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First off today, Pamela Manson at The Salt Lake Tribune reports that Utah filmmaker Richard Dutcher has filed a lawsuit against the people behind the Oscar-nominated film Nightcrawler alleging that the movie is based on his 2007 film Falling.
According to Manson, both films are based on the idea of a freelance news videographers who get into dark scenarios while trying to capture interesting footage. Manson claims that he penned Falling in 1999 and it was made into a film in 2007, with planned DVD and Blu-Ray releases this year.
He goes on to say that he learned about the alleged infringement after he went to see Nightcrawler in the theater. He argues that, while the two films are not identical, Nightcrawler is a derivative with the biggest different being that Falling was meant as a tragedy and Nightcrawler as a dark comedy.
Next up today, Paul Brinkmann at the Orlando Sentinel reports that a judge has dismissed a lawsuit filed by Isabella Tanikumi alegging that the Disney film Frozen was based on her memoir, entitled Yearnings of the Heart.
Tanikumi sued in October alleging that Disney had based Frozen on her life, specifically her time spent in the mountains of Peru. The judge however, said that general plot ideas and themes are not protected by copyright and that, while the works had some similar themes, they were expressed in very different ways.
Accordinv to the judge, Tanikumi listed some 18 similarities between the works but those similarities were “tenuous at best.” In the end, the judge ruled that no reasonable person could find Disney bored from Tanikumi in creating Frozen and dismissed the highly-publicized lawsuit.
Finally today Russia Today writes that Dennis Collins has been sentenced to six months home confinement for his role in “Operation Payback”, a 2010 cyberattack led by anonymous that targeted various pro-copyright websites including the RIAA, the MPAA and the U.S. Copyright Office.
Collins, who is elderly and terminally ill, was charged in 2013 in the attack and pleaded guilty last year. The prosecution had wanted Collins to spend a year in prison but, noting his illness and advanced age, the judge opted for a significantly lighter sentence. Collins was the last of the 13 defendants in this attack to be sentenced.
However, Collins is also accused of similar attacks on PayPal and other financial institutions. He is yet to be convicted in this cases and, with his sentencing complete, that matter will be picked up next month.
That’s it for the three count today. We will be back tomorrow with three more copyright links. If you have a link that you want to suggest a link for the column or have any proposals to make it better. Feel free to leave a comment or send me an email. I hope to hear from you.