By: Aiyana Moore ~Staff Writer~
Disney lovers hardly had time to get over the recent smash-hit, “Frozen,” that brought a new
princess and queen to the family, before a new Disney princess was announced.
The new princess movie, the release date of which has been moved from 2018 to 2016, will feature the first Disney princess of Polynesian descent, named Moana.
This movie will feature 14-yearold Moana and her “mythic adventure set around 2000 years ago across a series of islands in the South Pacific,” Disney said.
In recent years, Disney fans have become restless when it comes to the same old doe-eyed, small nosed, “I need a man to save me” princess mentality. However, the tomboyish princess Merida from “Brave” and the sisterly love shown between Anna and Elsa in “Frozen” have worked to break that mold.
Though Disney continues to try and evolve with the times, moving from the damsels in-distress to the princesses that don’t need a man to survive, Disney has received further criticism. Jasmine, Mulan, Tiana and Pocahontas all help to diversify the group, but it remains that an overwhelming number of princesses are Caucasian. Disney’s most recent releases, “Frozen,” “Brave” and “Tangled” have succeeded in pushing this imbalance even further toward the Caucasian protagonists.
This lack of diversity has brought Disney under scrutiny from some fans. Since Disney princesses are marketed mainly to young girls as role models, many parents have expressed a desire to see Disney work harder to represent people of color. With the introduction of
Moana, Disney is working to do just that. Not only is there a new princess of color, but viewers will also be introduced to a new culture and mythology through the movie.
Though there is still plenty of time before “Moana” is released, it’s already speaking to Disney
princess fans everywhere. With just one piece of concept art leaked by Disney and pulled
soon after, fans are running with it, drawing their own representations of what “Moana” will look like. Whether a girly-girl or a sailor, one thing remains certain: Disney fans are excited to see what “Moana” will bring.