Roc-a-Fella and Roc Nation founder Jay-Z has sued the photographer who shot his legendary “Reasonable Doubt” album cover. According to court docs, Jonathan Mannion continues to use his image and likeness to make money 25 years after the photoshoot took place.
Hov brought the lawsuit against Mannion and his company, Jonathan Mannion Photography LLC, for exploiting his name and image without proper consent. For instance, Mannion is accused of having Jay-z’s name and photo on his business website, including having the “Change Clothes” rapper on his landing page. Additionally, Mannion also sells pictures of the rap mogul for thousands of dollars.
Jay states that he never gave the photographer permission to use his photos and asked him to quit before the lawsuit was filed. Mannion declined Hov’s request and instead asked to be paid millions of dollars.
The Grammy-award winner first hired Mannion in 1996 to film the cover for his debut album “Reasonable Doubt,” which is now regarded as one of the greatest albums in hip-hop. The lawsuit states that Mannion took hundreds of photos for the album cover and was compensated for his work.
The 51-year-old is suing for all profits that Mannion earned from the use of his images and is asking a judge to force Mannion to stop all use of his likeness moving forward.
Mannion’s representative gave a statement to TMZ claiming that the cameraman was well within his rights to use the photos, citing protections under the First Amendment.
“Mr. Mannion has the utmost respect for Mr. Carter and his body of work and expects that Mr. Carter would similarly respect the rights of artists and creators who have helped him achieve the heights to which he has ascended.”