The dust has barely settled after the release of Disney’s most recent smash-hit, Frozen, but fans are already looking forward to their next Disney princess fix. With a tentative release date of 2018, the Polynesian fantasy musical Moana has already managed to inspire its own very lively fandom.
The animated musical will tell the story of a young Polynesian sea-voyager and navigator, Moana Waialiki, and will be directed by the creators of The Princess and the Frog, Aladdin and The Little Mermaid. It apparently includes Moana going on an epic journey and meeting demi-gods from what the Disney wiki somewhat oxymoronically describes as “real mythology.”
Not much else is known about the film (because, you know, it isn’t out for another four years), but the fact that Moana will be Disney’s first Polynesian sea-voyaging princess is enough for many people to be majorly psyched already.
Illustration via emmasdisneyworld/Tumblr
The evolution of the Disney Princess brand has received a lot of attention in recent years, partly thanks to the addition of characters like Merida, the tomboyish heroine of Disney/Pixar’s Brave. The Princesses are one of the biggest media franchises aimed specifically at young girls, so many parents were glad to see more forward-thinking characters being introduced, to balance out the passivity of the more traditional princesses like Cinderella and Snow White. When Merida was given a more feminine makeover as part of her official induction into the Disney princess pantheon, there was actual public outcry for her to be returned to her original state.