Bloomberg Law
Dec. 9, 2019, 4:21 PM

‘Fortnite’ Maker Says It Doesn’t Infringe Pumpkin Dancer Rights

Blake Brittain
Blake Brittain

The maker of the hit game “Fortnite” sued in Manhattan federal court for a ruling that it didn’t infringe the copyrights or trademarks of a man who went viral for dancing with a pumpkin on his head.

Fortnite’s “Pump It Up” emote isn’t substantially similar to Matthew Geiler’s dance, and Geiler doesn’t have protectable rights in the “Dancing Pumpkin Man” character regardless, Epic Games Inc. told the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York Dec. 6. Epic also says Geiler signed a license allowing it to recreate the dance.

Geiler gained viral notoriety for a video of ...