Above left is Lawrence Sullivan, the infamous "Florida Joker" who was arrested in 2017 in Miami, Florida for allegedly pointing a gun at automobiles driving by. Above right is a character featured in the new Grand Theft Auto 6 trailer just released last week. Mr. Joker isn't happy.
""GTA, we got to talk – if not, you got to give me like a mil or two," Sullivan said on Instagram. "That's me—that's the person they got their inspiration from me… Florida Joker ain't having that. Y'all took my likeness. Y'all took my life."
From The Guardian:
Many scenes in the trailer harkened back to viral news stories in Florida, where the game is set, including one scene involving a man with facial tattoos that closely resemble Sullivan's and with purple hair[…]
Business Insider reported that Sullivan may not stand much of a chance in court against Rockstar Games should he try to collect money over his likeness through a lawsuit. The actor Lindsay Lohan sued the company in 2014, claiming a character in Grand Theft Auto 5 mirrored her appearance, but the state supreme court of New York dismissed the lawsuit in 2016, ruling the company never mentioned her name, used her photo or featured her acting.
The court added that Lohan would still not have been owed compensation even if it found her likeness had been used, arguing that advertising laws do not apply to works of fiction in the same way. "The images are not of Lohan herself, but merely the avatar in the game that Lohan claims is a depiction of her," it said.