Guy Fawkes-'Vendetta' mask becomes symbol of Occupy protests

Occupy Wall Street protesters wearing Guy Fawkes masks participated in the 39th annual Village Halloween Parade, Monday in New York. (AP Photo/John Minchillo)

NEW YORK (AP) - Look at photos or videos from around the world of Occupy protesters and you'll likely spot a handful of people wearing masks of a cartoon-like man with a pointy beard, closed-mouth smile and mysterious eyes.

The mask is a stylized version of Guy Fawkes, an Englishman who tried to bomb the British Parliament on Nov. 5, 1605.

But history books didn't lead to the mask's popularity: A nearly 30-year-old graphic novel and a five-year-old movie did.

"V for Vendetta," the comic-based movie whose violent, anarchist antihero fashions himself a modern Guy Fawkes and rebels against a fascist government has become a touchstone for young protesters.

While Warner Brothers holds the licensing rights to the Guy Fawkes mask, several protesters say they're using foreign-made copies to circumvent the corporation.