Guy Ritchie Faces Legal Drama Due to Alleged Plagiarism in The Gentlemen
The movie's plot allegedly borrows heavily from an uncredited author's screenplay.
Guy Ritchie is being sued over his movie The Gentlemen. Actor/writer Mickey De Hara's lawsuit claims the director stole his story idea.
According to De Hara, Ritchie asked him to write a sequel to the 2008 gangster movie RockNRolla based on "personal experience".
De Hara was once reportedly convicted of possession of cocaine and marijuana "with intent to supply," for which he faced jail time.
In 2018, after De Hara pitched a script about a character who runs a marijuana business, Ritchie told him that "the time of the gangster movie was over," hinting that the project would not come to fruition.
Two years later, Ritchie released The Gentlemen, starring Matthew McConaughey as a gangster named Mickey who is trying to sell his marijuana business.
De Hara claims that the movie is a "substantial" reproduction of his script.
According to the lawsuit, The Gentlemen copies De Hara's characters, their traits and "unique plot elements," including the title character and an aristocrat with a drug-addicted child.
De Hara claims that a scene in which Coach played by Colin Farrell, who fights with several young men in a cafe and splashes vinegar in their eyes was lifted directly from his script.
He says his script also featured a character nicknamed The Coach who led a group of thugs called The Toddlers.
De Hara says that after the movie was released in January 2020, he wrote to Richie to point out the similarities between the two projects, to which Richie replied, "Mickey, I and my people have tried to contact you for some years now. There was no response. I am happy for us to sit down and have a chat."
De Hara denied that Ritchie tried to contact him about the project before its release.
In court, De Hara says he "has no intention of seeking credit for original work that was not created by him," but rather "credit for his original work that has been used in The Gentlemen without his consent and without payment of the agreed remuneration."
The screenwriter is also seeking more than $250,000, including a share of the movie's profits.
The director himself has not made any comment on the situation so far. The movie grossed $115 million at the box office. If De Hara's accusations are confirmed, the director might be forced to pay a tidy sum.