Who Murdered Fonzie?

Interesting news of a publishing deal today, via Publisher’s Marketplace:

James Boice, author of MVP has sold a comedic noir entitled Who Killed the Fonz? that “picks up the story of HAPPY DAYS two decades later, in the year 1984, and finds successful Los Angeles screenwriter Richie Cunningham returning to Milwaukee to investigate the suspicious death of his old pal Arthur Fonzarelli.” Simon & Schuster will publish the book.

I’m intrigued by this deal on a number of different levels. What permissions are needed (if any) to use television show characters? Of course, there is a long tradition of fan fiction, but that usually exists online or in smaller places. In this instance, Simon & Schuster is the publisher. We went through the whole Jane Austen and zombies and vampires and martian phase, but those were super old works that have passed into the public domain.

The book seems like it’ll be a real hoot.

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