UPDATE: MY OZ CHRONICLES ISN’T GOING ANYWHERE! Screw ’em.
So, I read a story this morning that has me seriously considering making a major change to my Oz Chronicle series of young adult novels. I may be dropping the “Oz Chronicles” from the title. Warner Brothers Studios has a planned series of films in development based on L. Frank Baum’s Oz Chronicle series. The Wizard of Oz, based on the first of fourteen books in Baum’s series, is one of the most popular films in cinematic history. It seems that Warner Brothers is trying fill the void that will be left by the lack of future Harry Potter films.
While my “Oz Chronicles” has been compared to Baum’s “Oz Chronicles,” my books are not based on the legendary author’s books. I have never read any of Baum’s books. I watched the movie every Thanksgiving for probably 12 years, so I’m sure I was influenced by the story. After all, my story is about a young boy named Oz who finds himself in a fantastical, horrifying land filled with monsters and warriors. Obviously, I picked something up from all those years of watching the Wizard of Oz. Now, my Oz books are much darker, and there are no ruby slippers, but still, I can’t deny the similarities.
So, where does that leave me? I’m left with two choices.
1.) Keeping the name and fight to differentiate my books from what I’m sure will be a much-hyped big studio film.
2.) Changing the name and starting from scratch with the marketing campaign.
It seems that Warner Brothers is having problems with the licensing issues surrounding the “Wizard of Oz.” If they use any element from that film – the ruby slippers for example – they have to pay MGM licensing fees, and since the books themselves are in the public domain Warner Brothers may not be able to stop anyone with a computer from designing t-shirts and capitalizing on the popularity of the film. Hell, for all I know, Warner Brothers may come after me to change the title of my series. But as I understand it, you can’t copyright a title, only the content. Who knows?
Here’s an idea. Hey, Warner Brother’s Execs, buy the rights to my Oz Chronicles and you’re in the clear! Everybody’s happy. You can contact my agent here: Let’s Make Big Monies!
There is never a dull moment trying to make it in publishing. I should have been an Optometrist.
If you’re interested, you can read the story about the “Oz” films here: ‘Oz’ Could be Next Big Film Franchise