[ Writer’s Cove ] Was The Matrix Franchise Stolen
I saw a friend of mine share an article on Facebook this morning titled “Black Author wins Copyright Case for Matrix movie” which you can read in full here >>> http://jasonskywalker5.wordpress.com/2010/02/18/black-author-wins-matrix/. Of course we don’t post things like this normally but I felt as though it needed to be shared with our audience as it consistents in large part of artists, poets, writers, musicians etc who all aspire to reach the top. Its important that they see the reality of the BUSINESS side of things! Its important that they get a chance to showcase their creativity but also protect themselves from those who are willing to take advantage of their talents. So I am going to share part of the story & some other important info I’ve found that can help artists gain legal protection for their creative works. I hope this helps some of you!
Black Author wins The Matrix Copyright Infringement Case
This little known story has met a just conclusion, as Sophia Stewart, African American author of The Matrix will finally receive her just due from the copyright infringement of her original work!!!
A six-year dispute has ended involving Sophia Stewart, the Wachowski Brothers, Joel Silver and Warner Brothers. Stewart’s allegations, involving copyright infringement and racketeering, were received and acknowledged by the Central District of California, Judge Margaret Morrow presiding.
Stewart, a New Yorker who has resided in Salt Lake City for the past five years, will recover damages from the films, The Matrix I, II and III, as well as The Terminator and its sequels. She will soon receive one of the biggest payoffs in the history of Hollywood , as the gross receipts of both films and their sequels total over 2.5 billion dollars.
Stewart filed her case in 1999, after viewing the Matrix, which she felt had been based on her manuscript, ‘The Third Eye,’ copyrighted in 1981. In the mid-eighties Stewart had submitted her manuscript to an ad placed by the Wachowski Brothers, requesting new sci-fi works..
According to court documentation, a FBI investigation discovered that more than thirty minutes had been edited from the original film, in an attempt to avoid penalties for copyright infringement. The investigation also stated that ‘credible witnesses employed at Warner Brothers came forward, claiming that the executives and lawyers had full knowledge that the work in question did not belong to the Wachowski Brothers.’ These witnesses claimed to have seen Stewart’s original work and that it had been ‘often used during preparation of the motion pictures.’ The defendants tried, on several occasions, to have Stewart’s case dismissed, without success.
Stewart has confronted skepticism on all sides, much of which comes from Matrix fans, who are strangely loyal to the Wachowski Brothers. One on-line forum, entitled Matrix Explained has an entire section devoted to Stewart. Some who have researched her history and writings are open to her story.
Others are suspicious and mocking. ‘It doesn’t bother me,’ said Stewart in a phone interview last week, ‘I always knew what was true.’
Some fans, are unaware of the case or they question its legitimacy, due to the fact that it has received little to no media coverage. Though the case was not made public until October of 2003, Stewart has her own explanation, as quoted at aghettotymz.com:
‘The reason you have not seen any of this in the media is because Warner Brothers parent company is AOL-Time Warner…. this GIANT owns 95 percent of the media… let me give you a clue as to what they own in the media business… New York Times papers/magazines, LA Times papers/magazines, People Magazine, CNN news, Extra, Celebrity Justice, Entertainment Tonight, HBO, New Line Cinema, DreamWorks, Newsweek, Village Roadshow and many, many more! They are not going to report on themselves. They have been suppressing my case for years.’ (Read the rest here)
The focus shouldn’t be on this one story but more so on protecting your creative works! I would suggest starting with our government instead of going through a third party. Visit http://www.copyright.gov/
If it seems to be too much work to obtain the copyright at the very least read through the Government’s website understand what you need exactly & then seek out a third party like LegalZoom to do the leg work for you. That is of course if you have the money!
For additional hit these links:
3 Ways to Copyright a Song:
How to Obtain a Copyright for a Book
Please take a few minutes & purchase “Advantage” by Young Midas. He is was in a horrible car accident & all the proceeds from raised from purchasing this song will go to his medical expenses.