NPR logo

Do You Want To Build A Lawsuit? China Totally Copied 'Frozen,' Kid Says

  • Download
  • <iframe src="https://www.npr.org/player/embed/429597099/429597100" width="100%" height="290" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" title="NPR embedded audio player">
  • Transcript
Do You Want To Build A Lawsuit? China Totally Copied 'Frozen,' Kid Says

Asia

Do You Want To Build A Lawsuit? China Totally Copied 'Frozen,' Kid Says

Do You Want To Build A Lawsuit? China Totally Copied 'Frozen,' Kid Says

  • Download
  • <iframe src="https://www.npr.org/player/embed/429597099/429597100" width="100%" height="290" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" title="NPR embedded audio player">
  • Transcript

A new anthem produced for the Beijing 2022 Winter Olympics is being attacked online as too similar to "Let It Go" from the film "Frozen." We asked a 5-year-old girl to assess the merits of the case.

DAVID GREENE, HOST:

It is possible that you have heard this song.

(SOUNDBITE OF SONG, "LET IT GO")

IDINA MENZEL: (As Elsa, singing) The snow glows white on the mountain tonight, not a footprint to be seen. A kingdom of isolation, and it looks like I'm the queen.

GREENE: This is "Let It Go" from the blockbuster Disney film "Frozen." Parents, you probably know this by heart already. And we are not trying to torture you here, but we are going to play another song that's awfully similar.

(SOUNDBITE OF SONG, "THE ICE AND SNOW DANCE")

SUN NAN AND TAN JING: (Singing in foreign language).

GREENE: This one is called "The Ice And Snow Dance," and no, it is not from a sequel to "Frozen." It is one of the anthems for Beijing's 2022 Winter Olympics. As you might imagine, the composer is getting a lot of flack in China for what many say is a blatant rip-off of Disney's megahit song.

(SOUNDBITE OF SONG, "THE ICE AND SNOW DANCE")

SUN NAN AND TAN JING: (Singing in foreign language).

GREENE: On the anthem's YouTube page, people have been venting their disgust with comments like shame and let it go. So how similar are these two songs really? We asked someone who knows a thing or two about "Frozen."

NOURA MCELWAIN: My name is Noura McElwain. I'm 5 years old.

GREENE: She is the daughter of Claudine Ebeid McElwain, one of our producers at MORNING EDITION. And Noura has listened to "Let It Go" hundreds of times, I think maybe even more. We played the Beijing Olympic anthem for her and asked what it sounded like.

(SOUNDBITE OF SONG, "THE ICE AND SNOW DANCE")

SUN NAN AND TAN JING: (Singing in foreign language).

NOURA: "Frozen."

GREENE: OK, that's just one girl's opinion. The question is whether Disney's lawyers will let it go.

(SOUNDBITE OF SONG, "THE ICE AND SNOW DANCE")

SUN NAN AND TAN JING: (Singing in foreign language).

Copyright © 2015 NPR. All rights reserved. Visit our website terms of use and permissions pages at www.npr.org for further information.

NPR transcripts are created on a rush deadline by Verb8tm, Inc., an NPR contractor, and produced using a proprietary transcription process developed with NPR. This text may not be in its final form and may be updated or revised in the future. Accuracy and availability may vary. The authoritative record of NPR’s programming is the audio record.