Mr Justice Kitchin has ruled that Harry Potter author JK Rowling and her publishing house Bloomsbury should face claims for copyright infringement in the High Court.
In rejecting the defendants’ application for summary judgment to dismiss the case, Kitchin J ruled that the claim had a chance of success although it was “improbable”. If the case goes to trial the claimant, Paul Allen, may have to provide security for costs, it was ruled.
DMH Stallard partner Nick Kounoupias instructed Blackstone Chambers’ Robert Howe QC to represent Allen in his claim against the author and publishing house.
The trustees of the estate of the late Adrian Jacobs, of which Allen is one, claim that themes from Jacobs’ 1987 book The Adventures of Willy the Wizard are copied in Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire, which was published in 2000, and allege that Rowling therefore has infringed copyright.
At a High Court hearing in July, 8 New Square’s John Baldwin QC, instructed by Schillings partner Gideon Benaim for JK Rowling, slammed the claim for lacking any merit. He described the claim as “absurd” and “a disgrace” and requested it be thrown out.