The son of the late singer Bobby Darin is suing McDonald's Corp. for more than $10 million, alleging the restaurant chain copied his father's singing style in the "Mac Tonight" commercials.
The suit, filed last week in Los Angeles County Superior Court here, alleges that the television ads infringe on rights to Darin's 1959 hit version of the song "Mack the Knife."The commercials feature a tuxedoed man with a smiling quarter-moon head, seated at a piano and belting out the hamburger jingle.
The suit alleges the character's voice and gestures resemble those of Darin, who died in 1973 at age 37 of heart problems.
The suit was filed on behalf of Dodd Darin - the singer's son and only heir - and the Bobby Darin Testamentary Trust.
Darin's upbeat version of "Mack the Knife," a song from the 1928 German musical "The Threepenny Opera," sold 2 million copies and won Darin two 1960 Grammy awards.
The suit seeks an injunction halting the McDonald's commercials, $100,000 in general damages and $10 million in punitive damages.