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Gabrielsson blames Millennium feud on men who hate women

AFP/The Local · 31 Jan 2011, 08:54

Published: 31 Jan 2011 08:54 GMT+01:00

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In her fight over the legacy of her longtime partner Stieg Larsson, Eva Gabrielsson finds her life starting to resemble that of the goth-punk heroine of his phenomenal Millennium trilogy.

Just as tattooed hacker Lisabeth Salander contends with men who hate women, so Gabrielsson suspects misogyny among those denying her the right to administer one of publishing's hottest properties: his literary estate.

"I think it's true," she told AFP on Thursday in Paris, where her 160-page memoir of her 32 years alongside the crusading journalist who penned "The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo" and its sequels has just been published.

"There's a lot of truth in that. Those who are doing this are men," she said, acknowledging that her life after Larrson's untimely death might as well be the fourth volume of his best-selling crime thriller saga.

"It would have fit extremely well into the Millennium series. It really would," she said.

Larsson, founder of a small magazine in Stockholm that shed light on Sweden's neo-Nazi underworld, was 50 when he died soon before Millennium became the biggest global publishing phenomenon of the 21st century.

In her memoir, "Millennium, Stieg and Me," Gabrielsson describes her life with the journalist-cum-novelist, their close collaboration, and the feud with his family that erupted after he died without leaving a will.

"I've got my apartment back after three years, Stieg's half of it," said the soft-spoken architect during a half-hour at a Left Bank boutique hotel where parakeets chirped in a cage beside her.

"They finally signed those papers in August 2007. I got my money back; we had joint bank accounts and I got that back...but all I asked for was the right to manage the literary estate."

She does not want full ownership of the estate, she said, but just the power to oversee what happens to the Millennium franchise as publishers and film producers explores way to milk it for maximum profit.

One of their arguments for not letting her administer the rights, she said, was that doing so would put her in conflict with the rights now held by Yellow Bird, producers of the Swedish-language film versions of the books.

Those rights include the right to develop characters, "so that means they would serialise their own productions, write their own manuscripts for 15 to 18 films, which they are known to do -- they've done it with another Swedish crime writer."

Gabrielsson had not spoken with the family since August 2005 when, during a visit to the Larsson home in Umeå, northern Sweden, his brother Joakim proposed a novel solution: that she marry her late partner's father Erland.

The idea left her "petrified," she writes in the memoirs.

Story continues below…

Last week the feud went online when Joakim Larsson attacked Gabrielsson's memoirs as "so many falsehoods and misleading statements... We have not contributed to a 'Stieg Larsson industry' aside from books and films, which was Stieg's own wish."

Of the much-rumoured fourth volume, Gabrielsson -- who is ready to finish it if the Larsson family lets her administer the literary estate -- told AFP that it opens somewhere in Canada, with Lisbeth still the central character.

"There is no book as such. There is the beginning of a book. People don't seem to understand that it's a fragment. It's something between a sketchbook and a manuscript," she said.

It exists in a computer -- exactly where that computer is, Gabrielsson would not say -- with no known print-out, amounting to about 200 pages in total, "but the family was never interested in letting me finish it."

AFP/The Local (news@thelocal.se)

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Your comments about this article

17:08 January 31, 2011 by Zala Russe
There needs to be some clarification on these issues. If, as indicated, the 'continuation rights' have been assigned to Yellow Bird, then it is not within the gift of the Larsson family, nor Eva Gabrielsson for that matter to direct outcomes except by re-negotiation of terms. The Larsson family will continue to benefit from the Trilogy. There is nothing to stop Eva producing the 'fourth novel' and publishing through arrangement with Yellow Bird. On the basis of sales performance of the Trilogy, Eva could be looking at a return of 100 Million SEK, or more. Of course it is in the interests of publishers and film producers to maximise profit, that is what they are there for. It would not, however, inhibit the ability of the authorship parties to dispose and distribute their share as they wished. The plot thickens!

20:18 January 31, 2011 by BobWas
I am so tired of this woman.

I started off in her corner but as I learned a little about Swedish inheritance law and listened to her playing the sympathy card over and over and bashing the Larsson family over and over, I changed my mind about her.

Eva wants the publishing rights even though Stieg did not leave them to her -- and she is going to do whatever she can to get them, including villifying Stieg's family. If she talked about me in the press the way she is talking about the Larssons, I would have already filed slander and libel suits against her. And if I were an heir to the estate, I would also have sued her for the return of the fourth book.

Look at how she describes the fourth book. She calls it a "fragment." Stieg in his last email to his brother called it "almost finished." Big difference.

Eva is playing us, people.
21:28 January 31, 2011 by Zala Russe
I'm with you BobWas

My sympathy for Eva is being sorely tested.

Eva says

"There is no book as such. There is the beginning of a book. People don't seem to understand that it's a fragment. It's something between a sketchbook and a manuscript," she said.

Well yeh, thats exactly what I have. It isn't hidden on a computer, I'm reelin out bits on here for free. The World spins on its axis and moves on. I believe I am faithful to the spirit of Stieg nonethless.

Sure, maybe he wouldn't approve that I want a Lisbeth coffee mug and pen, f**k-you t-shirt, and boots etc. But if that earned mega-bucks for his dedicated causes I don't think he would disagree.

I don't want ANY money. Seriously. Get THAT through your heads. If I rip you off for millions it is only incidental.

We haven't had opinion yet from Therese Larsson, the proto-type for Lisbeth Salander?

Ima tired of this in-fighting. There are ppl outthere 40 Million of us called 'fans'.

Do we count for nothing?

I think I have a damn good idea for a Larsson novel. I don't even claim to write 'like Larsson', I write LIKE ME.

Maybe I am delusional? I am the spirit of Salander.

Yellow Bird, if you are interested, get in touch.
07:03 February 1, 2011 by duogrn
>There are ppl outthere 40 Million of us called 'fans'.

>Do we count for nothing?

Sorry I am afraid so.

>I think I have a damn good idea for a Larsson novel. I don't even claim to write >'like Larsson', I write LIKE ME.

It's a fiction to us, ie something replaceable.

It's the brainchild of Larsson, and so is it literally to Gabrielsson.
08:36 February 1, 2011 by Taxlady
Stig and Eva aside all of this hype; is one reason to get married if you live here. If not married,property rights after death of a loved one are up for grabs.If there were no living relatives left like the brother and father who would all of the proceeds have gone to? The state? Because in another case I know of that's what happened.
17:00 February 1, 2011 by BobWas
Taxlady, you're right. If there are no heirs, property goes to the state when you die. That happens in every country with inheritance laws.
18:48 February 1, 2011 by Juan Harry Bush
She Should have signed a contractual agreement or Married the Man.

Now She's SOL.

No Sympathy.
00:11 February 2, 2011 by prosecute1966
So, Stieg and Eva, two intelligent professionals, live together as partners for 30 years but never do any estate planning? They never decided that if they don't want to marry each other, that they should at least take a stab at writing something down on paper that reflects their desires for the distribution of their stuff upon death? That's absurd. And it's sad because perhaps Stieg really did want his intellectual legacy to be owned and controlled by Eva, but nobody will ever know because they failed to attend to a very adult responsibility--planning for your loved ones after death. I feel bad for all parties concerned because all of this could have so easily been avoided. This is an object lesson for all live-in paramours--make a will and give a copy to a lawyer to review. Don't be stupid.
15:28 February 4, 2011 by cblanquer
Fru Gabrielsson stated recently on a max audience program on Saturdays night, that it was a full book. Now she changes her words.

She also stated that she would break the law regarding this case, as she considers it is unfair.

I am "tolking" that she pretends to get popular in order to make money with her own articles, interviews and a book. I can only see the "Kr" signs on her eyes.

Now accusing of misogyny those who do not agree with her, even for breaking the law, seems to confirm she will keep playing the dirtiest possible. A new kind of Salander. But tattoos are missing.
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