Gizmodo Editor-in-Chief Dan Ackerman Sues Apple, Alleging ‘Tetris’ Movie Ripped Off His Book

Blake Brittain, reporting for Reuters:

Dan Ackerman, editor in chief of the tech-news website Gizmodo, filed a lawsuit in Manhattan federal court on Monday accusing Apple, the Tetris Company and others of adapting his book about the landmark video game Tetris into a feature film without his permission. Ackerman said he sent his book The Tetris Effect in 2016 to the Tetris Company, which allegedly copied it for the movie and threatened to sue him if he pursued his own film or television spinoffs.

Reuters is hosting a copy of Ackerman’s complaint, which begins:

The movie entitled “Tetris” demonstrated the confiscation of Dan Ackerman’s original work and creation of his book “The Tetris Effect.”

Plaintiff Ackerman’s book took a unique approach to writing about the real history of Tetris, as it not only applied the historical record, but also layered his own original research and ingenuity to create a compelling narrative non-fiction book in the style of a Cold War spy thriller.

Mr. Ackerman’s literary masterpiece, unlike other articles and writings, dispelled of the emphasis on the actual gameplay and fans, and instead concentrated on the surrounding narrative, action sequences, and adversarial relationship between the players.

This was the identical approach Defendants adopted for the Tetris Film, without notable material distinction, but often resonating the exact same feel, tone, approach, and scenes as the book introduced several years prior.

I have watched the movie (enjoyable, but flawed) and not read Ackerman’s book, so I’m in no position to judge whether the movie is a rip-off of the book.

I do find it a bit curious that there’s no coverage of this lawsuit, at least yet, at Gizmodo itself, nor from Ackerman.

Thursday, 10 August 2023