In a move that is likely to outrage comic book fans, Twentieth Century Fox
and Chris Carter are now claiming that Carter is the sole creator of Harsh
Realm, the TV show based on the comic book created by James Hudnall and
Andrew Paquette. Late last year Hudnall and Paquette filed a suit against
Fox, Carter and Harris Comics, the publisher or the original series, in a
effort to get on-screen credits and fair compensation for the TV show based
on their creation. A press release issued by Paquette now reveals that, in
spite of the strength of the comic creators’ case, Fox and Carter are
employing their own legal strategies to deny the claim. The press release
Twentieth Century Fox and Chris Carter, creator of “The X-Files”, have filed
a counterclaim on 1/7/00 in the Southern District court of New York against
comic book creators James D. Hudnall and Andrew Paquette. This counterclaim
was filed to enjoin Hudnall and Paquette from speaking publicly regarding
the relationship between their comicbook “Harsh Realm” and the television
series “Harsh Realm”.
The dispute originally stems from the lack of a standard on-screen “based on
the comic book by” credit for Hudnall and Paquette on the Television Series,
which led them to file suit against Fox and Carter on October 8, 1999.
Subsequent attempts were made by Hudnall and Paquette to obtain such credit
which they believe is due to them as part of a settlement, but were
ultimately rejected by the Studio and Carter, who now claim that “The
Television Series [Harsh Realm] is original and created by Chris Carter. The
Television Series does not incorporate the characters, plots, images,
scenes, settings, or dialogue of the comic book and is not based on or
adapted from the Comic Books.”
Oddly, this statement seems to contradict Fox’s own statements made in
earlier press releases, such as “Chris Carter, the award-winning creator of
The X-Files and Millennium, steps into a new arena with another innovative,
ground-breaking television event – HARSH REALM. Based on the comic book
series, HARSH REALM explores a highly advanced virtual reality world – where
anything is possible.” released just prior to the unveiling of the 1999 Fall
It also conflicts with Hudnall and Paquette’s own views, backed up by expert
testimony review that found over two dozens points of similarities between
the comic book and the Television Series.
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