A Philadelphia man is suing in federal court saying the hit show “Empire” infringes on a show he created and copyrighted a decade ago.
Clayton Tanksley, an actor who once played a character on “The Cosby Show,” says Lee Daniels stole the idea from him during a 2008 film event.
Tanksley, who performs under the name Clayton Prince, says he participated in a “Philly Pitch” event. After the event, Tanksley claims he privately pitched his idea to Daniels and gave him scripts of the show, as well as several DVDs with episodes on them.
The suit filed Friday names Daniels, co-creator Danny Strong, 21st Century Fox, the Greater Philadelphia Film Office and the film office’s director, Sharon Pinkenson.
Emails sent Thursday morning seeking comment from representatives of Daniels, Strong and 20th Century Fox Television weren’t immediately answered.