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Yellowstone's Cole Hauser is being sued by show's creator over branding (of coffee, that is)

Rip Wheeler and the Duttons wouldn't have handled it like this, I don't think.

Cole Hauser in Yellowstone
Image credit: Paramount

In the popular series Yellowstone, some of the employees of the Yellowstone ranch are branded like cattle with the branding mark of the ranch - including the ranch's head hand, Rip Wheeler (played by Cole Hauser). Now, a branding issue is taking Hauser into the courtroom against the head of Yellowstone, the TV show.

Yellowstone crator Tyler Ranch owns a ranch called Bosque Ranch which, among other things, makes a variety of coffee called Bosque Ranch Craft Coffee. Its logo is an overlapping B and R in a style often seen in cattle branding for over a hundred years.

Hauser recently launched his own coffee, called Free Rein, also co-opting this cattle branding style for its logo - two overlapping letters, in this case F and R.

According to CNN, in a lawsuit filed in federal court in November, Sheridan's ranch argues that Hauser's logo constitutes “trademark infringement, unfair competition and false advertising." The lawsuit goes on alleged that Hauser didn't "asked for or received permission or authorization" and that the logos are likely to be misconstured by the public to be connected.

Hauser and his coffee brand have not made a statement regarding the issue.

CNN asked attorney Josh Gerben about the case, who stated its a "little surprising to see" this as a federal lawsuit since Hauser and Sheridan work together on the Yellowstone show, and that he assumes there was "clearly an opportunity for settlement discussions to take place.” He speculates that the reason a federal lawsuit has been started is because there were attempts at a settlement but Sheridan's company wasn't pleased with the proposed resolution.

Hauser and Sheridan are currently filming the fifth (and final) season of Yellowstone. Something is brewing onset, but we think its more than just coffee.


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Chris Arrant

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Chris Arrant is the Popverse's Editor-in-Chief. He has written about pop culture for USA Today, Life, Entertainment Weekly, Publisher's Weekly, Marvel, Newsarama, CBR, and more. He has acted as a judge for the Will Eisner Comic Industry Awards, the Harvey Awards, and the Stan Lee Awards. (He/him)

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