M. Night Shyamalan and Apple sued over Apple TV+ series ‘Servant’

M. Night Shyamalan has been slapped with a federal lawsuit accusing him of ripping off his Apple show “Servant,” by director Francesca Gregorini is also suing Apple and show producers. Gregorini claims “Servant is a wholesale copy of Plaintiff Francesca Gregorini’s 2013 feature film “The Truth About Emanuel.”

Ryan Naumann for The Blast:

The suit states, “Mr. Shyamalan has gone so far as to appropriate not just the plot of Emanuel — but also its use of cinematic language, creating a substantially similar feeling, mood, and theme.” The director says her film, “tells the story of a troubled and withholding 18-year old girl, newly hired by a white, sophisticated, privileged yet gracious, mid-30’s, first-time mom—to help care for her new baby.

Further, “Shockingly, this plot description of Emanuel could just as easily be applied to Servant, made six years later. And that’s just the beginning of the commonalities between the two works. These similarities include not just parallel plot points, but also strikingly similar—and highly idiosyncratic—characters, scenes, directorial choices, and modes of storytelling.”

MacDailyNews Take: We haven’t seen The Truth About Emanuel. If you have seen both the film and the Apple TV+ series, let us know how close they are below. Here are the trailers for both:


    1. If there is indeed any issue (is it really a copy or just a similar idea?) a rational person would blame the producer, M. Night Shyamalan, not the content service that purchased what Shyamalan was selling.

      1. Apple’s the studio that produced the film, not a distributor. Though both would be liable if there’s a violation here.

        Servant is actually the only thing on Apple+ that’s been of interest to me. Being a standout in Apple’s lineup, I won’t be surprised if it’s found to be a crib.

    2. Sorry, nope, the creator of Servant has notes about his ideas for the show dating back 17 years. If you learn more about Servant you see it’s only somewhat similar for the first couple of episodes and then diverges wildly.

  1. I don’t know if this accusation is reasonable or not. I have not seen either show.

    But I would be interested to see if anyone can go back every further and find predecessors to “The Truth About Emanuel” and “Servant” that shares key aspects in terms of plot, characters, etc. How many truly unique films can you make about people?

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