Sylvester Stallone is facing a copyright lawsuit against screenwriter Marcus Webb. The action star has been accused of stealing Webb's screenplay written in 2006 to be used in 2010's hit movie "The Expendables".
According to Reuters, Webb has filed legal papers in Manhattan federal court on Tuesday, October 25. In the documents, Webb claimed that the plot for "The Expendables" is "strikingly similar and in some places identical" to his screenplay titled "The Cordoba Caper".
The story of "The Cordoba Caper" revolves around a team of elite, highly-trained mercenaries that are hired to defeat General Garza, a rogue army general of a small Latin American country. "There can be no dispute that Stallone and/or [David] Callaham [Stalone's co-writer] had access to and copied protectable elements of the screenplay," so read the lawsuit.
Webb claimed that Stallone's star-studded action pic stole the opening sequence from his works, including "a hostage rescue at sea, off a foreign coast, which has nothing to do with the main plot." The screenwriter also insisted that "The Expendables" copied the villainous character in "The Cordoba Caper".
Frank DeMartini, general counsel for Millenium Films, said that the company had not been served with the lawsuit, and he declined to comment any further. Meanwhile, both representatives for Stallone and Lionsgate refused to make any official statement regarding the case.
"The Expendables", which was released in August 2010, has grossed $274 million worldwide. Its sequel "The Expendables II", which is still in production, is set to open on August 17, 2012 in U.S. theaters. Stallone will return to the second movie, along with Bruce Willis, Arnold Schwarzenegger and Jason Statham. Additionally, Chuck Norris, Liam Hemsworth and Jean-Claude Van Damme support the action film.