Why did people flock to see "The Expendables" two years ago, necessitating the inevitable sequel next year? Was it the sterling prose of Sylvester Stallone's and David Callaham's screenplay? Or was it the fact that it had every aging action star on earth, except for the news ones showing up in the sequel? It was the words, right? It had to be the words.
That's what a man named Marcus Webb says. Webb filed a suit yesterday in Manhattan claiming that Stallone and Callaham stole from his script to write "The Expendables." We thought Stallone and Callaham (lovingly, we might add) stole from every hackeneyed "let's get go 'em, boys!" action swat team thriller, but Webb insists it all came from his script, "The Cordoba Caper." (A former Zoetrope screenplay contest entry, says Google.) So what are the similarities?
Webb contends that Stallone's 2010 picture shares the same villain, plot about mercenaries, and opening sequence as his The Cordoba Caper. Because the script was being shopped around Hollywood from 2006-2009, Webb believes Stallone and Callaham had ample time to lift key elements from Caper. The lawsuit says, "There can be no dispute that Stallone and/or Callaham had access to and copied protectable elements of the screenplay."
Yeah, sounds anecdotal to us, though we would like to see that opening sequence. Webb didn't say why it took him this long to file his suit, though one wonders if that sequel has anything to do with it. We also wonder if Webb is eager to take credit for the following lines of dialogue:
- "I promised myself, I'm gonna die for something that counts."
- "He said we're dead, with an accent!" (exasperated) "Women!"
Also, we'd like to note that there is actually a character in "The Expendables" named "Hale Caesar." We are unequivocally certain that Stallone came up with that.
Sylvester Stallone Sued Over 'Expendables' Screenplay [The Hollywood Reporter]