso Ribeiro is not happy!

December 18, 2018
Alfonso Ribeiro

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According to an article published by CNN.com, Alfonso Ribeiro is suing both Fortnite and NBA 2K series for profiting off of the dance moves he created during his time on popular 90's sitcom, The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air.

As a player of Fortnite, I am familiar with the 'Fresh' emote (or dance move that you're able to use during gameplay) which imitates 'The Carlton' dance move made popular by Ribeiro's Fresh Prince character, Carlton Banks. 'Fresh' is a pretty popular emote (not surprisingly) amongst gamers that often have dance-offs on spawn island as they await the start of the Battle Royale to begin.

While Fortnite is free to play, many are encouraged to buy upgrades to make the game more fun with V-Bucks (fake in-game money purchased with real money). There are many other 'viral' dance moves that the game makes available to players through emotes for a select amount of V-Bucks.

'Floss' is another emote that is causing controversy as it replicates 'The Floss' which was created by Russell Horning (or as he's known on the internet, The Backpack Kid - from Katy Perry's 2017 Saturday Night Live performance of 'Swish Swish'). According to The Daily Mail, The Backpack Kid's mother is also suing Fortnite's owners (Epic Games) for unfairly profiting off of the dance move.

TMZ recently uncovered a video of Ribeiro admitting that he 'stole' the inspiration for The Carlton, which could make the lawsuit difficult for him to win. No matter how this all shakes out, this is an important reminder that even if you're a massively popular video game like Fortnite (or NBA 2K series) you still have to get permission before using someone else's intellectual property if you plan to make a profit.