Cape Town - It’s #BlackPanther week and everyone in the world is excited and gearing up to go support the film.
There’s no doubt about the amount of excitement and positive vibes this film has created. However, British-Liberian artist Lina Iris Viktor says her work has been used without permission in Kendrick Lamar’s recent music video for “All the Stars” – a song from the movie’s soundtrack.
Lina had been contacted twice by the film’s creators for permission to feature her work but she decided not to participate as she wasn’t happy with the proposed conditions.
A letter written by her lawyer, Christopher Robinson, to the 30-year-old rapper’s mentor, Anthony Tiffith at Top Dawg Entertainment, reportedly said, “The infringement of Ms Viktor’s rights is wilful and egregious”.
The letter further stated that Viktor is open “to discuss[ing] a resolution of all her claims, consisting at a minimum of a public apology for the unauthorised use and a license fee.”
In a telephonic interview with the New York Times, the artist said, “Why would they do this? It’s an ethical issue, because what the whole film purports is that it’s about black empowerment, African excellence – that’s the whole concept of the story. And at the same time they’re stealing from African artists.”
Kendrick’s representatives refused to comment at the time.
South Africa’s Asanda Sizani and Rharha Nembhard also commented on the plagiarism of Viktor’s work: