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Disney sued over "Frozen"

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Senior Member
What is the name of your state (only U.S. law)? New Jersey

In the US District Court for the District of New Jersey, a suit against The Walt Disney Company et al was filed by author Isabelle Tanikumi (aka L. Amy Gonzalez) for copyright infringement, fraud and plagiarism. Tanikumi is asking for $250 million in damages.

Isabella Tanikumi A/K/A L. Amy Gonzalez v The Walt Disney Company, Disney Enterprises Inc, Disney Worldwide Services Inc and ABC Corp 1-10 (fictitious name), Case 2:14-cv-05877-WJM-MF, September 22, 2014.

The claims Tanikumi makes are that the film "Frozen" borrowed heavily from her copyrighted books "Living My Truth" and "Yearnings of the Heart."
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Senior Member
And this is news? Most of disney's movies are adaptations of somebody else's stories.
Yes, but usually they're either in the public domain or they have permission.

Disney's assertion is the movie is an adaptation of the public domain Hans Christian Anderson story "The Snow Queen."

Frankly, I've not read the book (and am unlikely because I seriously believe this to be a publicity troll more than anything else) nor the movie, it would seem from reading other's depictions that Ms. Gonzalez/Tanikumi doesn't have much of a case. Just because her life parallels a fairy tale, doesn't make the dramatization of the story tale plagiarism.


Senior Member
And this is news? Most of disney's movies are adaptations of somebody else's stories.
True. In fact, Disney has already stated that "Frozen" is based on someone else's story.

Disney's claims "Frozen" is based not on Tanikumi's book but on the Hans Christian Anderson tale, "The Snow Queen" (which, since it was published in 1844, is nicely in the public domain).

The news is, I suppose, that Tanikumi has apparently NOT read the news over the years to learn that suing Disney is a bit of a futile (and costly) task. And additional news could be that there are apparently no creative writers out there (all starting their articles or headlines with "Let It Go"). :)

I still cannot seem to get a direct link to the case to work for some reason, so here is a link to an IP Law Blog commentary on the case, written by Josh H. Escovedo. A link is provided to the court filing:

edit to add: I guess I was working on my post when FlyingRon posted. I agree that it does not appear Tanikumi has much of a case.

And I am amazed that anyone has escaped seeing the movie. I have seen it at least 12 times now (if you have little kids, several viewings are mandatory).
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Senior Member
I haven't watched yet but I suspect I will be soon. My granddaughter is going as Elsa for Halloween and it is a favorite movie. Since we watch them so often it's only a matter of time before it shows up on my tv.

It seems like Disney was sued not all that long ago for a similar claim. I'll have to look for it.


Senior Member
... It seems like Disney was sued not all that long ago for a similar claim. I'll have to look for it.
Earlier this year, the creator of an animated short called "The Snowman" sued Disney, claiming Disney's trailer "Frozen" infringes on the copyrights in the short film.

The case: "Kelly Warner v The Walt Disney Company."

A link with a PDF available for download of the full decision:
http://www.lexology.com/library/detail.aspx?g=17c36b61-4151-491e-827b-635bb921da41 or, if this link doesn't work (I have not been having much success with links on this site today), you can try this Hollywood Reporter link with case access: http://www.hollywoodreporter.com/thr-esq/lawsuit-disneys-frozen-trailer-heats-722519.
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