Nirvana’s Nevermind was one of the most iconic albums in music history. That nude baby on the cover grew up and changed his mind about being cool with having his little member as a part of music lore. A lawsuit was filed, but that is over now.
The Nevermind baby’s case charging Nirvana and others of child pornography has been dismissed. After the plaintiff, Spencer Elden, who appeared on the record cover nude when he was four months old, failed to reply to a request to dismiss filed by Nirvana and the other defendants. Judge Fernando M. Olguin dismissed the case on Monday, Jan. 3.
Spencer Elden filed the lawsuit against the band and Kurt Cobain’s estate for “knowingly producing, possessing, and advertising commercial child pornography.” The band allegedly gained financially from their participation in his sexual exploitation, according to the claim. Elden was seeking a legal remedy of US $150,000 per defendant for the lifetime losses he claims he has sustained.
The cover, which was inspired by Cobain’s fascination with waterbirths, has been viewed as a statement on the morals society instils in young. The same image is interpreted differently in the case, which tries to incorporate the premise that the image was intended to induce a sexual response from viewers.
The lawsuit’s oral arguments were scheduled for Jan. 20, with Elden’s legal team given until Dec. 30 to respond. Elden will have one more chance to file a second amended lawsuit, according to the order, with a new deadline of January 13. If he fails to comply, the case will be dismissed without prejudice, meaning another suit cannot be filed in the future.
Lawyers for the band’s estate, surviving members Dave Grohl and Krist Novoselic, Courtney Love, Cobain’s widow and executor, and Kirk Weddle, the photographer of the cover image said Elden had “spent three decades profiting from his celebrity as the self-anointed ‘Nirvana Baby’.” He also recreated the image on the album’s 15th and 20th anniversaries, but he wasn’t nude for that photo shoot. He even tattooed the album’s title on his chest, but the lawsuit still came rolling in last year.
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