AceShowbiz - Joss Whedon is facing a copyright lawsuit filed by a writer who claims that the filmmaker stole his idea for "The Cabin in the Woods". Peter Gallagher is suing Joss alongside the horror flick's director Drew Goddard, claiming the movie they wrote has several similarities with his 2006 book "The Little White Trip: A Night in the Pines".
In his lawsuit, filed on Monday, April 13 in California, Peter also sued Lionsgate and Joss' Mutant Enemy production company. The author is suing for copyright infringement and seeking for $10 million in damages.
The suit claimed that the similarities between Peter's book and the movie are many. "Comparing the Book to the Film, the plots, stories, characters, sequence of events, themes, dialogue, and incidents portrayed in the two works are fictional and, in many respects, the elements in the two works are virtually identical," the suit stated.
"Like the book, 'Cabin in the Woods' tells the story of five friends (three guys and two girls) between the ages of 17 and 22 who take a trip to a remote cabin in the woods," the suit added, "The cabin's previous inhabitants were murdered by the father of the family, who returns to terrorize the group of friends. In the end, it is revealed that the friends are being filmed and manipulated by persons behind the scenes, thus becoming inadvertent characters in a real-life horror show for the enjoyment of others."
Peter also said the two main female characters had similar names with the ones in the movie. In the book, the girls were named Julie and Dura, while in the movie they're named Jules and Dana.
Peter claimed that he registered his book with the Writers Guild of America in 2007. According to his lawsuit, he published two runs of the book totaling 7,500 copies and sold them in Santa Monica, California, the Venice Beach boardwalk and the Hollywood Walk of Fame. "[The defendants] currently reside and operate out of Santa Monica, California, a short distance from where the Book was sold," the lawsuit stated.
Peter alleged he "was contacted by multiple credited entertainment industry producers who expressed interest in the Book," but he doesn't mention Lionsgate or Mutant Enemy.
A spokesperson for Lionsgate declined to comment on the issue, while Joss and Drew's representatives haven't commented on it yet.