Bay Area technology innovator Rearden LLC invented a groundbreaking set of technologies that have been used to create extremely realistic effects based by capturing the most subtle facial performances from actors such as Brad Pitt in The Curious Case of Benjamin Button, Daniel Radcliff and Rupert Grint in Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, Parts 1 and 2, and many other blockbuster movies. This technology was stolen by a rogue employee, and sold to overseas entities. It was then used to make high-grossing movies including Guardians of the Galaxy, Avengers: Age of Ultron, Terminator Genisys, Deadpool, Beauty and the Beast, the Rise of the Tomb Raider videogame, and more. A trial team including WVBR partner Frank Busch obtained a verdict restoring Rearden’s technology.
On July 31, 2020, after argument by WVBR Partner Michael von Loewenfeldt, the Ninth Circuit affirmed this victory, solidifying Rearden’s ownership of the technology. This represents a major victory in favor of domestic inventors and innovators whose work is misappropriated.