With Thanksgiving just a day away and the whole gift-giving holidaymukas shebang rapidly encroaching approaching, I feel its necessary to give thanks where thanks are due. And so, to the Disney Corporation, I offer my most heartfelt gratitude. Why?
Because Disney is killing off the princess:
The studio’s Wednesday release of “Tangled,” a contemporary retelling of the Rapunzel story, will be the last fairy tale produced by Disney’s animation group for the foreseeable future.
“Films and genres do run a course,” said Pixar Animation Studios chief Ed Catmull, who along with director John Lasseter oversees Disney Animation. “They may come back later because someone has a fresh take on it … but we don’t have any other musicals or fairy tales lined up.” Indeed, Catmull and Lasseter killed two other fairy tale movies that had been in development, “The Snow Queen” and “Jack and the Beanstalk.”
Wow. I mean, wow! Just in time, too. At 2 years of age, Sasha is almost ready to start demanding to watch full-on movies, and surely Disney’s princesses would’ve starred in many of them. Ariel, Belle, Snow White or whatever her name was—all would’ve surrounded me for the next decade at least. Now, though, I—and all of you with highly suggestible daughters—have been granted a reprieve.
Of course, this does nothing for the back catalog, nor does it wipe Barbie and her ilk from the shelves of Toys R Us, nor will it stop my wife, Jean, from occasionally dressing Sasha up in princess clothes purely because she herself wasn’t allowed to wear her own princess dresses as a child.
But it’s a first step, and maybe a sign? That our culture is changing? That kids—girls and boys alike—are ready to move on from the rigidly stereotypical roles and games that Big Media has prescribed for them for decades? In any case, if my thanking Disney with a big ol’ hug-and-kiss will help stave off the inevitable, then: