After years of countless Tintin parodies and homages, it seems the executors of Herge’s estate, Moulinsart, have entered a serious lockdown mode. Last week, for example, there was this story of how they played hardball with the author of a book which imagined a much older and depressed Tintin, who is reduced to reporting on the lives of shallow celebrities:
Publisher Paco Camarasa explained that Moulinsart first tried to pressure them into pulling the book from stores, before then agreeing to let it be distributed until the first 1,000 copies were sold. In exchange, Edicions de Ponent promised not to reprint the book ever again.
Although Moulinsart did not consider the illustrations that come with the text as infringement of any copyright laws, the estate concluded that the book “perverted the essence of the personality” of Tintin.
Which strikes me as odd, as I don’t remember them ever complaining about this book. Anyway, according to Forbidden Planet, now Moulinsart is going after the fan Web site Ojectif Tintin, slapping them with a cease and desist letter:
Their complaint ? Objectif Tintin used elements from Hergé’s oeuvre in their logo and illustrations (even though, as Didier Pasamonik asserts on Actua BD, this is fully covered by the Belgian quotation law), and they mentioned or even advertised events that were not licensed by Moulinsart. In other words, Objectif Tintin, in their attempt to be an objective (hence the name) and complete source of information for Tintin fans, failed to ask Moulinsart first if they could publish something.
I remember seeing tons of pornographic, satricial and otherwise outright snotty Tintin parodies when I was over in Europe way back when. Is it just the upcoming release of the Spielberg/Jackson film that has the company so on edge?