fairytale re-write



  • Question is: if you re-write part of a well known fairytale such as little Red Riding Hood or any other popular fairytale or borrow and slighly change a character, clearly referring to the original tale, are there any copyright or other legal restictions about doing this? Can you play with it as you want? Does it fall into the same legal catogory with fan art?



  • @Mr-NiftyRat most, if not all, fairytales are in the public domain, so copyright isn’t usually an issue.

    However, it’s always a good idea to do your own research and look into into any potential copyright issues before moving forward with publishing anything.


  • SVS OG

    @Mr-NiftyRat a work becomes public domain 70 years after death of its creator(in the US at least...may be a tiny bit earlier and later elsewhere) - i believe the brothers grimm collected the little red riding hood story "little red cap" in 1812 - we cannot use things that others have added to the story within the last 70 years though - for instance ruby slippers for wizard of oz - that is a warner brothers thing - we are definitely free to use grimms fairy tail stuff without restrition


  • SVS Instructor Pro

    @Mr-NiftyRat Any work that is in the public domain can be used by anyone without restrictions. A good rule of thumb is anything created before 1925. So rewriting Red Riding Hood would not be Fan Art (or Fan Fiction in the case of text) because there is no copyright holder.

    Also any changes you make in your rewritten version would be copyrightable to you! (cool right‽ )

    Thing is, that last bit works in the other direction as well. If you reference a version of Red Riding Hood (re)written after 1925, any unique elements in that version could be still protected and using them in your "new" version could be infringing on someone's copyright. This is what @Kevin-Longueil was referring to.

    And so @Melissa-Bailey-0 advice to research carefully public domain works is important!



  • Ok thank you all for clarifying this!