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Writer Thomas Althouse is suing Lana and Andy Wachowski - the directors of the sci-fi trilogy the Matrix - for allegedly stealing his ideas and using them in the sequels The Matrix Reloaded and The Matrix Revolution
According to E! News Althouse claims he wrote a screenplay called The Immortals that was registered with the Writers Guild and submitted to Warner Bros. in 1993. It was also copyrighted in 1996. In the screenplay, Althouse describes things called nodes that are located on the back of the immortals’ necks and that are used to connect to an alternate reality. Althouse also created a main character named Jim who was “a champion for the free people.”
In the Wachowskis’ Matrix movies, the protagonists connect to a virtual world called “the Matrix” by inserting a probe into a port at the base of their skulls called a “headjack.” The main character, Neo, discovers that the Matrix is an illusion created by the Machines to placate humans while their bio-energy is usurped. Neo then leads a rebellion to free the humans from their mental prisons.
Althouse only noticed the similarities between his screenplay and the Matrix sequels in 2010, though the movies were released in 2003. He is now suing the Wachowskis, producer Joel Silver and Warner Bros. for $300 million for “willful infringement on his copyright for purposes of commercial advantage.” Wenn.com adds that, on top of this sum, Althouse is also looking to get a share of the nearly $2 billion the Matrix trilogy grossed at the global box office because they allegedly used his ideas.
The Wachowskis have yet to respond to the lawsuit.