If one man is to be believed, the makers of the hit Netflix series Stranger Things actually took his idea. In a lawsuit, Charlie Kessler alleges the premise for the '80s-set series completely ripped off his short film Montauk.
Kessler’s short premiered at the Hamptons International Film Festival, and even managed to pick up an award. The film centers around covert government experiments, which also happens to be the focus of the Netflix series. (Not that it’s exactly an original idea, mind you.)
Anyway, here’s where things get dicey. As TMZ reports, Kessler says he and his agents actually pitched the idea, as a show, to the Duffer Brothers, the duo behind Stranger Things. The pitch fell flat, which is why Kessler says he was especially surprised when the Netflix series came out in July 2016. He alleges that Stranger Things was even sold under his title, The Montauk Project, and that Matt and Ross Duffer essentially all of his material. Naturally, Kessler’s looking for a payout, but he also wants any content that was picked from his ideas destroyed. Good luck with that one, bro
Stranger Things star Winona Ryder may be known for her shoplifting past, but from what I know, the Duffer Brothers don't have a history of petty larceny. Watching Montauk before it got pulled, I saw zero relation to the series nor a single mention of the Upside Down. There was also some very questionable acting that needs to be addressed.