Bratz creator Carter Bryant testified Thursday that he drew up some plans for the dolls while he was working at Mattel Inc. as a designer of fashions, hairstyles and makeup for its Barbie line -- and that he used some Ken boots to put together a Bratz mock-up, the Los Angeles Times reports.
The testimony at a copyright infringement trial in Riverside could bolster Mattel's claim that it owns a stake in Bratz, which are phenomenally popular with young girls.
Bryant left Mattel for MGA Entertainment Inc. in 2000, and MGA introduced Bratz the next year.
In 1999, Bryant said, he sent a drawing of the Bratz concept to an agency for artists "to see if that was anything they might be interested in," but he didn't "have the foggiest idea of what they would become."
What they became was a product line worth what analysts have estimated to be as much as $2 billion a year.
Beyond that, the Bratz girls -- with their hip-hugging outfits, bare midriffs, big shoes and pouty lips -- may have put the hurt on 49-year-old Barbie, whose U.S. sales have been faltering and were down 12% in the first quarter of the year.
El Segundo-based Mattel sued both Bryant and MGA, based in Van Nuys, but reached an out-of-court settlement with Bryant, 39, before the trial began May 27. The terms of the settlement weren't disclosed.
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