Knut Court Exercise

EuroSavant belatedly caught up with the Knut-the-polar-bear story last December here. I observed then that Knut’s life seemed to be careening along the path usually only followed by Hollywood child film stars (e.g. family tragedies; cover shoots; problems with excessive weight).

Sure enough, as the Berlin newspaper Der Tagesspiegel reports today, the struggle over the Knut-millions is now occupying the courts. Those millions are of course the millions of euros that the (at one time) cute little abandoned polar bear earned for the Berlin Zoo, through the flood of visitors he inspired, souvenir sales, those above-mentioned photo-shoots, and the like. The point of the news-piece is that the Newmünster Zoo (up in northern Germany, which owns Knut’s father and therefore claims an ownership interest in Knut) has now run out of patience with attempts to come up with some agreement with the Berlin Zoo to split up this Knut-money – they’re heading off to the federal court (Landgericht) in Berlin to settle this, as of tomorrow. And step one is to demand that the Berlin Zoo make an accurate accounting of just how much they have earned off of the erstwhile polar bear baby. That amount is alleged to be around €6 million.

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