“Emily the Strange” strange copyright dispute
June 4, 2009
Rob Reger and his company Cosmic Debris, Etc., Inc., creators of Emily the Strange are suing Marjorie Sharmat and Marc Simont, author and illustrator of the Nate the Great series in a preemptive measure to ensure that their character doesn’t infringe on the copyright from the Nate books published in the 70s and 80s (School Library Journal & Comics worth Reading). Cosmic Debris is asking a judge to declare that the goth girl doesn’t infringe on the Nate copyright.
Emily looks very much like the character Rosamond from the children’s series and a discussion in the blogosphere about the likeness between the two characters (one of the first to discuss this was CoffeeGhost.net, Emily the Rip-Off) has caused Cosmic Debris to ensure that the property ownership is clear (a movie about Emily the Strange is in development for 2010).
“Regarding copyright law, there is legally nothing wrong with sharing or implementing a unique variation on a concept,” Reger adds. “I have never drawn inspiration from the “Nate the Great” series or Rosamond. In fact, we at Cosmic Debris have always moved to individualize the idea of Emily the Strange and her universe, which are original to Cosmic Debris.”
94-year-old Marc Simont has stated that he and Sharmat have referred the issue to their publisher’s legal department.
posting by Lorraine