Wednesday, August 08, 2007

Harry Potter Number 8: Harry Potter and The Unquiet World

Little did I know that work has already begun on the alternate sequel to The Halfblood Relative Prince (and other Chinese-derived titles to the youngster wizarding series):

The zest with which the Potter series has been copied can be seen in the titles available for sale in China.

These include "Harry Potter and the Half-Blooded Relative Prince," whose name in Chinese closely resembles a genuine title in the series, as well as many others that are pure inventions, blending everything from story lines lifted from J.R.R. Tolkien, to plots and snippets taken from famous kung fu epics and characters from Chinese literary classics, like "Journey to the West."

Although not exhaustive, the list includes "Harry Potter and the Hiking Dragon," "Harry Potter and the Chinese Empire," "Harry Potter and the Young Heroes," "Rich Dad, Poor Dad and Harry Potter," "Harry Potter and Leopard-Walk-up-to-Dragon," "Harry Potter and the Big Funnel," "Harry Potter and the Golden Armor," "Harry Potter and the Crystal Vase," and on and on.

Later in the article, the para-author assesses the situation:

Not all book editors hewed to this strict interpretation of copyright, however. Lu Jia, whose Ba Shu publishing company acknowledges printing one knockoff, "Harry Potter and the Chinese Empire," but is widely believed to have printed several others, initially said she did not wish to talk about Harry Potter. "It had problems of intellectual property violations," she said.

Moments later, though, Lu reminisced, almost wistfully, about the experience.

"Everything would have been fine if they hadn't made the cover so obvious, even if you copied some sections of the original story," she said. "But the cover was so outstanding, and foreign people care a lot about things like that."

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