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Writer Claims "Hannah" Is His Baby!

1/28/2009 9:40 PM PST BY TMZ STAFF

Hannah MontanaA dude claims he's the inspiration and more for "Hannah Montana" and wants Disney to give him due credit -- as in a lot of money.

Richard Fronduto filed a lawsuit today in L.A. County Superior Court, claiming he wrote a script in 1990 called "The Secret Life of Sindi" which eventually became "The Family Business."

Fronduto claims his agent pitched his work to Disney and that Disney liked it so much they asked him to turn his script into a two-hour pilot. In short, he claims he's the brainchild for what became "Hannah Montana."

Fronduto claims numerous similarities between his script and "Montana." Both feature a 13-to-14-year-old middle class American girl who leads a double life as an ordinary teen and successful pop star. Both feature a single parent who acts as her alter ego's manager. And both have a best friend "with whom she shares her secrets." Doesn't that sound like half the Disney shows? We're just sayin' ...

Fronduto is suing for damages as well as a "Created by" credit on all future publications and broadcasts of "Hannah Montana."


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The makers of Jem are the ones that should be suing because they created the idea like 25 years ago.

2092 days ago


just another dude wanting money!!!!
but hey in these tough tines who wouldnt do anything for a buck!!!!!

2092 days ago

Just my opinion    

get a job

2092 days ago


Man he is going to win everyone knows that Walt-Disney steals all of their ideas and stories from the start of the company. They are bigger thieves than Jimmy Page and Eric Clapton but together

2092 days ago

Richard Ott    

Richard Frunduto, unaware Hannah Montana may be ending on Disney Channel, SAY WHAT?

2092 days ago


I dont know. if what he is saying is true. disney is guilty period. i bet he wins.

2092 days ago

Fan Since 2007!!!    

You beat me to it, rick.

Years and years ago I SPECIFICALLY remember reading an article that Disney was in talks to buy the rights to the Japanese cartoon "Kimba the White Lion". By thre time "The Lion King" came out every animator and producer denied ever having heard of it. Sh'Yeah...Right...

2092 days ago

Howard Robard Hughes IIV    

Money is one thing credits are a different game all togather.If you don`t follow the rules you`ll never get into the game.MUSE told you so,,,,

2092 days ago


She should get a DNA test than right TMZ?

2092 days ago


Well, I wrote the Bible.

2092 days ago


who da hell likes hannah anymore?! Disney might steal ideas, but they're the ones that madeit happen. Doesn't that count for anything? (p.s- a relative of mine works for disney)

2092 days ago


Okay, he's just NOW suing, WHY? If he was that bothered over this, why wouldn't he have sued earlier, like, when the show STARTED

2091 days ago


James, Jem creator Christy Marx posted online a while ago that Disney called her to testify in a lawsuit against them about Hannah Montana. Disney wanted to prove that the concept had already been used so many times that it wasn't original. But it was like saying "hey, we ripped off Jem and here's Jem's creator proving it."

2091 days ago


Didn't other guy file a similar lawsuit a while back claiming basically the same thing. Except, I believe that guy said he pitched his idea in the earlier part of this decade. Whatever, he's going to lose anyways. Disney always wins. Always.

2091 days ago

Lord Xenu    

Jem cartoon was nothing like Hanna Montana.

"Jem is an American animated television series that ran from 1985 to 1988 in U.S. first-run syndication. The show is about music company owner Jerrica Benton, her singer alter-ego, Jem, her band the Holograms, and their adventures."

Jem character was an adult and a music company owner, not a teenager of a middle class family. People having alter egos goes back decades, Superman is a good example, so thats nothing new. Does this guy have a case? Maybe, if he can prove what he says about his dealing with Disney. Jem could have served as an inspiration for the guys idea, but the similarity between Hanna Montana and his script is almost identical. Had he just told Disney about the idea and never heard from them again its unlikely he would have a case, but since Disney asked him for a pilot script, he just might. At the very least they may settle out of court just to avoid the possibility of him winning.

2091 days ago
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