Shalom Life | November 24, 2014

J.K. Rowling in a Lawsuit Against Jewish Author's Estate

Harry Potter author named in a billion-dollar case.

By: Christal Gardiola

Published: March 1st, 2010 in Culture » Books » News

J.K. Rowling in a Lawsuit Against Jewish Author's Estate

It’s almost like a battle between Harry and Voldemort, except this one has nothing to do with wizardry.

The estate of late Jewish author Adrian Jacobs is accusing J.K. Rowling of plagiarism. On February 17, the lawyers for his estate added Rowling’s name in a lawsuit filed against Bloomsbury Publishing PLC for alleged copyright infringement. The suit claims Rowling copied parts of Jacobs’ 36-page children’s book, The Adventures of Willy the Wizard: No. 1 Livid Land into her novel, Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire.

Independent company Backman and Turner published 5,000 copies of the Willy the Wizard story in 1987. But Jacobs, who was also an art collector, lawyer and accountant, died penniless 10 years later.

Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire, which was the fourth book in the Harry Potter series, came out in 2000. Max Markson, a publicist representing the Jacobs estate, tells the Jewish Telegraphic Agency that the similarities between the two novels are uncanny. He says, “It has the same plot line. Everything that’s in ‘Willy the Wizard’ is in ‘The Goblet of Fire.’”

Markson recalls how his suspicions began in 2003 after learning that Jacobs’ former agent, Christopher Little, was hired as Rowling’s agent. Little, however, denies that he represented Jacobs.

Rowling is estimated to be worth close to $770 million, according to the Sunday Times of London’s 2009 rich list. She calls the accusations “unfounded” and “absurd.” Rowling was quoted in an article in Daily Dispatch Online saying, “The fact is I had never heard of the author or the book before the first accusation by those connected to the author’s estate in 2004 I have certainly never read the book.”

Court proceedings are scheduled in May and Markson thinks the case has enough material to go favourably on the side of the Jacobs estate.

“If they win the case against Bloomsbury, it rolls around the world. Anything with Harry Potter -- films, games -- it becomes a domino effect,” he said to the Jewish Telegraphic Agency. “It’s a billion-dollar case, the books are an enormous franchise, it’s in the High Court of England. It doesn’t get much bigger than that.”

Sarah Silverman Admits to Crossing the Line With Bill Cosby Rape Joke Sarah Silverman Admits to Crossing the Line With Bill Cosby Rape Joke TrendingAmy Schumer Pays Tribute to Joan Rivers at Glamour's Women Of The Year Awards [VIDEO] Amy Schumer Pays Tribute to Joan Rivers at Glamour's Women Of The Year Awards [VIDEO] TrendingJustin Bieber is Not Becoming a Nice Jewish Boy Justin Bieber is Not Becoming a Nice Jewish Boy Trending
 

Netanyahu's Government Approves Controversial Jewish Nation-State Bill

November 23, 2014 | By Moran Azulay
Netanyahu's Government Approves Controversial Jewish Nation-State Bill

Bibi's administration approved the legislation that would officially deem Israel as the home of the Jewish people on Sunday

Read More

The Ten Best Kosher Restaurants In Toronto

November 21, 2014 | By Caitlin Marceau
The Ten Best Kosher Restaurants In Toronto

We look at the best kosher eateries the city of Toronto has to offer

Read More

Israelis Grapple with Synagogue Safety in Aftermath of Jerusalem Attack

November 21, 2014 | By Deborah Fineblum Schabb, JNS.org
Israelis Grapple with Synagogue Safety in Aftermath of Jerusalem Attack

Rabbis agree that we have to be more "vigilant" at shul

Read More

Israel Antiquities Authority Launches New Game For Children

November 21, 2014 | By Caitlin Marceau
Israel Antiquities Authority Launches New Game For Children

With "Dig Quest: Israel," kids will learn about history and archaeology without having to get off their iPads

Read More

Life Expectancy On The Rise In Israel

November 21, 2014 | By Caitlin Marceau
Life Expectancy On The Rise In Israel

Expectancy for both men and women is up compared to 2012

Read More

Lena Dunham, Gwyneth Paltrow, and Adam Sandler Read "Mean Tweets" on Jimmy Kimmel

November 21, 2014 | By Sara Torvik
Lena Dunham, Gwyneth Paltrow, and Adam Sandler Read "Mean Tweets" on Jimmy Kimmel

Dunham doesn't seem amused by one Twitter comment reading: "Unpopular opinion: lena dunham's boobs are dog noses."

Read More

Sarah Silverman Admits to Crossing the Line With Bill Cosby Rape Joke

November 21, 2014 | By Sara Torvik
Sarah Silverman Admits to Crossing the Line With Bill Cosby Rape Joke

The comedian offended many of her Twitter followers on Wednesday.

Read More

Amy Schumer Pays Tribute to Joan Rivers at Glamour's Women Of The Year Awards [VIDEO]

November 21, 2014 | By Sara Torvik
Amy Schumer Pays Tribute to Joan Rivers at Glamour's Women Of The Year Awards [VIDEO]

Schumer gave a hilarious and heartwarming tribute to the late comedian.

Read More

More Headlines