Thursday, January 7, 2010

Sherlock Holmes gay? shut down the franchise!

Some tutting here from Andrea Plunket, the US copyright holder of the Sherlock Holmes stories, about the Holmes/Watson bromance. From Cinematical, here's what Plunket had to say in response to Robert Downey's comments about the on-screen relationship in the new film:

"I hope this is just an example of Mr Downey's black sense of humour. It would be drastic, but I would withdraw permission for more films to be made if they feel that is a theme they wish to bring out in the future," says Plunket. "I am not hostile to homosexuals, but I am to anyone who is not true to the spirit of the books."

I haven't followed all the links and tried to figure out why this woman owns these rights, but it's a bit mystifying that fiction written so very long ago isn't in the public domain. Imagine the world and the stories in it if Shakespeare or Chaucer or Homer were still zealously guarded. We'd be poorer for it.

I think current copyright laws of lifetime of the author plus 70 years are unconscionable.

What do you think is a good term for copyright? Lifetime of the author? Lifetime plus 20 years? None at all?

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