How racist (if at all) do you think "The Princess and the Frog" will be?

I’ve not yet started a “controversial” topic when it comes to my threads, so I figure this might be a good starting point.

After seeing some extended trailers for the movie it seems like Disney is trying to atone for their lack of black main characters by making a movie of all things black, and while I FULLY understand the need for a black princess in the Disney-verse I wonder how much will be too much?

I’m wondering if Diz is gonna inject so much black culture and references that they are gonna be less “telling it like it is” and more “stereotyping up the wazoo”.

Anyone care to opinion on this??

It makes me wonder. If they just did a black princess story and made it similar to stories in the past with nothing really “black” about it other than skin color, would people be upset about that, too? Like, take, say Cinderella and make her black a la that Rodgers and Hammerstein’s Cinderella featuring Brandi and Whitney Houston. But not really acknowledge anyone’s race or culture. Would that princess be accused of being too white acting, or an Oreo?

Well, from the trailers, I gather it’s a)partially voodoo related, and b) located in the Big Easy. It’s hard to tell that story from a whitebread standpoint with that criteria.

Honestly, I wouldn’t know if it was stereotyping or not, I guarantee there will be a fringe group that claims it is (whether it is or not), a la Harry Potter and his devil worshipping witchcraft.

After complaints about the initial ideas about the story, Disney met with black leaders to try to address potential problems. Even with that, there will be issues with some things, but no more than, say, Aladdin.

All animated characters have elements of archetypes, stereotypes, and caricature. They’re treating their black characters the same way. Isn’t that the ideal situation?

I’m also wondering how much of the film the two leads are in frog form.

They really can’t win…any hint of stereotypes will be stereotypes, no black princess is racism, too ‘white’ isn’t celebrating the culture…but they’ve gotten better (really no where to go but up from the portrayal of Native Americans in Peter Pan). They bring in cultural experts now from day one to help them craft their world.

Moving thread from IMHO to Cafe Society.

I know a dozen people who have seen it, they all say it is pretty much a non-issue.

Here is Entertainment Weekly’s review. They loved it and didn’t mention racism at all.

Read the review here.

I’m going to cut Disney some slack for the Native Americans in Peter Pan. Peter Pan is told from the perspective of a child. The book, play, and adaptations certainly don’t have a nuanced view of pirates so why pick on them about Native Americans?

Probably, yes. It’s hard to simultaneously avoid accusations of stereotypes, whitewashing, and tokenism. I’m not going to see this thing in the first place but I’ve been expecting this debate and I’m curious about how it’s going to turn out.

Yeah, Disney doesn’t really have a good track record making movies with black characters in them that’s not racially insensitive. :wink:

(Interesting fact, we own that movie. I got a credit card for the first time just so I could buy that movie for my wife, who had fond memories of the movie as a kid and likes the famous song from that movie. Went to eBay and had to try 3 times, the first two the attempts to buy were mysteriously blocked somehow, I surmised it must be Mickey’s Lawyers making good on their threat to make sure that movie never again sullies the shores of N. America. Finally succeeded the third time, just before another attempted injunction (no way, mouse! I won it fair and square!)

Got it on VHS, though, and that format (and our player) is slowly going away. I don’t relish having to replace it via DVD, considering all the trouble getting the VHS was …

I’m just wondering what nation the black royalty is supposed to be from. Who is the “princess” the princess of? Who is the frog prince the prince of? What royal house do they come from?

I always wonder about this whenever there is a generic “prince” or “princess” in movies. Who, for instance, was the prince who The Beast used to be? What was he prince of? Was he actually a son of the king of France?

I’m no expert on the subject, but I think “Princes” under some systems can just be an order of rulers/nobility without actually having to be the sons of the ruling monarch. I don’t know the details of how that works—or where, or when—though. (My own preference of dealing with royalty involves more declarations and decapitations. :wink: )

Check Wikipedia.

That’s what I figured, too. Prince just meant like noblemen. Especially in the case of the beast who just lived in a random castle. In the cases of the ones who were the sons of kings, though, I’m not so sure–like Cinderella or The Little Mermaid.

For Tiana, though, I am confused as she’s a waitress, right? I guess she becomes a princess when she marries Prince Naveen, like with Belle and Cinderella and so on?

What is considered offensive and what is not changes so much, even if the film isn’t considered offensive today, in ten years it might look like “Birth Of A Nation”.

Is there Mardi Gras “royalty”? I noticed that there is some Mardi Gras imagery (the Poseidon float) at the end of the ads that are running. Do the Krewes have kings and queens?

You can say that again.

I wasn’t kidding about Wikipedia, actually. It says he’s from a fictional kingdom called Maldonia.

Didn’t Eddie Murphy already do this movie in a transcendent way?? :smiley:

Must we rehash the same tired racialist bullshit every decade, can’t we just get over it at this point? We’ve come a long way, baby. Stop trying to rebuild the wall that has fallen.