Escape From New York director
John Carpenter (Ghosts of Mars; Gorgon, the Space Monster) recently talked to Hollywood Reporter about his successful plagiarism suit against French director Luc Besson (Léon: The Professional) whose recent film Lockout rips off Carpenter’s classic Escape From New York.
“Look, CanalPlus is the company that, with me, owns Escape From New York. They came to me and said, ‘Luc Besson ripped you off on Lockout.’ Or Lockdown, whatever the hell that was. And they sent me the movie, and yes, he did. It’s the same story. (Laughs) I mean, you can’t do that, can you? You have to change a couple things. He’s after the president’s daughter? Come on. So I took him to French court.”
Carpenter’s side won an €80,000 settlement (CanalPlus sought €3 million), €20,000 of which went to Carpenter.
“[CanalPlus] wanted to also go after the video game Metal Gear Solid, which is kind of a rip-off of Escape From New York, too,” Carpenter said, “but I told them not to do that. I know the director of those games, and he’s a nice guy, or at least he’s nice to me.”
John! John! Kojima’s free now, work on a game with him!
Hideo Kojima’s infatuation with Hollywood is long-documented. Snake in Metal Gear is named for Escape From New York‘s Snake Plissken and looks like Terminator‘s Kyle Reese. Metal Gear Solid‘s Snake would end up looking more like Kurt Russell and even briefly goes by Plissken in Sons of Liberty. Also Metal Gear‘s Big Boss is just Sean Connery.