Actor Hayden Christensen has settled his legal battle with bosses behind U.S. TV series Royal Pains. The Jumper star and his brother Tove, who own production company Forest Park Pictures, accused executives at USA Network of stealing their 2005 idea for a show based on a "concierge" doctor who makes home visits to rich and famous clients.
The siblings filed a lawsuit against USA chiefs in 2010 after Royal Pains premiered, claiming the show was strikingly similar to their pitch, entitled Housecall, but a judge ultimately dismissed the case.
The Christensens won the right to an appeal last year (12), and earlier this month (May13) both parties submitted papers to dismiss the suit with prejudice and cover their own legal costs, according to The Hollywood Reporter.
Tove Christensen, who produced his actor sibling's 2003 drama Shattered Glass, was at home in the early hours of Tuesday (02Oct12) when an unidentified male used a rock to smash a window and gain entrance to the property.
The 39 year old, who was not seen by the intruder, promptly called police to report the crime as he lay low, reports TMZ.com.
The man attempted to steal a guitar but he ran off and dumped the instrument in the bushes after hearing police sirens, and he managed to escape before cops arrived at the scene.
Authorities have since launched an investigation into the incident, although they have yet to name any suspects.
The Canadian actor and his brother Tove, who own production company Forest Park Pictures, accused executives at Universal Television (UTV) of stealing their 2005 idea for a show based on a "concierge" doctor who makes home visits to rich and famous clients.
The siblings launched a legal battle against UTV bosses in 2010 after a programme containing striking similarities to their pitch, Royal Pains, premiered in June, 2009, but a judge subsequently threw out the case, declaring the claims concerned "materials that are not copyrightable, such as ideas".
The Christensens later filed an appeal in a bid to overturn the decision but UTV chiefs countered with a motion to dismiss, which was eventually granted by a district court.
However on Tuesday (26Jun12), the U.S. District Court of Appeals for the second circuit in New York reversed that ruling, giving Tove and the Jumper star the opportunity to push forward with an appeal.
The Canadian actor and his brother, Tove, filed suit against executives at the USA Network over allegations one of the channel's shows is based on an idea the brothers pitched to them back in 2005.
They claim their proposal for a show called Housecall, about a "concierge" doctor who makes home visits to rich and famous clients, was turned into Royal Pains, starring Mark Feuerstein.
The case went to court in New York on Tuesday (10May11) and Manhattan federal Judge Colleen McMahon dismissed the lawsuit, ruling the claims concerned "materials that are not copyrightable, such as ideas".
Their lawyer, David Marek, has now confirmed the brothers will appeal the decision, telling the New York Post, "We are disappointed with the ruling and hope to have it reversed on appeal."
February 14, 2011 12:33pm EST
Brad Anderson’s new film The Vanishing on 7th St. asks you to fear the haunting abyss that is the darkness but the more terrifying void is its story. Or lack thereof. Seeing as how it’s billed as a mystery horror-thriller and this from the director of neo-noir classics like The Machinist and Transsiberian I expected at least a few minor scares; I should’ve known they’d come only from Hayden Christensen’s performance.
The film is set in Detroit and follows a handful of survivors (including John Leguizamo Thandie Newton Jacob Latimore and Christensen) of an inexplicable power outage that seems to have consumed the entire city’s population. They must put the pieces of this puzzling event together to understand what’s happening and figure out how they can stay alive with looming shadows closing in on them.
With a less competent director at the helm this movie would’ve been a total disaster. The script is terrible focusing on one-dimensional characters their back-stories and a bunch of crackpot theories that hint at explanations but never follow through (in its defense the film is meant to be inconclusive but that doesn’t make up for bad dialogue plot holes etc.) Luckily Anderson is in his element with ambiguous narratives and creates a startling atmosphere that is interesting to examine. It has an unpolished gritty texture that brings to mind similar low-budget horror flicks but is enhanced by startling sound effects and an unnerving score from relative newcomer Lucas Vidal. Still all style and no substance only goes so far and The Vanishing on 7th St. never hits the throttle.
Essentially a creature feature without the creature the film is best looked at as an apocalyptic survival tale. The problem is that there’s nothing adventurous or enthralling about it. The characters’ encounters with the shadows are repetitive and the effect gets old quickly. Furthermore half of the cast (I’ll let you guess who) is incapable of conveying fear and if they aren’t afraid then how are you the audience supposed to be? I tried analyzing the film from an existential standpoint as a few of the characters question the reason for this human extermination but I couldn’t find any genuine moments of meditation.
Without question the star player here is Anderson who proves that he can do his job even when other members of the creative team don’t. The fact that he was able to develop such a striking tone from a sub-par screenplay is a testament of his ability as a storyteller.
The Canadian actor and his brother, Tove, claim they contacted the network in 2005 and pitched a proposal for a show called Housecall, about a "concierge" doctor who makes home visits to rich and famous clients.
The siblings allege USA Network bosses took the idea and turned it into their own series, Royal Pains, which is now in its second season.
The pair filed legal papers at Manhattan Federal Court in New York City on Tuesday (06Jul10), claiming an unnamed executive at USA told them that when they pitched their idea he was "aware of concierge doctors " and called their concept was "fascinating", according to the New York Post.
Christensen has been ordered to complete the 20-day Hollywood Beautification program after pleading "no contest" to a charge of misdemeanour battery following a violent altercation with his girlfriend.
He was arrested in September (09) after dragging his lover 30 feet (9.14 metres) as she clung to the side of his car following a heated argument, reports TMZ.com.
Witnesses allege the Shattered Glass producer was behind the wheel and hit the accelerator when the woman - who hasn't been identified - reached into the vehicle to grab her purse.
Christensen was also handed three years probation and must undergo a year of domestic violence counselling.
The Star Wars actor claims he struck a deal with producer Philippe Martinez in 2005 to star in a film called Crash Bandits.
The star's brother Tove also allegedly signed on to co-produce the project.
The pair are now suing Martinez, who they say claimed he had a $500 million (GBP333 million) to fund the film, and agreed to pay for the right to have first shot at producing the brothers' future projects, according to TMZ.com.
But the film never got made and now the brothers are demanding $3 million (GBP2 million) from Martinez.
Christensen, 36, was arrested early on Wednesday morning (02Sep09) after reportedly dragging his girlfriend 30 feet (9.14 metres) as she clung to the side of his car after a heated argument, according to TMZ.com.
Witnesses allege the Shattered Glass producer was behind the wheel when the unidentified woman reached into the vehicle to grab her purse, and Christensen hit the accelerator.
The woman reportedly suffered visible marks on her arm but did not sustain serious injuries.
Christensen, who was arrested at his Los Angeles home, is being held on $30,000 (£20,000) bail.