Actor Shia LaBeouf’s short film about a conflicted movie critic isn’t just getting bad reviews. It’s being trashed as unabashed plagiarism, and the actor is fessing up via his Twitter page.
The 12-minute film by LaBeouf, HowardCantour.com, featuring comedian Jim Gaffigan as the critic in question, apparently mirrors the work of author Daniel Clowes’ comic Justin M. Damiano. The short includes dialogue taken directly from Clowes’ story.
LaBeouf answered the charges earlier today via his Twitter page, a series of messages that begins by explaining the situation but ends in a full blown mea culpa.
“In my excitement and naiveté as an amateur filmmaker, I got lost in the creative process and neglected to follow proper accreditation”
“Im embarrassed that I failed to credit @danielclowes for his original graphic novella Justin M. Damiano, which served as my inspiration”
“I was truly moved by his piece of work & I knew that it would make a poignant & relevant short. I apologize to all who assumed I wrote it.”
“I deeply regret the manner in which these events have unfolded and want @danielclowes to know that I have a great respect for his work”
“I (expletive) up.
Now, the actor is being accused of plagiarizing his apology.
In another twist, BuzzFeed notes that the first part of LaBeouf’s apology closely resembles a four-year-old entry on
Yahoo! Answersby a user named “Lili.”