Creators of 'Stranger Things' are being sued for stealing the idea for the show
There is an old adage in society that "nothing is original." While this may ring true for a lot of what we see and consume, it would be nice to think that there is the odd original concept out there.
Stranger Things is one of those shows that - on the face of it - seemed pretty unique. Yes, the show borrowed a lot of themes and concepts from the 1980's sci-fi trends, but there was something refreshing and exhilarating about it.
It would be fair to say that sci-fi, as a genre, has been hugely diluted in recent times. There have been far too many box-office flops and alien movies to keep count of and, if we're being honest, the majority of them sucked. So, to see a show that used a majority-child cast to re-launch this once heralded genre of film, was pretty astonishing.
But, as it turns out, a new lawsuit claims that Stranger Things was not an original idea.
Matt and Ross Duffer, the creators of Stranger Things, are being sued by a filmmaker who claims that they ripped off his idea in order to make the beloved sci-fi series.
The lawsuit has been filed by Charlie Kessler, who claims that he made a short feature called "Montauk" that revolved around secret government experiments. According to Kessler, he planned on making the feature into a feature-length TV show.
The plot reads as follows:
"In the series, set in 1980 Montauk, Long Island, 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.
"Montauk is a love letter to the 80s classics that captivated a generation.”
I mean, let's be clear - that sounds rather like Stranger Things.
According to Kessler, he pitched the idea to the Duffer brothers at a party back in 2014. The series was going to be called The Montauk Project and Kessler claims that he "presented materials" which outlined the details of the project. Ultimately, however, it was the Duffer Brothers who sold Stranger Things to Netflix in 2015.
Entertainment Weekly have reported that Stranger Things was originally set in Montauk, Long Island but the location was moved to Hawkins, Indiana shortly before filming commenced.
Kessler says that his short film was based on the real-life conspiracy theories regarding secret government experiments that were conducted in Montauk during the 1970s.
In an interview in 2010 - six years before Stranger Things was released - Kessler spoke about his plans to make Montauk into a TV show, saying:
"I am actively developing a feature version of Montauk, which has a more traditional narrative story that mixes with different genres."
He is now asking for bother monetary damages and a jury trial in order to settle the case.
Neither Netflix or The Duffer brothers have made a statement regarding the allegations by Kessler.