A years-long legal brouhaha revolving around the wildly profitable Purge franchise has come to an end.
The suit centered on allegations from Douglas Jordan-Benel that the movie and TV franchise had ripped off his screenplay Settler's Day, as the Hollywood Reporter explained in their update on the proceedings Monday morning. In documents, Jordan-Benel called the two works "virtually identical" and pointed to a previous UTA talent agency script submission (i.e. the same agency repping Purge creator James DeMonaco) as alleged proof.
Defendants including Universal Pictures tried multiple avenues of arguing First Amendment rights interference, with federal appeals court ultimately determining that they didn't feel that such a violation had occurred. Now, four years after the Purge v. Settler's Day debate first began, all involved parties have come to an agreement in which the suit has been dropped. As the THR report explains, the terms of this drop agreement are "unusually" vague.
DeMonaco, Universal, and Platinum Dunes Productions told a California court Friday that all involved had agreed to the dismissal following a settlement. Per their cited documents, the plaintiff is dropping the suit "with prejudice in exchange for a waiver by Defendants of any claim for an award of fees and costs" due to information showing "independent creation." See the full report here.
Meanwhile in Purge land, last year brought us the origin story The First Purge (notably the first entry to not carry a DeMonaco director's credit). As is tradition with the franchise by now, the profits were high while the critics were less-than-stoked on the execution of the premise. In subsequent interviews, DeMonaco suggested that the next entry—most likely due next year—will be the last.