Disney returns to drawing board after whitewashing & # 39; complaint



Anika Noni Rose, the actress who expressed the character of Princess Tiana, took the social media to question the character's appearance in the new film. (AFP photo)

LOS ANGELES: Disney's highly anticipated animated film "Ralph Breaks the Internet" lives up to its name before its release in November – but for the wrong reasons.

The studio was struck by a torrent of protest over the image of his only black princess in the film, a sequel to the successful "Wreck-It Ralph."

Princess Tiana – who first appeared in Disney's 2009 feature film "The Princess and the Frog" – has only a small role in the new film, but previews seemed to show her with lighter skin and different facial features than she did. originally had.

Under intense pressure on social media, the animation giant has apparently re-signed the character – a rare decision just two months before the release of Nov 21 in the United States for the Thanksgiving holiday weekend.

Disney did not formally comment, but Brandi Collins-Dexter, a senior campaign director at Color Of Change advocacy group, working to ensure accurate representations of black characters in Hollywood, confirmed the move.

"Disney's decision to restore Princess Tiana's image to that of an impudent black princess with full lips, dark skin and dark hair in" Ralph Breaks Internet: Wreck-It Ralph 2 "is a victory," Collins said. -Dexter, those changes.

"Disney has shown that it is committed to the problems of the members of Color Of Change and the black community", she told AFP.

Bring back what & # 39; get lost & # 39;
In "Ralph Breaks the Internet", the friendly arcade game villain-turned-hero Ralph and his friend Vanellope discover the internet and send them on a new adventure.

An early trailer reveals an immediately iconic scene: Vanellope meets all Disney princesses – from Snow White to Cinderella, Ariel to Jasmine and Moana to Tiana, who first appears in a ball dress with dark skin.

But in another preview scene, a pajama party, her skin is considerably lighter, her nose narrower and her hair in loose curls.

Actress Anika Noni Rose, a Tony winner who voiced Tiana for both the 2009 film and "Ralph Breaks the internet", took to Instagram to express her surprise.

"This summer new photos were released where they looked very different, with lighter skin and much sharper functions," wrote Rose. "I was as surprised as most of her and my fans."

"My team and I immediately appealed to the studio to talk about the visual changes and three weeks ago I personally met with the Wreck-It Ralph team, my original animator Mark Henn and others," she added. . .

The team explained how & # 39; CGI animation did different things with the colors of the characters in a different light than with original characters drawn in the hand & # 39 ;, she said and showed her what steps she names to bring back those things that had been lost & # 39 ;.

Long history
The controversy has part of the hustle and bustle around "Ralph Breaks the internet," which is sure a winner of the cashier's squelched during the holidays.

But it is hardly the first example of hand-wringing in Tinseltown about the image of non-white characters.

Disney was also eligible for criticism of the reblay on the big screen of "The Lone Ranger" (2013) when Johnny Depp was cast as the right hand of the renegade, Tonto, who is Indian, although Depp has said that he might time. Cherokee.

In 2015, "Aloha" Emma Stone was cast as a character from Chinese and Hawaiian descent.

Stone said in an interview with Australian media that she had "learned at macro level about the insane history of money laundering in Hollywood and how often the problem really is."


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