The film hasn’t been released yet, but the genius director has done a magnificent job, and it will be released hopefully in 2017. That being said, like every fantastically successful film or TV show, there are always lawsuits claiming the story was stolen. Was this one? A court will soon decide. Kong: Skull Island is set to be released next year, but the battle for the soul of the story is in contention.
Artist Joe DeVito claims he created an entire Skull Island universe that ties together the people and events surrounding King Kong, with the blessing of the original creator’s family, and now he’s suing producers of the feature film claiming they stole his ideas from pitch meetings.
“More than 80 years have passed since the public was introduced to Merian C. Cooper’s King Kong,” states the complaint filed Wednesday by DeVito’s attorney Randy Merritt. “In that entire time, not one motion picture or television program has told the story of the iconic creature’s origin or his relationship to the mysterious island on which he was found.”
In 1992, DeVito began working, in conjunction with the Cooper family, to create a story that explains Kong’s origins and ties together the events before his capture and after his death.
More than a decade later, Mr. DeVito partnered with Lorenzo di Bonaventura to develop the Skull Island property as a high-budget television program. Following that partnership, DeVito claims he pitched the idea to Legendary and Warner Bros. — the producers behind the upcoming motion picture.
DeVito is suing Legendary and Warner Bros. for breach of implied contract, claiming the companies have used the conceptual framework he pitched them as the basis of their film without giving proper credit or compensation. He’s also hitting Legendary with an intentional interference with a contract claim, alleging the company bullied his production partners into dropping out of the TV project.
Legendary neither Warner Bros. Studios wanted to comment on this story.
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Written By: Tommy Lightfoot Garrett
Photographs are Courtesy: Warner Bros.
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