I’ve received numerous emails about the upcoming TNT TV series, Falling Skies, and the resemblance it bears to my 2010 science-fiction novel, Stars Rain Down. I thought it best not to comment on the topic until I was absolutely sure, but today I’m finally breaking the silence.
After consulting with Kessler & Wright, a well-known Los Angeles law firm specializing in intellectual property rights, we’ve determined that Falling Skies is in fact an unauthorized adaptation of Stars Rain Down, based on the presence of countless identical plot elements and a number of speeches lifted virtually word-for-word from my work. I normally couldn’t afford to retain the services of a firm like K&W, but based on the strength of my case, David Kessler has agreed to represent me personally under a contingent fee agreement.
We initially contacted Spielberg and company at the beginning of February in hopes of resolving the situation amicably, and then held a series of meetings with them throughout March. Being a new and mostly unknown author, my only interest at the time was in receiving a production credit, but our requests were summarily denied as was any connection between Falling Skies and Stars Rain Down. On Mr. Kessler’s suggestion, we have now filed suit against TNT, Steven Spielberg, series creator Robert Rodat, and production company Dreamworks Entertainment, alleging copyright infringement and defamation of character. We will be seeking monetary damages totaling 3 million dollars.
I must stress just how much I wanted to avoid legal recourse, and how much it pains me to be forced into such measures. Mr. Spielberg’s work has inspired me throughout my life, and I really wanted to believe that this was a simple coincidence. However, the evidence is truly conclusive. When it became clear that I was a very small fry being stomped on by a very large boot, I realized that I had no choice but to fight back.
These developments have so far made me more sad than angry, and I just wanted to thank all of you who’ve honored me with your support, kindness and prayers during this very troubling ordeal. While I remain hopeful for some sort of mutually beneficial settlement—for just a moment of humanity and compassion—I fear there are many difficult days yet to come. I hope that you, my fans and friends, will stick around as we here at Oktopod navigate this very perilous road.
Despite the sour news, I wish everyone out there a fantastic holiday today!
Chris J. Randolph
Update: As many of you have pointed out, this was just a bad April Fool’s joke. You can read more about it in this post. Happy April Fool’s everyone!