Thursday, November 19, 2009

Prince Naveen -- Too Lukewarm for Some

Has Disney finally, totally gotten it right by introducing an African American princess into their cast of animated princess heroines? I hear a resounding "yes" from doll collectors, parents, along with a host of others who have longed to visualize a character of Princess Tiana's magnitude, who finds her ideal companion, Prince Naveen, the person with whom she realizes that pleasant dreams do come true. This resounding "yes" is from an African American female perspective, however.


Disney's Prince Naveen character from the movie, The Princess and the Frog

Let's completely exhale and consider the African American male perspective. Prince Naveen's ethnicity is clearly not African American. My best guess, using his tanned appearance as my first clue; his straight black hair, and the name, Naveen, as additional clues, is that he is of East Indian descent. So, our beloved Princess Tiana finds herself in love with someone "other than a black male," as one astute African American male, whose opinion is highly respected, describes Prince Naveen. He further adds:


The bottom-line here is that the young black boys and girls will not find themselves trusting, helping and loving each other by this movie's conclusion. It will be the beautiful black woman and the "tanned-other-than-a-black-guy-with-overt-white-features" who emerge together in perpetual bliss. And for many current and future black women who lack the presence of positive black males in their lives, this will help germinate seeds of doubtful character, insecurity and lack of trustworthiness in the black men they meet. And [there] are already droves of them out here who have literally stopped dating "their-own-kind!" Yup, this is really going to help the black family!
All children are impressionable and our babies, especially, need to know that there is nothing wrong with being black, regardless to what others attempt to insinuate.

I realize that Disney's attempt with this movie is to create a first as well as appeal to a wider audience than African Americans by incorporating other cultures into the mix. Princess Tiana's BFF, Charlotte, is Caucasian and, as stated, Prince Naveen is something "other than" African American. For Disney, it all boils down to the mighty dollar. Greater appeal equals greater profit from moviegoers and merchandise purchasers.


L-R:  Princess Tiana todder doll, Just One Kiss Princess Tiana doll, Prince Naveen and Princess Tiana Wedding Gift Set

While the concern that Princess Tiana's prince is not African American has always been my reality; like many others, I have been blind sighted by the ideal of our first African American animated princess, overlooking the obvious in the tan, other-than-black male character, Prince Naveen. While Princess Tiana is part of my doll collection in full force, Prince Naveen is not. This is not to say that I won't eventually purchase the doll and contribute to Disney's profit margin, but in this collection, he will not be someone "other than a black male."


After viewing the movie, parents should discuss it with their children, stressing its make-believe nature, emphasizing their individual morals and cultural values, and iterating and reiterating again and again that there is nothing anomalous about possessing a high concentration of melanin pigment. This especially needs to be stressed to young, black princes because they do exist.

What are your thoughts?


dbg ◦
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45 comments:

  1. I've actually been quite insulted by this whole "prince naveen is not black" fiasco. Firstly he could be black... just very light with er straight hair ok I know, highly unlikely. I'm biased as my own partner is South Asian... it's like people getting upset are saying South Asians or Latinos aren't worthy of *their* African American princess. Can't we all share? Dissing another minority group ain't gonna get anyone anywhere. I know, little kids are impressionable but most of the stuff I've read are by adults.

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  2. ... besides, I prefer the characters when they are frogs anyway.

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  3. I think Prince Naveen looks like a Euro+Sth Asian mix OR Euro-Latino... my own partner is more than just "tanned"... he's actually more like Princess Tiana's shade and with summer coming along, he'll be darker than her soon... African American people are not the only dark skinned people on Earth *grumble*

    This is an argument from the other side... the not white or black side... signed, me.

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  4. I have to agree with 'Dolls of Color'. I am currently in an interracial relationship and I honestly never questioned Prince Naveen's ethnicity. My daughter is single, well educated, and successful, and I could write a book about the type of AA males who try to "get with her." Notice that I didn't say "date" because most AA males under 35 are clueless to the concept of dating and chivalry. For the most part, them young men that she does date have mostly been other than black. Not because she wouldn't date a black man, but because she desires a man who can speak English, hold a job, has never been incarcerated, is not on parole or probation, is not affiliated with any gang, and appreciates her for who she is - not what she can provide. Sadly, not many of our young black men are in possession of these princely attributes....

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  5. First, I agree that Disney's motivation is big bucks - Black princess and "tan" prince = twofer. Given the Prince's name, Naveen, I guess he's not a light-complected Black male. I don't have a problem with a "mixed" race couple based on common interests or chemistry. So I would have to *see* the relationship onscreen before I could decide that it is negative.

    Next, I think that the "problem" about the interracial relationship occurs because there's a Black woman and an "Other" raced man. When this union occurs, the Black woman gets condemned for being a "race traitor." She's setting a bad example.

    However, when a Black man dates a White woman, it's like some great triumph. Would the backlash be so strong if it were Princess Blanche and Prince Kunta? Probably not, I guess.

    Last, this is one movie. Some people don't even watch Disney movies. I happily went my entire childhood without seeing ONE Disney movie. The parents' values and actions, that will weigh more with the kids than any one run movie.

    Thanks for this interesting post.

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  6. I agree with D7ana saying "First, I agree that Disney's motivation is big bucks - Black princess and "tan" prince = twofer."

    First BLACK princess

    First Sth Asian/Mixed/Latino/totally made up ethinicity prince

    $$$ kaching $$$

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  7. I have to ask the question “how do we know Naveen is not black”?. It is not like African American stick to a set of names. The names used in my family and by others I know come from all over the globe. We, as a people, like different/ unusual names and use them. Juanita is a Spanish name and I know a few Black women named Juanita. I had someone (white) say to me "Why do they keep calling President Obama (we have to give him the respect of his title if we expect others to) the first Black president. He is bi-racial. He doesn’t look African American.” I had to answer “what does an African America look like to you?” I said that by definition all African Americans are of mixed race or “bi-racial. The only pure African Americans are second generation Africans borne here and that is only if they are pure African. If he is bi-racial, what are his children? How much of another race do you have to have in you to be bi-racial and what makes one black or African American? Do we define ourselves as what we are? If we do, where does self definition end and self dilution begin for all of those who don’t what to claim an African heritage? Is there a “Soul Patrol” and who is on that committee? If we truly become global is there a place for race or will we all become mixed race? These are just questions and no hard and fast answers.

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  8. That's a good point about Naveen possibly being Black, I-Luv-Dolls. But I think he is "Other" for marketing purposes. The kaching factor.

    The USA adheres to the one-drop rule. If you take that mindset in consideration, you can understand why Tiger Woods would never be considered "Asian" or why President Obama is "Black." That background also influences the defensiveness of [some] Black people. Know one of the worst charges you can make against a Black person? That they aren't "true" to being Black. That they want to be "White" or other. And who decides an individual's authenticity? Ideally, the individual would, but in reality, sometimes the society that person encounters directly.

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  9. Hey D7ana…Maybe Naveen is to be marketed as “other” but the test will be how well do the dolls sell...together and apart. I've seen too many Aladdin’s and other ethnic males on ebay. They seemed to have stayed on the store shelves for a long time too. I think that anything other than obviously white males with blond hair don’t really sell. The Enchanted Robert doll hung around stores for a long time and he had great clothes and he was a pretty hot actor at the time. I know they know what sells. They are not releasing a lot of these dolls for sale. I have not seen as many Princess and the Frog dolls in store as I have seen of lines in the past. There is always a limit on non-white dolls but it seems to be even less on this line. Now… maybe it is the economy but there were two head molds of Mulan and a Captain Li Sang, The King and I had four dolls and two were Asian males, one Asian female and one white female (non-Mattel but still relevant) , there was a Snow White, the prince, the Evil Queen and the dwarfs. So with this line, you are not getting Tiana’s mother or her white friend doll. You get the Tiana and the prince only. I think the production is limited because they feel the dolls won’t sell as well. I think the sales would be the same if he were obviously Black or “other”. They could have had him come from an African county as a prince. There would be those who would have said “what??? She needs an African? An African American isn’t good enough?” There are not princes (African American or any other type) of the US and a prince does need to have a kingdom somewhere. Captain Smith sold better than any storybook male they have done. When you do a male doll, you take a hit! When you do an ethnic male you take a bigger hit whether he is black or “other”. By the way, when are they going to make a Steve the complexion of Alvin Ailey or Princess of south Africa Barbie?

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  10. Thanks for the active dialogue. I appreciate everyone's comments. The intent of this post was to share my initial concern regarding Prince Naveen's apparent non-black ethnicity. It is disheartening that black males are often vilified, demonized, and negatively categorized in media and in real life. The male who shared his concerns with me viewed a televised PATF trailer that portrays the antagonist (the Voodoo Priest) as black and sinister while the protagonist (Prince Naveen) is the exact opposite. His concern is the potential negative impact the Voodoo Priest will have for young children. How many will be afraid of black men after viewing the movie? I decided to lend my voice to this issue, based on my initial concern and my question: Why can't Princess Tiana share her crown with an African American prince and why must the demonization of the black male continue? Finally, Disney's other past princesses all shared their happily-ever-after-ness with males of the same ethnicity. Princess Tiana is not allowed the same privilege.

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  11. I-Luv-Dolls - I just read your second comment. Your point about a prince needing to have a kingdom somewhere is quite valid.

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  12. "Disney's other past princesses all shared their happily-ever-after-ness with males of the same ethnicity"

    Well, actually... I'd like to point out that Pocahontas didn't end up with anyone at the end of the film... even though in real life she did end up marryiing a John Rolfe who is of English background.

    This might be a bit of a stretch... but wouldn't you consider merpeople and humans to be completely different races as opposed to the made up races of actual human society... I think Ariel the mermaid ended marrying not-one-of-her-own-kind.

    Oh yeah, that does make me ask... how come we don't see many merpeople who have non-European features as well as vampires? Hmmm???

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  13. D7ana - about the reactions to black female + light male vs black male + white female.

    (This is a heavy topic so please delete if it is not appropriate for this discussion.)

    I think the reactions to the B.Wom+W.Man vs B.Man+W.Wom is due to context in relation to the slavery past in the US and elsewhere. In the past, black women NEVER ever was allowed to even have consent in any relationship with a white man. It would always be a gross misbalance of power... for a modern B.Wom to be a with W.Man would probably be seen as submitting herself (and not in a good way) to a "white masta". Of course, this is not true of an equal relationship nowadays but the underlying thoughts can be so. If a B.Man is with a W.Wom, it is seen as sticking it to the dominant oppressive culture. What's the chances of a W.Man and B.Wom having a respected relationship prior to Civil Movement? Pretty much nil... it is seen as progressive as opposed to the BW+WM relationship with is seen as regressive.

    All this "historical context" doesn't even allow for "interracial" relationships between homosexual people!

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  14. DOC - I agree; your comment is quite heavy. I won't delete it, but I'd like for any additional comments to reference the dolls mentioned in my original post. Thanks!

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  15. I should admit that I do not follow the Disney dolls regularly; if I see one I like, I buy it. I don't always know the back story. In this case, I was not aware that there was a Black Voodoo Priest acting against Prince Naveen. With that tidbit, I can understand the "problem" with Naveen not being presented as obviously Black. It's not the interracial relationship; it's that the main Black male character is evil in contrast to the good and heroic, tan/Other male character. Now I *see* the "problem."

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  16. You know, its funny... I grew up without a father and fantasized as a black male child that when I became a man, I would be someone's prince. And I sincerely worship my chocolate princess of 15 years. Disney had a chance to affirm and celebrate black love in this film. An affirmation and celebration that would have gone a long way in the socialization of black children to love one another beyond the playground or classroom. [Wake up and remember the initial prince was devised to be a caucasian male.] Unfortunately, we are stuck with yet another very subtle, subliminal and insideous message that the black male is not the black female's ideal partner. A partnership that, in real life terms, spans the mortgage, the bedroom, the delivery room, the hug on that Carribean sandy beach, etc. You get the point.

    As for some of the previous comments...

    This is not an attack on inter-racial dating or love. Love is a treasure, regardless where it originates! Comments like that are so knee-jerk cliche and small minded. Try to stay on topic here.

    As for the retail driven supply/demand side of choosing a "tanned-other-than-a-black-guy-with-overt-white-features" prince for a doll/character... Why do people (99.99% of them being consumers) readily rationalize the motives of corporations moving product and services in the marketplace? Is a Disney Board of Directors member making comments here? I don't think so. The bottom-line is what is wrong with pairing a young black female and male together at the "start" of this animation project? The first animated film in Disney's 86 year history that includes an African American protagonist, female in this case. That is what the blog post is really about.

    In my view Disney made a very conscious decision to completely ignore - some would say undermine - the love I, and hundreds of millions of men of african descent around the world, readily give/want to give to our young black women. And not celebrating this in this "AA princess first" is damn shameful on Disney.

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  17. Thanks Chris for sharing your comment, which is exactly what the post was about -- Disney's lack of vision to include an AA prince in the Princess and the Frog movie.

    This is not the first time an AA princess was not allowed an AA prince in a movie. I've seen several previews of the 1997 AA version of Cinderella starring Brandy as Cinderella and Whitney Houston as her fairy godmother, which is scheduled to air on TV One (I believe) this week. Cinderella's prince in this movie is also unquestionably not African American, but curiously Whoopi Goldberg plays his mother!

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  18. While I get all princes need a kingdom, but this movie is aimed at kids. Who aren't going to care whether his kingdom is real or not. Most Disney princesses are in fictional settings, the places they live are made up. So Disney had no real reason not to make a black prince as far as I'm concerned.

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  19. I am not African-American but I am black and of African descent. For that matter I also have Native American and European bloodlines. However, at first appearance I am black. I think the real argumetn here is that as much as black people want a heroine we also want a black hero to look up to and help break some of the stereotypes that make us uncomfortable in our skin. This may be neither here nor there for some people and there may not be a right or wrong answer but there is definitely a demographic that is looking for a black hero and a black heroine.

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  20. Exactly, Tiffany! I am glad you understood the meaning of this post.

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  21. Thanks "Always Me," for understanding the true meaning of the post as well and for sharing your thoughts.

    dbg

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  22. prince naveen is from maldonia, the made up land. hes not black/white/asian etc hes supposed to be a multi-racial character of no exact background hence the made up country. therefore Disney can now say they've included all racial minorites into their movies.

    the film was awesome :D

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  23. Having read this very interesting dialogue, which I appreciate mainly because people have managed to keep a mature level of discussion (unlike most that I've read), I would like to comment on one thing:
    Whenever the interracial part of this movie's plot is brought up, people always seem to have a problem with it...but what if Naveen had been black too? I guarantee that there would have been an equally large discussion about Disney's apparent lack of interest in interracial relationships. The fact that this is Disne'ys first black princess puts a huge pressure on them, and there's no way they would have been able to please everybody. Personally, I think it's great that Naveen was neither white nor black.

    And incidentally, for all those who would prefer to see Tiana with a black man, "for the sake of celebrating and affirming black love", as Chris said (which, by the way, is not something I disagree with) - this WAS represented in the film, by Tiana's parents, and quite beautifully I might add.

    Love is beautiful regardless of race or gender, in my opinion.

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  24. i read somewhere that Maldonia was an old country in the British isles.

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  25. I find it really far-reaching to say that this lovely children's movie is insinuating that young black men are not good marriage material. Leave it to some people to turn anything into an opportunity to complain about racism. As far as the movie trying to say that black men are not meant to be married, does anyone remember Tiana'a lovely gentleman of a father?

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  26. Yes, I do remember Princess Tiana's loving, caring father; but those who might have blinked during the first few scenes of the movie may not. He died within the first few minutes of the movie!

    dbg

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  27. look at the logistics of what cultures had Kingdoms with Kings and Queens. Now please tell me what African American Cultures have had Kingdoms with Kings and Queens to the magnitude that many of the Disney films draw their time period and cultural significance from, such as Cinderella or Sleeping Beauty. Tina was growing up in a time where many Kingdoms like that no longer existed like that in the first place. So how would a girl growing up in New Orleans become a princess, cause the movie relies heavenly on Tina receiving the title of Princess at some point . Well she would have to Mary a prince, so please tell me what other option did she have than someone besides Navine, who came from a fictitious country based on one of several of the last countries of that time period that still had Monarchies. Did any of those countries include and African culture with Back Africans as the rulers? Cause historically if there was then I'm sure Disney would have pulled a Black Prince based on the Royalty of some African/Black ruled kingdom from that time period. Chances are that that situation/kingdom didn't actually exist. Unless Tina were to Mary the son of a Chief from some African Tribe, but how would one of them every afford to get to New Orleans in the first place, and why would someone in the life every care to visit New Orleans at all. Unless Disney decided to Make up a Kingdom that had a Black Prince. So, in attempt to keep certain elements of this animated film mildly realistic to keep a certain angle of appeal, and East Indian or Southern American Prince based on a culture and Kingdom that may have actually existed at the time the movie took place was the best choice, other wise the movie may have significantly suffered if the fabricated the role of Navine any further.

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  28. I understand exactly where BDE was coming from when he posted this review and opened it for discussion. The point is not to bring down other races but to discuss whether or not the character ethnicities in the film insinuated something negative about the black (male in particular) culture. I have to respectfully disagree. I've seen the movie several times and found it very complimentary to my AA heritage. The antagonist in the movie, a black male witch doctor, was evened out quite nicely by the also black but good female witch doctor. And I would have to agree with Vulpine_Empress that black love was wonderfully exemplified in Tiana's parents. I get that her father died, but that didn't take away from his good character any, if possible it made him seem more preeminent. I think the movie came as close as it possibly could to pleasing everybody. Good AA relationship in Tiana's parents, interracial relationship with Tiana and Naveen, good Caucasian in Lottie and bad Caucasian in Lawrence, good black voodoo doctor in Mama Odie and bad black voodoo doctor in The Shadow Man. Oh and by the way prince Naveen is Euro-Latino. A friend thought he was Italian while I believed he was Latino. So we looked it up and the language he is speaking is a mixture Italian/Spanish/Portuguese and the voice of Naveen is done by someone from Brazil.

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  29. I tried to read every word of every other persons' posts but forgive me if I have missed something. Naveen is "ambiguous" bc he is the love interest of both Tiana and her best friend (rich, white) Charlotte.

    In the end, Naveen chooses Tiana over Charlotte and that alone makes the movie good for my daughter to see.

    I am not a huge fan of the way Disney makes it seem like finding a man who will agree to marry you is the best thing you could ever hope for in life so I was glad we were getting our black princess but I wasn't planning to throw money at Disney in gratitude. My fairly radical friend told me to take my 4 yr old to see it right away and that I would be pleased that Tiana is the most feminist of any Disney princess ever.

    We love Tiana at our house. Leah has on her Tiana dress right now - almost a year after her Tiana birthday party. Last night I told her she was prettier to me than Tiana and she said that couldn't be true because Tiana has long hair and her's is short. Yes- it is starting already.


    Disney did a phenomenal job with the movie - the racial stuff isn't in your face but it also doesn't cause your kid to say "what's wrong with me".

    At Thanksgiving we saw a play that caused us to learn a ton about NOLA at the turn of the century esp in terms of racial intermixing. The idea that a prince from a small country called Maldonia and seeming to be a mix of France, Spain and Portugal is dead on - and the idea that he would court both Charlotte and Tiana is also dead on.

    Other things about Tiana to appreciate is that it has made Leah really proud that her daddy's roots trace back to Louisiana (slavery actually) - she sees NOLA as this incredible place with a proud history.

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  30. Also, I have seen this movie, like, 200 times now so I know the nuances more than I even care to.

    Naveen is a player. He doesn't want to work. He wants to dance and flirt and avoid all of life's responsibilities. Tiana's love transforms him.

    Given his original nature...do you still want him to be black? or is "ambiguous" okay?

    More to love - Disney used the colors of Mardi Gras - purple, yellow and green - in pastel as the Tiana colors. I love that. Disney put a lot of thought into this movie.

    Another thing - I am a big fan of the idea of black women looking beyond black men for potential love interests. This is for a variety of reasons - which I won't go into bc it would get "heavy". This movie presents an option to black women like my daughter and neice and it does it in a beautful, affirming way.

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  31. Ms. Tyler - Thank you for your comments. I enjoyed reading them. Please keep in mind that this blog was written months before the movie The Princess and the Frog was released. The blog was prompted by Disney's lack of vision to create an authentically black male as Tiana's prince. As Tiffany iterated in her comment, "There is definitely a demographic that is looking for a black hero and a black heroine." The lack of characters that fit this description, together-in-the-same-move, also prompted me to write this blog.

    dbg

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  32. Prince Naveen was not sold in Germany and many wanted him to buy.
    I am in dollsclubs so I know that.
    I am not happy they dont sell him
    in Germany. Evelyn

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  33. What a wonderful world it would be for all doll collectors if all dolls they desired were sold in their locales. Unfortunately, this is not the case for most of us. There are dolls that American doll collectors desire that are only sold in other countries. The hunt and chase of doll collecting is heighted by our limited accessibility. But then, there is always eBay.

    dbg

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  34. This is a fantastic thread. I feel it important to add that all demographic and census data point to the same immutable fact: biracial Americans are increasing in number exponentially. In light of this reality, in my opinion this film embraces not a post-racial America, but the "normalcy" of a biracial America. Being of South Asian and Puerto Rican decent, and having cousins of Puerto Rican and AA decent, I was happy to see what seemed to be different people of color romancing one another. This blog is about dolls, though, so as a person of color, all I can add is that the more people of color in mainstream media, the better.

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  35. Prince Naveen kinda looks like Rick Fox when he was younger.

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  36. Prince Naveen is not "African American", but this does not mean that he is not of African descent. He is from a fictional country called Maldonia...so clearly this makes him NOT African-American, because he is not American at all. However, I think we can imagine that he is of whatever ethnic background we like...for those that want a "black prince", one likely idea is that he could be from a part of Africa where the people are from a mixture of ethnicities (think of places like Eritrea, for example), or places in South America like Brazil or Guyana where people are of African (or mixed) descent. We can also remember that Tiana's father is highly admired by her in the movie and is a great example of a black man who loves and provides for his family and community.

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  37. Dbg,

    Thanks for responding to my earlier comment. It does make sense to me that feelings and opinions are different now that the movie in it's entirety can be seen and considered.

    Since this continues to be a popular post for your blog I wanted to provide a few interesting updates. My daughter and I continue to try to "vote with our dollars" to let Disney know how important Tiana is to us.

    We were in the Disney store the other day and I noticed two very interesting things - there was a set of small characters from the movie where Naveen appears almost as dark as Tiana. Also, in the new 16" Tiana doll (sings when hand is pressed) Tiana not only has her upswept bun but it is surrounded by a mass of curly hair as well. It's as if they have received a lot of feedback about the need for "natural" hair and found a way to convert her style to natural without significantly changing the profile of silhouette of the "bun" style. I was pleased with both changes. I took pics but they didn't turn out very good.

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  38. Thanks for the information on the new Princess Tiana and Prince Naveen products offered at the Disney store. If the new dolls resulted from customer feedback, kudos to Disney.

    I think this post remains popular because it is the headlining post under the Popular Posts category. The link to this post is at eye level and readily accessible on the main page were new entries appear. If I close the Popular Post feature, "Prince Naveen -- Too Lukewarm For Some" may not remain the most popular.

    dbg

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  39. I found this blog because I was curious what language Naveen was speaking. I have to say speaking from the perspective of a Tan non-african-american man who is married to an african-american woman with a child; I felt that it was refreshing that Disney shed away it's "birds of feather" mentality when it comes to onscreen relationships ie... Junglebook or Shrek. The eclectic casting of this movie from Keith David's Shadow man, to Tiana's father and from Naveen to the silly swamp hunters felt well balanced, and well meaning. It presented a story which showed that they're villians and heroes regardless of ethnicity and socioeconomic implications. I think anyone appalled by Naveen's ethnicity being somewhat ambiguous is possibly compensating for their own insecurities. My wife, my son and I enjoyed this movie very much, and it was nice for once to see a couple that we could relate to in an obvious instant classic movie.

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  40. Josh - I am sure Disney is delighted that you found the movie refreshing and relevant to your situation.

    dbg

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  41. I think the relevancy lies in that Tiana chose her partner based on emotional connection instead of a physical attraction, remember she didn't really see him until he was a frog, or Naveen solely saving her. They worked together and in the end they saved each other from a life of regret. I think the lesson of a relationship growing and becoming stronger by compromising without sacrificing the dreams of either partner will have positive implications for all woman regardless of ethnicity.

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  42. This comment has been removed by the author.

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  43. Hi again, Josh -- I agree with your observation (Tiana fell for Naveen when they were both frogs... they saved each other... there were no regrets).

    Please note that this blog originated prior to the movie's actual release and prior to my actual viewing of it (which was done on DVD long after the movie left the theater).

    However, without even viewing the movie, the first AA Disney princess to star in an animated film fascinated me as 1) a black-doll collector who knew dolls would be inevitable and 2) little black girls would finally see an animated [character] and doll [as a] princess that reflects their image. They would no longer need to idealize non-black princesses. So why couldn't or shouldn't her prince be AA?

    With that said, and again, without having viewed the movie, my opinions regarding Disney's selection of Naveen as Tiana's prince were based on hollywood's tendency to 1) often utilize black males (if at all) in supporting roles, 2) to vilify the black male, 3) or have him die off after the first few scenes because his presence is not regarded as important.

    In this first animated movie to feature an AA as a princess, it was "my" desire and would have been "my" preference for Tiana's prince to be an AA male, too. (Mine of 39 years is.) Hollywood seems to think that love between AA males and females is an anomaly.


    dbg

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  44. I know this is a very old post, but it popped up as a 'favorite post' and it reminded me that today I saw a Princess and the frog playset at target (polly pocket sized, not barbie sized) and Naveen was very dark skinned. I havent seen any other Naveens in a while, so that one may be an anomaly. But there he was.

    Of course, now I realize this comment is worthless without a picture.

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  45. Thanks, Ms. Lola -- no (positive/informative) comment is every worthless here with or without a picture.

    :-)

    Thanks again!

    dbg

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Thank you! Your comments are appreciated!