Director of the 2013 horror film Frankenstein’s Army, Richard Raaphorst, has alleged that Capcom used his monster designs without authorization, or even credit his monster design in Resident Evil: Village. The monster he is referring to is a boss character from the Heisenberg’s Factory section in the game. The monster has a propeller head, which is in Raaphorst’s words, a “one-to-one” copy of a monster seen in the movie Frankenstein’s Army which also has a propeller head.
In an interview with Eurogamer, Raaphorst explains that even the way the whole fight is handled is similar to his movie: “It’s just the same scene as in my movie, except that in my movie you have to cut loose the fuel tubes. That’s the only thing that is missing. But the whole thing is getting into flames, and then it explodes, and then the way it rotates through the camera – it’s all the same, really. Even the environments, the whole color palette. It looks like an animatic for my movie.”
Capcom never approached Raaphorst about his monster’s inclusion and he only found out about the monster’s design on May 7, when fans messaged him about the similarities. Raaphorst had this to say about the design. “At first I felt pissed, then I felt proud. Now, I see all the reactions and I feel pissed again, and insulted. It’s so difficult to come up with a great design. It’s really hard to actually think about something that communicates as a cool design. It’s not just that ideas are floating around that you can grab. It’s actually hard labour. Then they just grab it and put it somewhere in the game.”
Raaphorst understands that he will not receive any royalties for his character being in the game, as he doesn’t own the rights to the character anymore. Those rights are owned by MPI Media Group who Raaphorst partnered with to get his movie made. Raaphorst is now exploring his options to credit for the monster design and would have just loved to be credited with the design and nothing more.
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