Sapporo Apologizes for Unauthorized Usage of The Rose of Versailles Characters in Pamphlet
posted on by Jennifer Sherman
The city of Sapporo, Hokkaido recently apologized to The Rose of Versailles manga creator Riyoko Ikeda's Ikeda Riyoko Production company after its monthly pamphlet used content inspired by the famous series without consent. The June issue of the city's "Kōhō Sapporo" pamphlet included a six-page "public manners" feature that used characters based on The Rose of Versailles' Oscar François de Jarjayes and Marie Antoinette.
In the issue, Marie Antoinette appears as "Manner Shirantoinette," a name that incorporates the Japanese for "don't know manners." Oscar appears as "Oshcar," which is a reference to the Japanese word for "to scold." In the pamphlet feature's story, Oshcar tells Manner Shirantoinette about how to properly use bicycles and the subway in public, as well as how to throw away trash.
Sapporo apologized to Ikeda's company personally and issued an apology in the pamphlet's July edition. A representative of the city's public relations department said, "We didn't think that individual characters would be an infringement, but it was a representation that invited misunderstanding." Ikeda Riyoko Production had issued a complaint to Sapporo on June 6, and the city responded to the company the next day.
A representative of Ikeda Riyoko Production said, "This is regrettable, especially considering that the pamphlet featured 'good manners,' but we do not plan to take legal action." The company also stated that it could tolerate the references to The Rose of Versailles as a show of love for the work, but they want people to seek approval for such usage in advance.