Wills, Trusts & Estates Prof Blog

Editor: Gerry W. Beyer
Texas Tech Univ. School of Law

Monday, August 5, 2013

Estate of Sir Arthur Conan Doyle Mysteriously Absent


Sherlock Holmes has enjoyed quite the revival in recent years.  Recent feature films, a BBC series, and a CBS series are all licensed by the estate of Sir Arthur Conan Doyle. 

However, a recent book by Leslie Klinger comprising new stories about Holmes from modern day authors elicited a letter from the estate demanding licensing fees.  Klinger “took the estate to court claiming the copyright on certain story elements had expired and he should be allowed to publish.”  A default judgment was entered after no one representing the estate showed.  There is still no response as Klinger has requested a judgment rendering the estate unable to collect any more licensing revenue.

See Nick Clark, Sherlock Holmes Mystery: Sir Arthur Conan Doyle’s Estate and the Case of Character Licensing Rights, The Independent, Aug. 1, 2013.


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