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Fan Fiction for a book have a question.

New Orleans, LA |

Mr. Antoine Fuqua did the movie Training day. I want to write "Fan Fiction" on the movie. I would like to know do I need his blessings or, do I don't need it to due to the books being "Fan Fiction?"

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Attorney answers 4


This question is too general to be effectively answered, I'm afraid. But I can tell you some things that would diminish the likelihood that you would need to obtain his blessing. First, avoid making references to any specific dialogue in the movie. Second, make the references to the movie succinct and factual. Third, make sure that your commentary is unique and original. Fourth, when you have a draft of your work, take it to a copright lawyer and have them review and bless it. It may cost you some attorney's fees on the front end, but it will be cheaper than having to pay the movie studio for a license, and it will be cheaper than being a defendant in a federal lawsuit. Good luck.


Read and then, before you publish, see a copyright attorney.

The above is general information ONLY and is not legal advice, does not form an attorney-client relationship, and should NOT be relied upon to take or refrain from taking any action. I am not your attorney. You should seek the advice of competent counsel before taking any action related to your inquiry.


Fan fiction is technically copyright infringement unless fan writing it has the permission of the copyright holder. Copyright holders tend to look the other way when fans love their work so much that they expand upon it in interesting ways. The reason is that fan fiction actually benefits the original work.

Copyright holders stop looking the other way when someone tries to make money off of their fan fiction, however. A recent case involving the Harry Potter universe and a fan "encyclopedia" is instructive. I've added a link to a news article on the outcome of that case below.

So the short answer is that yes, you will need the copyright owner's permission to publish a fan fiction book, especially if it is for profit.

Mr. Ballard's suggestion of reading the Chilling Effects FAQ and contacting a copyright attorney before you publish is a good idea.

This information DOES NOT create an attorney/client relationship. I only represent clients after I've entered into an agreement with them. This is general legal information geared towards Georgia law. If your problem is not one involving Georgia law, then you should consult an attorney in your jurisdiction. THIS IS NOT LEGAL ADVICE—it is provided for informational purposes only. You should always contact an attorney if you have more questions.


The short answer is that what you are doing would likely be considered a derivative work, if it were close enough to tell that it was fan fiction. So your safe bet would be to get permission.

Another lawyer on here said it best. It's not about avoiding liability, it's about avoiding a lawsuit.