Rebecca Eckler claims that she shopped around her 2004 book to be made into a movie. In the middle of the process, she learned of the Apatow project. The script that was making the rounds, she alleges, had a picture of a martini glass with a pacifier around the stem -- the same as on the cover of her book.
Eckler, who told her tale in this month's Maclean's magazine, cites other similarities -- including the fact that the Katherine Heigl character is an up-and-coming television reporter, and the main character in Eckler's book is an up-and-coming newspaper reporter. She also says that the movie and book have a secondary female character in common -- the person that both main characters go to for advice -- and that both of the secondary characters have screaming children.
The lawsuit was filed in a federal court in January, alleging copyright infringement and seeking unspecified damages.
Judd Apatow, through his reps, released this statement: "The book 'Knocked Up' is very different than the film 'Knocked Up.' The book is about a woman who gets pregnant by the fiance that she loves on the night of her engagement party. The film is a very different story; the film is about a one-night stand between a pot smoking slacker and an ambitious young woman that leads to a pregnancy and their attempts to get to know each other. Anyone who reads the book and sees the movie will instantly know that they are two very different stories about a common experience."
Universal Pictures had no comment.