Writer Accuses Disney Of Stealing 'Zootopia' Pitch

Writer Accuses Disney Of Stealing 'Zootopia' Pitch
Gary Goldman said the plot and characters in "Zootopia" were nearly identical to a pitch he had made years before.

"Zootopia" was a critical and commercial smash hit, winning the Oscar for best animated feature — but not everyone is happy about its success.

Screenwriter and producer Gary Goldman filed a lawsuit accusing Disney of stealing his idea for the animated animal flick after he pitched Disney executives on his script in 2000 and 2009.

He claimed the film's protagonists, Officer Judy Hopps and Nick the fox, were almost exactly the same as his characters — just different animals. 

The complaint also claims the plot of "Zootopia" was practically identical to the one in Goldman's script. Goldman said he even called it "Zootopia."

But Disney says that's a bunch of bull. 

A Disney spokesman said, "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."

If Goldman wins his suit, he could be entitled to a big payday. "Zootopia" made more than $1 billion worldwide.