If you were a fan of WWF during the Attitude Era, you may remember copyright screens at the beginning of video games, reminding you that "Gangrel" was a property owned by White Wolf Entertainment.
Two decades after first appearing as the character on WWF programming, David Heath told Fightful.com that he's secured the rights to the name he potrayed for years, and explained several hurdles that WWF (now WWE) faced in bringing him back.
"Just recently in the past couple of months I've acquired the federal trademark for Gangrel for merchandising and licensing. I've been able to come out with hot sauces and energy drinks and some products soon. WWE kind of washed their hands of it because of all the drama. They had to lease it for five years. When the lease was up, they let me go, but brought me back for an anniversary show (in 2007). White Wolf sold to another company and that company decided to sue WWE for $5 million dollars over it. Vince took it to court and the judge slammed the gavel and said the person who wrestled as Gangrel had the character rights. I know when I did Edge & Christian's show, they had to do two weeks of legal and they couldn't say 'Gangrel.' Now that's under control. Now WWE doesn't use it for anything, and I have it. It's all cleared up now," said Gangrel.
White Wolf is now dead, bought by CCP a decade ago, a video game developer from Iceland and maker of EVE Online. When they wanted to make MMORPG from World of Darkness, which was the setting for any White Wolf games. CCP weren't able to make the game, and the MMORPG craze died down, so they divided Trademarks of White Wolf into two packages.
One is owned by Paradox Development, a video game developer/producer from Sweden (makers of Europa Universalis and Crusader Kings and producers of lot of niche genre strategies), who are using it to make card games.
The second half is owned by Onyx Path, tabletop RPGs makers, practically the same people who made original Vampire: The Masquerade and other World of Darkness books and RPGs. The company likely wasn't big enough to have pursued or continued the trademark.
Thanks to @Velkej_Bracha on Twitter for contributing to this article.
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