When Walt Disney decided to make feature-length animated films, he chose the classic fairy tale, Snow White to be the very first Disney movie in 1937. In the ensuing decades, Disney and his successors mined several famous fairy tales and legends for the company’s animated movies, which in turn led to “the Disney Princesses,” the commonly used description of Disney’s female heroines that later became one of Disney’s biggest brands.
Despite the international flavor of the various legends and fairy tales, it’s become very easy to expect the Disney Princesses to speak and sing in English instead of their native tongues. Even when characters clearly lived in other countries like France (Belle in Beauty and the Beast) or China (Mulan), everyone in the movies spoke English with the occasional native word thrown in.
While that’s unlikely to change anytime soon, YouTube user Movie Munchies has created two videos that compile clips of the Disney Princesses singing in their native tongues. In the first video, Frozen’s Elsa sings in Norwegian, Ariel from The Little Mermaid belts out a tune in Danish, while Aladdin’s Jasmine sings in Arabic, Mulan shows off her Mandarin, and Tangled’s Rapunzel wraps up her song in German.
The response to the first video was so strong that Movie Munchies created a second part a day later. This time, Belle finally gets to sing in French, while Snow White follows in German, with Meg from Hercules singing in Greek, Sleeping Beauty’s Aurora demonstrating her French, and Anna from Frozen wrapping up the series with her native Norwegian.
Presumably, all of these clips were taken from officially localized versions of the films that were commissioned by Disney. It’s impressive that the songs retain their power and their meaning even when they aren’t in English.
What did you think of the two-part video of the Disney Princesses? Give us your musical replies in the comment section below!
HT: Movie Munchies
Image Credit: Disney