Why the Estates of Ernest Hemingway, Truman Capote, Jack Kerouac and Arthur C. Clarke Are Suing an Author of Children’s Books

Jan 23, 2017  •  Post A Comment

The estates of some of the most famous writers of the past century are waging a legal war with Swedish author Fredrik Colting over a series of children’s books.

According to The Hollywood Reporter, the estates of Arthur C. Clarke, Jack Kerouac, Truman Capote and Ernest Hemingway, along with the publishing houses Penguin Random House and Simon & Schuster, filed a copyright lawsuit against Colting over his “KinderGuides” series.

The suit was filed Thursday in New York federal court. The New York Times notes that Colting’s partner Melissa Medina is also named in the suit.

The complaint “claims that ‘KinderGuides,’ which are based on classic novels such as Kerouac’s ‘On the Road,’ Hemingway’s ‘The Old Man and the Sea,’ Capote’s ‘Breakfast at Tiffany’s’ and Clarke’s ‘2001: A Space Odyssey,’ are nothing more than ‘unauthorized derivative’ works that lift the plot, characters and settings from copyrighted books,” The Times reports.

THR notes that Colting “infamously went to court a decade ago after writing a ‘sequel’ to J.D. Salinger’s classic novel, ‘Catcher in the Rye.'” Colting’s book, “60 Years Later: Coming Through the Rye,” was reportedly barred from publication in 2010, with his fair use defense rejected in a judgment that was later affirmed by the 2nd Circuit Court of Appeals.

The new complaint says: “Colting once again proceeds to brazenly infringe the rights of different authors, and the authors’ heirs and publishers, in complete disregard of copyright law. Remarkably, he also has the temerity to claim on the KinderGuide website that an upcoming title is none other than ‘Catcher in the Rye.'”

“Breakfast at Tiffany’s” (KinderGuides)

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