Selena mural in Molina neighborhood | Photo: Eric Lee Tunchez Facebook
An event to celebrate a revitalizedSelenamural in the neighborhood where the late Tejano icon lived received some legal drama on Saturday.
KIITV.com reportsthat just hours before the event was to take place, the Quintanilla family sent a cease and desist letter to the event organizer Eric Tunchez threatening a lawsuit over the event that looked to profit on Selena’s image.
The original mural was dedicated by West Oso High School students and art teacher Dicky Valdez shortly after Selena’s death in 1995, according toCaller.com. Tunchez wanted to revitalize the now fading mural and reached out to the Quantinalla family and received permission fromAbraham Quintanilla, Jr. to redo the mural.
The Quintanilla family hired New York artist San Sigüenza do the work of updating the new mural and Abraham Quintanillatold Caller.comthat Tunchez “didn’t pay one penny…and is taking credit for everything.”
Suzette Quintanilla, Selena’s sister, told 3News, “I just want people to know that we’re the ones who paid for the mural personally the Quintanilla family, not this foundation, we did we paid for it, and we didn’t give it to Mr. Tunchez to do whatever he chose to do, we gave it back to neighborhood.”
The letter states the family’s prior involvement with the revitalized Selena Quintanilla mural was “expressly contingent” with the understanding that Tunchez “would never, at any time, seek to exploit the mural for economic advantage and/or promote an event (either in connection with or unrelated to the mural) through the unauthorized and unlawful exploitation of the name, image, likeness and trademarks of Selena.”
“We have protected Selena’s legacy for the past 24 years, we take pride in making sure it is ran a certain way and we’re not associated with Mr. Tunchez, we’re not, and we want to make that very clear,” Suzette Quintanilla told 3News. “If we allow this then I don’t know what he’s going to be doing in the future and we’re just trying to protect Selena’s legacy.”
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