Homer Simpson Hologram at Comic-Con Sparks Patent Lawsuit

Company claims it owns rights to the technology that brought the Simpson patriarch to the annual comic confab

D’oh! Or, if you prefer, d’ohlogram!

Twentieth Century Fox Corporation has been slapped with a lawsuit over a hologram featuring “The Simpsons” patriarch Homer Simpson that was displayed at this summer’s Comic-Con.

Hologram USA filed its suit against Fox and Gracie Films in U.S. district court in southern California on Thursday.

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“On July 26, 2014, at the world-famous Comic-Con International event in San Diego, California, Homer Simpson appeared to participate in Fox’s panel discussion with the Simpsons’ creator, directors and producers,” the suit reads. “At the close of the panel, [series creator] Matt Groening introduced to the stage a seemingly three-dimensional, live Simpson. Groening and Simpson talked on stage for approximately two minutes about Comic-Con and the Simpsons show.”

Hologram USA, however, claims to have acquired the exclusive rights to patented technology based on “Pepper’s Ghost,” an illusion technique invented in 1862. The technology, the lawsuit says, “creates a lifelike illusion of three-dimensional images that can interact with live performers in numerous settings.”

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The lawsuit claims that the Homer Simpson hologram display made use of the technology without license or authorization.

Hologram USA claims that the Homer Simpson hologram damages the company’s business prospects.

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“Hologram USA’s efforts to reach business deals with potential customers has and will continue to be damaged by Defendants’ wrongful conduct,” the suit reads.

Fox had no comment for TheWrap on the lawsuit.

Hologram USA — along with co-plaintiffs Musion Das Hologram Limited and Uwe Maass, who Hologram acquired the rights from, according to the lawsuit — is seeking unspecified damages.

Watch Homer’s allegedly infringing Comic-Con appearance in the video below.

Pamela Chelin contributed to this report.