Stranger Things Creators Are Being Sued for Allegedly Stealing a Filmmaker's Idea

Charlie Kessler says he pitched the idea for 'Stranger Things' to Matt and Ross Duffer at a party in 2014

Two years later, he met the Duffers at the Tribeca Film Festival and pitched The Montauk Project, a series that would expand on the short (both are based on an actual conspiracy theory about psychological experiments based near the NY town). Kessler made a short film of the concept (and wrote a feature script titled The Montauk Project), which told the story of a paranormal phenomenon occurring in proximity to a government facility. Given the smash success of the series, there's no denying that the rewards reaped were great and will likely only get greater. Kessler's oiginal "Montauk" outline also has a slew of similar things which may be found on "Stranger Things", including a story of a young boy who disappears and a cop with a haunted past trying to find him. Both story concepts hold ties to a novel called The Montauk Project: Experiments in Time, which implements storylines with secret government experiments to create humans with supernatural abilities.

According to Kessler, the Duffers used the working title The Montauk Project early on in development of Stranger Things, which was originally set in Montauk, before the setting was changed to the fictional in town Hawkins. The Duffer brothers and Netflix have not responded to the claims.

In April 2015, Netflix announced the Duffer Brothers' series, which would eventually become "Stranger Things", with the title "Montauk".

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The plan was to make it into a series called "The Montauk Project".

Kessler is seeking an injunction ordering the Duffers to stop using his concepts and to destroy all materials based on those concepts, as well as restitution, lost profits and punitive damages.

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