Screenwriter Gary Goldman has filed a federal lawsuit against Disney for allegedly stealing the ideas that led them to create "Zootopia".
According to the suit, "Although The Walt Disney Company rigorously enforces its copyrights, it has developed a culture that not only accepts the unauthorized copying of others' original material, but encourages it. Instead of lawfully acquiring Goldman's work, Defendants said they were not interested in producing it and sent him on his way. Thereafter, consistent with their culture of unauthorized copying, Defendants copied Goldman's work."
Goldman alleges that he registered a treatment for "Looney", which was to be the first installment of a "Zootopia" franchise, with the Writers Guild of America, West, in August 2000. He said that the film was centered around a cartoon animal world that would mirror our human society, complete with class levels. He also said that the themes and characters for both films are extremely similar.
A spokesman for Disney responded, saying, "Mr. Goldman's lawsuit is riddled with patently false allegations. It is an unprincipled attempt to lay claim to a successful film he didn't create, and we will vigorously defend against it in court."