Back in August we reported on a story that was broken by TMZ and MTV News regarding a plagiarism suit filed against Twilight Saga creator/author Stephenie Meyer over her fourth and final book in the saga, Breaking Dawn.
The suit, filed by a 21-year-old musician/author named Jordan Scott, demanded that Meyer’s publisher, Hachette Book Group, cease and desist all printings of the Breaking Dawn novel, as contents of the book were allegedly copied from a novel Scott wrote when she was 15-16, entitled, Nocturne.
A lot of you looked at that case summary and immediately cried B.S. Now it’s looking like you made the right call. The “striking similarities” between Breaking Dawn and Nocturne included:
- A post-wedding sex scene
- A scene about a woman who’s sick because she’s carrying a child with “evil powers”
- A scene with the death of the main character’s wife
There was even some side-by-side analysis done of the two texts to see if there might not be truth to the charge. That “evidence” was far from incriminating at the time, and, according to MTV, United States District Court Judge Otis D. Wright II pretty much felt the same way when he dismissed the suit this past Wednesday. According to Hachette, Wright found that the “characters in the two works are vastly different.” The judge also claimed that Scott “twice manipulated aspects of the subject works in order to create the appearance of similarity.”
A young, wannabe artist making a frivolous lawsuit to gain fame and/or money? Unheard of in America!
Hachette attempt to nail the coffin shut on this suit by firing off the following statement:
This judgment confirms what we have known all along — ‘Breaking Dawn’ is a wholly original work by Stephenie Meyer and this was a frivolous lawsuit brought for the purposes of publicizing the plaintiff’s personal publishing aspirations…Hachette Book Group and Stephenie Meyer are pleased to be able to put this case behind us.”
But don’t count Jordan Scott out yet! Said the young “artist’s” lawyer:
“…We are pleased the judge very carefully made a side-by-side comparison of ‘The Nocturne’ and ‘Breaking Dawn’ and issued a considered opinion regarding his decision. At this point, Jordan Scott is studying her options regarding continued prosecution of her case against Stephenie Meyer.”
This dismissal represents the second (widely publicized) plagiarism suit that Meyer has had to face down in 2009 – an earlier suit was ultimately revealed to be a complete hoax.
I said back in August: True or not, the clear loser here is still the literary community. Breaking Dawn isn’t exactly Shakespeare (I remember when the book was about to be released and fans thought a first chapter preview Meyer released was a hoax because it was so poorly written!). The real humor in all this (for me at least) is that Meyer’s work can conceivably be held up to that of a teenager’s! I’ll stop poking fun there; I know a lot of you in fact enjoy these books. I ain’t mad ‘atcha.
In the end, this is the price of fame, sadly. However, with New Moon breaking movie records right now, I’m pretty sure Stephenie Meyer is laughing all the way to the bank – lawsuits or no lawsuits.
Side Note: I don’t feel like I should have to say this, but, NO BITING JORDAN SCOTT you Twilight fans out there… We know how you guys do… ;-)
The film version of Breaking Dawn (Parts 1 & 2?) are currently slated for release sometime in 2011.
Source: MTV News