Kendall Ashley
January 30, 2018 12:44 pm

Meryl Streep is one of America’s most revered, best loved actors working today. Regardless of the film, she always manages to deliver moving, breathtaking performances, and her work is nothing short of inspirational. With one of the most easily recognizable faces and names out there, it makes sense that she’d start thinking about ways to protect her image and her legacy. One of the best ways to protect your legacy is to protect your name, which is precisely what Meryl Streep is trying to do.

As TMZ reports, Streep apparently filed a petition to trademark her name with the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office. The move, if approved, would allow Streep to legally protect the usage of her name, giving her the sole, absolute rights when it comes to the usage of her name in “live, televised, and movie appearances by a professional actress and entertainer.” It would also grant her control of the use of her name in conjunction with speaking appearances, autograph signings, and even websites relating to films she’s starred in.

Of course, Meryl Streep is her stage name; her legal name is Mary Louise Steep.

It’s pretty out of the ordinary for celebs to go through the hassle of trademarking their name for no reason. Usually it’s a reaction to a forthcoming product line (if so, we need deets, like, yesterday) or in response to someone using their name without the individual’s consent. There have been speculations, as Bustle points out, that an individual who has been releasing songs under Streep’s name on Spotify could have been a catalyst for Streep’s file for a trademark.

However, Streep’s actions could also simply be about taking ownership of her name.

In the wake of the Time’s Up movement — of which Streep has been a vocal part — there has been a huge push to not let a person’s hard work and talent get swept up by a louder, more “powerful” individual. There’s also been a huge push for people to take ownership of their name and their work. After “She Knew” posters were plastered around Los Angeles, blaming Streep for being an enabler to Harvey Weinstein, it makes sense that Streep’s more than ready to take control of how her name is being used.

All of these reasons are, again, mere speculation, as Streep hasn’t commented on the trademark filing. However, we can’t blame her for wanting to be the one solely in charge of how her name is used. After all, there really is only one Meryl Streep, so why not make it official?

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