AceShowbiz - Zac Efron and Netflix found themselves being entangled in legal trouble. It was unveiled that the "High School Musical" actor and the giant streaming service have been slapped with a trademark infringement lawsuit over "Down to Earth" series.
Filing the lawsuit was a company called Down To Earth Organics in Manhattan federal court. According to court documents by TMZ, DTE "locked down the rights to 'Down To Earth' for media and entertainment purposes well before Zac and Netflix premiered their show."
Down to Earth claims its business is threatened by "potentially fraudulent" health advice that was given on the show. The brand also takes issue with Zac's promotion of Nature Valley bars attached to the show's name as it sells its own healthy snacks. For the company, Zac's new line is "creating additional confusion" among customers.
Speaking about the legal action, Joel Dichter, an attorney for Down to Earth, told Reuters, "My client could not just sit back and let Zac Efron, Darin Olien and Netflix go on to a new season without accountability for their action."
According to the court papers, DTE applied for a trademark for clothing with the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office in August 2017 and for snack bars in April 2018. It filed for trademark registration for podcasts in April 2020, months before the premier of the Netflix show.
Back in April 2021, Zac and Netflix were accused of stealing the "Down to Earth" concept from Australian presenter
Ben Waddell]. Ben told the Daily Mail Australia that the documentary series is an almost exact replica of the program he shopped around the U.S. back in 2018.
He failed to get the concept off the ground in America, so decided to return to his homeland to shoot a local version of the program, the pilot of which he claims Zac and Netflix copied. After struggling to get hold of Zac, Ben enlisted the help of local media to "track him down" and issued a legal notice demanding a response to his allegations.