Independent filmmakers and brothers Selton and Langston Shaw and their production company filed a copyright infringement lawsuit on Wednesday against Hollywood directors and producers Spike Lee and Nate Parker as well as three affiliated companies.

In the complaint, filed in United States District Court for the District of Columbia, the filmmakers allege that Parker and Lee stole the idea for the 2019 film “American Skin” from a 2017 screenplay the Shaw brothers wrote entitled “A Routine Stop.”

According to the lawsuit, “American Skin” and the Shaw brothers scripts both focused on police violence against Black men and women and the country’s systemic
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