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From the complaint: Sweet Cicely Daniher and her Vanicorn, above, and Pixar's Guinevere from the upcoming animated feature 'Onward.' From the complaint: Sweet Cicely Daniher and her Vanicorn, above, and Pixar’s Guinevere from the upcoming animated feature ‘Onward.’

San Francisco tattooist Sweet Cicely Daniher likes unicorns. She’s authored a book about unicorn imagery. She’s painted a unicorn mural on her ’72 Chevy van that’s been featured in San Francisco Magazine. “At the risk of belaboring the point,” her attorneys wrote in a complaint filed Monday in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California, “the Plaintiff has had a real thing for unicorns, for a very long time, and they have been a central theme and subject matter of her artistic work, throughout the entirety of her career.”

Now, Daniher alleges, Pixar Animation Studios and Walt Disney Motion Pictures Group have tricked her into letting them use her “Vanicorn” in the upcoming film “Onward.” Her suit accuses the companies of copyright infringement and violations of state and federal laws protecting artwork.

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Scott Graham

Scott Graham focuses on intellectual property and the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit. He writes ALM's Skilled in the Art IP briefing. Contact him at [email protected]

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