I wrote to The Walt Disney Company about my documentary, Invisible Chess: The Jason Goudlock Story, because I thought it would appeal to ABC News and ESPN, both owned by Disney. But, I guess, “doing the right thing” only matters to filmmakers like Spike Lee.
This was their response:
Dear Mr. Goudlock:
This will acknowledge, with thanks, your letter to The Walt Disney Company seeking out out interest in a documentary about the Ohio criminal justice system and your life story. Your correspondence was forwarded to the Disney Legal Department as it is our responsibility to respond to such submissions and inquiries on behalf of the Disney organization.
Please know that we sympathize with the circumstances of your position and we appreciate your interest in writing to us. As to the kind offer of your story and offer, I must explain that our company’s long-established policy does not allow us to accept for review or consideration any ideas, suggestions or creative materials not specifically solicited by us or our subsidiaries. It is our intention to avoid misunderstandings when projects are created internally which might be similar to submissions made to us from outside the company.
We recognize that this policy is sometimes a disappointing one as when someone like yourself, a creative individual, with all the best intentions, would simply like us to consider your own creative idea and offer. Experience has taught us, though, that if we abandon our policy for one person, we will have to make exceptions for others and soon we will have no policy at all. Therefore, as required, I must return your letter and accompanying documents, unexamined, and without retaining any copies. We hope you will understand that this is not meant to be a reflection on the merit of your offer and idea. Rather, this is how we are required to respond to all unsolicited submissions.
Although our reply must necessarily be one other than what you might have hoped for, we do appreciate your interest in writing to us.
Very truly yours,
The Legal Department
The Walt Disney Company
Download a copy of the letter from The Walt Disney Company here: