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Atlanta Braves In Legal Tussle With Disney Over Upcoming Movie Entitled ‘Brave’

(screengrab via

An upcoming film from Pixar Animation Studios entitled Brave is being met with opposition by the Atlanta Braves organization as the team claims the title of the film qualifies as trademark infringement. Wait. What?

The movie, set to be released in the summer of 2012 revolves around the exploits of Princess Merida and in no way has anything to do with baseball, let alone the Atlanta Braves. Yep. I’ll chalk this one up to Bad Idea Legal Battles.

Originally called The Bow and the Bear, a re-titling of the movie was set in motion last March when Disney submitted trademark applications for the title of Brave, apparently much to the chagrin of the Atlanta Braves, who filed a series of objections to many of the trademark applications, since the organization has apparently little else to do.

From a Stitch Kingdom report (via Big League Stew):

Although trademarks are specific to their singular and plural forms and the Braves do not possess any trademarks for the word BRAVE (only BRAVES), the organization believes that damages will occur as a result of Disney’s trademarks being approved as they have used the singular form before on merchandise and insist it is common for fans, media, et al to use the singular form when referring to a single player, whereas the pluralized form refers to the entire team.

The team and Disney are now engaging in private negotiations to settle the issue, which I suppose is nice of Disney, because if you ask me, this has to be one of the dumbest things I have ever read. The Atlanta Braves do realize that they didn’t invent the word “brave,” right? That the word has other meanings than that of the name of their baseball team? I could see a team like the Red Sox opposing a movie title with their team’s name in it, but Brave is a completely different situation.

If the Braves somehow succeeded in their trademark challenge — which, although not an expert on trademark law, I suspect they will most definitely not prevail — I bet other MLB teams will be kicking themselves for not thinking of this earlier, as teams like the Pirates, Angels and Rangers have had their team name co-opted on many occasions. But perhaps most importantly, to think that the movie Twins might never had been made. What an ugly world that would have been.