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Beauty and the Backlash: Walt Disney's modern princess problem

The executives had spent years cultivating Ariel, Elsa and Snow White as highly profitable models of femininity

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About two years ago, employees who managed Walt Disney Co.’s princess characters gathered to watch an extended scene from an unreleased movie. The executives had spent years cultivating Ariel, Elsa and Snow White as highly profitable models of femininity. The footage they saw, from this month’s animated feature “Ralph Breaks the Internet,” revealed the princesses as everyday young women, on break from their jobs as Disney royalty. Elsa and Sleeping Beauty have their hair down and wear pajamas. Snow White shows off her Coke-bottle glasses. Cinderella ...