Rumor Has It Disney May Be Giving Us an Afro-Latina Princess… Finally!

This year’s D23, a Comic Con-like expo devoted entirely to Disney, was nearly overrun by Marvel announcements, which had the full attention of many of their fans. However, Disney is still in the business of making timeless animation classics, and their latest announcement might mean that audiences are finally getting an Afro-Latina Disney princess.

Ariana DeBose’s transition from stage to screen culminated earlier this year when she won Best Supporting Actress at the Academy Awards for Steven Spielberg’s “West Side Story,” playing a character that Rita Moreno had played and won the Oscar for exactly 60 years prior.

Since then, people have not been able to get enough of the 31-year-old actress, who went on to host this year’s Tony Awards and has already been cast in a Marvel movie, “Kraven the Hunter,” which will be released as an installment in Sony’s SSU (Sony Spider-Man Universe). She was even on Time’s 2022 edition of the world’s 100 most influential people.

Now, she’ll be starring as a (potential) Disney princess in their latest original animated movie, “Wish.” According to The Mary Sue, the movie stars DeBose as 17-year-old Asha, who wishes on a star and is so desperate for help in her life that the star comes hurdling towards Earth. Don’t expect a Disney-fied version of “Don’t Look Up,” though, because Asha’s star is definitely much smaller than the one around which our planet revolves.

At D23, Asha was described as “driven, incredibly smart, and an optimist with a sharp wit. She sees darkness in the kingdom that nobody else sees and must find a way to help the people she loves,” reports Collider. Celebrated voice actor Alan Tudyk will be co-starring as Valentino, Asha’s trusty goat who gains the ability to talk after the star makes its way down to Earth.

The source also confirms that “Wish” is being created as a love letter to Disney animation classics and may also be an origin story of how the wishing star came into existence. Even the premise, they point out, is very reminiscent of movies like “Pinocchio,” which featured the classic Disney tune, “When You Wish Upon a Star.”

According to Deadline, the aforementioned kingdom is formally known as the Kingdom of Wishes, a place where wishes actually come true. The star that Asha brings down from the sky is described as a literal cosmic ball of energy and will communicate with Asha and Valentino through pantomime. The source also reports that the villain of this film is described as one of the most frightening we’ve yet seen in a Disney movie.

The animation style, too, will be unique as it blends traditional watercolor animation with the more contemporary, 3D animation style we’ve seen in recent decades. The film is already being touted as the next “Frozen,” one of Disney’s biggest hits ever, especially because “Frozen” co-director Chris Buck will be helming this film alongside Fawn Veerasunthorn while fellow “Frozen” co-director Jennifer Lee will be handling scripting duties.

Co-director Buck commented on the upcoming film, saying, “Fawn and I both grew up on Disney classics and fell in love with them,” adding, “Truly is no greater power in the universe than someone with a true wish in their hearts.” Meanwhile, co-writer Jennifer Lee said, “The film means so much to all of us at the studio and has been an incredible collaboration across all the generations,” before debuting test footage displaying the film’s unique animation style.

According to the film’s official IMDb page, “Wish” is scheduled for release on November 22, 2023.

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