No this post is not about tea. Though I am enjoying a peppermint matcha latte as I type this. What this post is about is greed…
“Your fees will be assured and you will be given a perfectly free hand” [ILLU]
If you enjoy Sherlock Holmes like I do you may have heard of the time that Conan Doyle Estate, Ltd. sued Leslie Klinger, BSI. The estate of the late author claimed that the character of Sherlock Holmes hadn’t be “fully formed” until the last story had been written. Where Mr. Klinger stated that at least the first 50 stories were/should be in the public domain. Guess what? Klinger won! Sherlock was free, well most of him anyway.
Which brings me to the news of the newest lawsuit brought by the Conan Doyle Estate, Ltd. This one is against the soon to be released (I hope) film Mr. Holmes and the book that it is based on “A Slight Trick of the Mind” by Mitch Cullin. The estate is claiming that Cullin used passages from two stories (“The Blanched Soldier” and “The Lion’s Main”) in his book…spoiler alert he didn’t. Sure they are similar but not word for word. Oh I should mention the book has been out some ten years now…you’d think there’d be some kind of I don’t know, statute of limitations here?
So long story short the estate is suing the author, the film makers, and studio (and who knows who else) for a cut of the profits. Why? Because they feel that writing about Holmes in retirement covers those stories not yet in the public domain. The questions is why now? Why not ten years ago? Why not when the movie was in talks? My thought is that the estate feels there’s a profit here and only sees dollar signs. Which makes me angry as it boils down to simple greed on the part of Doyle’s relatives over a character HE HATED. Added bonus the estate filed the lawsuit ON DOYLE’S BIRTHDAY. Classy right?
I’m so irritated by the ongoing struggle. I feel this is why Sherlockians can’t have nice things because of greedy family members who probable make enough off of royalties and if they don’t? There’s this thing called a job they might wish to look into.
For more complete coverage I suggest following I Hear of Sherlock Everywhere. In the meantime I certainly hope something can be done to Save Mr. Holmes! As the film looks fantastic!