By Ray O’Hanlon
The McCourt brothers own their own life story, a Chicago court has decided.
A federal judge in the Windy City has rejected a claim by playwright and producer Michael Houlihan that he is entitled to a share of the proceeds from the likes of Angela’s Ashes and other biographical works from brothers Frank and Malachy McCourt.
Houlihan produced the McCourt play “A Couple of Blaguards” and funded its staging in Chicago for a year in the 1980s.
Houlihan claimed in the case that as a result of a 1984 agreement with the McCourt brothers, he was owed a percentage of any subsidiary works from the brothers for 15 years after the play was staged in Chicago.
That timespan covered the publication and huge success of works including Frank McCourt’s “Angela’s Ashes” and Malachy McCourt’s “A Monk Swimming.”
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According to a report in the New York Post, federal district court judge Ronald Guzman rejected the argument that there was any carry over from the play into the later books and the movie version of Angela’s Ashes.
“This court cannot endorse the idea that granting rights to one incarnation of part of a life story automatically grants away rights to all conceivable tellings of that life story,” Guzman opined.
Brooklyn recalls revolutionary Irish
The 1776 Battle of Brooklyn and the role of Irish soldiers in what was one of the biggest clashes of arms in the Revolutionary War will be remembered at ceremonies next week.
Annually, the momentous opening shots of the War of Independence are commemorated, and the stirring words are recalled that, “the Declaration of Independence was signed in ink in Philadelphia on July 4th, and it was signed again in blood in Brooklyn on August 27th, 1776.”
The Brooklyn Irish American Parade Committee is opening a week of commemoration ceremonies on Saturday, Aug. 17 with a tribute to the “Maryland 400,” a largely Irish and Irish American regiment in George Washington’s army that fought a rearguard action against British troops on Aug. 27, 1776, that was successful enough to allow the evacuation of American forces to Manhattan.
The commemoration ceremonies for the committee’s “Battle of Brooklyn Week” will conclude Sunday, Aug. 25 with a wreath laying ceremony at Greenwood Cemetery. More details on the committee’s events and activities from (718) 499-9482.
East Durham 9/11 groundbreaking
A memorial honoring all who died in the September 11 attack on America will be dedicated at the Michael J. Quill Irish Cultural and Sports Center in East Durham, NY.
A groundbreaking for the memorial has been set for Sept. 7 at the center’s Irish Park.
The groundbreaking will come at the conclusion of a week during which the local volunteer fire department will have hosted the 114th annual Greene Country Firemen’s Convention on the grounds of the Quill center. For details on the groundbreaking ceremony call (518) 634-2286 or log on to www.irishpark.com.
More time for Malachy
Malachy McAllister will more time to mount a defense against deportation.
The former INLA member from Belfast, who now lives in New Jersey, was facing an August 7th deadline to appeal against a deportation order but that deadline has been put off until Sept. 3rd at least.
According to attorney Eamonn Dornan, the Immigration and Naturalization Service requested extra time in its appeal against a court order granting McAllister’s wife Bernadette and the couple’s four children asylum.
Dornan explained that as a result of this request, the extra time was automatically granted to McAllister for his appeal process.
Dornan said that he was now attempting to extend the appeal time beyond Sept. 3rd.
The McAllisters fled to Canada and then the U.S. after a 1988 loyalist gun attack on their home.
As an INLA member, McAllister was implicated in a plot to murder two RUC officers. The officers survived the attempt on their lives.
McAllister has since renounced violence and has proclaimed his support for the Good Friday agreement.