Mel Gibson threatens Chilean honey vendor with legal action over use of Braveheart image

KATHMANDU: Hollywood actor Mel Gibson has sent letter to Chilean vendor Yohanna Agurto warning legal action for using an image of the actor from the 1995 movie Braveheart to promote her honey.

According to Reuters, the letter from the actor's lawyers have threatened legal action if she did not withdraw the product immediately. The letter was signed by an assistant to Leigh Brecheen, a California-based lawyer.

The letter was aimed at preventing the use of Gibson's image, not banning the honey's name, Reuters quoted Brecheen as saying. "You need to get permission to use or duplicate a photo still from a film, which is owned by the respective studio that released the film. None of this is meant to prevent anyone from earning an income or creating a business, but there are proper channels to contact and clearances you need to go through to make sure you have the approval for such usage," she was quoted as saying.

Quoting Agurto, who spoke from her home in the capital Santiago, Reuters revealed that she was so frightened on receiving the letter on August 12 that she deleted her work email account. She had only started repacking and selling the southern Chilean product in June after the spread of the coronavirus caused widespread unemployment, she said, adding she only earned enough to support her family, Reuters added.

After she shared the letter with Chilean media, she said, her following on social media grew "exponentially". On August 13, she addressed an appeal directly to the actor on Twitter: "Dear #MelGibson, would you let us use your image on our honey please? Mis kids and me we would be infinitely grateful. Our honey is only for brave hearts," Reuters added.