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Pirates of the Pirates of the Caribbean?
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Agamemnon



Joined: 10 Jul 2006
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Location: Studying somewhere. Or at least that's where I should be.

PostPosted: Wed Jul 12, 2006 1:24 pm    Post subject: Pirates of the Pirates of the Caribbean? Reply with quote

Was "Pirates" Pirated?
By Natalie Finn
Wed Jul 12, 2:11 AM ET
E-Online

How does one put the brakes on a $654 million juggernaut?

A screenwriter who says that he had pirates on the brain long before Johnny Depp inserted his first gold tooth is going to try.

Royce Mathew has sued the Walt Disney Co., Buena Vista Home Entertainment, Jerry Bruckheimer Films, Touchstone Home Video and 24 other related enterprises that had a stake in the 2003 blockbuster Pirates of the Caribbean: The Curse of the Black Pearl for copyright infringement.

In his complaint, available online at TMZ.com, the Florida resident claims that over the last two decades he "created and wrote a number of original works including drawings, screenplays, outlines, blueprints, storyboards, and other original materials which included multimedia works, which he generally entitled SNPM, standing for Supernatural Pirate Movie."

Just a working title, we presume.

He also stated that he eventually filed his drawings, which included sketches of a pirate ship that he named the Black Pearl, as well as a blueprint and screenplay draft for his ghostly pirate caper, with the U.S. Copyright Office. Mathew also says that he created characters called Will Turner and Elizabeth, along with an eccentric pirate captain and a cursed crew.

There was no immediate comment from either Disney or Bruckheimer on the complaint.

Mathew is seeking unspecified monetary damages and an injunction prohibiting the 28 defendants from publicly displaying the movie (i.e. through DVD rentals, online downloading, soundtrack and merchandise sales, network broadcasts, etc.). Curiously, Mathew's suit was filed last Friday, just before the first of two planned sequels, Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Man's Chest, blasted the box office wide open, taking in a record $135.6 million and pretty much guaranteeing that this franchise is going to end up in billion-dollar territory.

Per the complaint, Mathew supposedly showed his early sketches and other materials to "a variety of employees and agents" of the named defendants, both privately and through the William Morris Agency and Creative Artists Agency, with the hope that his project would get the go-ahead. Alas, matey, he was told that his idea wouldn't make a "financially rewarding project."

But despite the fact that Disney has been linked with a certain swashbuckling theme park ride called Pirates of the Caribbean since 1968, Mathew felt that The Curse of the Black Pearl pilfered plot lines, event sequencing, characters, dialogue, mood, setting, pace, concept and its overall tone from his Supernatural Pirate Movie. Arrgh.

Although the lawsuit filed in U.S. District Court's Central District of California does not mention Dead Man's Chest or the upcoming At World's End, slated for a May 2007 release, it asks the judge to issue an injunction against The Curse of the Black Pearl and "other infringing works."

Could that include the newly refurbished Pirates ride at Disneyland and Disney World, which since June 26 has featured animatronic Captain Jack Sparrow figures and a story line that's more in sync with the hit films?

While fellow codefendants Disneyland International and Walt Disney Parks and Resorts could theoretically be in for a fight, they've got on their side almost 30 years of history and one of the most powerful multimedia companies in the world. We're going to place a bet on the strength of Disney and, well, let it ride.

***********************
My question....why did it take 3 years to file the lawsuit? If this guy has dated material filed with the Copyright office, then wouldn't this be pretty slam dunk?
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juggernautxug



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PostPosted: Wed Jul 12, 2006 2:20 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

guy's going to get a settlement at best. maybe a life-time pass to all the disney parks lmao


*edit

almost forgot.... I guess this guy could also go after digital playground for this movie 18+ http://digitalplayground.com/storeproduct.php?pid=725
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Drui



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PostPosted: Wed Jul 12, 2006 3:41 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Some people sure know how to waste their 15 minutes of fame.
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BoySetsFire



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PostPosted: Wed Jul 12, 2006 4:54 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

it doesn't matter, legally, that Disney has had that ride in its park for almost 40 years. the idea for the movie/characters/plotlines are separate from that. the doesn't even have to have a recognized trademark from the patent office, as long as he can prove that he created those names and such before Disney did. and he sounds like the kind of person that would have good documentation for all his stuff.

he's going to make a boatload, har har har, of cash on this. it's just a matter of time before he gets a big fat check of some sort, whether it be court-ordered, or disney settling out of court. if i were him, i wouldn't settle for a declared dollar amount. i'd hold out for a percentage instead. that's how keanu became a billionaire. he took a percentage for his Matrix work, instead of a fee.
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Lasairfiona



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PostPosted: Wed Jul 12, 2006 6:35 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

If, IF! the guy has had his material stolen, the best he is going to get is an out of court settlement. Disney is a very large and ruthless company and this wouldn't be the first time plots have been stolen but I say the guy is full of shit. Waiting this long for a suit can only mean he just had the damn idea.
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Black Kitty



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PostPosted: Wed Jul 12, 2006 8:12 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Well put, Drui. ^^;

Regardless of the outcome, what does he think he's going to do after this? Can he really think that any company will ever want to look at his concepts again?
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Agamemnon



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PostPosted: Wed Jul 12, 2006 8:14 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

If the settlement is large enough, I could see early retirement being a really good option.
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Michael



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PostPosted: Wed Jul 12, 2006 9:24 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Black Kitty wrote:
Regardless of the outcome, what does he think he's going to do after this? Can he really think that any company will ever want to look at his concepts again?


what 'cause he might sue them if they steal from him?
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Uncle Taylorbell



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PostPosted: Wed Jul 12, 2006 11:20 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Michael wrote:
Black Kitty wrote:
Regardless of the outcome, what does he think he's going to do after this? Can he really think that any company will ever want to look at his concepts again?


what 'cause he might sue them if they steal from him?


I think what B_K and Drui are saying is that, if someone steals from you, you should just shut up and not contest it 'cos like wow or something.
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TIAB



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PostPosted: Thu Jul 13, 2006 1:30 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I think the point was more that, as superficial as hollywood is, most movie studios are just going to see this guy as a liability, as someone looking out for himself and not the studio's best interest. His timing is highly questionable as well. And if he did have contact with a few Disney employee in which ideas were shared, who's to say that it didn't go the other way around? It could have been a well thought out get-rich-quick scheme. Either way, it would make any studio weary to trust him. Just simply not a good first impression that he's making.
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Michael



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PostPosted: Thu Jul 13, 2006 1:47 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Rolling Eyes

if he's a fraud he won't care and if it's real it won't matter
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PsycoMonkey



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PostPosted: Thu Jul 13, 2006 1:48 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

im so confused
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mouse



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PostPosted: Thu Jul 13, 2006 9:18 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

i don't know - he's suing because he came up with a character named "elizabeth"? any idea how many elizabeths there are in this world?

he probably came up with soemthing pirate-oriented, and has now decided that anyone else that does something pirate-oriented stole it from him.

we will see (i suppose) what was actually on file with the patent office.
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Just_A_Girl



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PostPosted: Fri Jul 14, 2006 12:08 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

In today's lawsuit happy world, this incident doesn't really come as a surprise.
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Darqcyde



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PostPosted: Fri Jul 14, 2006 12:45 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

BoySetsFire wrote:
it doesn't matter, legally, that Disney has had that ride in its park for almost 40 years. the idea for the movie/characters/plotlines are separate from that. the doesn't even have to have a recognized trademark from the patent office, as long as he can prove that he created those names and such before Disney did. and he sounds like the kind of person that would have good documentation for all his stuff.

he's going to make a boatload, har har har, of cash on this. it's just a matter of time before he gets a big fat check of some sort, whether it be court-ordered, or disney settling out of court. if i were him, i wouldn't settle for a declared dollar amount. i'd hold out for a percentage instead. that's how keanu became a billionaire. he took a percentage for his Matrix work, instead of a fee.


Um this may be of small note, but Jack Sparrow's appearance is pretty damn close to that of the pirate captain on the original ride.
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