2016 has been a progressive year for Disney who have been blasted in the past for negatively portraying female traits and exposing young girls to a backwards focused life; where the protagonist is always male and the victim in distress is always the poor unfortunate princess. And while everybody loves the idea of love, does the princesses focus always have to be on finding her prince charming? Now, however, it seems that Disney is willing to update their timeless form in order to keep up with our changing society.
First there was Zootopia’s Judy Hopps, a crime-fighting bunny who fulfils her childhood dream of becoming the first rabbit police officer in urban Zootopia. Now, set for release this coming November, ‘Moana’ is the story of a 16-year old Hawaiian who sets sail on a quest to find a long-lost island, and is voiced by 14-year old Hawaiian, Auli’i Cravalho.
According to Disney, their newest Princess addition Moana is “indomitable, passionate, and a dreamer.”As well as portraying positive and forward-thinking character attributes, Moana is also the first Polynesian princess which will encourage children to learn about alternative cultures.
The Mulan Effect
While these changes have been a long time coming, it was the 1998 classic Mulan which truly sparked the princess re-make revolution. The Asian princess was a pioneer for tough, independent, and brave female role models. See the official trailer for Moana below.