A Woman Is Suing Disney For Stealing Her Life Story For ‘Frozen’

Senior Writer
09.29.14 14 Comments

If you thought Mayim Bialik and her sons hated Frozen, prepare to feel the scorching hot wrath of Isabella Tanikumi. Also known as L. Amy Gonzalez, the author has filed a $250 million lawsuit against Disney over accusations that Frozen plagiarized as many as 18 ideas from her 2010 autobiography, “Living My Truth,” according to CNN. Disney’s legal team apparently isn’t taking Tanikumi’s claims very seriously, as a spokeswoman for the House of Mouse told CNN, “This is beyond ridiculous, she needs to let it go.” Get it? Because of the song “Let It Go”? I know, it’s a thinker.

But as easy as it is to pass this off as someone’s ambitious-yet-questionable attempt to make a cash grab over a list of loose coincidences, Tanikumi’s claims deserve to at least be considered so we can all rush to judgment on her or Disney’s behalf. After all, public opinion is way more important than whatever happens in a boring, old court of law.

According to the court documents, the “Plagiarism Summary” includes the following accusations of theft:

1. The Village

Isabella: Story begins in her village that is a town at the base of snow covered mountains (in the story and in the cover obverse illustration). She lives with her parents and sister Laura;
Frozen: Village at the foot of the snow covered mountains where Elsa and Anna live. With their parents.

2. The Two Sisters

Isabella: Two sisters are two years apart with opposite hair colors; the two sisters have horses;
Frozen: Two sisters are close in age and have opposite colored hair (brown and blonde); the two sisters have horses

3. Intense Sisterly Love

Isabella: Isabella shows deep love for her sister and vice versa;
Frozen: Elsa and Ana [sic] show deep love for each other

4. Older Sister accidentally Hurts Younger Sister

Isabella: Laura and Isabella are playing and Isabella was severely injured (fell in hot custard) with damage to the face;
Frozen: Elsa was playing with Ana [sic] and accidentally hurts her head.

5. Younger Sister Loses Memory Of what Happened

Isabella: Isabella has no memory of accident;
Frozen: Ana has no memory of the accident.

6. Both Sisters Experience personal Tragedy

Isabella: The sisters are involved in a very tragic accident (earthquake that affected an entire city) resulting in isolation for the two, and emotional bonding- friend died in the tragedy and they only have each other;
Frozen: The sisters are involved in a very tragic accident (storm cause parent’s boat to capsize) and they only had each other- isolation and emotional bonding.

7. Younger Sister Falls in Love

Isabella: Isabella describes a dark haired tall and fair man as her first love.
Frozen: Ana falls in love with a dark haired tall and fair man.

8. Two Male Characters

Isabella: Hans and Cristoff are two male characters who have romantic interests in Isabella;
Frozen: Hans and Kristoff are two male characters who have romantic interests in Ana.

9. Kristoff and Strange Characters

Isabella: Cristoff and Isabella meet with Diego who told of “his friends” who had healing powers.
Frozen: Kristoff tells Ana of “his friends” who had healing powers who will heal Ana.

10. Betrayal

Isabella: Isabella’s first love played with her affections and did not return her love.
Frozen: Ana’s first love played with her affections and did not return her love.

11. Recuse Sister

Isabella: Because of Isabella’s childhood accident, Isabella led a life of recluse and did not want to meet anyone because of her embarrassment and fears of her facial injuries. Defense mechanism is developed to prevent others from finding out about the defect.
Frozen: Because of Ana’s childhood accident, Elsa led a life of recluse and did not want to meet anyone because of her embarrassment and fears because of her hands. Defense mechanism is developed to prevent others from finding out about the defect.

12. Concealment

Isabella: Isabella had to cover up her facial injuries with concealing creams to be in public. Isabella is obsessive about concealing. Isabella has terrible fears- afraid to go out.
Frozen: Elsa had to cover up her hands with concealing gloves to be in public. Elsa is obsessive about concealing (conceal it; don’t feel it). Elsa has terrible fears- afraid to go out.

13. Moon Setting

Isabella: Isabella writes about her love under the shadows of the moon;
Frozen: Ana goes for a walk with her romantic suitor under the moonlight.

14. Defect Exposed

Isabella: Isabella had incident where her defect was exposed and children are frightened. Isabella runs away when her defect is discovered.
Frozen: Elsa had incident where her defect was exposed and children are frightened. Elsa runs away when her defect is discovered.

15. Hands to the Sky with Sprinkles

Isabella: Image of Isabella with hand to sky with sprinkles (book cover);
Frozen: Image of Elsa with hand to sky with sprinkles (DVD cover).

16. Open Door/Gates

Isabella: Isabella describes, in last chapter, closed doors that have potential to reopen. Winding maze to the top of the pyramid to a large door; later the doors are open and the future is happy (ending). Isabella describes, in the last scene, closed gates that have the potential to reopen; later the doors are open and the future is happy.
Frozen: Elsa opened the gate and the future is a happy ending.

17. Sister Dies

Isabella: Isabella’s beloved sister Laura, dies in a severe accident and devastates Isabella.
Frozen: Elsa’s beloved sister Ana, dies in a severe incident while trying to defend her sister and devastates Elsa (she does come back to life).

18. Isabella Talks about Frozen

Isabella goes on facebook and writes: Frio, Frio, Frozen? Regarding the song Frio, Frio about how is your heart.

Okay, so that 8th point about the male characters seems pretty serious, what with them being the same and all. But while I’m not big city slicker lawyer type with white hair and suspenders, it cracks me up that people would think that someone would be so arrogant and/or stupid enough to outright steal something and only change a letter. Sure, Disney is a massive steamroller that can do whatever it pleases, but would Jennifer Lee have been careless enough to lift everything from the story to the character names? I guess it’ll be up to the court to decide if coincidences are real or just fairy tales.

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