Before the release of Kung Fu Panda, DreamWorks Animation was doing what movie studios do: promoting the film. One of the ways of promotion, of course, was a movie trailer.
That trailer was watched by Jamye Gordon, who just so happened to have a story and drawings about pandas called Panda Power. After seeing what DreamWorks Animation was up to, Gordon altered his work so that it looked like he actually made Kung Fu Panda.
Gordon then took his “work” and sued DreamWorks in 2011 for copyright infringement. Amazingly, Gordon was generous enough to offer DreamWorks the opportunity to settle out of court for $12 million. The studio passed on that deal (I have no idea why) and decided to let it go to court.
Gordon decided to delete a bunch of evidence during civil litigation, which is a big flippin’ no-no in the legal world, if that notion wasn’t already obvious. That lead to Gordon’s conviction for fraud and perjury. This week, Gordon was sentenced to two years.
Them’s the brakes in this con that didn’t pay off.