Thursday, July 9, 2015

Folklore Thursday: 7 folktales I would rather watch than a live-action Prince Charming

Honestly, really?! The newest installment in Disney's "live action remake" craze is a movie about Prince Charming. Because what Hollywood needs in yet another live action movie featuring a dashing white dude.
(Unless they make a movie about a Prince Charming who is a person of color... which would be a surprising step from Disney)
What I don't understand is why Disney insists on recycling old material instead of continuing the trend of Tangled and Frozen and making new films from fairy tales that have survived been overlooked by them so far. There are so many that would be awesome on the screen.
In honor of Folklore Thursday, here is my wish list:

1. Twelve Dancing Princesses
Pretty please with cherry on top. Look, it already has the dancing and singing built in.

2. Jack and the Flying Ship
I know it would essentially turn into the Avengers on screen, but honestly, I would watch a folktale-Disney version of people with superhuman powers. Go figure. Bonus points if they do the Greek version with earthquake powers and a "plump princess" (this is one of the versions I included in my book).

3. The Frog Princess
The whole "animal bride" thing would be intriguing to watch... Plus the female protagonist and the mandatory witty Disney animal could be one and the same in this case. Doesn't necessarily need a frog - my favorite version is the Finnish story with the Mouse Princess who manages to be seductive even in her rodent form.

4. The Winged Wolf
Not just because it's a Hungarian folktale, but also because how awesome a winged wolf would be!

5. Bluebeard
Because it would be dark, and disturbing, and that fairy tale needs to be known by more people overseas. Bonus points if they do J. J. Reneaux's Cajun version, Marie Jolie.
(And maybe get Cajun culture right this time, *cough*Princessandthefrog*cough*)

6. The sea-hare
A princess that can see everything, and a hero that needs to hide from her. What an adventure and what a love story that would make... cool Hungarian version also available in my book, dear Disney, just sayin'.

7. The Daughter of the Sun
Italian folktale with a magical sassy female protagonist, some minor gore, and a whole lot of stunning visuals. Courtesy of Italo Calvino.

Come on, Disney. You can do better than Prince Charming. Don't sell yourself short.

6 comments:

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  2. Well, of course I'm all for Italo Calvino. You will allow me ;-)

    But I also like the story of the Twelve Dancing Princesses too. Do you know there is a novel retelling it in a 1920s setting? It has been on my TBR list forever. Sooner or later, I'll get to it.

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    1. I didn't know that! What's the title of the book?

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  3. I laughed at your Cajun culture reference. I grew up right outside of New Orleans and spent most of my viewing of the Frog Princess with my jaw open and whispering "No... they really didn't put a gap in his teeth." "No, they didn't ACTUALLY make the Cajun firefly "slow," too..) etc, etc. Bluebeard would be terrifying!!!

    Alex Hurst, A Fantasy Author in Kyoto

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    1. Right? Disney made that movie very uncomfortable for a number of reasons... XD

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  4. I'd like a "Jack and the Flying Ship" adaptation, but I'm actually more attached to its Grimm variant "How Six Men Got on in the World". The "Winged Wolf" has me curious. I need to get a book of Hungarian folk tales.

    As for the Charming movie, there are actually two of them coming out. One's a Disney live action picture and the other's an animated feature from the people who made Shrek. Now, I'm all for a fairy tale project with a male lead after having to put up with years of "princess culture". However, our culture kind of needs to get its head straight about what to do with the fairy tale prince archetype. Because of "Snow White", "Cinderella" and other stories where the prince plays a minor part, the concept has kind of devolved into a parody, usually as a dashing do-nothing or cad who's only good for kissing sleeping maidens. Strangely, one of the few Hollywood production to give ol' Charming any respect in recent years is OUaT.

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