A lawsuit filed by PBS’ “This Old House” star Bob Vila has been dismissed by a Chicago Federal judge on Tuesday. Vila claims that a Rockford, Ill., man used his name and celebrity status to promote a home expo show. The lawsuit claimed that the case against Robert Smith came because Smith misrepresented to promotional companies that he could get Vila’s endorsement by selling the rights for at least $5,000. Vila was seeking $2M in damages for each unauthorized use of his name.
As the Chicago Tribune reports:
The allegedly fraudulent promotions dated back to at least September 2015, when a home expo at the Lake County Fairgrounds in Grayslake used Vila's photo and the tag line, "The Home Expo Bob Vila Promotes" in advertisements. Smith had contacted Vila in July 2015 requesting permission to use Vila's name in sponsored tweets — permission that was not granted, according to the lawsuit.
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