Whenever you become a major success in the world legal troubles are never too far behind. In this case, J.K. Rowling the author and creator of all things Harry Potter has been accused of plagiarism, and she’s being taken to court. According to the Associated Press, she’s been called out on stealing ideas for Potter from another British writer.
The estate of the late Adrian Jacobs named Rowling as a defendant in a lawsuit filed back in June against Bloomsbury Publishing PLC for alleged copyright infringement. Within the suit, they claim that “Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire” copies substantial portions of story from Jacobs’ 1987 book, “The Adventures of Willy the Wizard — No. 1 Livid Land.” Sydney agent Max Markson represents the Jacobs estate and feels that they have “a billion dollar case” on their hands.
When the accusations first started flying Rowling kept mum on the topic, but now she’s speaking out and she’s not a happy camper. According to Reuters, the author released the following statement,
“I am saddened that yet another claim has been made that I have taken material from another source to write Harry. 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. The claims that are made are not only unfounded but absurd and I am disappointed that I, and my UK publisher Bloomsbury, are put in a position to have to defend ourselves. We will be applying to the court immediately for a ruling that the claim is without merit and should therefore be dismissed without delay.”
The accuser, Jacobs died in 1997 so if the case does gain some financial restitution it will go to the estate not the actual person. With something as popular as Harry Potter it’s not surprising that someone would swoop in and claim plagiarism to get a piece of the pie. At this point in the game anyone could be a target, even Stephenie Meyer got hit with a suit last year, and that’s pretty sad because who wants to lay claim to Twilight?
Who do you believe? Do you think Rowling copied ideas from Jacobs’ book?