Lawyers representing Joe Francis have written to movie bosses behind "Piranha 3-D" amid allegations a character in the new horror is loosely based on the "Girls Gone Wild" filmmaker. Jerry O'Connell plays a soft-core pornographer filming girls in bikinis on spring break in the upcoming picture, but Francis' legal team has moved swiftly to distance the star from rumors he inspired the character.
His lawyer, Stanton Stein, has sent a letter to the Weinstein Company, the movie corporation behind "Piranha 3D", to warn against mentioning his name during the promotion of the film. An excerpt from the letter, obtained by the New York Post, reads, "We caution all of those associated with this film to refrain from maligning Mr. Francis..."
"Any defamatory or disparaging statements... will be met with swift litigation."