2021.11.21 (일)

정평 Times

Diversity earned, Image lost?

Disney's unconventional casting

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   Aladdin, Maleficent, Cruella... Disney's remake made a great success, earning billion dollars. Their realistic CG, fantastic songs, and famous actors mesmerized people. However, oppositions existed in Disney too. Some celebrities criticized Disney, claiming they stimulate kids to be quiet, pretty, and passive girl. They argue that while the world needs loud, confidental, active women, it is inappropriate for kids to have contact with those fixed ideas. Then few years ago, suddenly one more question arose to people ; 'Should princess and prince always have to be white?', and this question is leading a exceeding debate. 

 

   Officially, Disney claimed that they ALSO have black princesses too. Tiana was their reason. However, it is a universal 'fact' that Tiana is one of the least famous princess. Not because of skin color, but rather Disney didn't invested on the character itself. It is an irony, to give the least-invested princess at front to protect themselves from public's attack. This made people even more angry, because they knew Disney's investment budget would be different if Tiana was 'white' just like other typical princesses. Day by day, public's opinion about Disney was worsened. To get the remedy for this serious problem, Disney took a biggest risk ever in the movie industry ; picking Halle Bailey for Ariel.

 

   '#NotmyAriel'.

 

 

   As soon as Disney showed their new casting, thousands of social media users opposed. What people wanted was full-invested black princess, and suddenly Disney turned Ariel into black, changing her whole identity. Soon, pictures of Black Ariel were spread all over and it was sure that the reaction of people wasn't good. At this serious moment, one article comes out, revealing the contraction between Beyonce and Disney. It was that as Beyonce participated the <Lion King> as a voice actor, she wanted Disney to cast Halle for Ariel. The reason was 'African's success'. She wanted more black people in the entertainment industry, so she forced Disney to cast Halle. However, unlike Disney-stars such as Britney Spears, Selena Gomez, and Olivia Rodrigo, who started with great success Halle had terrible start with #NotmyAriel challenge. Netizens spread this hashtag all over the world. It seemed like Disney's new remedy was not effective. 

 

  This issue about 'Image or Diversity' arose again after the Disney's another surprising notice : Tinkerbell will be played by Yara Shahidi, a black actress. While Tinkerbell's blonde, gleaming hair was her icon, Yara Shahidi had strong curls with black hair. As soon as netizens noticed, they strongly showed their disagreement, but Disney was stubborn. Then at this year, they finally touched the last bomb. Rachel Ziegler, Latin actress was casted for Snow White. Her attractive dark skin didn't matched with Snow White well. These issues makes us wonder, can movie director destroy the characters' identity and features at once?

 

   Movies are our childhood and memory. They give us inspiration and impression. Each characters' identity in those movies were our 'falling point' to characters. However, everything changes these days. Everything goes fast and everyone needs 'revolution'. The point is how much, and the timing. "It might be disappointing to see our favorite characters changing their style, but we must get along with the trend too." Disney says. Still, it is hard to let go our childhood and meet the new ones, just as the feeling we get when we lost Iron man in Avengers. Between the dilemma of our memory and future's trend must be hard. However, one thing is for sure ; these astonishing changes will keep occur, and every time, we must get along with it and adapt. As always, the world is changing!