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J.R.R. Tolkien as fictional character – fair use or a step too far?

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(Read caption) The Tolkien estate has sent a cease-and-desist letter to author Steve Hillard, objecting to the use of Tolkien’s name and personality and his book's cover art and typeface.

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We absorbed the idea of an unauthorized "Catcher in the Rye" sequel. We could handle exploring "Gone With The Wind" from a slave’s perspective. But J.R.R. Tolkien as a fictional character? Is this going too far?

It’s certainly too much for the estate of the “Lord of the Rings” author, which wants to block the publication of “Mirkwood: A Novel about J.R.R. Tolkien” by Steve Hillard. The Hollywood Reporter reported that Hillard filed a lawsuit claiming First Amendment and fair use rights to publish the book, after the Tolkien estate sent him a cease-and-desist letter objecting to the cover art, typeface, and use of Tolkien’s name and personality.

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