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Fifty Shades of Grey porn adaptation sued, for some reason

FiftyShadesofGrey.jpgWhen I read this article a little while ago I wondered what all the fuss was, another adult industry parody of a Hollywood film to be shouldn't be getting Hollywood upset, after all there's been Superman, Spiderman, Star Trek, plenty of parodies of big name films and no big press court action.

So why is there now? Why is Universal so upset that there's a porn version of Fifty Shades of Grey already on the go? Well obviously because there's isn't and it's going to steal their audience, that and the fact that it isn't a parody, the adult industry have not only beaten them to it but also managed to make a film that they never would.

Universal bought the rights to Fifty Shades of Grey in March for a mere US $5 million and are planning to make a film about the books, something that they might find a little hard to do considering the books are about an erotic love affair which even goes as far as featuring bondage.

Meanwhile Smash Pictures have made an adult film version of the book with the director James Lane, aka Jim Powers, leading the adaptation called Fifty Shades of Grey: A XXX Adaptation.

That upset Universal and Fifty Shades Ltd who call the film a...

"...willful attempt to capitalize on the reputation of the book."

According to the article in The Hollywood Reporter they reference a quote from an interview with L.A. Weekly that Stuart Wall, a Smash executive, gave for a piece about adult industry parodies of Hollywood films where he said:

"Since they are going to make a mainstream [film] of the books too, dabbling in the adult world, we're choosing to go with a XXX adaption which will stay very true to the book and its S&M-themed romance."

Their case against Smash Pictures and the film's distributors also points out the similarities between the film and the book:

"By lifting exact dialogue, characters, events, story and style from the Fifty Shades trilogy, Smash Pictures ensured that the first XXX adaptation was, in fact, as close as possible to the original works...

...Beginning with the first XXX adaptation's opening scene and continuing throughout the next 2½ hours of the film, Smash Pictures copies without reservation from the unique expressive elements of the Fifty Shades trilogy, progressing through the events of Fifty Shades of Grey and into the second book, Fifty Shades Darker"

It seems apparent that everyone involved has watched the film to see just how close it is to the novel and they claim it is far from a parody as it does not ridicule or comment on the originals, they say in some very plain language that it is a rip-off.

You can totally understand the court case if someone else has made a film of a property to which they don't have the rights; however I wonder if there really is a need for the case in the first place, after all why haven't the other parodies been taken to court.

Is this film really such a direct adaptation of the books? Well the books are about a sexual affair between two people that involves sex and bondage, two things you see in adult films all the time, in fact most of the time. I wonder how much they would have to work at making it a different film from the books, after all it's all just sex isn't it?

The sticking point will be that they claim the film lifts dialogue and characters directly from the books, these would be easy to prove, less easy will be their claim that they have also directly copied events and style, hard to prove in a film that is a series of sex scenes.

It's interesting to think though that before studios were making Hollywood mainstream films and the adult industry was parodying them, dipping a toe into the mainstream, now it's Hollywood who is in effect dipping their toes into the adult world by adapting a film that seems more suited for the adult industry than Hollywood. The roles seem reversed; the straps are on the other's wrists.

Still it does come down to whether the makers of Fifty Shades of Grey: A XXX Adaptation have directly copied the book for the film and it seems the lawyers for Universal and Fifty Shades Ltd believe that's the case, if they haven't it should be easy to prove, after all without the characters and dialogue isn't it just another porn film?

I wonder how the Hollywood version of Fifty Shades of Grey will turn out, a very pale shade of grey perhaps?



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