Author Sam Quinones wasn’t thrilled to learn of a new film about the opioid epidemic called “Dreamland” — because he wrote a 2015 book called “Dreamland: The True Tale of America’s Opiate Epidemic.”
Quinones’ book explored how opiate addiction took over countless towns throughout America starting in the 1990s. The name for the book came from the nickname given to a popular swimming pool in Portsmouth, Ohio, one of the key locations in Quinones’ journey.
The film “Dreamland,” which will star Gary Oldman, Evangeline Lilly and Armie Hammer, follows a drug trafficker, a professor, and a recovering addicted mother who are each tangled in the machine that keeps the addiction going in their own ways. Quinones told TheWrap that he has no involvement in the film and that the producers did not contact him about the title.
After Deadline broke news of the film, Quinones responded sarcastically on Twitter by suggesting other possible names, like “The Godfather” and “Star Wars.”
Hey folks -Let's help these filmmakers find a title for their movie about the opioid crisis that doesn't just take the name of my book.
3-The name of Whatever Movie Wins Best Picture Oscar this year@deadlinenancyhttps://t.co/Le6B5V5eFF
— Sam Quinones (@samquinones7) February 6, 2019
The U.S. Copyright office has said that “copyright does not protect names, titles, slogans, or short phrases.”
But that doesn’t stop Quinones from going to the court of public opinion — or at least the segment of it represented by Twitter — to try to shame the filmmakers into acknowledging that he was the first to dream up “Dreamland.”
Reps for the film, which is currently in production under the direction of Nicholas Jarecki, did not immediately respond to TheWrap’s requests for comment.
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