Last year James Gunn sold his pitch, Pets, to Fox. In his movie, a man is abducted by aliens who want to make him a pet. This morning Disney announced a deal with The Simpsons Movie director David Silver to helm The Pet, a movie about a man is abducted by aliens who want to make him a pet. And we’re back in the time-honored Hollywood tradition of competing picture concepts.

The chronology of this one’s a bit hazy, especially because The Pet was bought by Scott Rudin way back in June. Making it all hazier is the fact that screenwriter Matt Lieberman has worked on projects with Ben Stiller’s Red Hour production shingle… the people producing Pets. So is this a case of people coming up with an idea (which is not exactly the most groundbreaking idea in history) at the same time, or was there pitch pollination?

Both films are, according to IMDB, on track for 2009 releases, although I don’t know what the real status of Gunn’s movie is as he gets involved in an XBox Live TV show. If they do both get made, though, I wonder which one will be the Dante’s Peak?