Hello & welcome back to A Look at Disney.  Just recently,  Disney made a majorannouncement of their first Latina princess.   However,  she will not be appearing  in her own movie.  Rather, the character Elena will debut on an episode of the Disney Junior show, Sofia The First and then be spun off into her own titular show.  Disney  describes  her as bold, fun and caring.

The role of 16 year-old Princess Elena, the bold, caring, funny and clever ascendant to the throne in the fairytale kingdom of Avalor, will be voiced by Aimee Carrero (ABC Family’sYoung & Hungry).

The announcement of this new princess has been met with mixed reception.  Some are happy  at  the prospect  of a Latina princess for young girls and I get that why not?  But some Disney  fans are a little disappointed that she is being relegated to the preschool block and that Disney is not actually making a movie featuring a Latina princess.  Which is understandable and Disney Junior Senior Vice President, Nancy Kanter did not help by implying that Elena is not actually Latina but rather inspired by Latin cultures.  Which this ties  back into  something that happened around the time that Sofia was premiering three years ago because originally,  Sofia was supposed to be a Hispanic princess but Disney quickly recanted on that statement, when  they were getting complaints that Sofia was not Hispanic enough.  Show creator, Craig Gerber still stands by Sofia  being of this ethnicity.

As  for  my personal feelings on Elena,  I am interested to see what  Disney can do with her  and  this could be a good  to  expose young  girls  to another culture that they may not know much about.  Sure,  Dora  has had this turf but  the main Dora  show has ended and  now Nick is airing a new show with her a ten year old.  My view  is that I do not  believe that Disney is looking for a Dora clone here.  I do believe that  this show will teach children about Elena’s culture but  it will  not  talk down to children like Dora does.  And with Elena being older than Dora at 16,  that could  lead  to some  interesting storytelling opportunities because as I’ve read as one of the big themes of the show will  be Elena  learning how to rule her kingdom.

At the end of the day,  I feel I need to see more of this new princess before I can make a judgement but I do feel that Disney is trying to do a good thing and I hope it works out for them. What are your thoughts on Elena? Tell me in the comments. Peace!

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