Rapper 50 Cent has been hit with another copyright infringement lawsuit over his TV show Power.
Aspiring TV writers R. Byron Hord and Curtis Scoon have filed a lawsuit in Manhattan Federal Court against the hip-hop star, who produces and features in the crime drama, as well as cable network Starz and parent company CBS.
They claim the idea for Power was taken from their pilot script for a TV show called Dangerous, which they wrote in late 2009, about “an African-American Protagonist’s work as a drug dealer and subsequent attempts to launder his money and then ‘go legit,'” while maintaining relationship with an Irish gangster pal and a girlfriend who wants him to remain crooked.
According to the writers, they shopped the script around and met with 50 Cent in 2011 about developing the show. However, he never reached out but they claim he “willfully and improperly began developing, producing and filming their own television show” which is “substantially similar” to their original pilot.
50 Cent, real name Curtis Jackson, and network executives face up to $180,000 (£139,000) in fines per episode, of which there have been 27.
“We were just made aware of this filing and we are looking into this matter,” CBS spokesman said to New York Post gossip column Page Six. “It is too premature for comment at this time.”
This isn’t the first time the rapper has been accused of copyright infringement with Power. He was hit with a lawsuit last year (15) by author Larry Johnson who accused him of copying his novel Tribulation of a Ghetto Kid and turning the story into the show. He sought $200 million (£154 million).
Earlier this month (Sep16) 50 Cent was accused of infringement again for his upcoming superhero TV series Tomorrow, Today. Officials at JourStarr Publications claimed the plot is lifted from their 2016 release Othello Greene: The Story Begins, written by Anthony Baltimore. They issued a cease and desist letter to executives at Starz, warning they would file a lawsuit if they didn’t shut down production.