The producers of Valkyrie, Tom Cruise’s newest movie based on the plot during World War Two to kill Hitler may be sued for using a reproduction of the famous Hitler Globe.
The globes, produced in the 1930’s were given to high ranking officials in the Third Reich, with one Globe said to be kept at Berchtesgaden (The Eagles Nest), the Bavarian Country home of Hitler. Most were destroyed during the war, but the Berchtesgaden Globe was retrieved by American soldiers.
Art collector Robert Pritikin acquired the globe in 2007 and filed a copyright claim over reproductions, ostensibly to stop neo-Nazi’s creating copies, and this is where the problem for Valkyrie lies: they didn’t seek permission from Pritikin to use the globe reproduction first.
According to Page Six, the Globe is actually up for sale, the Pritikin is said to be hoping the matter will be resolved without going to court…or better still Tom Cruise will buy the globe.
Sadly though it’s a case of copyright law gone mad. This is a work created in the 1930’s by a German company that no longer exists; that an art collector can claim copyright over the work in 2007 when the work, under both US and German law should be in the public domain is scary within itself. Worse still though, the copyright claim means that an historical event, and portrayal of that event based on facts, is now limited by copyright law, even events that occurred over 60 years ago. Imagine for example a copyright claim over parts of the US Civil War, the US War of Independence, or the Battles of World War One? That we despise Hitler is irrelevant: history needs to be free so that we are able to remember it freely, copyright law has no place here at all. It’s yet another sickening example of how copyright law has been corrupted by greed and blatant disregard for the common good.