Hollywood is a strange, ugly place. For decades, the business has been the controversial center of petty squabbles, shady accounting practices, and abuse of those creating the content, and that’s something that hasn’t really changed. This is especially true in the case of animation, an industry that rests on the backs of hardworking animators and writers who get very little apart from the pure joy of seeing their work come to life.
The latest complaint regarding this comes from Terry Rossio, co-writer of such films as Pirates of the Caribbean and, of course, the original 1992 animated film, Aladdin. As is the case with many Disney animated films, Aladdin is getting a live-action remake, with much of the tone and style being retained from its counterpart. Sadly, despite these similarities, it looks like Rossio is getting little in terms of credit, compensation, or even involvement for the work that heavily inspired this remake.
The scribe recently took to Twitter to complain about the recently-released trailer:
“So strange that literally the only words spoken in the new Aladdin trailer happens to be a rhyme that my writing partner and I wrote, and Disney offers zero compensation to us (or to any screenwriters on any of these live-action re-makes) not even a t-shirt or a pass to the park.
“I must hasten to add that screenwriters can’t complain too loudly in the animation field. The original storyboard artists, head of story, character designers and animators did not get even as good a deal as the writers, despite being the heart and soul of the process.”
Sadly, as mentioned above, Rossio isn’t the only victim of this. Hollywood is quite the evil beast that will chew you up and spit you out once they have exactly what they want from you. Cartoon Brew notes that because of the Animation Guild being unable to negotiate benefits comparable to that of the Writer’s Guild of America, these are situations many have to deal with, though Rossio is quick to conclude that it’s less about money and more about recognition.
“[W]hen the work is re-made into a (potential) billion dollar film, why not give the original writers (and storyboard artists) some small participation. It’s not about compensation, it’s decorum. Consult with the writers, pay a fee, give park tickets. Zero involvement and zero recognition seems gauche…It’s more a lack of recognition … a remake payment, a chance to view the film, inclusion onto the team, a pass to the park — one cannot presume generosity, but lacking anything at all seems gauche.”
What do you think? Does Rossio seem just a bit entitled to you, or given the hundreds of millions Disney look to make, is a T-shirt or park pass the least Disney could do? Let us know down below!