Following fan backlash, Disney will reanimate Princess Tiana in the upcoming Wreck-It Ralph sequel Ralph Breaks the Internet.
The Disney Princess introduced in The Princess and the Frog appeared in a still from the film released in August. The image drew controversy with fans accusing the mouse house of whitewashing the character as she appeared with lighter skin and what looked to be a narrower nose. With less than two months to go before the film is due in theaters, Disney has tasked animators with redrawing the Princess in time for its release.
According to The Wallstreet Journal, Anika Noni Rose who voices Tiana met with Disney animators and representatives from racial justice organization Color of Change who campaigns for racial representation of black characters in cinema.
Color of Change senior campaign director released an official statement:
“Disney’s decision to restore Princess Tiana’s image to that of an unapologetically Black princess with full lips, dark skin and dark hair in Ralph Breaks the Internet: Wreck-It Ralph 2 is a victory for Color Of Change members, Black children and their parents, and Black audiences who want to see the variety of shades, shapes and sizes of Black characters accurately represented in the arts.”
So, um…is this supposed to be Princess Tiana in Wreck it Ralph 2? pic.twitter.com/LxBkKjK6zw
— The Great Blaxby. (@HunseckerProxy) August 9, 2018
This is what Tiana shoulda been looking like. Hire Black woman animators for accuracy. 😊https://t.co/rYw04jHhHw
— WhatFreshHellisThis (@LisaBolekaja) August 11, 2018
Huge win for Black girls who look up to Princess Tiana! After conversations with @Disney & @DisneyAnimation about the character's appearance in #WreckItRalph2, they addressed our concerns and restored Tiana to her original depiction. #RepresentationMatters https://t.co/lN8j4OA95N
— ColorOfChange.org (@ColorOfChange) September 21, 2018
The film stars John C. Reilly, Sarah Silverman, Gal Gadot, Jack McBrayer, Jane Lynch, Alan Tudyk, Alfred Molina, Ed O’Neill, Timothy Simons, Ali Wong, Hamish Blake, Glozell Green and Taraji P. Henson.
In “Ralph Breaks the Internet,” video-game bad guy Ralph (voice of John C. Reilly) and best friend Vanellope von Schweetz (voice of Sarah Silverman) leave the comforts of Litwak’s arcade in an attempt to save her game, Sugar Rush. Their quest takes them to the vast, uncharted world of the internet where they rely on the citizens of the internet—the Netizens—to help navigate their way. Lending a virtual hand are Yesss (voice of Taraji P. Henson), the head algorithm and the heart and soul of the trend-making site “BuzzzTube,” and Shank (voice of Gal Gadot), a tough-as-nails driver from a gritty online auto-racing game called Slaughter Race, a place Vanellope wholeheartedly embraces—so much so that Ralph worries he may lose the only friend he’s ever had.
Ralph Breaks the Internet: Wreck-It Ralph 2 hits theaters November 21, 2018.