On December 21st, it will be seventy-eight years since the realise of the company’s first full length animation film, Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs. Throughout this time, the studios has seen many up’s and down’s with its theatrical realises, and direct-to-video films and sequels. Currently, Disney is at its highest peak since their realise of Frozen in Christmas 2013. Through some of these films, there have been some iconic female characters who have been created princesses of their own right. Princesses like Belle, Cinderella, Snow White, Aurora and their latest princesses Anna and Elsa. But what about those who aren’t princesses? Don’t they deserve to be princesses too?
So in honour of the women who didn’t make the cut, I’ll be posting my first top ten countdown of my favourite unofficial Disney princesses. This countdown is based on only female Disney characters who didn’t make to the official princesses lists because of box office flops, non-humans, didn’t make a lot of money on theatrical realise or because they haven’t starred in their own main feature films.
So here they are; my top ten:
- Maid Marian (from the 1973 film, Robin Hood)
A relative to the English Royal family (niece to King Richard as matter of fact), best friend to her lady-in-waiting, Lady Kluck and the love interest of England’s greatest hero, Robin Hood, it seems to me that Maid Marian is the perfect candidate to be ranked as a Disney Princess. The only problem? She’s a vixen! Now, how can Disney disregard Maid Marian as a “princess” if she’s a member of the dog family, as is Robin Hood? Also, Robin Hood did well at the time of it’s realise; however, the film received mixed reviews decades after. Is that the reason why she is not classified as a princess in the Disney genre?
What puts Maid Marian in the number ten spot is her spirit, dreams of finding love, and making things right with her Robin and is very kind. So, do Disney need to re-think twice or do the critics need to change their minds about Robin and his Maid Marian?
- Giselle (from the 2007 film, Enchanted)
She’s the second transformative, modern Disney character since Mulan to change her ways – from being a damsel in distress to become a true heroine. Giselle is also a beautiful, happy, kind and (in my opinion) adorable. So why isn’t Giselle an official Disney princess?
Well, Giselle was really, really close to becoming one; that is until she was dissed by Disney lawyers that the studios said they had to pay Amy Adam royalties for using her likeness in the film. So what resulted in this was disapproval and Giselle being taken off the princess list. However, Giselle is still a fan favourite and at this moment, a squeal is in its early stages of development! So it looks like we’ll being seen Giselle sometime soon.
- Melody (from the 2000 sequel, The Little Mermaid 2: Return to the Sea)
Melody is a daughter of an official princess, Ariel, and a royal prince, Eric and the granddaughter of King Triton; this means that her claim as a princess is really strong as she is related to both royal families of the land and seas. If she was an official Disney princess, Melody would have been the youngest princess on the list. If only there weren’t three problems.
- The Little Mermaid 2 didn’t do really well and received negative reviews from critics
- The second was the film, being a direct-to-video squeal
- This is a possible one – Melody’s age. In the film, Melody is twelve years old while all the Disney princesses are between sixteen and twenty-one years old. Could this be an issue since Disney thought Melody was too young to be a princess?
- Wendy Darling (from the 1953 film, Peter Pan)
She’s not a royal, but she is a major character in Peter Pan. So why is Wendy not an official princess?
Is it because of the reviews? No. Peter Pan did well on its theatrical realise and gained positive reviews.
Is it her physical appearance? No. Wendy is prefect as she is; young or not.
Was she involved in radical stereotypes? No. Although Tiger Lily was due to the film’s mocking of Native Americans at the time.
So why is Wendy not a Disney princess? You can blame Tinkerbell for this one.
Upon the films realise, Tinkerbell overshadowed Wendy by taking her spotlight as a favourite female lead. So I guess that makes Wendy the completely forgotten Disney princess. Too bad; Wendy could have been a sensation but she still is in my eyes. 😉
- Nala (from the 1994 film, The Lion King)
Upon The Lion King’s realise, it became one of the highest grossing animated films of all time before it was knocked to third place by Frozen and Toy Story 3! L
So why isn’t Nala on the list? Like Marian, she’s not a human; she’s a lioness.
But I love Nala because of her kindness, fun attitude and her loyalty to Simba. Who can argue with that?
- Kida Nedakh (from the 2001 film, Atlantis: The Lost Empire)
She is a princess by birth (like Princess Aurora) and expectably beautiful.
However, Kida isn’t an official princess because she becomes Queen after the death of her father (towards the end of the movie) and Atlantis was a flop at the box office. Still, she had a squeal but that didn’t do too well either…
- Lilo Pelekai (from the 2002 film, Lilo and Stitch)
Lilo is an adventurous, free-spirited, dysfunctional girl who always gets into trouble. She’s also an outsider because she doesn’t fit in with other girls. Lilo is a unique and inspirational character who is well loved because we can all relate to her.
I’m not entirely sure why Lilo isn’t a Disney princess but I believe it maybe because of her age, like Melody and Wendy. Or is there another reason? Who knows…
- Kiara (from the 1998 sequel, The Lion King 2: Simba’s Pride)
Like Melody and Kida, Kiara is a princess by birth and has a strong calm. Kiara isn’t an official princess for a couple of reasons:
- She’s a lioness (like her mother, Nala)
- The second Lion King movie is a direct-to-video squeal
- The movie didn’t so well, as it received negative reviews from critics.
I guess, mother and daughter aren’t having too much luck with popularity, or success either.
But in my opinion, Kiara is beautiful and strong willing; just the prefect princess, and an inspiration to young girls and women everywhere. 🙂
- Ting-Ting, Su and Mei (from the 2005 sequel, Mulan 2)
Okay, Disney have made a very weird choice on this one. While the first Mulan film was a huge success and Mulan was declared an official princess (even though she isn’t a princess by right or by marriage; she’s a princess because of her heroism and bravery – I see no problem with Mulan being a princess because she’s a real inspiration ), Mulan 2, and Ting-Ting, Su and Mei were not.
Ting-Ting, Su and Mei are princesses by birth because they are daughters to the Emperor. However, these three beautiful women haven’t made it to the list for two reasons:
- The film was a direct-to-video (and DVD) sequel)
- Mulan 2 was a flop and it received negative reviews
It’s a real shame because I really love these three princesses, especially Mei who is a sweet character in my eyes. 🙂
- Jane Porter (from the 1999 film Tarzan)
Ever since I can remember, I had a huge thing for Jane; I really love her; I look up to her as my inspiration and I wish she was my big sister. I also had a huge crush on Tarzan because, come on, he’s super cute and boiling hot. He just makes me want to drool…
Anyway, back to Jane. Why isn’t she a Disney princess?
The film did really well at the box office; in fact it was a massive success, like The Lion King, there were no battles between female characters and the film was very clean (in reference to stereotypes). So, what’s the real reason Jane isn’t a princess?
Like Giselle, Jane was so close to become a Disney princess; she even appeared on the front cover of the official Disney princess magazine in the UK!
Issue #18 of “Disney’s Princess” magazine, where Jane Porter is on the front cover
The other reasons that Jane isn’t a Disney princess is because that her dress is the same as Belle’s dress (which was really confusing), because Tarzan is the King of the Jungle and due to a lawsuit by Burroughs’ family estate, Disney isn’t allowed to make any further Tarzan movie series and television shows (sorry Legend of Tarzan fans), following the direct-to-video squeal, Tarzan 2.
But another reason for Jane not being a Disney princess is Tarzan’s family.
When Tarzan was a baby, his real parents were murdered by a leopard and was adopted into the clan by Kala, the alpha female. When he grows up, he becomes the alpha male and leader of his clan.
So does Tarzan’s adoption have anything to do with Jane, as an unofficial princess? I’m not too sure on this one.
But, what if Burroughs’ family estate was okay with Disney, marketing Jane as an official Disney princess? Should Disney re-official Jane as a princess, even though she’s a Queen. Just like they did with Elsa from Frozen?!
Re think this one, Disney; with all of your unofficial princesses. Please, for the sake of your fans. 🙂
So, there you have it. Those are my top ten unofficial princesses.
Who are your favourite unofficial Disney Princesses? Also, do you think Disney should re think, change their minds about re-officiating their unofficial princesses and treat them as equals by letting these ladies becoming princesses in their own right?
That’s all for now; I’ll try and upload more poetry and favourite quotes tonight, but I have to up early again tomorrow.
Hopefully, I’ll see you soon.