Stranger Things' creators accused of plagiarism; Netflix hit allegedly a copy of short film Montauk

FP Staff

Apr 04, 2018 13:28:04 IST

The creators of Stranger Things have been sued for allegedly stealing the show’s concept.

Filmmaker Charlie Kessler, who directed the short film Montauk, alleges that he pitched the idea of turning his short movie into a full series to the Duffer Brothers in April 2014.

Kessler filed a lawsuit (read it here) on 3 March, Tuesday claiming he pitched the Montauk concept to Matt and Ross Duffer at a Tribeca Film Festival party. He also claims to have presented “the script, ideas, story and film” which was allegedly used to develop Stranger Things.

Kessler claims that the Duffer brothers used the working title The Montauk Project during the early stages of Stranger Things. This version of the show was set in Long Island, and was later changed to Indiana.

Stranger Things creators accused of plagiarism; Netflix hit allegedly a copy of short film Montauk

The Duffer Brothers/Image from Twitter.

According to a 2015 Deadline report, when Netflix green-lighted Stranger Things to series, the project was titled Montauk. Its original log-line read, “Described as a love letter to the ’80s classics that captivated a generation, the series is set in 1980 Montauk, Long Island, where a young boy vanishes into thin air. As friends, family and local police search for answers, they are drawn into an extraordinary mystery involving top-secret government experiments, terrifying supernatural forces and one very strange little girl.”

According to Deadline, Kessler’s Montauk story-line involved a missing boy, a nearby military base conducting experiments on children, and a monster from another dimension that looks like a toy.

According to Variety, both Montauk and Stranger Things came after a 1992 book called The Montauk Project: Experiments in Time about secret government experiments at a place called Camp Hero in Montauk, Long Island.

“After the massive success of Stranger Things that is based on Plaintiff’s concepts that Plaintiffs discussed with Defendants, Defendants have made huge sums of money by producing the series based on Plaintiff’s concepts without compensating or crediting Plaintiff for his Concepts,” said Kessler's suir as reported by Deadline.

The Duffer Brothers and Netflix haven’t yet responded to the claims.

Updated Date: Apr 04, 2018 13:28:04 IST