Disney has always been under the spotlight when it comes to their movies. Over the years Disney has had many controversies regarding their characters, storyline and their general depiction of female characters. This seems to be even more heightened with their recent reproduction of cartoons into live action movies.
Disney’s New Live Action movie Franchise
Cinderella was the third Disney princess movie to be given a real life story in 2015. When it came to Disney’s Live action version of Cinderella there was severe controversy over one edited scene. Instead of the classic scene where she rescues herself from a locked tower she had to be rescued
Prior to this remake, The other Disney Princess movie to get a live action remake was Maleficent. While Sleeping beauty was the premise for the movie, it did not come under the same scrutiny as Cinderella. This was a completely new story and may have been the reason why it was not lead with so much scandal. If they had gone and remade the original, would the situation have been different?
Beauty and the Beast
The newest Disney movie to get a remake is Beauty and the Beast. This has always been my favourite Disney movie and I was delighted to find out this was getting the live action treatment. I loved Belles attitude of not sticking to the norm and wanting “adventure in the great wide somewhere”. It was a movie where Belle never gushed over Beast and took none of his nonsense. It was also the first Disney movie where it was the prince that needed rescuing and not Belle. I was gutted when I heard of the Stockholm Syndrome theory to Beauty and the Beast and refused to believe it.
Beauty and the Beast Controversy
The newest controversy has exploded as Disney has put the first openly gay Disney character into the movie. Some cinemas in the USA have banned the movie. Russia has given it a 16 age rating.
Why are other children’s movies and cartoons not held to the same standard?
There have been other children’s cartoons that have included damsels in distress and gay characters. Why are they not held at the same standard? Why are they not scrutinised like the Disney movies? Even though Pixar is now a part of Disney only recently does it seem to undergo the same difficulties. In Storks, a movie distributed by Warner Brothers there is a scene where you see gay and lesbian couples holding babies. No one batted an eye, there was no out pouring to ban the movie or give it a higher rating.
Why is it people get so upset about Disney movies?
Disney has become a victim to its own success. It has been around for so long, Disney is being held to an unfair higher standard. The first Disney princess movie was Snow White in 1937. Cinderella was created in 1950. If we look at the time when Beauty and the Beast was made it was in 1994. The children who enjoyed this movie are now well into their late 20’s /early 30’s. Some of them more than likely have children of their own. I can safely say that nearly every person living today has seen a Disney movie or tv show as a child. Times have changed since the original writing of these movies. What would have been societal norms at the time during the creation of these movies no longer exist.
Is it because of our deep love and connection with Disney that we hold them to a higher standard? While we want them to change and reflect today’s society we also want to keep the magic of our childhood intact.
Are you going to watch Beauty and the Beast?
I will be the first in the queue to watch the new Beauty and the Beast movie. But I am not going to be complaining about all the changes they made. I am going to accept it for what it is. A new take on an old childhood fairy tale. I know it is not going to live up to my favourite Disney cartoon but it will never taint the 1994 version of the movie. If you are not happy to accept that times have changed and film makers want to put their own stamp on a movie, don’t go and see it.