Avengers: Age of Ultron director Joss Whedon and Lionsgate Films have been sued by author Peter Gallagher, who claims 2012’s The Cabin in the Woods movie infringes his copyright.
Peter Gallagher, who says that the damages equal or exceed $10 million, claims that the movie was ripped straight from the pages of his book.
In the lawsuit, filed in California on April 13, Peter Gallagher claims that the horror film and his book are “virtually identical” in numerous respects.
The writer claims that he published The Little White Trip: A Night in the Pines in 2006 and registered the book with the Writers Guild of America in 2007. According to the lawsuit, Peter Gallagher published two runs of the book totaling 7,500 copies and hawked them in areas including Santa Monica, California, the Venice Beach boardwalk and the Hollywood Walk of Fame.
The similarities between Peter Gallagher’s book and the film are myriad, the suit claims.
“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 complaint claims.
The suit also claims: “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 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 Gallagher even says that the two main female characters in his book are named Julie and Dura, whereas in the film they’re named Jules and Dana.