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Variety’s Power of Women: Highlights From the Star-Studded Event
A series of anti domestic violence PSAs have altered photos of celebrities to deliver a shocking message.
The #StopViolenceAgainstWomen campaign, which was to raise awareness for International Day for Elimination of Violence on Nov. 25, photoshopped images of female stars to look as though they were beaten up. Kim Kardashian, Kendall Jenner, Miley Cyrus, Kristen Stewart, Angelina Jolie, Madonna and Emma Watson are among the subjects used for the PSAs.
"No woman is immune from domestic abuse," the message reads below the disturbing images.
In a related campaign, images of Disney princesses were also altered to make them appear battered and bruised.
The artist behind the project is Alexsandro Palombo, who often uses Disney characters in his work. He's raised awareness for breast cancer, equal rights for the disabled, and World AIDS Day by altering images of the beloved cartoons.
Palombo's rep told ET that the artist did not ask for the celebrities' permission to use their images for the project, and has yet to hear from any of the subjects. "This new series is a contemporary art series, so no need [to get] the consent of the celebrity," the rep explained.
Since the release of the images, the artist's rep says Palombo has received a lot of thank you messages from women who have been victims of domestic violence.
However, a legal source for ET says that these images may violate the subject's right of publicity.
"Celebrities have a right to market the goodwill associated with their celebrity," Rod S. Berman, Chairperson of the Intellectual Property Group, explained. "It would be as if someone took their image, put it on a T-shirt and sold it. The right to publicity gives the celebrity some control in how their public image is used."
Palombo could also face some legal woes if one of these celebrities claims "defamation because the artist is using their image in a false light."
"It's also possible that their spouses or significant others may have a claim for defamation because the image may suggest that the individual is being abused by someone, which may be false," Berman added.
In addition, the artist might also have to go up against the person or agency that owns the copyrights to these images.