Disney Withdraws Its Misguided 'Dia De Los Muertos' Trademark Filing

Dia De Los Muertos/Photo: <a href=Tomas Castelazo" />
Dia De Los Muertos/Photo: Tomas Castelazo

I concede that it's only a matter of time before Disney owns everything -- but an entire holiday? Disney just announced that it will change the name of its upcoming Dia de los Muertes-themed animated film, in response to uproar that occurred when it attempted to file trademarks on the actual name "Dia de los Muertos," potentially controlling its use on everything from clothing to snacks and toys. Maybe they should try this trick on a much less beloved holiday first, like Columbus Day. I can't imagine there are many people left who'd come out swinging for that one.

The Telegraph is reporting that Maggie Smith "watched with unease" as her son Toby Stephens was beheaded onstage during a production of Danton's Death. Apparently their guillotine special effects are shockingly convincing, but ... please. I'm sure the scene wasn't pleasant to watch, but I'm sure that someone as seasoned as Dame Smith has nothing to fear from a prop guillotine. This woman was performing Shakespearian tragedies before many of our parents were born.

Before you donate to the next Hollywood type that comes begging, the Toronto Standard has a message for you: "Stop Giving Your Money to Rich People on Kickstarter." You see, when we poor losers give Zach Braff $2.3 million to make his next movie, we're really just helping an already wealthy man avoid taking any personal financial risks. Why should he expect that? It's even worse in the case of the crowd-funded "Veronica Mars" movie, in which we've absorbed that risk for an entire studio (Warner Bros.) who could have afforded this all along. Save your money for the true underdogs and let the fat-cats grub for bucks the good old-fashioned way!

I'm not saying John Cusack is too good for "Hot Tub Time Machine 2," but can you blame him for passing on the sequel? Early chatter has tagged Adam Scott as his potential replacement, but I think that's a mistake. Clearly they should gender-swap the role and go with Joan Cusack instead. In a movie like this, you wouldn't even really need to explain it! Just wind her up ("Toys," anyone?) and let her go.