In January of the year 2000, Pokémon was sued by stage magician Uri Geller for $97 million (over a Pokémon card with a similar name that carried the magician’s trademark bent spoon).
20 years later, Kotaku reports…
Spoon-bending magician Uri Geller gave Nintendo permission to use the character Kadabra on Pokémon cards today, after a 20 year legal dispute in which Geller claimed the Pokémon’s Japanese name and image were too close to his own.
“I am truly sorry for what I did 20 years ago,” Geller tweeted today. “Kids and grownups I am releasing the ban. It’s now all up to #Nintendo to bring my #kadabra #pokemon card back. It will probably be one of the rarest cards now! Much energy and love to all!”
As Screenrant explains, while Kadabra is a word associated with magic, the Pokémon’s Japanese name — variously written as Yungerer, Yungeller, and Yun Geller — seems to be a reference to Geller… Geller sued Nintendo over Kadabra in 2000, seeking damages and insisting the card stop being used in sets. “Nintendo turned me into an evil, occult Pokémon character. Nintendo stole my identity by using my name and my signature image,” Geller said at the time.