Conspiracy theories are flying this afternoon around the apparent refusal of the mainstream press to cover the story of Sophia Stewart, the writer who claims that The Matrix and The Terminator were both based on her original material. We decided to call her up and try to sort a couple of things out.

Stewart brought a lawsuit against the Wachowski Brothers in 2003, alleging their Matrix films borrowed crucial elements from a screenplay titled The Third Eye, which she wrote (and had copyrighted) in 1981, and later submitted to their production company in response to an advertisement. Then, in October 2004, Stewart won the right to proceed with a lawsuit against the Brothers and producer Joel Silver. But that decision - and the case itself - never appeared in major papers such as The New York Times, The Los Angeles Times, Variety or The Hollywood Reporter.

Stewart told us today that she never met or spoke directly with the Brothers; when she saw The Matrix and recognized her own material, she was "shocked." When asked why this ongoing saga has been ignored by most domestic media outlets, she said, "Time Warner" - parent company of Matrix studio WB - "is suppressing my case. They don't want their stocks to fall." But, she also mentioned that the initial filing of the case was reported on CNN - like Warner Brothers, a Time Warner company.

Is there truly a nefarious corporate plot underway here? Or, is the media just tired of covering intellectual property suits that blow up and then fizzle into quiet settlements? One thing we know for sure: a Google News search for "Sophia Stewart" turns up just two hits: Blogcritics and us.

Much more on this story as it develops...

categories Cinematical