50 Cent has filed a lawsuit (Dec. 23) against Rick Ross for rapping over his “In Da Club” beat as a means to promote Black Market, his eighth studio album, Billboard can confirm. The MMG boss did a remix of 50 Cent’s 2003 hit on his #RenzelRemixes mixtape, released Nov. 27.
In statements sent to Billboard from 50 Cent’s publicist, the Queens rapper’s attorneys say they are working to preserve their client’s reputation.
“50 Cent’s most valuable asset is the name and reputation he has painstakingly built through his Grammy-winning music, acting, and business endeavors,” said Paul LiCalsi, partner and co-chair of the Entertainment and Media Litigation Group at Robins Kaplan LLP. “He chooses his projects carefully for the very purpose of protecting that name and reputation.”
“Our complaint alleges that Rick Ross has taken these without permission to advertise his own album, and violated 50 Cent’s rights in the process, and we believe he should be held liable,” LiCalsi notes of the suit, first reported by TMZ.
Craig Weiner, partner at Robins Kaplan LLP, adds, “We will use every legal tool available to remedy what we allege is an unauthorized use of 50 Cent’s name, identity, and trademark. 50 Cent actively and generously collaborates with fellow hip-hop artists, but we maintain that this is a case of outright misappropriation. 50 Cent had absolutely nothing to do with Black Market or the mixtape that preceded it.”
This isn’t the first legal battle pitting 50 Cent versus Ross. In 2010, 50 was ordered to pay $7 million after posting a sex tape during their ongoing feud that featured a Florida woman, said to be the mother of Ross’ child.
Earlier this year, the rappers fired shots at each other on Instagram when Ross mentioned 50’s son, who applied to be an intern at MMG.
50 Cent is seeking $2 million in his lawsuit. Billboard has reached out to a rep for Ross for comment but did not hear back at time of publication.