BROOKLYN–The long anticipated civil trial of Driver v. The Toasted Avocado kicked off today with Cooper Driver making his own opening statement after his attorney, Michael Vendetta, failed to post his own bail. Driver is suing the popular satire website The Toasted Avocado for more than $20 million in damages for copyright infringement of his Star Trek role play character. Vendetta remains in federal lock up after being charged with trying to blackmail Bravo Fleet in an unrelated case.
“I chose my character’s race, the model-actor for the avatar, the ideal human body height and weight, and even his backstory on Vulcan,” Driver began to the jury. “As for the ship, I selected the Star Trek era, the class, and I modified the specs entirely myself, giving it extra shuttle crafts and photon torpedoes. Everything about this is mine, and I’ll be [EDITED] if I let anyone else [EDITED] that up!”
The controversy began when the satirical Toasted Avocado ran a parody article showing Driver’s title character, Captain Johnny Omega of the USS Exalted Glory save the universe from the Borg, Thanos, and the top 1% in only six and a half sentences.
Driver specifically objected The Avocado attributing the line “Hasta mañana, baby” to Omega, which Driver said was out of character.
“I clearly said no one can use my Captain Johnny Omega, ever!” Driver sprayed at the jury.
“I stand with Cooper… I stand with Cooper…” chanted Mary Johnson from outside courtroom. Johnson plays the Exalted Glory’s XO Commander Amelia Felicity Meadows. “No one can ever use our universe… No one can ever use our universe…”
But not everyone sides with Driver.
“Cooper Driver is 100% wrong because no one owns Star Trek,” said Richard via telephone from Wewoka, Oklahoma. However, Richard currently has his own lawsuit pending against Paramount Pictures for allegedly stealing his plot device and using it in Star Trek III. While Richard didn’t use the plot himself until 2007, he says he thought about it “much earlier.”
Driver’s case is expected to be dismissed by the judge as soon as Driver finishes his opening statement.