Accusations of plagiarism against Oscar-nominated film The Holdovers surface in bombshell allegations day before event: Genuinely overwhelming – Press Stories

High Drama Surrounding Oscar-Nominated Film “The Holdovers”

The upcoming Academy Awards may be overshadowed by controversy as Best Picture nominee “The Holdovers” is accused of being plagiarized line-by-line from a screenplay that was never made. Simon Stephenson, known for his work on popular movies “Luca” and “Paddington 2,” has made the explosive allegations in emails to the Writer’s Guild of America.

Stephenson claims that director Alexander Payne likely read his script for “Frisco,” a similar movie, on the industry’s “black list” back in 2013. The evidence of plagiarism, according to Stephenson, is overwhelming and brazen. He meticulously compared the two films scene by scene and alleges that Payne reviewed his script in 2013 and 2019 before approaching first-time writer David Hemingson for “The Holdovers.”

Stephenson asserts that “The Holdovers” screenplay has been plagiarized line-by-line, with only five parts not in his “Frisco” script. The Writer’s Guild of America informed Stephenson that it is not a guild issue and referred him to a Los Angeles law firm, suggesting that a lawsuit may be the most viable option.

Despite the accusations, “The Holdovers” has been nominated for five Oscars, including Best Original Screenplay. Payne, a previous Academy Award winner for Best Adapted Screenplay, declined to comment on the allegations and could not be reached for further statements.

As the Oscars draw nearer, the controversy surrounding “The Holdovers” continues to unfold, leaving the film industry and fans alike on edge awaiting the outcome of this dramatic saga.

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About the Author: Cory Weinberg

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