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Asterix creator hits back in legal fight with daughter

© AFP

Text by FRANCE 24

Latest update : 2013-12-03

Albert Uderzo, the co-creator of Asterix, said he had filed a judicial complaint against his daughter and son-in-law for "psychological violence" in a long-running legal dispute. He said they wanted to "get their hands" on his legacy.

French illustrator Albert Uderzo, the co-creator of Asterix, said Monday he had filed a judicial complaint against his daughter and son-in-law for "psychological violence" over a long-running legal dispute.

Uderzo, who is 86, accused his daughter Sylvie and her husband of trying to "get their hands" on his legacy. He created the iconic comic series with writer René Goscinny in 1959.

Asterix at 50

Sylvie and her husband Bernard de Choisy have made a number of legal complaints over Uderzo's estate, including one claiming that her elderly father was being exploited.

The rift goes back to 2007 when the couple were dismissed as managers of the company handling Uderzo's estate. A year later the company was sold to French publishing firm Hachette.

In 2011, Sylvie launched a suit against an unnamed individual for "abuse of weakness". She asserted that members of her father’s entourage exploited his mental state to influence the management of his work and his fortune. In October of this year, the court threw out her case.

"I have kept my mouth shut for years, but today I have decided to act," the 86-year-old Uderzo told reporters at his home in the Paris suburbs.

"I want to turn the tables on those who are attacking me. Enough is enough," Uderzo said.

In a statement, Uderzo and his wife said their daughter and her husband were not seeking reconciliation and were "introducing and extending legal procedures that have no foundation".

"The sole purpose of these acts is to undermine our psychological integrity and to hasten our debility, in order to get their hands on our legacy, which they covet," the statement said.

"We have decided to make Sylvie Uderzo and her husband understand that we won't let them do this to us," said Uderzo's lawyer, Pierre Cornut Gentille.

The 35 books in the Asterix series have sold 352 million copies worldwide and been translated into more than 110 languages and dialects.

The latest edition, "Asterix and the Picts" was released in October. Written by Jean-Yves Ferri and illustrated by Didier Conrad, it was the first in the series not written or illustrated by one of its original creators.

(FRANCE 24 with AFP, REUTERS)

Date created : 2013-12-03

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