Saturday 25 May 2019

Stranger Things plagiarism lawsuit meritless, says show creators’ lawyer

The spooky show about a boy who goes missing has been a huge success.

Matt and Ross Duffer (John Milne/SilverHub/REX/Shutterstock)
Matt and Ross Duffer (John Milne/SilverHub/REX/Shutterstock)

By Julia Hunt, Press Association Entertainment Correspondent

Stranger Things creators Matt and Ross Duffer have dismissed a plagiarism lawsuit filed this week as “completely meritless”.

Director Charlie Kessler is suing the pair, claiming they lifted ideas for their hit Netflix show from his 2012 short film Montauk and feature film script The Montauk Project.

The film-maker alleges he pitched the work to the Duffer brothers at a party during the Tribeca Film Festival in 2014.

This is just an attempt to profit from other people’s creativity and hard work Lawyer Alex Kohner

The lawsuit claims “the script, ideas, story and film” were discussed and presented to the brothers, and that elements were then used in Stranger Things.

It says: “After the massive success of Stranger Things that is based on Plaintiff’s concepts that Plaintiffs discussed with Defendants, Defendants have made huge sums of money by producing the series based on Plaintiff’s concepts without compensating or crediting Plaintiff for his Concepts.”

Kessler is suing for breach of implied contract and is seeking monetary damages and a jury trial.

The Duffer brothers’ lawyer Alex Kohner said in a statement to the Press Association: “Mr Kessler’s claim is completely meritless.

“He had no connection to the creation or development of Stranger Things.

“The Duffer Brothers have neither seen Mr Kessler’s short film nor discussed any project with him.

“This is just an attempt to profit from other people’s creativity and hard work.”

Press Association

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