Los Angeles, CA – TI Beverage Group, owner of the www.truebloodwine.com website, sued retailer Hot Topic and HBO executives Sophia Chang and James Costas for trademark infringement and unfair competition. TI makes both alcoholic and non-alcoholic beverages and has used Vampire® as its trademark, in addition to other vampire related marks such as Vamp® and Dracola®. In 2009, TI purchased Trueblood Winery, LLC, which had been in business since 2002.
In 2008, HBO televised the True Blood television show in which the characters drink a fictional drink called Tru Blood. TI alleges that Omni Consumer Products entered into a licensing agreement with HBO to manufacture and sell a blood orange drink labeled Tru Blood in September of 2009. TI previously filed suit and notified the defendants of the alleged infringement and after not discovering the products on the shelves, believed that the product had been scrapped. TI alleges that it recently found the Tru Blood products at Hot Topic and filed the instant trademark infringement lawsuit. The case is TI Beverage Group, Ltd v. Hot Topin, Inc. et al., CV10-02089 RGK (C.D. Cal. 2010).