After the disappointing results of “Avatar” in Oscar, now the movie has come into controversy for copyright infringement.
On one side, the Chinese Science fiction writer Zhou Shaomou filed a lawsuit at People’s Court of Beijing for copyright infringement. Allegedly the movie is 80% copy from his novel named “Tale of the Blue Crows” which was written by him in 1997. He has stated that in his novel the story line was that 6 astronauts travelled to a distant planet and met with blue-skinned creatures inhibited on that planet. According to the author, the alien landscape, events and characters portrayed in “Avatar” are similar to that of his novel. The writer has made a claim of USD 147 million (1 Billion Yuan).
On the other side, Emil Malak, owner of the Bellaggio Cafe at Hornby and Robson Streets, Canada, has sues the movie director and producer for copyright infringement at B.C. Supreme Court stating that the film bears a striking resemblance to his “Terra Incognita”, a screenplay he wrote and first copyrighted in 1998.
El- Khatib, the Lawyer for Mr. Emil Malak, has stated that there are striking similarities between the movie and story written by her Client. In both stories the human goes to a planet for mining precious minerals and have a clash with indigenous people. Also she has stated that the tree containing the memories of indigenous people is common between both the stories. Also the characters of the aliens in both the stories are similar as both incorporates spotted faces, long braided hair, flat noses and yellow eyes.
Allegedly, Malak has sent his he sent his script and graphic designs to about 20 movie studios including Cameron and his company Lightstorm Entertainment Inc. However he never heard back from them about the script or received his copy back.
However, the Twentieth Century Fox is confident that they will win the law suit and will prevail in a copyright infringement battle. Mr. Chris Petrikin, Vice President, Corporate Communications at Twentieth Century Fox Studio, commenting on the law suit in B.C. Supreme Court, has stated that the studio is confident that the lawsuit will be decided in our favour.
It was stated by Mr. Petrikin in an e-mail to the Province that “What we can say is that James Cameron wrote the story for Avatar two years before Mr. Malak claims he wrote his work, and therefore Avatar cannot be based on Terra Incognita”.
Source (Image): Avatar Offical Movie Website