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Bill Bellamy Regrets Not Trademarking ‘Booty Call’

The comedian coined the phrase.

Bill Bellamy is known for his comedy chops, hosting skills and coining one of the most popular pop culture phrases on the planet -- booty call. However, he made one mistake — never trademarking the phrase. 

On this week’s episode of the podcast PEOPLE in the '90s, he revealed that he first used the term while on HBO’s Def Comedy Jam but never thought to trademark the phrase.

"At the time I wasn't thinking of it like that," the 56-year-old said. "I was just thinking of my joke. I didn't realize the phrase would catch on to become, like you said, a normal word that people know what it is now. Booty call was just a clever way to say you're trying to get a girl to come by." 

He continued, "But who knew that everybody was going to lock in on it? I probably right now would be on a spaceship if I trademarked it.”

I mean, I'd be out there with Elon Musk somewhere," Bellamy joked.

RELATED: Where Are They Now: The Cast of Booty Call
As for why the term became so iconic, he explained, "The reason why that blew up, I think, in my opinion, was one, the joke was really, really funny, but the phrase was so easy. When I was doing it in the clubs, people started smiling, because they were like, 'That's what it is!'" 

Bellamy pointed out today people are swiping, not calling, "Now they got Tinder, they're cheating. But back in the day you had to really make the call. Now you can swipe left, swipe right. We had to get the number. Now you just see a picture and you swipe."

The term got so popular that in 1997 a film was made called Booty Call. The romantic comedy is best known for launching the film career of Oscar-winning actor Jamie Foxx. The film, featuring Bernie Mac, Tommy Davidson and Vivica A. Fox, followed guy trying to christen his new relationship with a first night of sex.

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