The Princess and the Frog’s black critics

The New York Times has an interesting article about the criticisms the upcoming Disney film The Princess and the Frog has encountered, especially from black folks.

A casting call for The Princess and the Frog began in late 2006 so this movie dispels the rumors that it only came about because of the election of President Barack Obama.  I heard about this movie before President Obama announced that he was running for president.  The star of the film, Princess Tiana, is voiced by actress Anika Noni Rose and Prince Naveen is voiced by Bruno Campos.

princess tiana


I have blogged about the movie a couple of times and I have mentioned some of the complaints coming from some black folks.  The article mentions similar complaints the movie has already received despite the fact that the movie hasn’t been released yet:

After viewing some photographs of merchandise tied to the movie, which is still unfinished, Black Voices, a Web site on AOL dedicated to African-American culture, faulted the prince’s relatively light skin color. Prince Naveen hails from the fictional land of Maldonia and is voiced by a Brazilian actor; Disney says that he is not white.

“Disney obviously doesn’t think a black man is worthy of the title of prince,” Angela Bronner Helm wrote March 19 on the site. “His hair and features are decidedly non-black. This has left many in the community shaking their head in befuddlement and even rage.”

Shaking their heads in befuddlement and rage? Lol, not me. I don’t have a problem with a non black prince being the love interest of a black princess in a Disney movie. It’s not on my list of top 50 concerns. Hell it’s not on my radar. Can black women have the freedom to choose who they want to be with?

Others see insensitivity in the locale.

“Disney should be ashamed,” William Blackburn, a former columnist at The Charlotte Observer, told London’s Daily Telegraph. “This princess story is set in New Orleans, the setting of one of the most devastating tragedies to beset a black community.”

I haven’t heard any complaints about the New Orleans location. So according to Mr. Blackburn, New Orleans is off limits when it comes to where a movie takes place. I swear some folks need to take a chill pill.

Of course, armchair critics have also been complaining about the princess. Disney originally called her Maddy (short for Madeleine). Too much like Mammy and thus racist. A rumor surfaced on the Internet that an early script called for her to be a chambermaid to a white woman, a historically correct profession. Too much like slavery.

I blogged about the name situation last year. I mentioned that Maddy is usually short for Madeleine or Madison. But some black folks were hearing Mammy instead of Maddy (smdh).  All of these complaints and the movie won’t be released until December.  Like I stated before, we are some hard to please folks.

You can read the entire New York Times article here and check out the latest trailer for The Princess and the Frog.

9 responses

  1. Disney has always been racist! Why do the leading black character.e.g. Raven and Chyna ALWAYS HAVE WHITE FRIENDS? I’m
    not racist or anything but Disney seems to highlight more white than blacks.

  2. GoodKingBad, let me explain how things work at WordPress and other blogs. The person who owns the blog approves all comments. So I’m the one who decides whether comments are approved or go to the trash bin. It was my decision not to post your previous incoherent comments since you seemed to be babbling. This comment is the last comment I will approve of yours since it’s a little more understandable.

    You can take your complaints about me not approving your comments to YouTube, MySpace or wherever your want, I DON’T GIVE A DAMN. It’s my decision, not yours or anyone elses. If you have issues with interracial dating amongst black women and black women only may I suggest you start your own damn blog or website? Or go to YouTube and create your own video. That way you can scream and yell all you want about your one sided views on interracial dating.

    You can keep trying to comment until the cows come home on my blog but your comments will go to the TRASH BIN after this. What you also need to do is get a damn life. You are way too obsessed with commenting on this particular topic. Start your own organization for all I care, but your comments will be trashed.

    Have a nice day.

  3. You got it, sister. First of all, the web page you linked to is merely a host to a support group for Black men with a deviant fetish for White women, nothing more. You might as well show a webpage full of Black gay men and say: “It’s time for many Black women to start thinking, and acting like Ellen DeGeneres”. And those 14% of Black men and 4% of Black women are
    irrelevant, as are Black homosexuals and lesbians. You quote this statistic of outmarrage, claiming the superior loyalty of the Black female over Black men to the Black family unit, how about a statistic stating the number of Black women who have, and do engage in illicit unmarried sex with White and other types of men, often exclusively, even excluding Black prostitutes and Black female porno trash? 4%? As there are plenty of Black men who are exclusive to Black women, and Black women exclusive to Black men, and the bottom line is that any Black women who wants a Black man can have one, and vice versa. What IS relevant is WHY do these Black men have a fetish for flaxen hair and white flesh? Number one, they have been brainwashed by the media: pornography, and the icon of the White female goddess invented by television and Hollywood, the same White goddess that afflicted Black females straighten their hair and lighten their skin to emulate, the same White goddess that ol’ massa left in the big house to go down to the slave quarters to force himself on African women. These men are brainwashed to an artificial beauty standard, This brainwashing of Black men is an unintentional by-product of the media, as they gear more towards portraying young Black men to be pant-sagging, uneducated, criminal minded idiots, or some loyal, but inferior second class attachment, as corporate White male Hollywood has no interest in Black men being aroused by White women. And last but not least, the ego massage given them by their just-as-lame peers for their association with a White women. And this what The Princess and the frog is about brainwashing and an instillation of a deviant beauty standard in prepubescent Black females until they are old enough to watch Halle Berry, Whoopi Goldberg, Sanna Lathan, Nia Long and a rick of other Hollywood icons of Black female sexual predators of White men to be taught how to adulate even the most mediocre of White men and lead them into sex, which coincidentally is the most singular thing Black actresses in Hollywood do on film, if they want to work. Just like it’s Kenan and Kels’ job to teach prepubescent Black males homosexuality, and like it’s the Marlboro mans’ job to influence young people to smoke. As far as Black men dating anybody they want, anybody can date whomever they want. Those types of Black women can date three legged bisexual octopuses and space aliens if they want, but we don’t appreciate their fetishes pushed on our Black youth. And watch, when the movie fizzles out, White male Hollywood, with their colonial/Zionist/reconstruction era mentality, will surely promote the DVD and have this movie all over prime time where Black female children can be targeted and influenced by it, and at some stage in their young life, be ripe for the picking by White men, in the same fashion White fascists oppressed indigenous peoples to rob them of their land to make it available to their fellow White man. Don’t bet or guess, live in the real world, and if those statistics you mentioned are an issue, watch carefully and closely to what your, or any other Black male children in your care watch and read and act accordingly. (P.S.Dear moderators, please be informed that if this perfectly legitimate post does not appear after this fourth attempt to post it, I intend to expose this biased, propagandistic site from youtube to myspace and a few stops in between.)

  4. GoodKingBad, apparently this animated movie really bothers you. Yet in the real world I bet you don’t blink when you see black men with white, latina or asian women. No problem with you I guess. Even though up to 14 percent of black men are married interracially, you’re upset about black women and white men in a movie and in the real world black women are the least likely of all women to date interracially. So what is your problem?

    Since the 1960s, marriages between black men and white women have been steadily increasing—14 percent of all black men are now married outside the race. Yet only 4 percent of black women do the same. Why? Black women, for better or worse, have always seemed to maintain a loyalty to the ideal of the black family unit. That’s understandable, even noble, but it doesn’t make a whole lot of sense when so many black men don’t feel the same way. Combined with the disturbing number of black men in prison, that means 47 percent of all African-American women today never marry. With those numbers, I say it’s time for many black women to start thinking, and acting, like Tiana.

    If black men can date who they want, then why do you have problems with black women doing the same thing? Are black women suppose to be so loyal to black men yet black men can pick and chose any asian, latina or white woman of their choice?

    Why don’t you check out this site and let’s hear you gripe and complain about that:

  5. The prince is the only character whose voice is done by a White man. This type of propaganda is usually passed off as a “Black” movie as everyone in 90% of the cast is Black, to atract Black audiences to bring their (female) children to be brainwashed. I’ll give credence to some of the other opinions when I see a White cartoon princess with a prince of any other color.Not a fact I’m especially proud of but Black male/White female couples outnumber White male/Black female at least 10 to one in real life, but in the media White male/Black female couples outnumber Black male/White female couples 50 to one. Any Black parent who takes their children to see this need to also view “Birth of a nation” and “The last king of Scotland”

  6. Tiana’s just as light (i.e. fair-skinned) as Naveen who’s actually darker than Dr. Facilier, so the hue thing is plain STUPID. Black people range in color, so why are Blacks denying this diversity now? And Naveen hails from Maldonia, which–since it’s mythical–COULD be an East African country or an American country with people of mixed ancestry or perhaps a European country with transnational inhabitants… The point is that Prince Naveen looks just as BLACK (if not “Blacker” than) some readily accepted Black people, e.g. Halle Berry, President Obama, Alicia Keys, me, etc. (By the way: how SHOULD black look?!) And if, in the end, Naveen’s not actually Black, why not just accept that exogamy is more normal than endogamy, and that Black women DO marry non-Black men!

  7. The princess and the frog represents typical fare of the Black female in the media. Her image is to be a role model to Black females to live though vicariously. The the main purpose of the princess is to instill a deviant beauty standard on to pre-teen Black females grooming them for a preference for “handsome princes” a term synonimous with “White men” These media images are the same reason Black American Christians worship a White Jesus and a White god. Black women can go for whomever they want, White men,Asian men, White Women, or anybody else. But Black people(With obvious exceptions) don’t appreciate Eurocentric trash and racist propaganda targeting our eight, nine, and ten year old sisters, daughters, and nieces. The princess and the frog was designed for them to watch untill they are old enough to see Monsters ball.

  8. It would have been more right for Disney to do a animation about an African Princess. She would have worn beautiful African royal clothing, and it would have been the ultimate Disney Black Princess.

  9. Kudos to Walt Disney for making an African AMerican themed cartoon film. I look forward to viewing the film and I hope it becomes a classic.

    I can’t believe people are making a fuss over Prince Naveen’s appearance. This is a CARTOON people. Please remember that President Obama is of mixed heritage and married to a sister.

    Now if you flip the coin, there is Tiger Woods, half of the NBA, a third of the NFL, Taye Diggs, Cuba Gooding, Jr., Ken Griffey Jr, Ice-T, Micheal Jackson, Quincy Jones, Sidney Pointier, Clarence Thomas, and countless other black men who wouldn’t be caught with a black female. So why fuss about one black female cartoon character with a multi-cultural prince?

    By the way, the movie will work because the multi-racial production of Cinderilla with Brandi and Whitney Houston was a huge hit for Walt Disney/ABC network.

    And if sisters are listening, stop waiting for your prince to come and start looking at other options. Brothers are not restricting theirselves at all nowadays.

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