Warner Brothers’ portrayal of the swordboat captain “Billy” Tyne in the movie, The Perfect Storm, did not violate the rights of his heirs under F.S. 540.08, Florida’s statute regarding unauthorized pulbication of name or likeness.
On April 21, 2005, the Florida Supreme Court ruled against Appellants/Plaintiffs in Tyne v. Warner, Case No. SC03-1251, because “… the term ‘commercial purpose’ as used in section 540.08(1) does not apply to publications, including motion pictures, which do not directly promote a product or service.” The Court specifically approved the construction of F.S. 540.08 by a Florida District Court in 1981. See Loft v. Fuller, 408 So. 2d 619 (Fla. 4th DCA 1981).