Is Harry Potter Wizard a Lifted Concept?

Harry Potter has been fighting fictional battles in the books and on the theater screens. But now a real battle is imminent for the charming wizard. New battleground: Court.

The Estate of Adrian Jacobs, the deceased British children’s author, has expressed its regrets that its US breach of copyright action brought in good faith against publisher Scholastic in relation to Harry Potter in the USA has been summarily dismissed by a New York Judge.

However, the Estate’s US attorneys are presently analysing the judgment with a view to lodging an Appeal, it was said in a statement issued today, Jan. 10.

The Trustee Paul Allen stated: “This US decision has no legal bearing upon the Estate’s established action in the High Court of England against J.K. Rowling personally and her publishers Bloomsbury over breach of copyright in Harry Potter and The Goblet of Fire. That case is scheduled for a 10 day trial in Feb. 2012 when the Estate hopes that evidence and cross examination will be heard in open court for the first time.”

Major disclosures are expected over the next few months.

Recently, “Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows – Part 1″ movie was released on Nov. 19, 2010, and “Part 2″ will be coming on July 15, 2011.

A few hours before its midnight premiere, “Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows – Part 1″ had leaped over previous record-holders to become the top “Harry Potter” advance ticket-seller in Fandango’s ten-year history. And it was the overall third best pre-seller in the company history, said the ticket seller Fandango. (Read: New Harry Potter Can Win Even Star Wars)

Now the English case, involves allegations by the Estate of Adrian Jacobs that J.K. Rowling copied a substantial part of Jacobs’ visionary 1987 book The Adventures of Willy The Wizard No 1 Livid Land, into her book Harry Potter and The Goblet of Fire published 13 years later by Bloomsbury.

Trustee Paul Allen says “Jacobs’ Estate will continue to vigorously pursue its claim in London. The massive amount of evidence brought by the Estate, in the English High Court included forensic linguistic analysis, factual testimony relating to Rowling and her agent Chris Little, and evidence from experts in Children’s fantasy literature demonstrating startling similarities between the two books.”

The statement said that in The Adventures of Willy The Wizard, a short, densely written, illustrated book, Adrian Jacobs created a fantasy world intertwined with the real world in which there are Wizard Schools, Villages of Wizard Brewers, Gambling Wizards, Wizard Chess played on Wizard Trains, special Wizard Hospitals, Wizard Travel by magic powder, apparently headless creatures, Elves as Wizard Helpers, International Gatherings of Wizards, Human Memory Erasers, etc.

The Estate claims that all of these Jacobs’ concepts are part of Jacobs’ original themes, many new to the genre, echoed and copied in Harry Potter and familiar now to Potter readers.

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Rakesh Raman