So what happened? Well…those Ears, that’s what happened. According to THR, Deadmaus, unbeknownst to me, had been approached several times by Disney to create shit. Who knew??? Imagine a remixed Star Wars theme for the Disney XD show Star Wars:Rebels? Yep, he was approached. They also wanted to use his track “Ghost and Stuff” for a new Star Wars video game, but all that went pear shaped when the topic of the ears came up.
Disney doesn’t want any Mickey Mouse fans to be confused about the source of Deadmau5’s goods and services, especially when the musician is attempting to register his mark for everything from toys and backpacks to mayonnaise and walking sticks.
Last month, Disney got aggressive with a 171-page filing at the Trademark Office, which caused Deadmau5 to put out a slightly-offbeat tweet how Disney thought its customers stupid (though, as we pointed out then, trademark registrations inherently assume some consumer gullibility.)
Turf-battling at the Trademark Office isn’t usually this exciting, but according to Deadmau5, the situation has become so heated that after Disney’s ABC division reached out to the artist last month to appear on Kimmel’s Halloween show, the “subject went pretty far up the chain,” whereupon the offer was rescinded with someone at Disney/ABC stating, “We have to stay away from [Deadmau5] until the matter is resolved.”
Disney hasn’t yet responded to a request for comment.
So okay, enough of that, let’s talk about Fantasia.
According to Deadmau5’s papers, Disney worked through a concert promotion company to approach him in October 2013 about “re-imagining” Fantasia for the film’s 75th anniversary, presumably next year. The musician includes as one of his exhibits (see below) a mock-up depicting Deadmau5 as the sorcerer’s apprentice instead of Mickey Mouse.
“The pitch involved deadmau5 creating and performing new original music at live Fantasia concerts at major venues around the world, including the Hollywood Bowl,” says Deadmau5’s answer. “The rationale given for selecting deadmau5 for this opportunity was that: ‘Deadmau5 is the most innovative musician of our time, and Disney the most successful entertainment brand to ever exist. Bringing these two visionaries together, with this particular franchise, provides an incredible opportunity that could touch millions of people around the world.’”
Deadmau5 sees Disney’s willingness to co-exist with him throughout the years as a point in his favor in the ongoing trademark battle, especially when the musician has been prominently lugging the “mau5head” nearly everywhere he goes. The goodwill between the parties, though, appears to have limits.
So that’s it. It seems to me that Disney is still open to the idea of working with him, but they’ve gotta get all their ducks in a row before they proceed. We all know how strong-willed Deadmau5 can be, but if this indeed works itself out don’t be surprised if this collaboration happens. It would be marketing gold and I don’t think either party is willing to look pass that much money.