Culture&Arts

The Duffer Brothers Are Being Sued for Stealing 'Stranger Things' Concept

The Duffer Brothers Are Being Sued for Stealing 'Stranger Things' Concept

"Stranger Things" creators Matt and Ross Duffer are being sued for allegedly ripping off a filmmaker's idea for the hit Netflix series. "Some of the 'Stranger Things" cast have alluded to the connection, saying in a Wired interview that the show was based on stories about Camp Hero".

Kessler claims the Duffer Brothers stole major plot elements - including the story's setting near a mysterious government installation, as well as its reliance on supernatural forces leading to an alternate reality - from Kessler's 2011 short film Montauk.

Kessler's attorney Michael Kernan argues that the 2014 party pitch created an implied-in-fact contract pursuant to well-established industry norms.

"Montauk", which won an award at the Hamptons Film Festival in 2012, was a found-footage sci-fi short that told the story of a violent event that took place in the Long Island community.

Kessler alleges he did not know that "Stranger Things" mirrored his own ideas until it was released in July 2016, according to the suit.

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The Duffer Brothers and Netflix haven't yet responded to the claims. The series resembles an alleged real-life government experiment known as "The Montauk Project" (on which Kessler's film is also based).

Kessler reportedly sought out the Duffer brothers in 2014 to help him spin Montauk into a TV series, although the two parties made no agreement.

As reported by Variety back in 2015, Stranger Things was originally sold to Netflix under the title of "Montauk".

As restitution, Kessler is not only demanding his slice of the pie in lost profits and punitive damage, he's also seeking an injunction to stop the Duffers from using his concepts and demanding they "destroy all materials" based on his concept.

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