In Icons’ life-like Steve Jobs doll, originally promised to ship in February, won’t make it to store shelves after all. Tandy Cheung, the doll designer and In Icon founder, said plans to manufacture and ship the figurine were abandoned thanks to legal pressure from Apple.
In a statement on the In Icons website, Mr. Cheung said:
Unfortunately we have received immense pressure from the lawyers of Apple and Steve Jobs family. Regardless of the pressure, I am still Steve’s fan, I fully respect Steve, and his family, and it is definitely not my wish or intention that they be upset. Though we still believe that we have not overstepped any legal boundaries, we have decided to completely stop the offer, production and sale of the Steve Jobs figurine out of our heartfelt sensitivity of the Jobs family.
The 12-inch doll caught the eye of the press at the beginning of January because of its striking likeness to Mr. Jobs. At the time, In Icon was taking pre-orders with the promise to ship by late February.
In Icon’s now discontinued Steve Jobs doll
Apple quickly responded with a letter from its legal team telling In Icons to stop production of the doll. Mr. Cheung replied by saying, “Apple can do anything they like. I will not stop, we already started production.”
He added, “Steve Jobs is not a product, so I don’t think Apple has the copyright of him.”
While Apple would have likely given In Icons legal headaches over the doll, the company could’ve sold it throughout most of the United States. Likeness rights after death, however, would’ve prevented Mr. Cheung from selling the doll in Indiana, Illinois, Texas, Connecticut, Georgia, Florida, California, Ohio, Virginia, Washington, New Jersey, Nevada, Nebraska, Kentucky, Tennessee and Oklahoma.
Despite Mr. Cheung’s boasting, the company finally decided to stop production of the doll. Customers that pre-ordered the US$99 figurine, the company is working on plans for refunds.