Kendall & Kylie Will Face Legal Action from Tupac Photographer for "Vintage" Tee Design

First the families and estates of Notorious B.I.G. and The Doors expressed their outrage—and their desire to pursue legal action—for the sisters’ unauthorized use of the musical icons’ images. Now, they’re being sued

Kendall and Kylie T-shirts featuring musical icons like Notorious B.I.G., Tupac and The Doors have landed the sisters, both in head to toe black outfits with black hair, in hot water; inline image.
(Photo: Rex Shutterstock)

When you think of rap and rock legends like Notorious B.I.G., Tupac Shakur and The Doors, you naturally think of Kendall and Kylie Jenner, right? Ugh. Well, it’s another day, another Kardashian kontroversy, this time with the youngest members of the Kardashian-Jenner krew stuffing their well-shod feet into their grilled mouths with a line of “vintage T-shirts” that literally no one has the patience to deal with. And this time, it looks like the Jenner sisters’ are in legal hot water for their actions.

On June 28, Kendall and Kylie dropped a collection of T-shirts for their Kendall + Kylie line entitled “Rock vs. Rap.” The tees in question featured iconic images of musicians like The Notorious B.I.G., Pink Floyd, Tupac, Led Zeppelin and Ozzy Osbourne with—brace yourself—photos of the reality stars’ faces and the letters “K.K.” superimposed over top. I mean, what Tupac fan hasn’t longed for a $125 T-shirt with the Kardashian family initials pretty much covering up an image of his face or Kendall’s enormous hoops obscuring Biggie’s likeness?

The backlash was kwik and it wasn’t just from incensed Twitter users who accused the sisters of appropriating and whitewashing images of the musical and cultural icons. Families of some of the musicians featured quickly responded, with both the estates of Notorious B.I.G. and The Doors issuing cease and desist letters to the Jenner sisters for unauthorized use of the images.

Biggie Smalls’ mother Voletta Wallace also slammed the sisters on Instagram, writing “I am not sure who told @kyliejenner and @kendalljenner that they had the right to do this. The disrespect of these girls to not even reach out to me or anyone connected to the estate baffles me. I have no idea why they feel they can exploit the deaths of 2pac and my Son Christopher to sell a t-shirt. This is disrespectful, disgusting, and exploitation at its worst!!!”

Even Sharon Osbourne, whose family is no stranger is controversy, expressed her disappointment in the girls with this burn on Twitter: “Girls, you haven’t earned the right to put your face with musical icons. Stick to what you know…lip gloss.”

After a day of being dragged, Kendall wrote this apology on Twitter and the designs were pulled from their site. “These designs were not well thought out and we deeply apologize to anyone that has been upset and/or offended, especially to the families of the artists. We are huge fans of their music and it was not our intention to disrespect these cultural icons in anyway. The tee shirts have been pulled from retail and all images have been removed. We will use this as an opportunity to learn from these mistakes and again, we are very sorry.”

Unfortunately for Kendall and Kylie, the apology might be too little, too late. In early July, the estate of Notorious B.I.G. issued a statement to People in response to the Jenners’ apology that implied the dramz is far from over. “While we appreciate that the Jenners have made an apology and pulled the unlawful and unauthorized items, this matter has yet to be resolved.”

Update: On September 13, TMZ reported that photographer Al Pereira filed a lawsuit against Kendall Jenner, Inc. (the registered company behind the T-shirt line) claiming it used an image he shot of Tupac and Biggie in the shirt design without permission. 

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