Do J.R.R. Tolkien's Kids Deserve Money For The Lord Of The Rings Movies?
from the what-did-they-have-to-do-with-it dept
There are some competing opinion pieces in the LA Times, starting off with one siding with J.R.R. Tolkien’s kids in their legal fight for royalties from the Lord of the Rings trilogy movies:
Tolkien obviously isn’t Peter Jackson, who directed the franchise, or Liv Tyler or Viggo Mortensen, who starred in it, or New Line Cinema, the studio that financed it, or Miramax, which owned the film rights for a second but couldn’t get the movie made, or producer Saul Zaentz, who bought the rights in 1976. He’s just the guy who dreamed up the cosmology, the whole shebang of hobbits and dwarfs, orcs, ents, wargs, trolls, whatnot.
Then, there’s the other side, pointing out that while it might be true that they legally deserve the money, it doesn’t make any common sense:
I find it offensive to common sense to argue that the heirs of J.R.R. Tolkien (who are as dismayingly numerous as Kennedys in the court filing) are entitled to a shilling for work in which they had no hand and which was completed in 1949.
Most of the essay focuses on the question of the length of copyright, which we all know has been expanded to ridiculous lengths. However, it does seem like a reasonable question to ask why the kids of Tolkien deserve money for a movie they had nothing to do with based on an idea they had nothing to do with.