There are few horror movies that genuinely earn the right to be called brilliant, and 2012’s Cabin in the Woods is definitely one of them. Written by Joss Whedon and Drew Goddard, the film totally deconstructed the horror genre, sending a powerful message about its penchant for recycling old ideas.
But was the entire idea of Cabin in the Woods stolen from an unknown author? According to TMZ today, a massive lawsuit has just been filed, as Whedon and Goddard are being dragged into court. Writer Peter Gallagher claims that their movie contains some very peculiar similarities to his book, written well before the release of Cabin.
The book is called The Little White Trip: A Night in the Pines, and in it a group of five young friends head out into a cabin in the woods. As it turns out, the ill-fated characters are being manipulated by outside forces and filmed as players in a real life horror-show, which is of course the concept of Cabin in the Woods.
Furthermore, the two female characters in Gallagher’s book are named Julie and Dura, while in the film the female characters are named Jules and Dana. He says that it’s further proof of the thievery, and he also notes that 25 specific scenes throughout the book found their way into the movie.
To bolster his claim, Gallagher swears that he used to take to the streets of Santa Monica, California to promote his book, and it’s interesting to note that Joss Whedon lives in Santa Monica. Did he snag a copy from the author at one point in time, and use it as the inspiration for Cabin in the Woods? Perhaps the court case will answer that question.
Peter Gallagher is seeking damages in excess of over $10 million.