While no one can argue with Disney's animated achievements, there's a large, cavernous space to discuss their racial downfalls. The company has gotten a lot of flack for their heroes being generally light-skinned, American English-speaking good guys with symmetrically perfect features, while the villains embody the opposite (Aladdin). However, in March, Jette Kernion alerted us to Disney's latest animated feature -- The Frog Princess, which will break new ground by introducing an African-American princess.

The big question: can they pull it off? The team bringing Princess Maddy to the screen are John Musker and Ron Clements. Sure, they brought us The Little Mermaid, but they're also responsible for Aladdin, which was far from a beacon of multiculturalism and racial respect. I'm surprised that Disney would tempt fate with that pair, and not completely remove themselves from the last doomed attempt. That being said, you can check out the first image of Maddy to the right, and she doesn't look half bad. Of course, no Disney film would be complete without a girl with small, cute features, but she also has a different look about her -- sort of old school Betty and Veronica.

However, Maddy actually seems to have two looks, and I'm wondering if the picture to the right wasn't just the stepping stone to making her more like the rest of the recent Disney ladies. (sigh) This other picture has her looking much more like Jasmine and the other heroines that Disney has released over the last few decades. Have they all forgotten that girls can still be cute while looking different? Snow White was nothing like Sleeping Beauty, yet both were popular and loved. What do you think? Is Disney finally starting to get it right, or are they still completely clueless?

categories Cinematical