Quentin Tarantino’s lawsuit over his leaked screenplay, The Hateful Eight, has been amended.
In January of this year, gossip website Gawker posted a link to download Tarantino’s unproduced script. The filmmaker was outraged by the situation. He soon after filed a formal complaint, which turned into an official lawsuit.
Gawker responded to the allegations by calling them “shallow”. According to the accused: “Because plaintiff did not allege any facts showing that an infringing act actually was undertaken by a third party — merely accessing the script by clicking on the link is legally insufficient — plaintiff did not state a claim for contributory infringement.”
Tarantino’s first attempt to sue Gawker was unsuccessful. However, he was given the opportunity to amend his initial complaint. According to The Hollywood Reporter, the director has gladly taken this opportunity.
Tarantino, represented by Lavely & Singer law firm, believes their actions have been a direct copyright infringement.
The amended complaint states: “Anyone who sought to read or obtain the Screenplay from the Screenplay Download URL necessarily had to first download a PDF copy of the work onto their own computer. On January 23, 2014, after Gawker obtained the Screenplay Download URL in response to its request for leak of an unauthorized infringing copy of the Screenplay, Gawker itself illegally downloaded to its computers an unauthorized infringing PDF copy of the Screenplay — read it and learned that the PDF download document was 146 pages — directly infringing Tarantino’s copyright.”
Tarantino also argues that Gawker asked its users to provide an unauthorised copy of the screenplay. Even when it was eventually taken down from this location, Gawker allegedly pointed readers elsewhere, so they could access a copy of the script.
The judge will address whether a site that downloads copyrighted material is in violation of the rights of the author.