Living your life in the public eye comes with a lot of opportunities (and usually a nice chunk of cash), but there is also a downside to fame. We all know that fame can be ugly, and one of the things that contributes to this is when people want to take advantage of you; whether this means making references to a celebrity to profit from them, or suing them for a completely bizarre reason (like stealing a chicken in first grade) so that the individual can get some media attention.
Below are 15 of the most mind-boggling and downright weird lawsuits that some of our favorite celebs have been involved in, and they may make you think twice before saying or doing anything involving a celebrity ever again!
15 Michael Jordan Was Sued For Resembling Another Guy
Imagine being sued, just because someone looks a lot like you? It seems absurd, right? Well, unfortunately, this is what happened to Michael Jordan after a man named Allen Heckard, who admittedly bears striking resemblance to the star, decided to sue him for $416 million for emotional pain and suffering.
According to Time, he also sued Nike for the same amount, because he believed they were responsible for making Jordan a star.
You’d think he would have just enjoyed soaking up the limelight–because who wouldn’t want to be Michael Jordan—but Heckard alleged that it was very uncomfortable for him to be mistaken for a superstar. However, he reportedly ended up dropping the lawsuit, but there’s no word if he still gets hit up for autographs for being a doppelgänger.
14 Mila Kunis Was Allegedly A Chicken Thief In The First Grade
In perhaps the most absurd lawsuit of all, Mila Kunis’ name was in all the headlines in 2015, after a Ukrainian singer, Kristina Karo accused her of stealing from her. But what did Kunis allegedly steal? Was it a killer pair of Louboutins? Perhaps a fancy handbag or a fat wad of cash? No, it was a chicken.
Wait, things get even crazier because according to People, Karo’s lawsuit stated that she was suing the actress for $5,000 because in first grade Kunis stole her chicken. And this reportedly left her with emotional distress. Why did she wait so long to come clean with this story? Well, apparently 25 years later, Karo found she and Kunis were both living in Los Angeles and all the feelings came flooding back to her.
This is bizarre, but considering that Karo had just dropped a single, it made a lot of sense to get her name out there, even if it was for the wrong reasons.
13 Mariah Carey Sued By Alleged Biological Mother Of 'Her' Children
Mariah Carey and Nick Cannon are parents to twins, Monroe and Moroccan. They are adorable, so I understand people looking at them and thinking they wish they had kids that were that cute,
but I don’t think anyone, except Tina Seals, actually believes they are the mother of those children.
Seals, who has also made headlines for claiming that she was Beyonce’s surrogate with Blue Ivy, set her sights on Carey in 2014. According to Radar Online, Seals claimed that her eggs had been used to conceive Carey and Cannon’s children and that they had not notified her that they were fertilizing her eggs and used them without her permission. She claimed she wanted full custody rights as well as financial support. The judge said heck no!
12 Kim Kardashian May Think Twice Before Having A Sham Marriage
Kim Kardashian and Kris Humphries' marriage only lasted 72 days, and a lot of fans were very disappointed with the results, especially since the nuptials had been televised as part of a TV special. But someone got more than upset with the short-lived relationship, and that was comedian Rob Delaney, who decided to sue Kardashian for having a sham marriage.
Delaney explained his reason for getting a lawsuit to MTV News, saying, "I'm suing Kim Kardashian and Ryan Seacrest and E! Entertainment Television and Comcast for perpetrating what we now know to be a hoax, their marriage. It can't be real. I want them to stay married. I want them to stick it out, so as an incentive, I am suing them for monetary damages — but only $18 million, not a lot. That's just what she was paid for the wedding episodes themselves."
What a considerate citizen!
11 Charlie Sheen’s Scenario In 'Two And A Half Men' Was Too Familiar
Charlie Sheen has ruffled a lot of feathers over the years and has been involved in several lawsuits, but this one is by far the most bizarre.
According to People, Sheen was sued by a woman named Ursula Auburn after she felt that a scenario in Two and a Half Men was too similar to real-life.
The storyline in question involved a character named Rose, who Auburn claimed looked, sounded, and even dressed a lot like her. She reportedly also claimed that the character had some of the same encounters she's had with Sheen, and sued him for not asking her permission to base a character on her.
Perhaps the strangest thing about this whole lawsuit was that it was actually settled outside of court...
10 Gwyneth Paltrow Was Sued By Another Chris Martin
We all know Gwyneth Paltrow consciously uncoupled with husband Chris Martin, but this lawsuit has nothing to do with her former husband, but rather a man who has the same name. The man reportedly filed an emergency restraining order against Paltrow and Donald Sterling because according to Page Six, he alleged that Paltrow and Sterling were lovers, and Sterling paid the actress $500,000 per month so that they could “breed" blonde-haired, blue-eyed babies. UM, okay.
But wait, there’s more. He was also seeking $10 million and claims that Sterling thought he was the singer Chris Martin, which is why he reportedly ended up harassing him. The alleged harassment included phone calls and he also claims to have received a rock through his window.
It shouldn’t come as a shock that this man got nothing from this suit.
9 Tara Reid Got Mad Over A 'Sky Las Vegas Condominiums' Ad
You can understand a celebrity wanting to sue when their name or likeness is being used, because after all, that’s how they make their money. That said, there are still some celebrity lawsuits that are pretty hilarious because of how bizarre they are, and Tara Reid was apart of one of these lawsuits.
The actress sued owners of a Las Vegas condominium project after they used her name in an ad, which read, “Dear Tara Reid. Come let it all hang out.”
Innocent? Well, yes, except the thing that really annoyed Reid is that they were seemingly referring to her nip slip on a red carpet of P-Diddy’s birthday celebrations. According to Today, Reid’s lawsuit alleged that the company’s wording made it seem as though she has intentionally exposed herself.
8 Miley Cyrus Learned A Lesson About Pulling Faces
When Miley Cyrus was just 16, she angered a woman named Lucie J. Kim so much, that she found herself embroiled in a $4 billion lawsuit. The reason for this was because Cyrus allegedly took a photo with friends in 2009, and in it, she was making slanting eyes, which according to Time, she insisted was just her making a goofy face and was not meant to be offensive.
But for Kim it was offensive, and she alleged that Cyrus had violated the civil rights of Asian Pacific Islanders and insisted that Cyrus be responsible for paying the circa one million Asian Pacific Islanders damages. This would amount to around $4,000 for each of the people in the area who had suffered from seeing the image.
Cyrus apologized, and the case was later dismissed.
7 Jay Z Allegedly Stole Lyrics From An Inmate
Jay Z is one of the most successful and respected rap artists in the music industry, but according to one man, he is the reason that this musician is the superstar he is today. According to Page Six,
a Florida man named Jeffrey Philistin sued Jay Z for stealing his image, his lyrics, and more.
The way it all came about is through a prison letter, because according to Philistin, who has been behind bars since 2006, he first got in touch with the rapper via an inmate named “Chuck,” and then started sending Jay Z lyrics through the mail. Lyrics he claims to have heard on the album, Watch the Throne.
The lawsuit reportedly claimed, “Mr. Carter has stolen the plaintiff lyrics, style, physical image through his lyrics. Also the plaintiff have given [sic] the defendant Mr. Carter ideas on how to write lyrics, how to zone rap, and other ideas how to write in universal god language.”
6 Lindsay Lohan Hated E Trade’s Reference To A Milk-A-Holic
There is a legitimate reason why celebs sue people because they are using their name or image, but Lindsay Lohan probably took this one too far when she decided to sue E-Trade over a Super Bowl ad.
According to Mental Floss, the ad in question involved two babies, and the female one was accusing her boyfriend of having that "milk-a-holic, Lindsay," over. We all know Lohan has had her substance abuse problems, and she felt that the company was referencing this. That said, the company only used her first name and the ad does not have her likeness so this is a tough one to prove.
The end result? According to CBS, Lohan and the company reached a settlement and she withdrew the lawsuit. And if this lawsuit teaches us anything, it’s that you have to be really, really careful with what you say and how you say it.
5 Sacha Baron Cohen Sued For Disrupting A Bingo Game With 'Bruno'
Sacha Baron Cohen’s film, Bruno, was offensive to a lot of people, but one woman claimed to have been physically injured during the mockumentary. According to Daily Mail, a woman by the name of Richelle Olson claims she was “attacked” by Bruno (a character that Cohen assumes) in a bingo hall in Palmdale, California, back in 2007.
She was upset that she had been told Cohen’s character was a celebrity, but when he arrived at the bingo game for the elderly, he did so wearing very little clothing
and she reportedly described him as being "extreme, outrageous, offensive caricature of a gay man…" She was also angry that he used vile language and when she tried to get the microphone away from him, a struggle ensued which left her with serious injuries, apparently.
4 Frank Sivero Sued 'The Simpsons' Creator Over A Character
Frank Sivero was not impressed with The Simpson’s creation of the character Louie, who he felt was modeled around the character, Frankie Carbone, which he portrayed in the Martin Scorsese-directed film Goodfellas, in 1990.
According to Deadline, the character of Louie, who is part of Fat Tony’s mafia in the popular animated series first appeared in October 1991 during in the fourth season, but although fans may have liked this character, Sivero definitely didn’t. Sivero reacted by suing FOX for $250 million because of the reported likeless between the cartoon character and Carbone, but according to Deadline, the network filed to dismiss the case and “specifically denies that the character ‘Louie’ in The Simpsons television series was based on Plaintiff or any character that he has ever played.”
3 Katherine Heigl Got Really Mad Over A Duane Reade Tweet
Katherine Heigl is rumored to not be the easiest celebrity to work with, but I can’t comment on that. What I can comment on though is her overreaction to a Duane Reade tweet. Heigl was seen shopping at the pharmacy, and thinking that this would bring the store great publicity, the social media team decided to tweet about how "@KatieHeigl can't resist shopping #NYC's favorite drugstore," along with a photo of the actress snapped outside the store.
I get it, celebs don’t want their name or their image to be used without their permission, especially if money can be made off this,
however, instead of just telling the company to delete the tweet and perhaps issue an apology, things took what many people seem to think was an unnecessary turn. According to Zimbio, Heigl sued for $6 million, but reportedly withdrew the lawsuit five months later.
2 Diamond Dallas Page Sued Jay Z For Using This Hand Gesture
It’s strange the things that make someone recognizable, right? It may be a quirky hairstyle, a specific pair of sunglasses, or in Diamond Dallas Page’s case, an interesting hand gesture. The former professional wrestler had reportedly copyrighted his hand gesture in 1996, which he referred to as the “Diamond Cutter.”
Jay-Z didn’t realize this, obviously, and ended up using the gesture on the cover of the Roc La Familia album, as well as merchandise, which resulted in Page taking action and filing a lawsuit against the rapper and Roc-A-Fella Records, MTV News reports. Page’s lawsuit was seeking an injunction, as well as monetary damage. His lawyer explained, "People would come up to him and ask him if he was letting Jay-Z use it or if he had licensed it to him. People [would also] say he's using Jay-Z's sign."
1 An Unnamed Chef Sued Simon Cowell For Her Shoes
To conclude this list, we bring you yet another odd lawsuit, this time involving Simon Cowell and an unnamed chef. According to People, the chef had arrived at Cowell’s home to interview for the position of being his personal chef,
however, when she arrived she was asked to remove her shoes, which reportedly were fitted with orthopedic insoles worth $500.
Sounds pretty standard at this point, right? But here’s where things get weird, apparently the shoes were not returned to the chef (what the heck Cowell allegedly did with them is puzzling), so she decided to sue for the cost of the shoes and the gas money that it took to get to his house. I think it’s safe to assume she didn’t get the job.
People magazine notes that the shoes were returned, but the whole scenario is just a bit crazy...