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James Cameron wins lawsuit over Avatar credit (Case thrown out by judge)


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James Cameron wins Avatar lawsuit


James Cameron cleared of Avatar screenplay theft accusation

September 18, 2012

James Cameron has been cleared of allegations he stole an unknown screenwriter's idea when he created Avatar.

TheWrap reports that U.S. District Court Judge Manuel Real has thrown out a lawsuit brought against Cameron and 20th Century Fox by writer Elijah Schkeiban.

Schkeiban had claimed that Cameron stole ideas from his screenplay Bats and Butterflies. The writer claimed a mutual acquaintance in Hollywood had passed his script on to Cameron before the Canadian filmmaker wrote the sci-fi blockbuster.

Judge Real, however, ruled on Monday that Schkeiban's script is substantially different from Avatar and threw out the suit, despite the scribe's claims that there are huge similarities between the stories.

Those similarities include a 'weak' protagonist and, in the words of the defense, 'bad guys attacking good guys,' which the defence pointed out is 'not copyrightable.'

Real said in his decision to dismiss the suit, 'Bats and Butterflies is a straightforward children's story that lacks the depth and complexity of the moods expressed in Avatar.'

Schkeiban's is just one of several Avatar-related lawsuits that have been brought in recent years.

In other Cameron news, the director recently announced he'll be cooperating with the truth seekers on TV's Mythbusters to tackle the question of whether or not there was enough room for both Jack and Rose on the makeshift raft at the end of Titanic.

(Photo by PR Photos)

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Dazzled by 3d effects in the theatre, but now they're commonplace. Rewatching it on my tv though... 'Meh.' I thought Inception was more interesting.

But while Inception will probably not get a sequel, Cameron is going to milk Avatar until the stupid forest moon is out of Ewoks. Er, i mean Avatar ripped off Ferngully, not Endor. Right?

Not sure if the sequels will earn the billions promised. People are now bored by the spectacle of 3d and can Cameron deliver something even better, effects-wise? Not sure. But he certainly will spend the bucks to try.

As for the lawsuit, bah. Everybody wants a piece.

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This is the real copyright case against Cameron. I saw it on the news a while back. The screenplay was very well developed, with graphics and designs, for the film. It does appear, from what was shown on the news, that he was completely ripped off.


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I knew exactly what was going to happen next throughout the entire movie. The whole time I was thinking "I've seen this movie before, except now the Natives are blue."

Having similarities is one thing, but the story pretty much cart-wheeled down the beaten path.

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