One of the local spots featured in the Love Live! Superstar!! anime promotional material is a real-life café in Harajuku, but it’s a good idea to make sure you have likeness rights before working an actual place into your art and story. Unfortunately, it appears as if Sunrise didn’t go through the proper channels to do so for this particular Harajuku café, and the staff has since apologized and announced plans to remove the café from the anime.
The café in question was going to be a prime location for one of the new aspiring idols, but following the apology it’s being removed from future promotional materials. The café staff issued a statement, as well, saying they had been contacted and agreed to its likeness being used during a “brief five-minute phone call,” but expected to meet someone from the Sunrise staff the next day for exterior photos. When no one arrived, they assumed the café was not going to be used for the Love Live! Superstar!! anime.
Of course, it became pretty clear that it was being used when promos featuring the café popped up earlier this year, sending fans in droves to take photos and pose in elaborate cosplay. Some were apparently even rude to café staff members in the process, and posted negative messages online when asked to follow the rules. The café staff were surprised at the sudden boom, but were mostly just upset at being so overwhelmed and unprepared for the rush.
The Love Live! staff apologized for the inconvenience and owned up to the fact that they failed to properly communicate what was going on behind the scenes. They also urged fans to refrain from rude behavior in and around the café, saying it would “unfairly damage the reputation of the store, cause serious harm to the feelings of the staff members, and may be subject to criminal penalties.”
In addition to promos, the café will be removed from any upcoming episodes of the anime, which kicks off on July 11.