Wednesday, July 30, 2014 20:11 [Daily Archive]

Domestic by Safak Timur
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Real life Batman faces super test
ISTANBUL - The mayor of Batman, a city recently under scrutiny due to unsolved murders and increasing rates of female suicides, will sue the director of the movie "Batman" movie.

Real life Batman faces super test

Not a superhero with supernatural abilities, or a person wealthy enough to buy high-tech toys to fight evil, but a simple human being named Hüseyin Kalkan, the pro-Kurdish Democratic Society Party mayor of the southeastern city of Batman, declared war against his city’s namesake superhero, Batman.  

“The royalty of the name ‘Batman’ belongs to us … There is only one Batman in the world. The American producers used the name of our city without informing us,” Kalkan told to the Doğan news agency. Batman is a centuries old city, taking root in the Neolithic age but becoming significant when oil was found in the region at the end of 1940s. Almost a decade before that, Batman was created as a comic hero. Kalkan is going to sue Christopher Nolan, the director of the latest Batman movie “The Dark Night,” not DC Comics, the creator of the superhero.

Mayor Kalkan, speaking to the Hürriyet Daily News and the Economic Review, said last year foreign media picked up on Batman and the city’s increasing suicide rates among women. He said a columnist asked why Batman’s mayor did not sue the movie Batman for royalties while struggling with economic problems. “We found this criticism right and started to look for legal possibilities of a case like that,” he said.

Meanwhile, local newspaper Batman Çağdaş alleged yesterday that Batman residents living abroad cannot use Batman as a title for their business, leading the municipality to think about the royalty rights of that name.

However, mayor Kalkan rejected any allegations about the issue and said they do not have any information that Batman residents living abroad have problems about using Batman as a name.

But Batman Çağdaş newspaper reported that Şafii Dağ, a former Batman resident, currently living in the Germany city of Wesel, is one of those citizens who cannot use Batman as a title for his business, according to the newspaper. “I named my two restaurants Batman. But six months ago, a team of employees from the production company of the movie Batman made me change the title. Telling them that Batman was the name of my hometown did not change anything,” Dağ said.

Meanwhile, the name of a local region cannot be registered as a brand name, said lawyer Vehbi Kahveci, head of the Intellectual and Industrial Property Rights Commission of the Istanbul Bar. Also having overseas clients, Kahveci said “Batman” and his image is registered all around the world. The Batman Municipality missed the period in which they could object to the registration decision for Batman’s name as a superhero, according to Kahveci. 
 

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