The Hobbit Pub Conflict to End

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Saul Zaentz Company, owner of rights to Lord of the Rings and The Hobbit, appear to have backed down from legal action on the Hobbit pub in Portswood.

The popular student drinking hole has been involved in a battle with the company for the last week, as the company suggested that the pub must change their theme and branding or else face a costly legal battle with the Hollywood giants.

The company earlier contacted the Daily Echo, and revealed that they wanted to sort the issue ‘amicably’, and suggested a nominal licence fee of $100 – about £64 – per year to acknowledge the use of the brand, and so allowing the pub to keep its theme of more than 20 years.

A statement quoted on the BBC read:

“When it’s an established business, we like to get the company to acknowledge they are using our trademarks, stop selling infringing articles and then we will grant them a licence for a nominal fee – approximately $100 a year.”

The details within the agreement are yet to be fully agreed, or apparently even properly discussed between the pub and the company, and it is still not clear what “infringing articles” will have to be restricted in order for the licence to be granted.

This revelation comes after a Facebook campaign which has seen the page accumulate nearly 50,000 likes, as well as tweets from celebrities Steven Fry and Sir Ian Mckellen -both actors for the Middle-earth films – both critical of the Hollywood company.

More updates to follow.

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