This film is a fully plagiarized, shot-for-shot remake of my comic. The filmmakers didn't ask me for permission to adapt my work. They didn't even notify me they were doing so until the film had already been released and was winning awards at film festivals. https://t.co/4mW9w7ObSf pic.twitter.com/ew5d7I0BY7— Adam ElIis (@moby_dickhead) February 1, 2021
Adam Ellis is an illustrator who has worked with Buzzfeed, and creates his own comics - he regularly posts them on Instagram, and has also published a book of his work.
Keratin is a 2020 short film, about "an isolated man's ritualistic pursuit of creation in the heart of a dark, dense forest." It was written and directed by Andrew Butler and James Wilson. And guess what? They stole it.
An account on Film Twitter posted an interview with Butler and Wilson, and today, Adam Ellis retweeted it, stating that the film is actually a shot-for-shot copy of one of his comics. They didn't ask for permission to use his work, and actually only told Adam about it when they wanted him to help promo it so they had a better shot at awards.
They emailed me in October, when the film was making festival rounds, & asked me to HELP PROMOTE it. When I told them I didn't approve of it and asked them to pull it from festivals, they ghosted me for months. Now they've premiered it on @WeAreDN, & don't even credit me by name. pic.twitter.com/H0FY3zZdEt— Adam ElIis (@moby_dickhead) February 1, 2021
Jason Thorpe, the star of the film, has also spoken out on Twitter saying that he had no idea the work was stolen, and that Adam deserves credit.
The film company should make contact with @moby_dickhead and make an apology and credit his work. I feel angry and let down.— jason thorpe (@jaythorpe) February 1, 2021
My sincere apologies.
Butler and Wilson have since either deleted or made their social media private. The original interview with them has been deleted, and the film's IMDb page is now filled with 'trivia' such as "Oops! The filmmakers accidentally on purpose stole the plot from an Adam Ellis comic."
Going to assume they're watching their shot at awards drop pretty quickly.
SOURCES: 1, 2, 3