This news came at an opportune moment: life literally all over the world continues to change in full accord with the novels of George Orwell. Writer Natasha Kiselyova announced this in her blog:
“After all, life is the coolest screenwriter.
Effective January 1, 2021, all of George Orwell's works published during his lifetime went into the public domain. So we are waiting for a wave of new editions of his books and film adaptations.
In the UK, copyrights remain for 70 years after the death of the author. Orwell died in January 1950 at the age of 46, which means that our beloved 2020 was the last year that copyright for his works was protected by law. And now anyone can publish them, stage performances, musicals, operas, ballets, make films and TV shows, make computer games, and anything else. When, if not now. For several years now, Animal Farm and 1984 have become synonyms of our time.
Well, and a quick fun fact, in the early 70s David Bowie wanted to stage a musical based on Orwell, but the writer's widow would not allow it.
And one more moment. All this only applies to books published in the UK. In the United States, Houghton Mifflin owns the exclusive rights to publish Orwell's novels, while the rest will have to wait until the 95-year copyright in this country expires. That is, the very first novel of the writer, Days in Burma, published in America in 1934, will only go into the public domain in 2030.
So, for example, and this is awesome, since January 1, 2021, Francis Scott Fitzgerald's cult novel The Great Gatsby went into the public domain, it was released in 1925 in the USA, 95 years ago..."