NEW YORK (Reuters Life!) - The actress Lindsay Lohan has sued E*Trade Financial Corp for $100 million, saying a “milkaholic” baby girl who appeared in a recent commercial was modeled after her.
Lohan alleged that online brokerage’s use in the ad the girl, also named Lindsay, improperly invoked her “likeness, name, characterization, and personality” without permission, violating her right of privacy.
In her lawsuit filed Monday in a Nassau County, New York state court, the 23-year-old actress sought $50 million of compensatory damages and $50 million of exemplary damages. She also demanded that E*Trade stop running the ad and turn over all copies to her.
Lohan's lawyer Stephanie Ovadia did not return requests for a comment. An E*Trade spokeswoman declined to comment, saying the New York-based company had not reviewed the complaint. A copy of the complaint is available at www.tmz.com .
The New York Post reported the lawsuit earlier Tuesday. It said Ovadia maintained that Lohan has the same “single-name” recognition as celebrities like Oprah Winfrey and Madonna.
E*Trade’s ad was shown in the February 7 Super Bowl, which according to Nielsen media drew about 106.5 million American viewers, a record for a U.S. television program. It is part of a series of ads featuring babies who play the markets.
In the ad, a baby boy apologizes to his girlfriend through a video chat for not calling her the night before because he was on E*Trade.
The camera switches to the girl, who asks suspiciously, “And that milkaholic Lindsay wasn’t over?”
It then switches back to the boy, who uneasily replies “Lindsay?” before another baby girl, presumably Lindsay, moves into the frame and asks, “Milk-a-what?”
Lohan was ordered in 2007 to serve one day in jail, undergo an alcohol education program and spend three years on probation after admitting to drunk driving and cocaine possession.
“It is clear to me that my life has become completely unmanageable because I am addicted to alcohol and drugs,” she said in a statement at the time.
Various problems have made the onetime child star in Disney movies a staple of Hollywood gossip pages and the paparazzi.
A spokesman for Grey Group, which the Post said produced the E*Trade ad, told the newspaper the “Lindsay” in the ad was named after a member of its account team.
Grey Group declined to comment on Tuesday.
“Lindsay” was in 2008 the 380th most popular name for newborn American girls, according to the U.S. Social Security Administration. That was down from 241th in 2004, when Lohan’s popular film “Mean Girls” was released.
The E*Trade case is Lohan v. E*Trade Securities LLC, New York State Supreme Court, Nassau County, No. 004579/2010.
Reporting by Jonathan Stempel; Additional reporting by Steve Eder; Editing by Tim Dobbyn
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