JAY-Z and Legendary Photographer Jonathan Mannion Head To Trial Over 'Reasonable Doubt' Photos

JAY-Z and Legendary Photographer Jonathan Mannion Head To Trial Over 'Reasonable Doubt' Photos

Published Mon, January 24, 2022 at 11:00 AM EST

JAY-Z’s lawsuit regarding photographs taken from his 1996 album Reasonable Doubt has failed and the Brooklyn hip-hop mogul is officially taking the case to trial. 

In court documents obtained by AllHipHop, Hov and famed hip-hop photographer Jonathan Manion could not come to a settlement regarding photos Mannion took for his 1996 debut album. Hov is suing the photographer for using his pictures without permission as Mannion has several photos of Hov on his website with a sale price attached.

“Plaintiff Shawn Carter and Defendants Jonathan Mannion and Jonathan Mannion Photography LLC participated in a mediation before the Honorable Terry Friedman (Ret.) on January 5, 2022,” the court filing reads. “The parties were unable to reach an agreement to resolve this case.”

JAY-Z says Mannion never had permission to sell the photographs, and when he asked Mannion to cease the sale of said images, Mannion demanded millions of dollars. Due to both parties’ inability to agree, the case will go to trial in July 2022.

“JAY-Z never gave Mannion permission to resell any of the images,” a representative for the mogul argued in court. “Nor did Jay-Z authorize Mannion to use his name, likeness, identity or persona for any purpose.”

Mannion has famously taken some of the most iconic images in hip-hop history, capturing moments from DMX, Ja Rule, Nas, Aaliyah, and many more, earning himself a reputation as one of the genre’s greatest photographers. 



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Mannion has still found time to show love to Hov despite their legal issues. In May 2021, he shared a rare photo of Busta Rhymes alongside Hov and the late Notorious B.I.G. wishing Busta a happy birthday and referring to Hov as a “king.”

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