We all know that the makers of The Hangover Part II felt no compunction about appropriating an innocent tattoo artist’s work as one of several means of getting a cheap laugh, but is it possible that their idea theft extended to basing The Hangover Part II on another man’s life story? Ha ha, no. It isn’t, because everyone’s fully aware that The Hangover Part II is based entirely on the script for The Hangover, with the word “baby” scratched out and replaced with “monkey.” Still, that hasn’t stopped a California man named Michael Alan Rubin from filing yet another Hangover-related lawsuit against Warner Bros., this one claiming that the film was ripped off from a screenplay he wrote about his own wacky experiences in Asia.
According to the lawsuit, Rubin crafted a script in 2007 titled Mickey And Kirin, about the time he married a Japanese woman, then spent a tense honeymoon in Thailand and India where they bickered over money, and his bride refused to share a hotel room with him. Rubin claims he wrote his script after meeting a Bollywood producer who allegedly gave him the lead in several of his films, then dropped it off with the Writers Guild. He was then surprised to learn from “a Hollywood friend” (which is what he calls billboards) that someone else had made a movie about “some Asian misadventures by Americans on the road to a wedding."
“But his story sounds absolutely nothing like the plot of The Hangover Part II,” you might say, pointing out that Rubin’s story takes place after a wedding, concerns a man’s rocky marriage to a Japanese woman, and doesn’t involve monkeys or mobsters or the fragile bonds forged between three bros thrust together by outrageous circumstance, etc. But then again, perhaps you’ll feel differently if you hear a few more details about Rubin’s honeymoon (you won’t): Along with suing for copyright infringement and misappropriation of his publicity rights, Rubin is also claiming defamation—this based on Ed Helms’ character’s subplot, and “the inference that [Rubin] was under the influence of drugs when he ditched his girlfriend and proposed to a male-to-female transsexual prostitute,” as suggesting that Rubin was on drugs while out proposing marriage to a transsexual prostitute may cause some people to question his character.
For its part, The Hollywood Reporter (who broke the story) doesn’t even try to hide its open scoffing at Rubin’s chances of getting this into court, saying there is “no evidence that the producers of Hangover II knew who the heck he was.” But hey, we all do now. He’s the guy whose wife wouldn’t sleep with him because he was broke, so (while clean and sober!) he fooled around with a transsexual prostitute, then decided to tell the whole world about it.