Tom Cruise is being sued for USD1 billion by a man who claims that the script for “Mission: Impossible – Ghost Protocol” was based on his copyrighted screenplay. Timothy Patrick McLanahan is suing the actor, along with several others, for allegedly ripping off his idea for the movie in 1998.
According to the court documents filed on Dec 20, 2013 in California, which was obtained by RadarOnline.com, the screenwriter named Cruise, Paramount Pictures, and various production companies as defendants. http://amradaronline.files.wordpress.com/2014/02/tom-cruise-sued-ghost-protocol.pdf
McLanahan claimed that he wrote a screenplay called “Head On” in 1998. It has received a copyright certificate from the U.S. Copyright Office, which protects its material and author from unauthorised use.
He then sent the script to William Morris Agency, but it passed on it. However, McLanahan said that The agency then sent it to another agency, CAA, without his permission.
William Morris “then shopped the script around the world, including Tom Cruise’s Rick Nicita, top agent with Creative Artist Agency.”
Nicita is the husband of Paula Wagner, who is one of Cruise’s production partners.
Then in 2011, “Mission: Impossible – Ghost Protocol” was released.
“Upon reviewing and watching the script and movie of Ghost Protocol, I immediately recognised that the scripts for this movie had been illegally written and produced from Head On’s 1998 copyright.
McLanahan said that because the film generated close to USD1 billion, he is asking the same amount in damages.
The movie, produced by and starring Cruise, generated almost USD700 million in the box office, USD144.5 million from the DVD and blue ray sales, plus millions of dollars in movie rentals and subscription sales.
The film budget was USD145 million.
Cruise and the other defendants have yet to comment on the lawsuit.