'Disturbia' Copyright Lawsuit Dismissed
September 22nd, 2010 1:30pm EDT
A judge in the U.S. has dismissed a copyright infringement lawsuit which claimed Shia LaBeouf's 2007 movie Disturbia was based on the famous story of Rear Window.
Lawyers representing the trust of late writer Cornell Woolrich filed legal papers claiming DreamWorks movie bosses stole part of the film's plot from her short story, which was turned into an Oscar-nominated film by Alfred Hitchcock in 1954.
Both stories follow a man who spies on a neighbor from his window and becomes convinced they have committed murder. Legal reps alleged studio heads didn't ask permission to turn the short story into a film.
However, New York District Court judge Laura Taylor Swan has dismissed the complaint, insisting the similarities aren't enough to warrant copyright infringement.
She says, "The main plots are similar only at a high, unprotectable level of generality. Where Disturbia is rife with sub-plots, the short story has none. The setting and mood of the short story are static and tense, whereas the setting and mood of Disturbia are more dynamic and peppered with humor and teen romance."