tolkien estate

Unpopular opinion I know but I wish the Tolkien Estate would lighten up about the films. The films made a huge impact on my life and it saddens me that the Estate’s attitude towards them is preventing more Tolkien adaptations from being made. The Harry Potter films (while I love them) are considerably worse adaptations when compared to the Jackson films, JK Rowling knew they would not be perfect yet understood that they would not tarnish the original books. I wish the Estate had a similar view.

Book Done, But it's not Over.

Book II: The Saga of Thranduil is done. ✅ However, it’s no where NEAR done. The extended version has to be done for it to be totally done. And that one is way longer never mind the annotated version). But officially, online, Thranduil’s story is complete. Any changes will be in the extended versions (and some here: @tkwrtlegends ) Congratulations. Thranduil has a book that a lot of people keep asking to see in a bookstore. If published, it would be the first new Middle-Earth novel in 62 years–especially if it gets read by the Tolkien Estate. So Thranduil has a job to do. This is his moment.

Originally posted by shipstership

worldflower  asked:

If you're still taking theories how about Elves don't exist in Middle Earth. Elves have never existed in Middle Earth

Okay guys, I might lose some followers over this but time for a conspiracy theory. I know Tolkien claims that he translated the Red Book of Westermarch into modern English and, yes, we all respect him for the great scholar and linguist that he was. And I know that the idea that a single person could just ‘make up’ such a rich history, plus multiple languages is patently absurd. What man would dedicate his entire life - and that of his son! - to such an elaborate, pointless hoax?

I think J.R.R. Tolkien was that man.

Do we have any evidence at all, from a source other than the Tolkien family, that the Eldar existed? We have sketchy myths and legends describing elves but the same is true of zombies and mermaids, and few of the mentions we do have don’t align with Tolkien’s descriptions. No archaeological finds, no reliable encounters with living elves that eschewed Valinor, nothing beyond his word. Has anyone even seen this supposed Red Book? Tolkien, as a scholar, would have been well familiar with the Red Book of Hergest, a collection of ancient Welsh poetry and lore, and I would bet that that was his inspiration for the fraud - it’s not even that subtle! 

So why would he do it? I imagine, in part, it was scholarly interest - surely he would not have put in the sheer amount of work that he did otherwise! But there is a less innocent motivation too. Do you know how much money the Tolkien estate has reaped from its ‘translations’ over the years? The legacy of the estate was estimated to be more than £10 million in book sales in Britain alone in 2001, closer to £50 million worldwide. 

J.R.R Tolkien was a liar and elves aren’t real. 

There. I said it. Come at me.

Middle Earth Real Estate

I decided to list the best real estate in Middle Earth and the best places to live in order from 1 to 10. (This is only from the era of The Hobbit through The Lord of the Rings.)

1. Lothlórien! This is the place I would move to right away and where I would live forever. It is a place of beauty and wisdom where Elves are both wise and brave. 

2. The Grey Havens! This is a city full of memory and of sadness and hope. The sea would call but this is a great place for those who cannot decide if they want to actually leave Middle Earth. 

3. Thranduil’s Halls! There would never be a dull moment here among these dangerous Elves who shoot first and ask questions later as they party. I would not recommend living here for the faint of heart. 

4. Rivendell (Imladris)! This is a place of beauty and of rest. Known as the Last Homely House, Imladris is a place for peace and finishing good books. You might get bored after a few thousand years here though.

5. Rohan! If the horse people accept you into their hearts, there you will stay. You will not find a more hardy and hale group of humans elsewhere in Middle Earth. 

6. Erebor! The Dwarves may have fought dearly for this home, but gold and laughter have filled its halls since. If you wish to live among the Dwarves, I would highly recommend this place as there is little chance of you dying from Balrogs. 

7. Gondor! Gondor stands almost as proud and tall as it used to be. Sure you might end up trapped in a city while Mordor bangs on your walls, but at least you are guarding the memories of an ancient civilization. 

8. The Shire! The reason why it is not higher up on this list of most wanted real estate is for the fact that you must be a Hobbit to live here without difficulty. All the houses are built for those who around 3.5 feet tall. If you love gardens, parties, and pipeweed, this is the place to be!

9. Ithilien! This would be a lovely place to live if only it were not for the dozens of Haradrim continuously passing through. However, if you like the more Robin Hood type of lifestyle, this is the place for you. 

10. Dwarrowdelf (Moria)! This used to be a cool city but serious renovation is required to live here now. Basically, you have to rebuild a stairwell that leads to the outside world, remove all the dead bodies, and drive out the thousands of Orcs and Goblins that now live here. Fortunately, the Balrog is now gone so one less thing on your to-do list. If you can do all that, Dwarrowdelf is a stunning underground city that you would love to call home. 

There are many other places to live in Middle Earth as well. Where would you want to call home?

Okay, so Asoiaf puts so much importance on people’s names. The series harps on about this point again and again and again—we see it with Sansa, with Arya, with Theon and Asha and Brienne and Jaime and Cersei and… You get the point. Names have power; names are power. To be stripped of your name is to be stripped of your identity, of a piece of your soul, and to hold onto you name in secret (as Sansa and, less successfully as regards to the ‘secret’ thing, Arya) means still having a grasp on your identity. Another theme in Asoiaf is the importance of peoples’ lives. Everyone’s life has some intrinsic value, no matter what they’ve done with it, and there is nothing that can take that away because everyone has this value.

But for years, GRRM couldn’t be bothered to give a name to Ned Stark’s mother. She’s the mother of Ned and his siblings, the grandmother of their children and grandmother to four of the main characters, Sansa, Jon, Bran and Arya. But we know nothing about her. The kind of relationship she had with her children could provide great insight into both her and them; we know nothing. The point in the timeline at which she died could provide great insight into why her children developed the way they did; we know nothing. Just knowing what house she originally came from, what her name was, could provide insight into what kind of life she led at Winterfell; we know nothing, GRRM.

A fan asks GRRM what Ned’s mother’s name was. He replies “Lady Stark. She died.”

Which is remarkably tone deaf, all things considered.

Fans pester GRRM about Ned’s mother, and he makes this comment which, coming from someone who has claimed to be a big Tolkien fan, is just bewildering in its ignorance, wondering in irritation if people ever wrote Tolkien letters about who Aragorn’s mother was. Well, no, GRRM, they didn’t, because they didn’t have to. Tolkien told us plenty about Aragorn’s mother, whose name is Gilraen, by the way. In fact, Tolkien told us so much about both of Aragorn’s parents, unprompted, that the fans were able to make a film about them, though the Tolkien estate put a stop to that. But I digress.

Anyways, the fans pester GRRM some more, and he finally tells us what Ned’s mother’s name was: Lyarra Stark, and she was by birth a member of House Stark (her father being a Stark and her mother a Flint), being Rickard Stark’s first cousin once removed. And pretty much nothing else.

Meanwhile, we have the as of yet still unnamed previous Ruling Princess of Dorne. Mother to Doran, Elia and Oberyn, grandmother to a slew of grandchildren. Besides the same arguments I make with Lyarra, that she undoubtedly had an impact on her children and grandchildren (if she lived long enough to meet any of them, and who knows if she did?), and that her life and death have value in and of themselves. This Princess of Dorne is one of the few women we know of in the canon who ruled lands in her own name, successfully and uncontested, and one of the very few women we know of who did this in recent memory. Already, she is a unique, interesting character who we would definitely like to know more about, because she led what is by Westerosi standards an unusual life, and her actions must certainly have had some kind of impact on the political climate of Westeros.

And yet, we know next to nothing about her, and we don’t know her name. Oh, we know more about this Princess than we do about Lyarra, certainly, but the fact that we don’t know her name is rather glaring. It’s hard to record someone’s history when you don’t know their name.

Names are important. Names have value. People’s lives have value. These are the messages told to us repeatedly in these books. But such messages are inevitably undercut by the author himself expressing confusion that anyone could be curious about the names and lives of certain of his characters, because it reminds us that even if we are supposed to view names and lives as valuable, the author doesn’t view all of his characters as equally worth a history. Some of these characters are people, and some of them are just plot devices, names on a genealogical chart, walking incubators for their more interesting children, even when they have the potential to be much more than that. That’s the sort of thing that really takes you out of the novel. It’s the sort of thing that can ruin your reading experience, when you are so starkly reminded that certain characters are less valued than others.

My doctor came to my rescue again…she made it possible for me to finally get money to eat, get medicine, pay back my cousin, put some $$ in my PayPal business account, feed my cars and myself–all for one reason. For Book II: The Saga of Thranduil. That’s why she did it. For the book. No one has ever loved my work so much that she would convince my stepmother to give in and send me enough money to tide me over for plenty of time to get this book done and possibly go to Mythcon in July. ☺️☺️☺️☺️ This was the voice message I got from her today. Glad I picked up the 📱 phone. I thought it was a telemarketer at first, then thought it was my Dad’s nurse. It was neither. It was a miracle. ☺️❤️❤️ Looks like Thranduil is on his way to having two covers. She’s also wanting me to get to the U.K. and to the Tolkien Estate (next to a friend of the family I spoke to the other day). I sent my book to my sister and my cousin. Did they read it? No. But it doesn’t matter anymore. Thranduil got 100 new follows on Niume overnight and Book II on Tumbler just made it to 833 followers. All together, that’s 1,164 (over 2,210 w/Twitter and Facebook; 2,265 with Google+). I haven’t counted the other pages yet but he’s been Stumbled upon a lot today. Miracles Happen… ☺️ @fortunatelyclevercandy Giggle.

Originally posted by haruhisuzzumiya

help-me-im-a-cat  asked:

In my story my character is transported to a fantasy world and there she learns about magic. Coming from this world and being a gamer, she remarks that some of the magic is like Skyrim. But I said Skyr*m, do you think I'd get sued? Or is that okay?

Just using the term as a one off line would probably be De Minimis, though I’m not a Intellectual Property Rights attorney, so take this with a grain of salt or twenty.

There’s three parts to Intellectual Property Law; copyright, trademark, and patent. Copyright is the intellectual property law that protects what you create artistically. “I wrote/painted/created this piece of art, it is mine.” Trakemark protects what you sell, at market. “I’m selling this product, you don’t get to sell your own product while pretending to be me.” Patent is the protection of inventions and innovation. “I made this thing, it does something unique, it’s mine, you can’t take my work and leave me with nothing.” None of these work exactly that smoothly, but it’s worth keeping in mind.

Incidentally, censoring out a random vowel does nothing, legally. If you’re going to say “Skyrim,” then just say it. There’s two ways this can go, copyright or trademark.

It’s worth pointing out that, yes, you can be sued, even without naming your setting. Fair use is an “affirmative defense.” This is the legal equivalent of saying, “yes, I did what they’re accusing me of, but the law they’re using don’t apply because of this.”

In copyright, Fair Use is usually examined through four (five) tests. Is the work transformative? What is the nature of the original work? How much did you take? What effect does the alleged infringement on the market for the original work? And, sometimes, what is “the character” of your use?

The transformative test is basically asking if you’re simply lifting copyrighted material wholesale. For a work to be transformative, it needs to alter the copyrighted material in some way fundamentally alter the nature or context of it. The best example of this are reviews and critique, which will take a copyrighted work, and then discuss it in detail.

Historically, simply lifting characters or settings, and using them in your own material, without substantially reworking them is not transformative, and as a result is copyright infringement. So, if you land your character in The Land of Skyr!m, and do nothing to differentiate it from the Tamerilic province, that’s going to be infringement. If you have a vaguely viking themed setting, and your character from the outside world wanders in, looks at the architecture, mountains, or whatever, and says it “reminds them of Eastmarch in Skyrim,” that’s probably not going to be infringing.

The nature of the original work is tested to determine if there’s a compelling interest to protect it. This one’s actually fairly complex, but what it basically means is that copyright law is more protective of art than non-fiction.

The amount of the work taken tests to see, exactly that. Did you simply copy down the bulk of the copyrighted work. This gets a little more complex in that you can potentially take “the heart” of the work, in a fairly concise excerpt, and actually commit copyright infringement.

Amusingly enough, if Pride and Prejudice wasn’t in the public domain (meaning the copyright has expired) Pride and Prejudice and Zombies would be an excellent example of a situation where the work passes the transformative test, but completely fails the substantiality test, because it copies the entire text. Similarly, if I’m remembering correctly, most annotated texts face the same issue, even though they substantially expand the work’s context.

The effect of your work on the copyrighted work’s market is tested to determine if you’re actually harming the copyright. Either by not licensing the work, or by offering an alternative to the copyrighted work. If you’re playing a song at a commercial venue without paying the rightsholders, that’s infringement, because it should have been licensed, even if you’re not making money off of it. In cases where you’re providing an alternative to the original material, that’s still potentially infringing. The example above would be annotated works, where they function as an effective alternate option to reading the original material. A heavily cut down version of the text could also function as an alternative.

The example that comes to mind are film remixes, where an entire film is condensed into 10 to 15 minutes without fundamentally loosing the substance of the film. This is slightly different from taking the heart of the work, which, in theory, can be achieved by taking a single line or scene.

The final test, is the character of use, this is examining what you’re doing, in a larger sense. If you’re using excerpts of copyrighted material for educational purposes, then it is less likely you’ll be found infringing. Similarly, if you’re engaging in non-commercial use, such as fanfiction, then this is the test where it applies. It’s worth stressing, simply engaging in non-commercial use, does not automatically exempt you from copyright infringement.

So, that’s copyright. Simply using the name Skyrim, and saying, “yeah, this reminds me of Skyrim,” without actually attempting to copy or emulate the setting should be fine. Just like you can have character say they enjoyed watching Star Wars, or Star Trek. You can also, certainly, have characters talking about about copyrighted settings without an issue. The thing you can’t do is actually use those settings for your own work. (Again, remembering that fanfiction exists in a sort of legal limbo. Without a prior agreement from the rightsholders, it is technically infringement, but there’s no value to be had from litigating. Though that’s never stopped the Tolkien Estate from going after everyone that looked at them funny.)

Trademark also has its own fair use defense, and it operates under completely different rules. Again, it’s an affirmative defense, so it only comes into play after you’ve been sued, but it’s the same basic idea, “I did something that looks like infringement, but it’s not.” Also, fair warning, I’m a lot less versed in trademark law, so there’s probably going to be some errors here.

As mentioned above, Trademark law is primarily concerned with ensuring that brand confusion does not occur between two products. Fair use usually operates off the idea that you did use another company’s trademark, for the purposes of referencing their mark specifically.

That means you can’t sell products under that name, and you can’t claim to be endorsed by the trademark. You can still say something reminds your character of Skyrim, just like you can say they wanted McDonalds, a Coke, or any number of other consumer products. That’s not what Trademark is designed to prevent. What you can’t do is sell your book as Skyrim, or even as “a Skyrim story.” Not that it matters, but the part where you also wouldn’t be using the font from Skyrim’s logo is actually relevant to trademark fair use.

I’m actually conflating normative and traditional fair use in Trademark law. Strictly speaking, normative fair use is when you reference someone else’s mark, while traditional fair use is when you’re referencing your own product, and it could be mistaken for the registered trademark. So the tests are slightly different between these two situations.

Again, if you’re just having a character say that the world they’ve found themselves in reminds them of Skryim, that would be normative fair use. If you were trying to market your book under the name Skyrim, or the “a Skyrim story” mentioned above, then that would be traditional trademark infringement.

-Starke

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2

I was all but ready to say something rather funny until I got a mention on Twitter from someone that I was suggested to follow. I had forgotten I hit the follow button–mostly because today has been extraordinarily busy. When I posted about writing Thranduil, several websites were going all at once–I even had a hit on Reddit. But this person I had followed (and forgot) was a book editor from Australia. Normally, I get a message in my mailbox but he decided to say something direct on my page hours after I had followed him.

“All the best with your fantasy series. Best Wishes for the Holiday Season.” I was caught off guard again. I have had an upset stomach for about a week I don’t know why and a headache this morning but was still working on an excerpt (another hard one) and all the horrible news mixed in with some good news, I was feeling rather stoic and empty until I read that.

There are times I can get so lost in writing, I forget what I am doing from the outside point of view. I forgot that another author asked people to post what writing accomplishments they made this year and I said I reached 500 pages, but I was more proud of learning what NaNoWriMo meant.

For what most people would find ridiculous, I take seriously. Like deciding who to send to the funerals of Dáin II Ironfoot of Erebor and King Brand of Dale because I can’t leave the throne of Mirkwood unattended.

It hasn’t been a year for me, it has been 3000 years. I have created a world within a world and both are tied to one another yet are profoundly different I know some find it hard to believe I could have done this in a year. With each of the four elves that will tell their story, there is a whole world everyone knows but has never seen. Since the first words, I couldn’t tell this story in any other way than through Thranduil’s eyes. To see the Battle of the Five Armies from Thranduil’s point of view I think is the best, though, some say it was the Battle of Dagorlad during the War of the Last Alliance.

I tend to get lost in this world–I don’t apologize for it, but I forget the outside world and those reading my world. I nearly forgot what task I was undertaking until an author pointed it out. 61years it has been since The Lord of the Rings. To write a new ME novel would be a history making event–especially if the Tolkien Estate approves it. I don’t think about it. I think about the story–as I should. But when someone says something like this man tonight, I am brought back into the reality of it all.

I don’t like to think about it. They never forget to remind me of what it means to do this. To be called an Inkling (an honor bestowed on men writers in Tolkien’s day) or being thought of as the next generation of that legacy is something I don’t like to think about. I don’t like to think of myself as anything more than just a writer doing what I love.

If I succeed, I will have more enemies than friends. I know there are people that already don’t like me. How could a little girl outside of England write 500 pages of a story about the most elusive of Tolkien’s characters that takes place in Tolkien’s Middle-Earth in a year? Unlike the Fellowship, I have no one by my side talk to. It’s a lonely place to be.

I’m not special or anything. I just wanted to do something for my dad to show him I could do something while he was alive that he could be proud of. I chose to keep it close to Tolkien because I felt it was the right thing to do. I didn’t write it to be popular, I wanted it to be right. I didn’t expect more than one or two readers. In a sea of fan fictions about Thranduil, I thought I’d only have a handful because I thought I was writing something boring because I didn’t put any modern things in it. No gratuitous violence or explicit sex. I learned Tolkien’s languages on his terms. Today, I don’t have a handful of readers.

@bellevox, @leepacesweetfantasy, @elven-nicknacks, @babschwi, @earrinde-lancaeriel, @lasimo74allmyworld, @storytimeteller1, @fortunatelyclevercandy, @peonies-and-poppies, @elvenprinces, @elvenrealm, @theothermegnolia, @mrseinsteingrooving, @indomitablemegnolia, @miresgaleth, @kelcipher, @emitis17, @kerstin1864, @glendathegoodone, @moonofmorrigan, I don’t have a handful of readers anymore. I just learned The Kingdom of the Woodland Realm Trilogy has a lot of them now…how to put this some of you don’t have a panic attack…

It has close to, uh…well…

Over 3000….and the founder of Scriggler put me on a list of Powerful Readers and I’m on a list called Must-Read Writers and someone on Pinterest put excerpts on a board called Books Worth Reading….I don’t know what to say. Thranduil has done it. He has broken through. He could actually be published…I need to lie down…

Good luck with that. Well, I guess Thranduil has a chance to do more than I thought. Merry Christmas and Happy New Year. With that readership, Lee Pace might get interested. I wouldn’t hold my breath on that, but it could happen.😳 He did pick up a publisher on Instagram or something. I can’t keep up these days. I just got the attention of another publisher on Twitter. No where to run to, Baby. No where to hide. Thranduil is going somewhere. it’s only a matter of time.

girion-lord-in-dale-deactivated  asked:

first of all I just want to thank you for running the greatest tumblr blog of all time and for answering all of the questions I didn't realize I had even after I read the books. I know that due to Chris Tolkien despising the movies that more film rights to any other Tolkien books will be sold anytime soon, but what about after he dies? Not all Tolkien's hate the films (like Royd) what would happen if the rights fell into his hands?

Generally, I really don’t know. Part of the problem is that I really have no idea what the future of the Tolkien Estate is after Christopher Tolkien dies - I couldn’t find any really “official” sources for its Board of Directors, so I’m even kind of shaky about who is currently on the board (I know for sure that Christopher Tolkien, his wife Baillie, and George Michael Tolkien are on it, but only some sources also include Priscilla Tolkien or Simon Tolkien.) And I don’t know who would be most likely to join the board after Christopher Tolkien (my experience with “family business”-type situations tells me that such decisions are always complicated and usually personal, so it’s unlikely anyone outside the family could make any accurate guess about that.)

The other part of the problem is that the Tolkien’s relationship with the movies is also quite complicated. While some of them have made their feelings (positive or negative) publicly known, most have kept quiet as far as I can tell. And it’s not just a matter of whether or not they like the movies, or agree with their interpretation of JRR Tolkien’s books. The Tolkien Estate has had a rocky relationship with Warner Bros (and by “rocky” I mean a string of lawsuits and counter-lawsuits concerning breach of contract and, ultimately, money money money.) So even the ones who like the movies might, in the end, decide that they don’t want to sell any more movie rights because of these legal/financial concerns.

And, just because I love visual aids, here’s a simple Tolkien Family Tree. Dotted lines represent marriages, solid lines represent parentage. Boxes outlined in gold are those family members who are (or might be) actually on the Tolkien Estate board. Red boxes are definitely anti-movies, blue boxes are definitely pro-movies (at least as far as a few Google searches could tell me.)

anonymous asked:

When would Tolkien's work be in the public domain? Has there been any interest on the part of the estate to allow any writer to write any sort of sequels etc. with the estate's permission, as there clearly would be an audience for more Tolkienana. Or have there been any writings that the estate has suppressed for not having a write to publish?

I think the Tolkien Estate is pretty strongly against anybody else writing in Tolkien’s world. I don’t have specific examples, but I’m pretty sure they’ve suppressed a few unauthorized sequels (or at least argued against them.)

Now, as for the public domain: Actually, Lord of the Rings was technically in the public domain in the US from 1965-1996, due to a failure to comply with manufacturing restrictions (more details in this article, if interested). But as for entering the public domain for good, that depends largely on the country. A few google searches have told me this:

  • In the US, Tolkien’s works will enter the public domain 95 years after they were published. So, 2032 for The Hobbit, and 2050 for LotR?
  • In the UK and other “life+70” countries, Tolkien’s works will enter the public domain 70 years after his death. So, 2043?
  • In Canada and other “life+50” countries, Tolkien’s works will enter the public domain 50 years after his death. So, 2023?
  • There’s also a chance that any of these laws could be changed, and the dates pushed further into the future, just a heads up.

Notice that I am not sure about any of this, as I literally just did about a dozen google searches on copyright laws. If you’re knowledgable in this area, and noticed a mistake, please let me know!

🌟 I came here to make a movie

Having made this account, many assumed I was here to roleplay. Well, you’ve been had! I’m sharing with you all now that I came here to start a movie adaptation of a beloved children’s novel. There’s something about this fandom that is amazing, beautiful, kind, and supportive. I can honestly say I’ve never been part of something so grand! Which brings me to this..

It’s long been an interest of mine to work on an animated adaptation of The Hobbit! That is, one directly based on Tolkien’s writings as word-for-word accurate as we can possibly get it while still appealing to a modern audience. We’ve seen this done a number of times through the years. But anywhere between 2017 and 2025, I want to add just one more to the list.

I’m basing designs and locations directly on Tolkien’s descriptions and on his own artwork of his series. I want to stay as true to the book as it possibly can to honour what he’s done for all of us and how he’s brought all of us perfect strangers together. It’s been a pleasure getting to know the fans and what they look for in this specific series as well as how they respond to adaptations of something this classic and beloved. You’ve all been an enormous inspiration to me by unknowingly being part of this experiment! I want now to move onto a legitimate process behind this animated adaptation. I want experts of Tolkien and that doesn’t mean some big Hollywood hotshot with a push-broom moustache. It means YOU! The same fans whp devoted a lot to the individual characters and to following the story to accomplish this; yes, the very same fandom that keeps the legendarium alive and kicking!

I want to call upon some of you–whether you’ve any legal qualifications making movies or not–to help make designs, artwork, and keep up with character continuity. I also call upon you to be part of our private audience so you can review and critique what the others come up with. We meaning this tumblr team I’m hoping to establish between us all. And who knows, if I like working with you, I can recruit you to work on even more projects in the future.

I’d like to clarify that this project is non-profit fan-project as we do not hold any rights over Tolkien’s works. That means we are volunteers and as a team will not be asking for or making any profit from this animation until and if we do get the go ahead from Tolkien Estate. In which case, this could air in theatres, be purchased as a box set or play on netflix. If we do not get the green light, it will remain a fan-project viewable on the web. Most importantly, it will be a project that we all came together to produce on our own! So what do you say?

This project is for the next generation of Tolkien adaptations; something that might not be released for actual audiences to watch for five to ten years. But it could be produced in just as little as three if you decide to help now! More hands means a quicker production. This account will be dedicated to making more posts about this film, open job positions and updates containing concept art crediting everyone involved. You can contact via ask, message, fan-mail or reblog if you’d like to join in! Now, let’s get this show on the road!

I’m asking you guys--All of you guys!--Will you come with me, for fellowship? Or just lend me your sword, your bow, and your axe? Please signal boost!

Positions you can volunteer for. (No art degrees required.)

JRR Tolkien’s Estate Tries To Stop Novel About Him

The estate of JRR Tolkien is embroiled in a fierce legal battle over an American novel that uses the author of The Lord of the Rings as a central character.

The dispute comes only months after Tolkien’s heirs settled a multimillion-pound lawsuit over royalties from the Lord of the Rings films. Tolkien’s family claimed that the New Line studio behind the $3bn-grossing trilogy failed to pass on any money to the estate, showing “insatiable greed”.

Now the estate, registered in Oxford, where Tolkien was a university professor, is demanding the destruction of all copies of Steve Hillard’s Mirkwood: A Novel About JRR Tolkien. The 450-page work recounts a young woman’s quest to find her grandfather after discovering documents given to him by Tolkien. The estate is demanding an immediate halt to further sales, and threatens legal action to obtain damages.

In a letter to Hillard, the estate’s lawyers, Manches, said: “At no time have our clients granted permission to use the name and personality of JRR Tolkien in the novel, nor would they in any foreseeable circumstances.” It claims “unlawful commercial advantage” has been taken of the estate’s “valuable rights”, and argues that Hillard’s book “trivialises the name, personality and reputation of the late professor”.

Hillard admits to using a quote from a published Tolkien letter, but says other conversations are imaginary and that he has produced a respectful portrait. He also claims that the author of The Hobbit, who died in 1973, would have been on his side in the argument. “His stories were unearthed from his research,” said Hillard. “He would be somewhat concerned about attempts to stifle works that borrow from history.”

Intellectual property rights and the powers of an estate to control names and reputations are now set to be challenged in the US courts. Hillard is in turn suing the Tolkien estate in what looks set to be a test case. In his lawsuit, filed in a Texas district court, Hillard argues that the novel is one of “innumerous fictional works that contain fictional accounts involving real people”.

He cites Joyce Carol Oates’s Blonde, which features Marilyn Monroe; Michael Cunningham’s The Hours, with Virginia Woolf; and Don DeLillo’s Underworld, in which Frank Sinatra appears.

Hillard, 62, from Austin, Texas, said: “Imagine if you couldn’t use Winston Churchill as a character in a book about the second world war. How many movies have used a fictional treatment of Churchill? The implications of this assertion by the estate would be that you couldn’t do that.”

His lawyer, Daniel Scardino, said: “Just imagine a world where you can’t talk about celebrities, where you can’t put celebrities in works of authorship, whether fiction, non-fiction, literary criticism or otherwise, where somehow their celebrity status insulates them from criticism … That’s the real concern.” The estate’s demands were “wholly without legal basis”, he added

Hillard’s legal papers state that Mirkwood “has not in any way … violated the rights of the estate under UK or US law”, and that “Hillard is within his rights to author a fictional novel with a celebrity as a character”.

Mirkwood is Hillard’s first novel. He self-published it and Amazon has been selling it worldwide since January. About 900 copies have been sold. In his day job, he heads a private equity fund assisting minority groups and women in the acquisition and running of radio and TV companies. Having studied philosophy and law he has studied Tolkien over two decades, inspired by his two daughters’ love of Tolkien’s classics.

According to the book’s jacket: “Mirkwood reinvents JRR Tolkien as a man haunted by the very myths he rewove into his famous works … In 1970, [he] sets in motion elvish powers embodied in a cache of archaic documents.”

The estate claims that the book jacket’s design – a tree illuminated by rays of light above three figures – is “strikingly similar” to Tolkien publications.

The Tolkien estate is headed by the author’s son, Christopher, as literary executor. Its lawyer, Steven Maier, said: “I can’t comment on the present case in too much detail … However, the Tolkien estate will always take action to protect its intellectual property rights.

"The estate understands that there is a balance … between freedom of expression and the protection of legal interests… This particular use of Tolkien’s name has crossed the line of what is fair.”

So, what are your thoughts on that?

Movie Adaptations of Smaller Tolkien Works

As far as I know, Lord of the Rings and The Hobbit were the only stories whose rights have been sold to anyone outside of the Tolkien Estate. So, unless I missed something, Tolkien’s other stories (like Farmer Giles of Ham or The Adventures of Tom Bombadil) fall under the same category as The Silmarillion in terms of the likelihood of a movie adaptation (see this post, and this one too, for more information on that.)

However, I think that these shorter stories have a better chance at getting adapted than the Silmarillion, mainly because they’d be easier to adapt, and Christopher Tolkien might not feel quite so protective of them as he does the Silmarillion. But that’s just my opinion.

Tolkien Estate sues Warner Bros and Saul Zaentz Company for unauthorised merchandising

In an $80 million lawsuit filed Monday in U.S. District Court in Los Angeles and obtained by The Hollywood Reporter, the Tolkien estate and its book publisher HarperCollins claim Warner Bros., its New Line subsidiary and Rings/Hobbit rightsholder Saul Zaentz Co. have infringed the copyright in the famous books and breached a contract. The crux of the suit is the estate’s contention that a decades-old rights agreement entitles the studio to create only “tangible” merchandise based on the books, not an “online slot machine” or other digital exploitations that the estate calls highly offensive.

“The original contracting parties thus contemplated a limited grant of the right to sell consumer products of the type regularly merchandised at the time (such as figurines, tableware, stationery items, clothing and the like,” the complaint states. “They did not include any grant of exploitations such as electronic or digital rights, rights in media yet to be devised or other intangibles such as rights in services.”

Hence, the Lord of the Rings: Fellowship of the Ring: Online Slot Game, which the estate claims it learned about via a spam e-mail to its atttorney in Sept. 2010, caused it to investigate the scope of its rights agreement. The estate says it then learned that Warner Bros. is planning traditional slot machines with Rings characters, as well as other products outside the limited scope of its original rights deal.

About time too I say. The way Warner Bros have put Lord of the Rings on anything that stay still long enough in the past couple of years has been awful. I can only hope slot machines have been a gamble too far for them. I strongly believe the estate has a case.

The way Saul Zaentz Company has behaved, with its land grab of trademark filings and its bullying lawyers, is even worse. Orcs through and through.

I’ll be watching this one with interest. The full lawsuit filing is here

faramircaptainofgondor replied to your post: anonymous asked:The Tolkien estat…

You know what would be amazeballs? A Silmarillion TV show. GoT style. (But OH GOD please don’t let David & Dan near it.)

THIS! SO MUCH! I VE BEEN TELLING PPL EXACTLY THE SAME. THIS IS THE ONLY WAY IT WOULD’VE WORKED. and it would have to be the same style, same brutality. no PG-13 whatsoever. it’d be a totally different side of middle earth. of the elves especially! we can only dream of someone making this, and making it good.

angelikamariepickles  asked:

So I recently learned that hobbits are a real thing. BBC has an article on their site-"Why are we the only human species still alive?"-that says our species of human appeared 200,000 yrs ago & there were other human species around at the time, including hobbits. So when we talk about early human history, does that also include hobbit history? If I go to a museum & they have a scrap of paper that's 100,000 years old, is that strictly from a homo sapien, or do all hominins count as early humans?

WHAT YOU’RE REFERRING TO IS “HOMO FLORESIENSIS,” A WIDELY-CONTESTED FOSSIL SPECIMEN. WHETHER OR NOT IT SHOULD HAVE ITS OWN SPECIES IS CONTROVERSIAL, WITH MANY RESEARCHERS BELIEVING THE FOSSILS TO COME FROM MODERN HUMANS WITH CONDITIONS THAT INHIBIT GROWTH. 

THEY MAY HAVE BEEN AN OFFSHOOT OF THE SAME EVOLUTIONARY BRANCH AS MODERN HUMANS, MAKING THEM A “COUSIN” SPECIES MUCH LIKE THE NEANDERTHALS. MODERN HUMANS ARE JUST ONE SPECIES OF PRIMATE AMONG MANY IN THE GENUS “HOMO” THAT HAVE EXISTED, IT’S JUST THAT WE’RE THE ONLY ONES THAT HAVE SURVIVED IN LARGE NUMBERS INTO THE MODERN AGE. MANY OF THEM WERE NOT DIRECT ANCESTORS OF PEOPLE LIKE YOU AND ME, ALTHOUGH SOME SPECIES (LIKE NEANDERTHAL) WERE ABSORBED INTO HOMO SAPIENS BY MEANS OF INTERBREEDING. MANY HUMANS ALIVE TODAY, MYSELF INCLUDED, HAVE SOME SMALL TRACE OF NEANDERTHAL DNA IN THEIR GENOME. 

THAT BEING SAID, AS THEY’RE NOT ANCESTORS OF MODERN HUMANS, THEIR EXISTENCE WOULDN’T BE A PART OF “HUMAN HISTORY,” AND SINCE THEY EXISTED IN THE PREHISTORIC PERIOD, THEY WOULDN’T BE A PART OF ANY HISTORY AT ALL, THEY’D FALL UNDER THE JURISDICTION OF ANTHROPOLOGY, PREHISTORIC BIOLOGY, AND PALEONTOLOGY. 

ALSO, THEY WEREN’T “HOBBITS” AS IN THE LORD OF THE RINGS SPECIES. THEY WERE A RELATIVELY ISOLATED GROUP OF PRIMATES, POSSIBLY HUMANS BUT DEFINITELY AT LEAST HUMANLIKE, THAT LIKELY SHARED A COMMON ANCESTOR WITH MODERN HUMANS OR POSSIBLY WERE MODERN HUMANS WITH MORPHOLOGICAL MUTATIONS. THE TOLKIEN ESTATE HAS TAKEN LEGAL ACTION ON MULTIPLE OCCASIONS TO STOP THE USE OF THE WORD “HOBBIT” IN BOTH POP CULTURE AND SCIENTIFIC LITERATURE.