Clayton Haugen, a writer and photographer, is suing Activision for copyright theft for reportedly copying his job on the Mara Operator.
Activision, the publisher of the Call of Duty series, is the subject of a complaint brought by the California court on 2 February. First found by Torrent Freak, the case charges that Activision stole the hunt for the Mara Operator from the writer and photographer Clayton Haugen.
The photographer says, intentionally and without his knowledge, that Activision modeled Mara after one of his characters, Cade Janus. Coincidentally, both Mara and Janus are using the same model, an army veteran named Alex Zedra.
Activision is said to have stolen the look for Warzone Mara
Haugen says that he used the model for the first time in his short tale, November Renaissance, for his character Cade Janus. In 2017, the first pictures of the Alex Zedra model shoot were released in numerous sources, including his Instagram.
The history for Cade Janus is that of a “female vigilante.” Janus was set to distinguish the November Revival from a vast spectrum of science fiction films released over the last decade.
According to Haugen’s attorneys, Activision liked the Janus model so much that they used it to build Mara, an operator who first appeared in Season One of Modern Warfare in 2019.
The case charges that Activision hired the same photographers who filmed Alex Zedra as Cade Janus in 2017. Also, Activision seemingly employed the same makeup designer.
The artist was then told to “prepare the talent exactly as she did for Haugen’s Cade Janus photos. They directed her to design the talent’s hair precisely as she did for Haugen’s Cade Janus photos, including using the same extension of the hairpiece.”
In addition, there are reports that Activision and the producer Infinity Ward have reached non-disclosure deals with the talent recruited.
Haugen also insists that Activision never asked him to take inspiration from the Cade Janus pictures, which are quite close to the promotional photographs used by Mara in Modern Warfare.
Activision has yet to comment on the case, although they are unlikely to do so. However, the case will not easily end, since certain significant allegations are being raised against the publishing firm.