James Cameron wins fourth ‘Avatar’ lawsuit

Yes album cover artist Roger Dean claimed his fantasy artwork inspired the 'Avatar' universe

Director James Cameron has won the latest Avatar lawsuit following three other failed suits in the last 11 months.

Artist Roger Dean has created album covers for rock acts including Yes and Uriah Heap. He claimed that his fantasy artwork of floating mountains in 14 separate paintings had inspired the Avatar universe.

Deadline reports, the $50m suit brought against 20th Century Fox and Cameron’s company Lightstorm Entertainment alleged: “The similarities of each such work are substantial, continuing, and direct so as to rule out any accidental copying or similarity in scenes common to the genre.”

But the presiding New York judge threw out the case calling Dean’s claims “misguided”.

Speaking to RTL (via Collider) earlier this year Cameron spoke about the planned sequels now in production: “You’ll see new worlds, new habitats, new cultures. The primary conflict between the human view of dominating nature and the Na’vi view of being integrated into nature is the same, but it manifests itself in very different ways.”

Cameron will shoot all three of the follow-up films in New Zealand, and the new pictures will focus on lead character Jake, played by Sam Worthington, and his new life on the planet Pandora.

Released in 2009, Avatar became the highest-grossing movie of all-time, with worldwide box office takings exceeding $2.7 billion (£1.7 billion). The first sequel is scheduled for release in December 2016 with the third and fourth films set to follow in 2017 and 2018