LAWFUEL – The Legal Newswire – MGA Entertainment, Inc., manufacturer of the popular BRATZâ„¢ fashion dolls, announced today that it has hired the prestigious law firm of Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher&Flom LLP&Affiliates to prosecute and defend claims involving its chief competitor, Mattel, (Nachrichten) Inc.
Thomas J. Nolan, a Skadden partner and accomplished trial attorney, will lead the team of Skadden lawyers.
“We’re pleased to have a trial lawyer of Tom’s caliber and a prestigious firm like Skadden in our corner,“ MGA Entertainment CEO Isaac Larian said. “MGA Entertainment and BRATZ have had tremendous success against Mattel’s Barbie products in the marketplace, and Mattel has responded to this competition with a meritless lawsuit. We remain confident that this matter will resolve favorably for MGA.“
The litigation began in April 2004 when Mattel sued Carter Bryant, an MGA freelance product designer and former Mattel employee. Mattel accused Mr. Bryant of helping MGA develop the BRATZ dolls while he was still working for Mattel. In October 2004, MGA intervened as a defendant in Mattel’s action, asserting its rightful ownership of the BRATZ properties.
In April 2005, MGA filed a complaint charging Mattel with various illegal efforts to infringe and dilute MGA’s trade dress, copy MGA’s products, and engage in other acts of unfair competition against MGA. In particular, the complaint described Mattel’s “serial copycatting“ of BRATZ product lines and marketing.
In November 2006, Mattel retaliated with counterclaims against Mr. Bryant, Mr. Larian, MGA, certain MGA affiliates and an MGA employee.
Mr. Nolan is a nationally known trial lawyer who has obtained jury verdicts in excess of $1 billion for his corporate clients. From antitrust to intellectual property matters, he is frequently tapped by corporations facing high-stakes litigation in state and federal court.
“I am honored to be selected as MGA Entertainment’s lead trial counsel,“ Mr. Nolan said. “I look forward to standing before a jury to explain how BRATZ took on Barbie and outsold her around the world the old-fashioned way…by out competing Mattel with a more popular and hip product.”
Skadden is one of the world’s leading law firms, with 22 offices and more than 2,000 attorneys. Skadden represents a broad spectrum of clients including nearly half of the Fortune 250 industrial and service corporations, as well as financial and governmental entities, high-technology start-up companies, and educational and charitable institutions on their most significant matters around the world.
Mr. Bryant is represented by John Keker of Keker&Van Nest LLP in San Francisco. Mattel, Inc. is represented by John Quinn of Quinn Emanuel Urquhart Oliver&Hedges LLP in Los Angeles.
About MGA Entertainment, Inc.
MGA Entertainment, a consumer entertainment products company headquartered in Van Nuys, California, manufactures innovative lines of proprietary and licensed products including toys and games, dolls, consumer electronics, home décor, stationery and sporting goods. The MGA family includes such brands as the award-winning Bratzâ„¢, Be-Bratz.comâ„¢, Bratz Babyzâ„¢, Bratz Kidzâ„¢, Lil’ Bratzâ„¢, Yummi-Landâ„¢, Rescue Petsâ„¢ and the newly acquired Little Tikes® brand. MGA has also acquired worldwide licensing rights for Zapf Creation®. For more information please visit: www.mgae.com www.bratz.com www.littletikes.com