Quinta Brunson, the creator of the Emmy-nominated series “Abbott Elementary,” and ABC are being sued for copyright violations.
Christine Davis filed the lawsuit, according to court records obtained by The Post, saying that her program named “This School Year” is a “veritable knock-off” of the popular show.
12 July 2018 According to Davis, she developed her script, which is set in a public school in New York City, in 2018 and registered with the copyright office in the early months of 2020. In 2021, Brunson’s creation made its debut.
The “look and feel of the inner-city school, the mockumentary approach, unusual plot synopsis, set design, and unique characters,” according to Davis, are all reflected in the program.
She also thinks the first few episodes share plotlines and that many of the characters are “almost identical.”
In Davis’ idea, the principal of the school commissions documentary filmmakers to capture how everything proceeds as planned. But the school is seen differently by the faculty and student body.
A “young, idealistic teacher aiming to win tenure but also trying to persuade everyone that the school has to be transformed,” Ms. David is the main character of “This School Year.”
Brunson, the author of “Abbott Elementary,” plays Janine Teagues, the main character who works at a Philadelphia public school with inadequate funding. Their principal can be touch-tone deaf when surrounded by ebullient and kind coworkers.
The lawsuit claims that “[Brunson & ABC] deliberately and illegally utilized [Davis’] works to create the ‘Abbot[t] Elementary’ television show without [Davis’] permission, license, authority, or approval.”
First day of production for Abbott Elementary season 2. 💅🏾 😊
— quinta brunson (@quintabrunson) July 18, 2022
In the middle of June and July, Davis alleges she met with Sullivan Wright and Cherisse Parks three times at Blue Parks Productions in Los Angeles, after which they allegedly showed the “The School Year” script to Hulu. A few months later, “Abbott Elementary” production got underway.
Neither Producer Has Any Association with The Abc Program.
She demands that “Brunson and ABC give overall revenues they made from the show” in addition to a jury trial, undisclosed damages, and other demands.
Brunson’s representative declined to respond to questions from The Post. But on Monday, she tweeted, “First day of production for Abbott Elementary season 2,” along with a blushing smiling face and the shade-throwing nail-filing emoji.
The Post also contacted “Abbott Elementary” representatives.
Recently, the show was nominated for seven Emmys. As the first black woman to receive nominations for Best Comedy, Best Actress, Comedy, and Best Writing for a Comedy Series all in the same year, Brunson made history.