SOUTHFIELD, Mich., March 3 (UPI) -- A U.S. Army Master Sergeant is suing the makers of "The Hurt Locker" for allegedly basing the film's main character and plot points on him and his experiences.
The Iraq war movie has been winning critics' and craft guild awards all season. It is nominated for the best picture Oscar, while its director Kathryn Bigelow and star Jeremy Renner also are nominated for best director and best actor Oscars. The Academy Awards are to be presented Sunday in Los Angeles.
The Law Offices of Geoffrey Fieger said Wednesday they filed in Michigan's Federal District Court a multi-million-dollar lawsuit on behalf of Iraq war veteran Master Sgt. Jeffrey S. Sarver, and against the makers of "The Hurt Locker."
The law firm claimed Sarver, "is, in fact, the film's main character 'Will James' or 'Blaster One,' which was Master Sgt. Sarver's 'call signal' during his tours of duty in Iraq."
The suit said screenwriter Mark Boal was allowed, as part of an armed services press program, to be embedded in Sarver's unit.
"Virtually all of the situations portrayed in the film were, in fact, occurrences involving Master Sgt. Sarver that were observed and documented by screenwriter Boal," the law firm said in a release. "Master Sgt. Sarver also coined the phrase 'the hurt locker' for Boal ...
The suit alleges that the film's makers falsely claim that the characters portrayed in the film are fictional when, in fact, the film's main character 'Will James' is Master Sgt. Sarver."
The suit also claimed the movie's screenwriter and makers intentionally cheated Sarver out of financial participation in the film, and any acknowledgment of his heroic actions in Iraq.