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Disney's First Black Blue-blood Makes French See Red?

3/15/2007 8:47 PM PDT BY TMZ STAFF

The Frog PrincessIt was supposed to be a moment of triumph for a company with a sketchy history when it comes to racial diversity in animation. After years of "Snow White" princesses, Disney announced that it was releasing it's first animated film with a black blueblood, about a princess named Maddy who lives in the French Quarter of New Orleans.

The film's unfortunate title? "The Frog Princess."

Given that 'frog' is a favorite English epithet for the French, we're eagerly awaiting a Frenchie firestorm: After all, in 1993, when Disney trotted out its first ever non-snowy white princess in "Aladdin," angry protests from Muslim Arabs erupted; they called the animated "Aladdin" racist for showing a Middle East filled with arbitrary violence. For example, one offending "Aladdin" lyric went:

"I come from a land, from a faraway place,where the caravan camels roam, where they cut off your ear if they don't like your face; it's barbaric -- but hey, it's home!"

That line was, unsurprisingly, cut from the final "Aladdin."

Calls to the French Consul-General's office in Los Angeles were unreturned at deadline.

Developing...

COMMENTS

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1.

kbn    

I say it's about damn time... My daughter will be 10 years old this year; too bad it didn't happen sooner.

2597 days ago
2.

Brenda    

Oh, I thought "The Lion King" introduced Disney's first African prince and princess. it was unfortunate that they were animals rather than people .. as if white people wouldn't spend money on a black princess movie and therefore animals had to represent African people... I thought it was insulting. I'm looking forward to see The Frog Princess with my daughter! (I wish they had chosen a more princess-like name for this girl! Cinderella, Belle, Jasmine, Ariel ... and Maddy. Hmphf.)

2597 days ago
3.

Eshe    

Don't expect too much, Mommas, therefore, you won't be disappointed....
Disney has incredibly beautiful African (Brown) fairies on their Fairy website....
As always, we are Creators, if you want something,and you feel you must have it, create/make up your own for your daughter....

2597 days ago
4.

Tina    

#2 - be happy they didn't call the new princess LaKeesha or Rachmesha.

2597 days ago
5.

Tina    

Maybe they should have called the new princess Towanda.

2597 days ago
6.

Michelle    

I predict problems. Frog Princess (ugly name). Maddy (variation on Mattie?? slave name??). The villain is named Duvalier and is into voodoo. Why don't you just BEG Haitian, African, Black, Spanish and French peoples to protest you? It might be easier. Disney has a history of racist imagery and I was hoping this movie would escape that, but I'm just waiting for the backlash. Mark my words, it'll come.

2597 days ago
7.

Suzanna    

Maddie may be short for Madeline, which is a nice princessy name. Also consider that she is in the french quarter of NO. Maddy fits in.

2596 days ago
8.

John S.    

I think that either you people are either joking, overreacting, or just looking for something to be angry about.

First of all, I do not think that it was never Disney's intention for "The Lion King" to represent black people with animals. The animal characters were just animals, period. Also, as for any African black people not being in there, think of the fact that no white people or no other humans appeared in the movie, either. The film's focus was exclusively on the animals. Having humans might have yanked attention away from the purpose ofthe plot, which was about a lion being a heir to the African wildlife in spite of his evil uncle.

And Michelle, I am not racist. But I think that you are overreacting with what you are complaning about, which do not seem racist to me.

Poitically correctness can ruin our entertainment. For example, like how Muslim groups go too far in pressuring Hollywood to not depict villians as extreme Muslim terrorists, desipte how more relevent then ever before Middle eastern terrorism is nowadays.

2596 days ago
9.

Randy    

Well, let's face it, anymore it's hard to do or say anything without offending someone or some group. Disney is all about making $$$$ so they are not going to intentionally do anything to hurt their sales. And if the French are offended by the title of the cartoon then they deserve to get warts.

2596 days ago
10.

Jack    

Actually, this sounds like a wonderful step forward. Remember that the wicked witches were white (or at least green) as were the wicked stepsisters and stepmother, Captain Hook, etc. I grew up in the deep South, and there was good voodoo and bad voodoo the same as Disney portrayed good magic and bad magic. The princess's name is appropriate for the location and how wonderful it will be to have a Disney fairy tale set in New Orleans!

2596 days ago
11.

jOE'S WIFE    

I think it's an ok idea, but the black people will get offended just like they did. Also, this is not Disney's first movie about black people...remember Song of the South??? It wasn't released because it had black people bitching about slavery. Watch, they will bitch at Disney because they will feel the movie portrays racism or something because she lives in the maids quarters.

And wake up, Jack, it's not set in New Orleans, you bubble head.

2596 days ago
12.

Crystal    

#5,
Maddy actually is just short for names like Madison and Madeleine, nothing wrong with it imo. I know quite a few little girls called Maddy who will most likely be absolutely delighted knowing that the new Disney princess will have "their" name.

2596 days ago
13.

Stacie    

I for one am looking forward to the movie, and I don't care if the priness is black, white, purple, or green. Didn't care with the others growing up either, before I knew what PC was. And I can bet my 4 year old niece won't notice or care either.

2596 days ago
14.

Mexicana    

Wow, I take it that from "voodoo queen"s comment, "voodoo queen", If you read the article you will see that the new disney movie will be set in New Orleans not Africa or wherever the hell you thought it would be set.

I love that people love to get up in arms over nothing. Hell, I am of mexican descent and there isn't a mexican disney character. Am I freaking out about that? NO!!!

I think people should just CHILL OUT. The movie hasn't even been made and yet there is all sorts of bitching going on. I am sure "The Frog Princess" is just a working title. Considering BLOGGERS are having a hayday over the title, I am sure that Disney will change the title. As far as the new princesses name goes, Maddy sounds cute and I like it. From what I hear, Maddy is an appropriate name for a girl from the French Quarter.

If we want to talk about The Lion King being a racist movie well, I just won't go there. THAT's just TOO STUPID. I don't think Disney was trying to make a movie for black people when they made The lion king. I think it was for everyone. Yeah it was set in AFRICA but LIONS LIVE IN AFRICA.

By the way, people need to look up the meaning of Racism instead of just using the term willy-nilly. I think that you people mean Prejudice...not RACIST.

My point? Quit your B*tching! Read an article from beginning to end and make sure you comprehend it before you comment on it! Don't be so overly senstitive! And last but not least, EVERYONE needs to get over themselves!!!

2596 days ago
15.

Jack    

Mexicana is absolutely right. And Voodoo Queen's comment did leave me puzzled. The French Quarter is obviously in New Orleans, and it has been a place that as a former Mississippian, I have loved all my life. As to race, many natives of New Orleans are Creoles, a mixture of black, white, French and Spanish with a culture unlike any other in the world. A few years ago the Dance Theatre of Harlem took the European ballet "Giselle" and created a "Creole Giselle" a production that was widely acclaimed. And again, the name is appropriate as it is a nickname for Madelaine, one that is common in Creole culture. So everyone loosen up and hope that we will have a wonderful story and music to rival "Alladin" and "The Little Mermaid"

2596 days ago
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