Another Viral Dancer Is Suing Epic Games
Photo Credit: Photo: Sergey Galyonkin

Another Viral Dancer Is Suing Epic Games

Epic Games, the makers of Fortnite, has another lawsuit on its hands from a performer who said the game stole and is profiting off of his dance moves.

Russell Horning, the teen sensation who went viral last year after posting his”floss” dance on social media, is suing Epic Games and Take-Two Interactive with the help of his mother. Epic Games is the maker of Fortnite and Take-Two Interactive makes NBA 2K. Horning alleges that both games profit from his dances and use it unfairly.

Fortnite has hundreds of millions of users and brings in a massive amount of money. The game has made over $1 billion since 2017 and in July, Fortnite began selling emotes that gives its characters dances.

The lawsuit is the latest in a string of litigation over the creative rights of dance moves presented in the gaming industry. Since the beginning of December, rapper 2 Milly, actor Alfonso Ribeiro and Lenwood ‘Skip’ Hamilton have sued Epics games for using their likeness in its video games — 2 Milly and Ribeiro are specifically suing for the use of the “Milly Rock” and the “Carlton Dance,” respectively.

Epic Games has been under fire from entertainers and creators since its Emotes became more popular.

“Fortnite should put the actual rap songs behind the dances that make so much money as Emotes,” Chance the Rapper said in a July tweet. “Black creatives created and popularized these dances but never monetized them. Imagine the money people are spending on these Emotes being shared with the artists that made them.”

Epic Games’ latest legal battles could reshape how artists and dancers monetize off of the gaming industry and how developers find inspiration.