A Montgomery, Alabama man has hit Ice Cube’s Cube Vision
Productions and Metro Goldwin-Mayer (MGM) with a $100 million dollar copyright
infringement lawsuit, alleging the companies stole the idea for “Barbershop."
Davis, 31 said he copyrighted “The Shop” in 1999 as a college student,
based off of his experiences in Atlanta, Georgia.
The breach of contract
and copyright infringement suit was filed yesterday (September 7) in U.S. District
Court for the Middle District of Alabama.
[“The Shop”] was copyrighted in 1999 while I was in college, and
theirs was copyrighted in 2001, the same year that I was getting investors and
letters of intent,” Davis told AllHipHop.com. “A very famous celebrity
gave Ice Cube my script and the story board. I am not saying two people can't
have the same idea, but for our concepts to be similar is impossible.”
Davis said similarities
between "The Shop" characters and the characters of “Barbershop”
would ultimately vindicate him in court.
in the lawsuit include “Barbershop” writers Don D. Scott, Marshall
Todd and Mark Brown.
Davis said he negotiated
with various actors and comedians for one year in regards to appearing in the
film. During that time an investor offered to produce his screenplay.
got wind that MGM was doing a film 'Barbershop,' my whole operation was shut
down,” Davis claimed. “They stopped me from shooting my own film.”
Davis said he wasn’t
trying to capitalize off of the hundreds of millions of dollars the movie franchise
and subsequent DVD releases have earned.
not somebody throwing something out in the air,” Davis said. “I
am a filmmaker. They took it from me and I just want just due. It won’t
take a rocket scientist to figure this out.”
Up next for Davis
is a project titled “Black Greek Organizations: The Foundation.”
The DVD focuses on the history and current state of Black masonry, secret societies
and black fraternities and sororities.
The DVD will be
available at Wal-Mart, Target and Best Buy stores nationwide in January and
features John Salley, Shaquille O’Neal and the last known interview with
legendary lawyer and Kappa Alpha Psi member Johnny Cochran.
Representatives for MGM
or Cube Vision Productions could not be reached as of press time.