The producers of a big-budget Western/science-fiction movie have been sued by the author of a story with the same name, who says they stole his idea, Deadline.com reports.
The 2011 release “Cowboys & Aliens” is the focal point of the lawsuit. Writer Steven John Busti, based in Austin, Texas, filed the suit in federal court.
DreamWorks Studios and Universal Pictures are named in the lawsuit, along with comic book entrepreneur Scott Mitchell Rosenberg and his company, Platinum Studios, the story reports.
Busti says the story of cowboys battling aliens was his idea, which he published in 1995 under the title “Cowboys & Aliens” in the “Bizarre Fantasy” comic book.
“Cowboys & Aliens” later became the name of a graphic novel series from Platinum Studios, starting in 2006, the story says. Universal and DreamWorks bought the rights for the film from Platinum Studios. Busti says the graphic novel series is close to his original idea.
The big-budget movie, which starred Daniel Craig and Harrison Ford, grossed about $175 million worldwide, the story notes, barely covering its costs.