Monday, June 1, 2009

The Princess and the Frog

The New York Times recently published an article about the upcoming Disney Film, The Princess and the Frog. Apparently the discussions over the Afrocentricity of this Disney character have already began. We all knew that it would be a matter of time before Disney created a Black Princess, and we also knew the uproar and debate it would cause. This situation is no different than Pocahontas.

Some of the main problems people mention include skin tone, the fact that the Prince is a Frog, and the setting being in New Orleans. We all know that colorism is a problem in African American neighborhoods. I think that no matter what shade the princess turned out to be, someone would find fault with it. If she had darker skin, perhaps people would think they were making the Princess look like the infamous "pickaninny" carcicatures. If she had more fair skin, others would talk about the media's preference for portraying African Americans in lighter skin. This can go on...not to mention the sexist themes throughout all of the Disney films.

At the end of the day, Disney will never be able to please everyone. I look forward to taking my sister to see The Princess and the Frog. This movie is another "teachable moment" for families to have with their children. Its a discussion parents have the option to lead; but for me, its a discussion that will be required.

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