What Has It Got In Its Jackpotses?

The Tolkien estate and its book publisher HarperCollins have filed an $80 million lawsuit against Warner Bros., its New Line subsidiary and Rings/Hobbit rightsholder Saul Zaentz Co. for copyright infringement and breach of contract. The gist of the suit is that their agreement allows the studio to create only “tangible” merchandise based on the books, not digital products like the Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring: Online Slot Game.

Not only does the production of gambling games patently exceed the scope of defendants’ rights, but this infringing conduct has outraged Tolkien’s devoted fan base, causing irreparable harm to Tolkien’s legacy and reputation and the valuable goodwill generated by his works.

The suit also complains the defendants have asserted rights to exploit the books through anything from ringtones and downloadable games to hotels, restaurants and travel agencies.

[Thanks to Michael J. Walsh and Martin Morse Wooster for the story.]

6 thoughts on “What Has It Got In Its Jackpotses?

  1. I’m a big fan of Lord of the Rings. Why don’t I feel outraged? Possibly because this just seems like a squabble over money, not the integrity of the work.

  2. And if you a jackpot hit of three rings, you become invisible?

    This is awful, but Bible Baggins Grease Burgers from Denny’s is okay?

    A cut on the CCR record under question was “Zaentz Can’t Dance”. For your any CCR song with Zaentz’s copyright on it was not played at live concerts.

  3. Forgive me, but the “Shire Sausage Skillet” at Denny’s is rather tasty… apparently sausages from Middle Earth are higher quality than Denny’s normal fare.

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