The owners of the rights to Faulkner’s literary works are suing Sony Pictures Classics after taking exception to a line spoken by actor Owen Wilson, who plays a time-travelling writer.
In the 2011 comedy, Wilson says, “The past is not dead! Actually, it’s not even past. You know who said that? Faulkner. And he was right. And I met him, too. I ran into him at a dinner party.”
The complaint, filed by Faulkner Literary Rights LLC on Thursday (25Oct12), alleges Sony bosses failed to seek permission to use the line, which is from a passage in Faulkner’s Requiem for a Nun.
The suit states, “The use of the infringing quote and of William Faulkner’s name in the infringing film is likely to cause confusion, to cause mistake, and/or to deceive the infringing film’s viewers as to a perceived affiliation, connection or association between William Faulkner and his works, on the one hand, and Sony, on the other hand.”
Faulkner Literary Rights LLC executives are demanding “damages, disgorgement of profits, costs and attorney fees”, according to The Hollywood Reporter.