If you watched the new trailer for Disney's "black princess" movie which was posted Monday, you already know a major plot point, which for some, is a major problem. Spoilers ahead.
As seen in the clip, Princess Tiana kisses a frog… and turns into a frog. She then, according to reports, "spends a significant chunk of the movie not as a black princess at all but as a frog." Guest contributor Shannon Prince has brillliantly articulated what's wrong with this, on Racialicious.com:
After decades of waiting, would it be too much to actually see an hour and a half of a black princess on the screen? I can't help but think that Disney would never hide a non-black princess away in animal form for a large part of a film – maybe because they never have. This is a fairy tale with a white prince and a black princess who, for much of the movie, isn't a black princess at all. Perhaps in the scenes where Tiana is hopping around in her toady body whites in the audience will forget how melanin-endowed she was in the movie's opening and identify with her. Still, I can't help but wonder […] if this was Disney's way of saying to white audiences, "Yes, Tiana's black, but not really."
When you add this to the toothless firefly sidekick, the fact that Tiana was originally a maid named Maddy (to close to mammy?) and the lack of a black man as a hero (but a black man as a villain; the bad voodoo "magician,") do you get the feeling Disney should have spent some more time at the drawing board?
The Princess And The Frog And The Critical Gaze [Essay] [Racialicious]
Earlier: Disney's First Black Princess Is A Little Green
The Princess And The Frog: First Look
Why Has It Taken So Long For Disney To Create A Black Princess?
An Early Look At Characters From Disney's Black Princess Movie
Why Is Disney's First Black Princess Such A Challenge?