Yes, Disney Is Actually Attempting to Trademark "Dia de los Muertos"
Update: Since the publication of this post, Disney has canceled its applications for trademarks on Dia de los Muertos.
In 10 applications filed May 1 through the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office, Disney Enterprises Inc. is attempting to trademark the phrase "Dia de los Muertos."
If successful, the corporation would be able to go after individual companies who attempt to use "Dia de los Muertos" for profit in the areas of education and entertainment, goods and services, apparel, toys, and food items.
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But unless the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office is ready to give up the trademark on similar religious and popular worldwide holidays, including Christmas, Easter, Hanukkah, Yom Kippur, Kwanzaa, and Ramadan, you needn't hold your breath.
One of 10 applications Disney has filed for a trademark on "Dia de los Muertos" . . . click here for a full-size version.
At CinemaCon on April 24, 2012, Disney/Pixar announced that director Lee Unkrich, producer Darla K. Anderson, and the team behind Toy Story 3 would be working on "The Untitled Pixar Movie About Dia de los Muertos" (working title) that, according to Disney is a "wholly original Pixar Animation Studios film that delves into the vibrant holiday of Día de los Muertos."
A trademark would allow Disney to hawk Dia de los Muertos merch and toys promoting the film -- and would also enable to company to sue anyone who also used the phrase/holiday name on their product for profit.