I know you’re probably sitting around just waiting for Frozen 2 to #GiveElsaAGirlfriend, but in the meantime, you need to take a look at the first teaser trailer for Disney’s latest princess, a teenager from the ancient South Pacific. That’s right, another DPOC: Disney Princess of Color.
Moana tells the tale of, well, Moana, an adventurous young Polynesian woman, voiced by 14-year-old Hawaiian native newcomer Auli'i Cravalho. A descendent of seafaring peoples who explored the islands of Oceania, Moana embarks on a journey to complete her ancestors' quest to discover a lost land of legend, honing her skills as an expert navigator at sea (not to mention an expert spear thrower!). She’s joined by the formerly powerful demigod Maui, voiced by—because apparently this movie could get even better—Dwayne "The Rock" Johnson.
Moana, slated for a Thanksgiving premiere, is written and directed by Ron Clements and John Musker, the duo behind The Little Mermaid, Aladdin, Hercules, and The Princess and the Frog. So they probably know a thing or two about sea-set epics mixed with mythology. With a soundtrack by Hamilton's own Tony-winning Lin-Manuel Miranda, this is def going to be a winner.
But seriously, in a time when Hollywood is all too eager to whitewash the crap out of fictional characters of color, and even real-life people of color, or use the pain and misfortune of minority characters to give white characters some emotional edge (what a time to be alive!), Moana is a breath of beautifully animated fresh air. It lets a brown girl—a brown girl with a body type that deviates from the classic Disney formula, no less—be brave and resourceful, the heroine of her own story. Most importantly, it lets her have fun.