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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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16.

Tiffany M    

Where to start...Where to start lol. Well, first it's still a half assed effort due to the fact that this is America and the girl isn't even from here. I guess they felt the need to make it more appealing to the whites, but as an African American, I would have liked it if she sounded normal (no accent). I mean Disney is an American company and A.A little girls here want to here someone who sounds like them. Just a lil F.Y.I. Snow white didn't have an accent, etc etc. It's hard to notice the racism as it relates to Disney...due to the "innocent" nature of the movies which are constantly being produced. Ohh but baby it's there

smooches~

2747 days ago
17.

Suzanna    

Mexicana, I did a search on mexican disney characters. In "The Three Caballeros" from 1944, there is a Mexican charro rooster named Panchito. I sure that this will spark more debate about the character not being human. And, yes, I do have a life, but I am bored at work since i just wait to answer tech support calls. ; )

2747 days ago
18.

Elanna    

I didn't get upset over Addain and looking forwardd to the Frog Prince. It is Disney and a cartoon. Get a cup of coke, a tub of popcorn and enjoy.

2747 days ago
19.

Lisa    

GOODNESS! Some people will complain about ANYTHING! They will shout racism about anything! Stop being so negaive and embrace the fact that they are making an effort to create a disney character that more children can relate to. Being a kindergarten teacher of a multicultural group of kids, it is shocking to see that the children don't see all of these color issues. Some kids color their own skin white or peach even if they are african american and caucasian kids color their skin brown. They don't care and adults need to stop being so negative about innocent things like a disney movie. In an ideal world we all wish that we could create our own perfect characters to movies or books that we name what we feel is appropriate, but PLEASE .... GROW up and find some love in your negative hateful hearts and find the joy that is in each other, in our world and in entertainment.

2747 days ago
20.

Bil    

I, for one, am delighted that a new girl will have a share of the Magic Kingdom. My daughter's life was enriched by Disney creations no matter what color they were: Jasmine, Mulan, even Ariel, who had red hair. My daughter's hair is brown, but she loved Ariel anyway. Kids aren't so picky (read racist) as their parents. As Rogers and Hammerstein told us in South Pacific, "They have to be carefully taught."

2746 days ago
21.

jawga_gal    

I think this film is based on a common European fairy tale of which there are several variations and names, one of which is "The Frog Princess." The term "frog" has nothing to do with France, but with the transformation of the frog. In some versions a real frog; in this version a more figurative "kissing of the frog" type transformation. I think the Bothers Grimm wrote a version of it, as well.

From what I've read online this film is to be set in New Orleans in the jazz age. Maddy is a chambermaid. Of course, so was Cinderalla. And, in "Pretty Woman" Julia Roberts was a prostitute saved by a knight on a white horse, figuratively speaking. And, so on... Race aside, that's the real issue that should concern us, I think.

And, to get you all really talking again... I've read that the prince will be white! I'm not opposed to historically accurate films that include depictions of social issues. Maddy might very well have been a chambermaid, her mother might very well have been a wet nurse, and so on, but why are these films always about the damsel in distress being saved by a white man? Why is that promoted to our girls as desirable? I have a son; what will this show him about how to treat women? Some posters online have asked about Aida. But, that story is tragic, everyone says. Well, boys watch westerns and love them. Does the hero always live? Isn't there some middle ground for these films?

And, before someone jumps all over me for seeing racism and sexism everywhere, I'm a white, former debutante from south Georgia. I was a cheerleader, in a sorority (until I dropped out) and was on a local teen modeling board in high school. If there are sour grapes involved it's not because I couldn't be the princess, but because I wasn't allowed to join the chess club because it was "for boys only" not because of my ability. I could easily look the other way, but I don't. And, neither should you.

Fire away!

2745 days ago
22.

Jamie    

I love the fact that there are people complaining and people complaining about the complainers and the damn movie hasn't even been released yet!

Please,for God's sake,get a life!

2744 days ago
23.

Marjani    

Yep - she's a "frog" princess and her name is "Maddy." Not Happy, not Pretty, not even Sparkle -- just Maddy. What is she "maddy" about?

I guess they can still infuse racism even into an attempt to be fair.

2744 days ago
24.

Alexis    

You guys will never be happy will you? No matter what... there is always someone out there that's gonna bitch about something. Get over yourselves.

2744 days ago
25.

your momma    

Just goes to show how shallow everyone is. Maddy is short for Madeline or Maddison. So whoever said about "variation on Mattie?? Slave Name??" Quit your bitching!!!! Im so glad everyone is bitching over a disney project. Get off your high horse and be gladd that they are actually making a Princess that is of color and not "snowy white". What asses!!!!! Oh Disney is soooooooo racist. Let me tell you........

2744 days ago
26.

SouthernMom    

It would be really nice to see all of the energy that is posted in these comments to be directed towards something good.

LIKE HOMELESSNESS, FOSTER PARENTING, HUNGER, STREET KIDS.

The race card is played so much that it is hard for anyone to go forward with their life because they can't get out of the past.



2744 days ago
27.

tsn002    

I think that its great that a black princess will be showcased along with the other ones in the Disney line up. Im 20 amd when I was a kid I always looked for a princess that was of ethnicity, and could only relate to Princess Jasmine from Aladdin. I think this is wonderful

2744 days ago
28.

Cheryl Foster    

I think it's about time and for that matter I think it's great. Today's black [ people of color }and (interracial children )need a possitive portral of themselves. They are part of the history of the United States no matter how they got here, or what our silly ancestors did in the Past. Todays young people need to relate and this is good way to begin it.

2744 days ago
29.

Mandy    

Disney can't even make a film of any kind without someone jumping all over them about it. But you know, Chanel is right. Instead of being prejudiced and screaming That's Racist! put all the energy into something a lot more worthwhile of being upset over.

2744 days ago
30.

Kerry Marshall    

All I have to say is that people will continue to misrepresent our community of many cultures if we keep silent. We need to be careful of what we feed to our children through trusted movie brands. Maddy?, Plantation?, and African American should never be found in the same sentence, ever. However, I guess somethings are to far fetched even for a fairytale.

2742 days ago
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