Skip to main content

Disney Is Making Its First Movie About An African Princess… But She Won’t Be Black

Avatar • May 16, 2015

*Sigh* In today’s, ‘who told them this would be a good idea?’ news; Disney is working on a film called The Princess of North Sudan… but it’s not about a Sudanese girl. It’s based on the true story of Jeremiah Heaton, a Virginia farmer who, after discovering that Bir Tawil in North Sudan is the only unclaimed piece of land on earth, claimed it so that his daughter could be a real life princess.

53c0392d2fe67.image

2890E9AA00000578-3077444-Jeremiah_Heaton_and_his_daughter_Princess_Emily_Jeremiah_37_clai-a-2_1431389606083

After news outlets picked up the story in 2014 Heaton got a lot of flack for what many felt was present‐day colonialism: a white man finding an ‘unclaimed’ land and taking it for personal gain.

HelloGiggles.com has more details on how, exactly, Heaton made his claim;

“planting a flag in Sudan [and] making a white girl the princess of an African country” is exactly what Heaton did, from a completely literal and neutral perspective. In June 2014, the Virginia farmer traveled 6,000 miles (including 14 hours in a caravan) to the unclaimed territory, all in order to plant a flag originally designed by his children on the back of a restaurant placemat. The “country’s founding” was on his daughter’s 7th birthday.

I just followed the same process as many others have done over hundreds of years, planted our flag, and claimed it,” Heaton told The Guardian. The process Heaton is referring to is, of course, colonialism — but he insists that his case is different.”

Wow 🙁

Heaton claims that he wants to help the Sudanese people by using “his” land to try new agricultural methods. And as for Disney, by all indications, they are really going through with this.

It’s very unclear why on earth Disney thinks it would be a good idea to bring this story to the silver screen. Aside from the uncomfortable parallels to colonialism, many are pointing out how offensive it is that Disney’s first African princess movie will center on a white American girl.

Ladies, what are your thoughts?

50
Leave a Reply

avatar
29 Comment threads
21 Thread replies
0 Followers
 
Most reacted comment
Hottest comment thread
36 Comment authors
SharksticksProudafricanCosita$7275329Sarah Recent comment authors
  Subscribe  
Notify of
lis
Guest
lis

Yawn.….

OneMind
Guest
OneMind

Oh get a grip!
People whine Disney is racist but run to take their kids to the newest movie. I’m sure all you’re kids have seen frozen and are addicted to it. So stop saying their racist but buy their crap.

lis
Guest
lis

I said yawn because same old same old.…and I agree..Blacks complain and complain about TV and movies being racist and we are not represented, etc etc …yet can’t seem to stop watching TV or not supporting their movies…so yawn.

Leelee
Guest
Leelee

This ain’t right — but this is Disney we are talking about it has no baring on my life or my future children’s- that’s what books & real knowledge are for!!

Bigantic
Guest
Bigantic

http://www.theguardian.com/world/2014/jul/16/american-claim-africa-science-jeremiah-heaton-egypt-sudan

I read through a few articles and am wondering how this dude is going to pull off any of his plans without getting killed.

However, this would be an interested documentary if it was just marketed as such — a story of a crazy man who planted a homemade flag in Africa. Not a Princess movie.

PS
For my seventh birthday, I got a bike.

JTC
Guest
JTC

You all are ridiculous… Why can’t you just be happy for the man and his daughter?? It’s not like he colonized it for his country and is picking up slaves like the old times. He is even HELPING the local people with their farming yet you still complain?!? The land was unused and unclaimed anyway and I bet the money he’s giving them as he travels there is certainly helping.. He did something I bet none of you have even come close to doing which is why it’s being made into a movie. Stop hating and crying racist about every… Read more »

BlueCornMoon
Guest
BlueCornMoon

Because it’s unacceptable ! I’m of the generation that grew up in the 60s during the civil rights era at the end of segregation. Altho things have changed for the better there are still white folks that continue to find ways to put themselves in some kind of “in charge” or “savior” position when dealing with minorities. Many are reluctant to listen to us about our own culture. Case in point : I ‘m a church singer have sometimes sung in mixed, mostly white church choirs & chamber choirs whose directors decided to do black spirituals. In once case the… Read more »

Thea
Guest
Thea

I completely agree…I could not have said it better.

Dee
Guest
Dee

over 80% of africa is black. i would know. but they go to the few that arent. not showing any culture or anything but they did that with brave, mulan etc. thats why its a big deal they purposely chose not to pick one of the millions of folk tales or stories to make movie on

Sugabelly
Guest

Did anybody ask him for his help??????????? We didn’t ask him for help. He needs to sit his ass down in Virginia.

Bianca
Guest
Bianca

Girl hush! That’s the problem with white supremacy, no one EVER asks for their help, they force it upon everyone, and PLEASE, tell me ONE GOOD thing that has ever came out of white “help”? America has been at war in Iraq and other surrounding countries since I was in the first grade, I am now finishing college and they haven’t done any good there but blow shit up and irritate the people. Whenever whites claim to help, they’re really stealing some shit. The things people actually need help with, they turn a blind eye to. They’ve raped and stole… Read more »

JTC
Guest
JTC

Also this page has so many damn ad’s I can’t even type…

RectPropagation
Guest
RectPropagation

Completely gross. Not surprised Disney thinks this colonialist, “White Savior” nonsense is a good idea.

Chrissie
Guest
Chrissie

Straight up, they aren’t looking out for you. Disney doesn’t care about empowering the black community. Neither does Vogue or Nickelodeon. The sooner people accept this the sooner people can focus on building up themselves and their children without getting derailed by news like this. Doesn’t surprise me at all.

Dee
Guest
Dee

im convinced disney is racist or at least support white supremacy. There was an argument that they had only made a story with one black person or something, but others said that they just didnt fit the context. Now that there’s an opportunity they still haven’t done anything. Sad. Won’t be buying any movies for my future kids or watching anyore

Thea
Guest
Thea

I agree with you. The early cartoons are racist as hell and I think they have a responsibility to be sensitive to racial issues.

Sarah
Guest
Sarah

If this is such an issue, why has no one started a petition protesting this movie at least?

Sahara
Guest
Sahara
$7275329
Guest
$7275329

it’s not widely known about yet and is still in development anyway. If Disney is dumb enough to actually go through with the movie, it could be a different story.

niecie
Guest
niecie

I think this is more about what a man will do for his daughter, not so much white supremacy, but Disney does suck for what they’re doing.

Tabatha
Guest
Tabatha

Ehh… I don’t care. Not everyone in Africa is black, and it has no baring on my life and who I am and I think that parents need to stop leaning on Disney and other crap to make their kids feel special and validated. That’s YOUR job. This is a true story, so I don’t see the issue. Most father’s think that their daughters are princesses(not mine) anyways it’s just that this father actually moved on it and made his daughter a princess. Good for him. I’m a Scottish Lady and I’ve NEVER been to Scotland. You can buy a… Read more »

Thea
Guest
Thea

You sound defensive.…as if racism is gone from society.…it is not

Hatsune Miku
Guest
Hatsune Miku

Black are the majority in Africa not fucking whites. So it shouldn’t be a little white kid ruling over Sudan.

Jennifer Hagan
Guest
Jennifer Hagan

How are you Scottish and have never been to Scotland? Are you saying you have Scotish ancestry? Because that isn’t being Scotish. It is a nationality NOT an ethnicity nor a race. The only way you could be Scottish is if you have Scottish nationality. Even then, you would be British. There is no Scottish passport dear.

Sharksticks
Guest
Sharksticks

The proper question is, why is some Scottish white lady stalking the comments section of a website for black women…? Why do white folks come onto websites intended for Black girls, and post their lame brain, insensitive opinions, as if black women are supposed to put them on a pedestal?

JichaelMackson
Guest
JichaelMackson

It has no baring on my life”
Ohhh, but it does. Because your children’s friends will have seen this movie and so will their teachers (and random people) and will and can use the information to influence your child.

I don’t like it. Like someone else said, there are a MILLION stories of Africa that tey could tell and they pick one?
Instead of being mad at Disney, which we tend to do, we should be mad at OUR filmmakers who don’t animate stories for our children.

agranon
Guest
agranon

It’s time for blacks to assimilate. Too many racists in the world, black and white,why can’t we just get along?

LusciousDC
Guest
LusciousDC

I nor any of mine will watch this. If you’re going to to a movie about an African Princess, why not do it about a REAL African Princess, not some White wannabe. How long has Africa had African Princesses and now that a White one popped up they want to do a movie. I think I’m done with Disney altogether. Better yet, some of us Black folks are descendents of African Royalty, why not do a movie about THAT. Real royalty instead of this crap.

Susan linde
Guest
Susan linde

Disney’s focus is on getting their main audience (young girls in the West) to spend money and the “princess” story line works. So this real life princess adventure is right up their alley. Disney is neither a history documentary company nor looking for stories of princesses that its audience won’t identify with. Disney has a business model to make money based on stories of fantasy and magic..they are not interested in promoting black empowerment of young black girls or the growth of the African continent. If anyone is offended by this movie, they need to find the right forum to… Read more »

Julep
Guest
Julep

ask the united nations.…lol omg.

This movie is offensive as hell. This is coming from a west african.

Thea
Guest
Thea

I think it is typical. It makes me not want to buy Disney merchandise. It is indeed up to parents to validate their children but we cannot deny that the images that children see do linger and make an impression. I think it is unfair for people to downgrade the racism of this. If you look back at old cartoons, you can see a history of stereotypes in the characters and it took forever for them to create Princess Tiana who just happens to be void on lots of advertisements that feature disney princesses. Just another way to downplay and… Read more »

Carmen Kadji
Guest
Carmen Kadji

Madness !! :@

Ronnie
Guest
Ronnie

If Black people want to see Black Princess films, the moneyed Black folks need to produce such a film instead of looking for Mickey Mouse to do it. Jay‐Z, Beyonce and Will Smith did it with Annie. Whitney Houston’s production company did it with Brandy as Cinderella. It can be done again.

Sarah
Guest
Sarah

Annie was crap and everyone knows. You are correct, but an emphasis needs to be made on QUALITY. Otherwise it doesn’t make a difference.

cha
Guest
cha

Some of these comments are foolish. “Racism isn’t real, masta is good to us” cried the coons . But they enjoy sitting in the front of the bus.…(sips tea)

agranon
Guest
agranon

Lololololololol Black folks, I feel sorry for you. Always getting the butt end of everything. Now the ultimate disgrace

Julep
Guest
Julep

what a shitty condescending comment…

Ronnie
Guest
Ronnie

While I agree that Annie was not a great film, it made over a 130 million at the box office. That means other films starring Black girls will be financed and green‐lighted in the future.

Quality is important but so are baby steps. We have to be the change we wish to see.

Sharksticks
Guest
Sharksticks

Exactly! Where are the QUALITY black animation companies to do this sort of thing? You don’t need to take baby steps to get someone with a unique imagination to write a quality animated movie. There are hundreds of illustrators and animators thirsty for a job. They are not limited to Disney. Disney does not scoop up all the good animators fresh outta school. They are out there.

Tammie Thomas
Guest
Tammie Thomas

Boycott Disney! They don’t care about the African American experience and they never have!

Curly
Guest
Curly

I’m of color and I do not think that his intentions were to make themselves “rulers” of land. I think it was a gesture to his daughter, but I do not think that it should be as publicized and created into a movie. There are so many other things that Disney can make into a movie other than a “white girl” being proclaimed an “African Princess.” I wholeheartedly believe that this is disrespectful in a way. I understand she is a “princess” in Africa now, but the way that they are making it sound goes too far. It is fine… Read more »

Sharksticks
Guest
Sharksticks

I’m of color” <—— You didn’t have to say that to get your point across. No one is going to punish you for being white and lurking around on a website intended for black girls.…

Mishynana
Guest
Mishynana

the land sucks no one wants it

Cosita
Guest
Cosita

So white dude goes to brown people’s homeland, sticks a flag in the ground and claims t as his own. Smells like colonialism to me. I have been to North Africa and realize not all native Africans are black but these people aren’t even African at all and they are calling her an African princess. wtf!

Jennifer Hagan
Guest
Jennifer Hagan

Can’t Disney make a movie about empowering young women? About breaking down gender bias? Ok she’s a princess but what does that mean? This isn’t colonialism since the land is unclaimed. No one is on the land.this story is ridiculous and I’m having trouble understanding how this will be a film. How about the story of the little girl in Sudan that is trying to get an education? Or doing something extremely brave? The film is offensive because there are some very real problems in Dafur and The Sudan that no one gives a damn about. It would be a… Read more »

hostile_17
Guest
hostile_17

Very well said. The “colonialism” is nothing. Thousands die from real issues and the Americans turn it into an article about movies… Tragic.

eljjai
Guest
eljjai

This is really very offensive.

Proudafrican
Guest
Proudafrican

I’m a Sudanese and I’m so done with Disney instead of making a movie about a real Sudanese princess they had to make a movie about a Sudanese princess wannabe .…..

trackback

[…] Apparently Disney is making their first movie of a black princess. http://bglh-marketplace.com/2015/05/disney-is-making-its-first-movie-about-an-african-princess-but-… […]

Medusa
Guest
Medusa

Disrespectful. Won’t see.

Shopping Cart