A filmmaker has filed suit against B.B. King for allegedly interfering with his autobiographical film, “B.B. King and I,” which chronicles his long relationship with the blues legend and his success in helping King get a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame, according to The Hollywood Reporter.
King Size Film Production, who filed the lawsuit last week in California federal court, claims B.B. King has been attempting to use his trademarks and rights of publicity to interfere with the First Amendment right to tell the true story of Michael Zanetis (the “I” in B.B. King and I).
The film stars Patrick Fugit (“Almost Famous”) as Zanetis and Wendall Pierce (“The Wire”) as King. It’s being co-produced by Frank Capra III, the grandson of the legendary writer and director of “It’s a Wonderful Life.”
The story of the film is about Zanetis, whose life is described in the complaint as “inextricably interwoven with the story of his relationship with B.B. King.”
Zanetis moved from the Indiana farmlands to the California beaches in 1977 to pursue his dream of working in the music business. B.B. King’s son, Willie, is said to have arranged a chance meeting between Zanetis and his father, which sparked a three-decade long relationship.