Executors for the Scottish writer's estate are suing producers at Miramax, Roadside Attractions and director Bill Condon for adapting the film from the book A Slight Trick of the Mind, which allegedly breached copyright by appropriating elements from one of Doyle's Sherlock Holmes stories.

Doyle's heirs own the rights to the fictional detective's days in retirement and believe both the novel and the movie have used protected material.

Attorney Benjamin Allison tells TheWrap.com, "There's clearly a lot of creativity in the book - and we imagine the movie - beyond Arthur Conan Doyle's protected material... We admire both the book and the movie - and we have told the defendants that - but much of the setting, plot and especially the character and emotional makeup of Sherlock Holmes as an older man come straight from copyrighted stories.

"Those stories are among the most original and creative works of modern fiction, and they should not be ripped off just because older Conan Doyle stories are in the public domain."

Doyle's heirs are seeking an injunction to block the movie's release, a recognition of the novel and movie's source material and a share of the profits from both.

Mr. Holmes is currently due for release on 19 June (15) in the U.K. and July (15) in the U.S.