“Once Upon A Time…When I was a little girl I wanted to be Cinderella. But I had a wicked mother, two brothers and a sister who said I was foolish, and dashed all my hopes and dreams…“
Ha, actually, that’s not really true. I just wanted to start my blog with a fairytale. The part about being Cinderella was fact though. Here’s the thing, I couldn’t be just any Cinderella, and there were a few to choose from.
Leslie Warren was Cinderella in the Rogers and Hammerstein musical version, and she sang and danced and looked sheepishly in the eyes of the handsome prince, who also sang and danced.
Roger and Hammerstein’s Cinderella
But, she wasn’t quite the one I wanted to be like.There was the Grimm’s fairytale of Cinderella, which had her going to more than one party and wearing several different types of shoes. ‘Lame,’ is what I thought about that version.
NO. The version of Cinderella I had to be was THE one and only Disney’s “Cinderella.”
I sang the song, “A dream is a wish your heart makes…,” so many times my mother threatened to tape my mouth shut. (Hmm, maybe she was wicked after all). I just loved the movie, and I was led to believe this version of “Cinderella” was the real deal, maybe by my wicked mother, that it was the one and only and all the others were weak copies.
I’ve grown and am now a student of EMAC, I have come to the realization that Disney has cornered the market on Intellectual Property through copyright. In our reading for this week, Braithwaite and Drahos state in their book “Information Feudalism”(2002), that the threat to the motion picture and publishing industries was not so much to protect the entire industry as to individual players who did not want to lose their position of dominance (Braithwaite & Drahos, 2002).
I understand copyright. I’m a writer and don’t want anyone else stealing my words, but hold on—didn’t Disney borrow/steal from someone to make their version of “Cinderella?” It seems rather narrow for them to think they can cry copyright infringements on a story that has been around for hundreds of years. I mean Grimm’s Cinderella came out circa 1812, which was 89 years before Walt Disney was even born. Had the Brother’s Grimm claimed copyright protection I wonder how successful Disney would be today?
On Disney’s website they have a folder that stipulates their copyright rules, entitled Disney Anti-Piracy, and the rules are very clear.
I recently watched a movie on YouTube called, “Twisted.”
(Warning: This video includes adult language and situations. Also, if you go about 15:00 mins. into the video, they sing a song and even mention Intellectual Property!)
It’s a spoof or parody by TeamStarKid on the Disney characters made popular in “Aladdin.” Need I remind anyone the story of Aladdin has been around for centuries. The video has been on YouTube for some time. So I wondered why this particular show seemed to go unnoticed by Disney. Why hadn’t some Disney power-that-be pulled the plug? I discovered there is something called the Parody Law which says it’s okay to imitate a character from an original work. What? I won’t go into all the details, but Fair Use gives someone permission to parody Disney’s characters. So it’s okay to make fun of Disney, just don’t use any of their characters as your own.
Back to “Once Upon a Time…”
Actually not mine–but Disney’s, and their new drama on ABC television. It looks as though Disney can go ahead and change up the life and times of their own characters. For example Hook is a good guy, Peter Pan is evil, and “new” characters with whom we’ve known since childhood, i.e. Rumplestiltskin (also a Grimm story), are now a part of Disney’s fables.
So it’s all right for Disney to change-up their characters. That’s cool, kudos to Disney, but shouldn’t we all get that kind of creative license? After all, isn’t pretty much everything remediated now-a-days? I’m just sayin’.