Disney is one of the most recognizable names in entertainment today. In efforts to protect their lucrative 3D film industry, the Walt Disney company has made some big requests from a judge handling a bankruptcy case that could threaten some of their patent rights.
Moves To Protect Movies
Disney is one of several companies tied up in the purchase of assets from the Digital Domain Media Group bankruptcy filing earlier this year. Having already sold off everything from office furniture, computers and technological equipment, to patent portfolios, Digital Domain Media Group has been busy this year liquidating its assets. However, one particular patent sale has gained a lot of attention as issues have since surfaced about the potential for licensing conflicts with the sale of the patent.
The problem lies in the patent portfolio covering 2D-to-3D conversion technology, which was sold at a recent auction to 3D-exhibition specialist, RealD for $5.45 million. Now claiming rights over the use of the technology based on contracts with the original patent holder, Disney is fighting for the ability to continue to access the technology in the future. Specifically, Disney is currently undergoing the conversion of “Alice in Wonderland” and “G-Force” into 3D movies, both of which were signed into agreement in 2009.
Earlier this month, the U.S. Bankruptcy Judge disagreed with Disney’s claim stating that there is question as to whether the contract allowed for “perpetuity” in the use of the technology. In other words, Disney’s contracts could be thrown out, putting a halt to the conversion of the two movies into 3D, based on the sale of the technology patent. Disney is expected back in court sometime this week to make another plea to the court.