Disney has listened to the concerns of film fans after a backlash over the depiction of Princess Tiana in Ralph Breaks the Internet.
The Wreck-it Ralph sequel had been accused of white-washing the features of Tiana, as well as Mulan and Pocahontas, who appear alongside all the Disney Princesses in a celebrated scene.
Now, according to the Wall Street Journal, Disney’s animation studio has reanimated portions of Tiana’s scenes to ensure her skin is darker than the trailer’s iteration.
Advocacy group Color of Change and Tiana voice artist Anika Noni Rose are said to have sat down with Disney to discuss the character’s representation and it seems those in charge took note.
The creation of Princess Tiana, @Disney's first Black princess marked a defining moment for how Black women and girls are presented in media, specifically in animated movies. We're glad @DisneyAnimation has committed to restoring Tiana to her original form to ensure authenticity. pic.twitter.com/O4LpuiQZSs
— ColorOfChange.org (@ColorOfChange) September 20, 2018
Earlier this year, producer Clark Spencer told Yahoo Movies UK that the issue wasn’t with how the film’s animators had coloured Tiana, or the other ethnic princesses, rather he blamed the tech people were watching the clips and trailers on.
“Everyone watches something on a different movie screen, or a television, or on the computer because that’s where a lot of that information comes from and it’s not representative of what we see on our computers which are state of the art, colour-corrected when we’re doing our own work,” Spencer said. “We feel like we have been very true to the original characters.
“We spent a lot of time making sure we pulled up the colour model sheets from when those characters were created and did our best to make sure that within the computer we are replicating that side of it.
“It’s a complicated world because again there are so many different ways to see it and if you see it in the right way you will feel like we’ve done it correctly, in terms of representing them, but if you see it on a screen that’s at all neutralising colours, in some way, then it will appear as if we didn’t push as far as we could.”
There was also criticism over Mulan’s features as some fans argued that the new version had tempered her Asian features by making her nose smaller and eyebrows thinner.
I'm just going to say it
seeing all the people squealing abiut how "pretty" a significantly paler Mulan with a smaller nose and thinner brows+lips really disheartens me pic.twitter.com/oiLz8ES4Ug
— Stephanie (Law School 😱 Semi-Hiatus) Tran (@YouAndYourEgo) June 5, 2018
When asked about this specific criticism, Spencer says that this is down to the fact that these are avatar versions of the Disney princesses, not the originals.
“We’re caricaturing all of them to be a specific group with respect to Oh My Disney,” he explained, “because it was important to us to say these are not the Disney princesses, they are the avatars, so there is a component of that too.”
Ralph Breaks the Internet: Wreck-It Ralph 2 is in cinemas on 23 November