Marlon Brando Estate Suing Harley-Davidson Over The Brando Boot

Brando’s portrayal of Johnny in the movie the “Wild One” has become an iconic image. And because in this movie the actor was riding a 1950 Triumph Thunderbird 6T. the Triumph Factory marketed a leather jacket similar to that worn by Brando’s character, tee-shirts, limited prints, etc. Brando’s image remains so potent today among bikers that Harley-Davidson tried to pre-empt part of this image via The Brando Biker Boot. Almost immediately Brando Enterprises, an operating entity that protects the Marlon Brando brand on behalf of the actor’s family, has filed a lawsuit against Harley-Davidson. The suit alleges Harley-Davidson used the legendary actor’s name without a license for a leather riding boot called “The Brando”.   

The suit alleges that “It is interesting that Harley-Davidson – a company that is vigorously protective of its own brand – would seek to exploit an iconic property without benefit of a licensing agreement,” says Jeffrey I. Abrams, the licencing attorney who filed the suit. “The flagrant disregard for the law by Harley-Davidson cannot be tolerated. It is our mission to protect the Marlon Brando name and we will pursue any company or individual who infringes on these rights meant to benefit the Brando family.”

While the lawsuit is pending, Harley-davidson stopped selling the Brando Boot, making the boot more desirable to many. Being very nice and having a few connections in the biz, I give you one address where you can still order a pair online. Full grain leather upper. Full length cushion sock lining, Shaft height: 8″ Heel height: 1.75″. YKK® locking inside zipper. 3M® reflective piping. Oil-resistant rubber outsole. And they are on sale at $129.95. Order while they last at Outback Leather. (inside, search Brando)

Zipper's

24 Responses to “Marlon Brando Estate Suing Harley-Davidson Over The Brando Boot”


  1. 1 Larry Jones May 18th, 2011 at 8:11 am

    Giving the boot to Harley. Hee, hee.

  2. 2 Kirk Perry May 18th, 2011 at 8:31 am

    Where in the world would you need a boot with mud-holding moto-cross tread as soles? Katmandu?

  3. 3 Luis May 18th, 2011 at 8:53 am

    Shouldn’t Triumph be selling it?

  4. 4 Seymour May 18th, 2011 at 8:55 am

    “It is interesting that Harley-Davidson – a company that is vigorously protective of its own brand – would seek to exploit an iconic property without benefit of a licensing agreement,” So true.

    Cyril, I’m surprised that you posted that link!

  5. 5 Tom May 18th, 2011 at 9:35 am

    Now the shoe is on the other foot!

  6. 6 Jeff Nicklus May 18th, 2011 at 10:01 am

    What goes around – comes around … huh HD! Pay back is a bitch!

    Over & Out,

    Jeff

  7. 7 Brody May 18th, 2011 at 10:04 am

    Quite funny.

  8. 8 chopmonster66 May 18th, 2011 at 11:04 am

    hd will just pay them off !!!

  9. 9 Chrome Pyrope May 18th, 2011 at 11:15 am

    Marching to the beat of a different drummer…

  10. 10 toby May 18th, 2011 at 11:21 am

    Unlikely that HD will just pay them off. Triumph has an exclusive (to motorcycle clothing) use of the Brando name for six to eight years (depending on different sources). Brando Enterprises will have to extract some pain from HD and probably share some of those dollars (pounds) with Triumph. Ironic that HD would use a name associated with Triumph to push their clothing. Kind of like Google calling their newest smart phone the SteveJobs.

  11. 11 J P Davino May 18th, 2011 at 11:44 am

    What goes around comes around and boots you in the ass I guess!

  12. 12 Dave Blevins May 18th, 2011 at 12:43 pm

    What’s next for HD?
    Perhaps the “Fonzie” motorcycle jacket… nah, Fonz rode a Triumph
    Possibly a “Burt Munroe” replica hemet… wait, that was an Indian
    Maybe a “Rollie Free” swimsuit… darn it, a Vincent
    I’ve got it, an “AMF” bowling shirt! yeah, that’s it.

  13. 13 Unkl Ian May 18th, 2011 at 1:55 pm

    Including different colors, that link carries 69 different HD boot designs.
    Pretty amazing. I never would have guessed.

  14. 14 ray c wheeler May 18th, 2011 at 3:34 pm

    In what part of the world are these boots manufactured?

  15. 15 Knucklehead May 18th, 2011 at 3:40 pm

    If I remember correctly. Brando wore engineer boot’s. NO laces! We all wore them cause of that back in the 60’s.

  16. 16 Luis May 18th, 2011 at 5:01 pm

    @Ray probably thailand like triumphs “classic” bikes.

  17. 17 Dale May 19th, 2011 at 8:25 am

    This is f’ing stupid

  18. 18 chopperfreak29 May 19th, 2011 at 9:08 pm

    knucklehead: I wear engineer’s boots. Best all round riding boot ever. Laces are for suckers!

  19. 19 Wiz May 20th, 2011 at 4:48 am

    I’m too fat to do laces! Wiz

  20. 20 Steve Hog Radio Producer May 20th, 2011 at 1:24 pm

    Triumph was the bike not H-D so why try to make hay off something that had nothing to do with your company? Bad move and stupid merchandising idea.

    There are plenty of Icons who rode HD just do your home work and then get the License in order. Every one from Bogart to Brando have license attached to their names just as H-D has for their name sake.

    Why not go after some of the Biker Flick Icons who rode H-D bikes? Here is one: “She Devils on Wheels” women’s riding boots! Becuase she rode a Harley.

  21. 21 TPEvans May 23rd, 2011 at 7:46 am

    Those who would purchase a boot because it has “brando” in its name or wear a t-shirt because it has “Harley” written on it somewhere are more into playing “dress-up” than portraying any sort of image.

    If you want to portray rebellion, wear something that has not a single identifying mark or corporate logo. Besides indicating you can’t be taken in by the hype, it has the additional advantage of just totally screwing with the minds of the marketers.

  22. 22 E. D. Genet May 23rd, 2011 at 8:24 am

    Ironic…I your attemps to define “rebels” you put rules and quidelines on everything “rebel.” What bikes count and what doesn’t, logo t’s and no logos, HD vs Triumph. There is nothing rebel about 99% of American riders today…from poser execs to 1%ers its nothing more than a sea of sheep, tattoed and clad in black leather riding cycles with their primary concern being their image. If you have to define it you don’t get it…and never will. Have fun at your next fashion show…I mean rally! Enjoy your flock of clones.

  23. 23 GRIP ACE - HIDDEN MOTORCYCLE SWITCH SYSTEM May 23rd, 2011 at 9:41 am

    I must say Harley Davidson bought 4 Grip Ace systems in 2006 and now their 2011 soft tails are coming with a partial digital switch system. They could have saved a fortune in development and manufacturing by coming to Grip Ace and we could have blasted the world together. We love you HD stick to your integrity and values.

  24. 24 geno May 24th, 2011 at 3:19 pm

    looks like OUtback sold out of that one
    but you can still buy the deviant, the bronson or Im a dipstick boot
    better hurry

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