Tuesday, October 24, 2006

Robert Fiveson Contra DreamWorks y Los Warner Bros.

Good news from Variety: a federal judge has ruled that the lawsuit filed by Robert S. Fiveson & the awesomely named Clonus Associates against DreamWorks & Warner Bros. can move forward.

Why does this matter? Because Fiveson is the creator of a little-known '79 sci-fi/horror flick called Parts: The Clonus Horror, and claims that DW/WB's The Island, starring Ewan McGregor and Scarlett Johansson, is a ripoff of his film. After hearing this last year I made it a point to watch both movies, and in my opinion Fiveson has a very good case.

Plus, DreamWorks really isn't helping itself with a defense like this:

...DreamWorks also has argued plaintiffs were not entitled to any damages because "The Island" wasn't profitable.

The judge, however, said the defendants' method of calculating was highly contested by the plaintiffs and that the defendants did not provide supporting documentation when filing a declaration saying "The Island" made zero profit.

In other words, DreamWorks -- implying a place where dreams are made in factory-like conditions -- feels that it's perfectly all right for them to steal other people's ideas so long as they don't make any money off the project. That's a very progressive stance for a media conglomerate to take.

Incidentally, unless you have a subscription to Variety.com, you probably won't be able to read the linked article after a day or so. Tough titty for you, eh?

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