10 Disney Firsts that are Not

1.  Frozen is not the first Pixar/Disney film with a female director.  

Brave’s Brenda Chapman was the first female director at Disney, at least until she was removed from the project that she had scripted and fought for.  Females being fired from their projects at Disney is kind of a habit, actually, as Sharon Morrill was removed from the Tinkerbell project.  While I agree that this was probably better for the franchise in the end, it didn’t take long till Disney started cranking out the very thing that had brought Morrill the pink slip, dependence on lackluster sequels.


2.  Frozen, also not the first one to show that a woman doesn’t need a man.

You have seen Brave, haven’t you?  Or Mulan?  Pocahontas? Alice in Wonderland? Checked out the cast of Tinkerbell?  Did you think about Dumbo or Bambi’s single mothers?


It is, however, possibly the first Disney film with a gay family.

3.  Frozen, yet again, not the first (or even the best) sister movie.

Nani gave up her dreams at 19 to take care of her sister when their parents died.  They may have fought and argued, but she tolerated and accomodated Lilo’s idiosyncrasies.  She let Lilo blast Elvis all day long, she let Lilo pick the ugliest dog in the pound and name it Stitch, and she turned down a date with a hot, sweet, wonderful surfer dude so that she could focus on taking care of her sister.  In Nani’s words, “I’m the only one who understands her.  If you take that away, she doesn’t stand a chance!”  Ohana means not locking your family out of your life and then cursing them with an eternal storm so you can go discover yourself.

Lilo and Nani

If you didn’t cry at this, you have no heart.

4.  Elsa, so not Disney’s first queen.   

Kida is queen, goddess, and alternative energy source all rolled into one.

Also, possibly Plinkly.


5. Tiana, not the first American princess or the first African princess.  

Those titles go to Pocahontas and Nala, respectively.  Tiana is still the first African American princess, which is noteworthy, and we hope Disney doesn’t stop there!

6.  Walt Disney’s first company was not called Disney.  

It was based in Kansas City and called Laugh-o-grams.  It went bankrupt and Walt moved out West.  We’re kind of glad that it did, because I don’t want to admit to being a Laugh-o-fan.

7.  Mickey Mouse was not Disney’s first animated mouse character.

Originally, the iconic murine was named Mortimer, although the style was kept and Mortimer eventually became the name of the tall, cocky mouse who ribs Mickey and tries to woo Minnie.

8.  Sofia the First is not the first Latina princess….because she’s not Latina.  

It took a very long time to get an African American heroine, and then another long time for a Polynesian main character.   So, at the rate that Disney is moving, Hispanics can expect their first representation…in about 2027, if another ethnic group doesn’t cut in line.

9.  Beauty and the Beast wasn’t the first Disney film to win Best Picture

Mary Poppins stole that in 1965.  As the movie features several scenes with live-action and animated characters interacting, you could almost say that it was the first animated movie to do so, as well.  The studio has continued to rake in nominations for the category, though, with Up and Toy Story 3.  That doesn’t even include all the Best Shorts and Honorary awards that Walt received.

10. Flynn Rider was not the first Disney character to question why everyone is singing

Enchanted’s Robert Phillip, owner of the princiest princy name ever given to a non-prince, finds it odd and a little discomforting that everyone in Central Park seems to know the lyrics and dance moves to Giselle’s favorite song.


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