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Quick, Somebody Make a Movie About This Bonkers Silicon Valley Court Battle

It’s lit at the Hyperloop

Getty Images
Getty Images

Hyperloop One is a transit startup pursuing Elon Musk’s dreams of rigging supersonic tubes for mass long-distance travel. It just raised $80 million in May, but then it conducted an embarrassing initial public test that was essentially a sled rapidly crashing into a mound of sand. Also, CTO and cofounder Brogan BamBrogan has quit and is taking the company, its other cofounder, and three executives to court. The nasty complaint was filed yesterday and it reads like the legal version of a sled rapidly crashing into a mound of sand. (Also, Brogan BamBrogan looks exactly like you’d imagine someone named Brogan BamBrogan would look.)

The complaint is a punchy narrative of corporate ne’er-do-well-ism, nepotism, pay-to-play scams, harassment, a potentially criminal noose, and an aesthetically criminal mustache. Does the lawsuit have merit? Hyperloop One’s legal team said it was “unfortunate and delusional” in a statement to Gizmodo, but let’s have the California judicial system decide. What’s clear without the presence of a judge is how wild and soapy the accusations are.

Some choice excerpts:





This is rich source material for a motion picture about Silicon Valley high jinks and hubris. It’ll be like The Social Network, except it will have a plot!

Here, I’ll cast it:

Hyperloop One cofounder and engineer BROGAN BAMBROGAN: Matthew McConaughey. Twitchy, steampunk, elaborately mustachioed Matthew McConaughey, wowing audiences with a rambling-yet-poetic monologue about why he changed his name from “Kevin Brogan” to “Brogan BamBrogran,” which is something the real Brogan BamBrogan did. I’m starting to suspect that the real Brogan BamBrogan has been meticulously plotting his eccentric life choices in a long-game effort to one day be portrayed by Matthew McConaughey in a dramatic film.

Former Hyperloop One vice president of business development DR. KNUT SAUER: Owen Wilson. Fusion reporter Ethan Chiel tweeted “The plaintiffs in the Hyperloop lawsuit read like a list of characters in a Wes Anderson movie,” and he was absolutely correct. I’m pretty sure Owen Wilson approaches every single role as though his character is named “Knut Sauer,” so this shouldn’t be a stretch.

Former Hyperloop One assistant general counsel DAVID PRENDERGAST: Idris Elba. I just want Idris Elba to be in this movie and I can’t find any photos of David Prendergast, so let’s pretend that he looks like Idris Elba.

Former Hyperloop One vice president for finance WILLIAM MULHOLLAND: I don’t know what William Mulholland looks like either, so let’s throw Aziz Ansari in here. I feel like he would excel at playing a righteously disgruntled tech employee.

Hyperloop One cofounder SHERVIN PISHEVAR: Shervin is portrayed as an egotistical schemer in the lawsuit. If we’re cool with going for slightly lesser-known actors (and why wouldn’t we be, this is my fictional casting session) Navid Negahban, a.k.a. Abu Nazir from Homeland, also has rocked similar questionable facial hair, and he’d bring on the menace.

Hyperloop One chief legal officer (former chief legal officer?) AFSHIN PISHEVAR: The photo included in the lawsuit, allegedly showing Afshin Pishevar with the symbolic noose, looks a lot like Russell — “Maximus Decimus Meridius, commander of the Armies of the North, General of the Felix Legions, and loyal servant to the TRUE emperor, Marcus Aurelius. Father to a murdered son, husband to a murdered wife” — Crowe on his way to a rodeo-themed workout class. The only thing I can remember Russell Crowe doing in the last year is yelling about hoverboards on Twitter, so let’s get him some work.

OVERPAID PR GIRL: She’s an insultingly underdeveloped character in the lawsuit and will probably be an insultingly underdeveloped character in the film, so I am loathe to force this upon a promising young actor. Emily Ratajkowski could knock it out, though. Sure.

BAMBI LIU BAMBROGAN: Actually, fuck it, this is my hypothetical movie adapted from a controversial lawsuit. We’re getting another woman as a character. Brogan BamBrogan’s wife, Bambi Liu BamBrogan, isn’t named anywhere in the lawsuit, but in the movie she will be the secret mastermind manipulating the not-so-angelic investors into discord — Bambi will be an aspiring actress who convinces the poor schmucks at Hyperloop One to fight within ranks in an effort to get her husband to spend more time helping her launch her reality television program Bambi’s World. Lucy Liu will play our stealth villain.

Your move, Hollywood. Please make all checks payable to me.