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Wednesday, February 27, 2008

Wait, You Mean Zombies in a Shopping Mall Has Already Been Done?

Apparently that's news to Capcom, the video game developer that had the nerve to act surprised when Richard Rubenstein--owner of the intellectual property of Dawn of the Dead--sued them last Monday for copyright infringement over their game Dead Rising.

Capcom tried in vain to block the lawsuit, claiming that the concept of zombies in a mall was not something that could be copyrighted. But Rubenstein's MKR Group took it further, declaring that, "Both works are dark comedies. Both works provided thoughtful social commentary on the 'mall culture' zeitgeist, in addition to serving up a sizable portion of sensationalistic violence."

I was wondering how long it would take for this to happen. George Romero even mentioned the alarming similarity during his recent Opie & Anthony interview. Rubenstein owns the rights to both Dawn and Day of the Dead--in fact I believe it was a dispute between he and Romero over the ownership of the concept that partly created such difficulty in getting a fourth Dead film made for so many years.

Rubinstein is known for being quite the litigious fellow--going after fan websites and that sort of thing. But it's hard not to see his point on this one. The game is clearly inspired 100% by Dawn, and it looks like Capcom is trying to get away with adapting the concept without having to pay to officially license the property.
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