Thoughts on Disney’s New Princess

November 6, 2009 at 11:01 pm 4 comments

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When they’re little, most little girls and boys discover the magic that is a Disney movie. I know my little sister and I did. And inevitably, there would come a day when a group of little girls would have a conversation that goes something along the lines of this:

“Well I want to be a mermaid, so I’m Ariel.”

“My hair is blonde, so I’m Cinderella.”

“NO FAIR, my hair is blonde too. I want to be Cinderella.”

“You can be Sleeping Beauty.” [Because as we all know, no one can remember her actual name, Aurora.]

“I’m wearing yellow, so I’m going to be Belle!”

At this point all the little girls would turn to the black child waiting quietly.

“Well, Jasmine kind of looks like you…you can be her.”

And so it was.

That’s probably the reason I love Princess Jasmine to this day; she was everything I thought a Disney Princess should be and she looked kind of like me unlike all the others.

But today’s little girls don’t have to “settle” for Jasmine. With Disney’s new film opening this December, the first African-American princess will debut: Princess Tiana.

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People (especially on the imdb movie boards) like to say that it doesn’t matter the race of the princess, but how would you feel growing up as a little girl and watching these movies with not one of these princesses looking like you?

What if your dream was to work at Disneyworld as one of the princesses? Do you REALLY think that would happen? They don’t flat out discriminate in the application process, but make it clear they are looking for “look-alikes”.

I’d like to think that this movie is a milestone for Disney, and before long maybe we’ll have a Latina princess and so on. So yay The Princess and the Frog and yay traditional, hand-drawn Disney animation!  The movie stills are GORGEOUS. Can’t wait to see it!

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Thoughts? Agree? Disagree?


Entry filed under: COM 530- Theory & Analysis, COM 540- Interactive Writing & Design. Tags: , , .

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4 Comments Add your own

  • 1. colleencallahan  |  November 7, 2009 at 10:34 am

    I definitely agree! It’s sad that it’s taken this long, but they’ve finally done it. The movie looks good too so that’s a plus.

  • 2. Nathan Acosta  |  November 9, 2009 at 9:06 am

    I can’t wait to see this! It sounds like a movie that’s been on the shelf for years — so long that Disney found novelty in its hand drawn format. It’s definitely time and I wonder how much Obama’s election influenced the Disney execs (anyone else remember hearing about this around inauguration weekend?)

    However, from what I understand, isn’t Princess Tiana a frog for most of the movie? 😦

    • 3. jqimedia  |  November 9, 2009 at 2:52 pm

      She is indeed a frog for most of the movie–apparently there’s some Internet controversy about that. Yes! Disney finally has a Black princess…oh, she’s a frog most of the movie…

      But you know what, I applaud Disney for making steps in the right direction. They have to start somewhere 🙂

  • 4. Nathan Acosta  |  November 9, 2009 at 6:54 pm

    (sorry, please delete my earlier comment; I accidentally sent it from my work WordPress)
    Yeah the frog thing kind of dampens things. Isn’t it weird that we had Pocahontas in ‘95 and Mulan in ‘98 and are just now getting to a black lead character? Both of those movies were very well received (from the world at large and by me personally, lol).


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