I had a college friend whose photo appeared on Girl Scout cookie boxes long after she’d graduated from scouting. It was an awesome fun fact she could tell at parties or during two-truths-and-a-lie ice-breakers; one that I was was kinda jealous of, actually. But a U.K. man who claims his face appears on Pizza Hut boxes without his consent doesn’t find his situation funny at all.
“I think it is me and it just makes me feel very weird. I was just out for dinner with my little boy, and the next thing I see this box. It’s all very weird,” the man, 39-year-old Nick Richardson tells The Daily Mail.
Richardson says multiple friends and family members have texted him, also noticing the likeness to a black-and-white photo illustration on Pizza Hut boxes. Richardson says the image could have been based on a photo surreptitiously taken of him while he ate at a Pizza Hut with his son in August. News reports don’t state exactly why he’s upset; presumably it’s because he believes the chain didn’t ask permission to use his likeness or compensate him in any way.
“Even the outline of the stubble is the same. It would be an enormous coincidence if it wasn’t me,” he told The Daily Mail. “And if by some miracle it’s not me then fine, show me the original image.”
A Pizza Hut spokesperson dismissed Richardson’s claims, saying the image is based on the likeness of an employee of the pizza chain’s creative agency, and not Mr. Richardson or any other customer. Still, Richardson isn’t buying it and has demanded Pizza Hut turn over the original photo. He claims the pizza company told him it can’t share the original due to copyright law.
Really, you’ll just have to inspect the images for yourself. (Note that Richardson has posed himself to replicate the image on the pizza box.) Consensus among The Takeout staff is that yeah, sure, there’s a resemblance, but that’s probably because Richardson has one of those generically white-dude faces that looks like a million other late-30s guys with stubble. We point to the difference in the ear shapes as a major disparity between his face and the pizza box image. And as for Richardson’s hometown of Redditch, Worcestershire, well, tell me that’s not the name of a town made up by the internet.