Back in January, we reported that a pair of screenwriters—Stephanie Counts and Shari Gold—had filed a lawsuit against Fox, New Girl creator Elizabeth Meriwether, director Jake Kasdan, and a bunch of other industry people that alleged the idea for New Girl was stolen from a script they had written in 2006. Their claims depended on a pretty elaborate conspiracy involving the William Morris Endeavor agency taking the script from Counts and Gold, filing the metaphorical serial numbers off of it, giving it to Meriwether to rewrite, then Meriwether passing it off as her own, and, finally, Fox picking it up as a series. A legion of reverse vampires was involved at some point, as well.
Still, the similarities between the scrips were enough for Fox to offer a $10,000 settlement to Counts and Gold, but they turned it down and called it “paltry.” Presumably, they thought their chances were better if they took it to court. However, according to Variety, it still hasn’t worked out so well for them. That’s because a federal judge has decided to dismiss the case on the grounds that their complaint is too “ambiguous.” He argued that—since Gold and Counts cite multiple different incarnations of New Girl scripts—it’s “impossible to discern” which parts were stolen.
Unfortunately for Fox and New Girl, though, things are still decidedly un-adorkable. The judge told Gold and Counts that they could resubmit the case and file a new claim, meaning this is still not over for the network. But it has probably been delayed considerably, so that gives Fox time to pack its Zooey Deschanel up and haul ass to Mexico or something.