Was “Man From the Stars” Ripped Off From the Comic “Sul Hee?”

The author of the comic “Sul Hee,” Kang Kyung Ok, is suing the producers of the SBS drama “Man From the Stars” (script by Park Ji Eun, directed by Jang Tae Yoo). Production company HB Entertainment reported on May 20th that it has not yet decided its position because it still lacks information about the claims made in the lawsuit.

A spokesperson from Kang Ho Law Firm, which is representing Ms. Kang, stated that “Our client is seeking 300 million won (roughly 292,00 USD) in compensation for copyright infringement from HB Entertainment and script writer Park Ji Eun in the Seoul Central District Court. The results of a careful analysis indicate that the main characters, plot, and development of events in both ‘Sul Hee’ and ‘Man From the Stars’ are very similar.” The representative also remarked that the author had recognized the violation of her rights from the very start of the show’s broadcast and thus suffered severe mental distress. “The production company refused to resolve the dispute amicably, thus leading to litigation,” he announced.

“Man From the Stars,” which finished its run in February, is about an alien who came to earth 400 years ago and winds up falling in love with top star Cheon Song Yi in the present day. Kang Kyung Ok first brought up the issue of plagiarism after the show premiered, writing on her personal blog that “The story arc seems very similar to ‘Sul Hee.’”