Writer Loses Plagiarism Suit Against James Cameron
A children's book writer is presumably out the cost of his legal fees after becoming the latest person to sue James Cameron for plagiarism. On Monday federal Judge Manuel Real threw out Elijah Schkeiban's claim that Cameron had used elements of his screenplay Bats and Butterflies, based on his series of children's books, an Avatar. Real ruled that the screenplay was a straightforward children's story that lacks the depth and complexity of the moods expressed in Avatar. Schkeiban had pointed to the similarities between the heroes of the two stories, noting that both were physically weak, and claimed that a climactic scene in Avatar in which the bad guys turn on the good guys emulated a similar scene in his screenplay. But, as reported by TheWrap.com, Cameron's lawyers argued that in the first instance, Being seen as weak is not protectable expression and in the second, Bad guys attacking good guys is not copyrightable.