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Disney Gives In And Brings Back The Classic ‘Snow White’ After ‘Woke’ Backlash

After hearing complaints from fans about the new Snow White film, Disney is going back to the classic version.

As per InsideTheMagic, the Walt Disney Company shifted its promotional strategy for the upcoming live-action adaptation of ‘Snow White,’ signaling a return to the classic roots of the beloved 1937 animated film.

In response to the backlash, Disney reportedly postponed the film’s release by a full year, moving it from its initial March 2024 slot to March 21, 2025. Since the announcement of the delay, there has been a shift in the promotional material and Zegler’s public comments, with an emphasis on the iconic status of the original animated film:

“It’s been amazing to work alongside Disney to breathe life into such an iconic fairy tale. Of course, she’s an iconic Disney princess, and so a lot of those iconic beauty moments for her are still scattered throughout the film.”

On top of this news, Disney has partnered with LEGO to release a Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs LEGO set based on the classic cartoon rather than the live-action adaptation. In contrast with LEGO’s previous set for ‘The Little Mermaid’ based on its live-action version, this suggests a strategic move by Disney to honor the original film.

Why Did Disney Receive Backlash?

Disney’s decision comes after widespread backlash from fans, following changes that sparked heated debates across social media platforms and petitions calling for a boycott of the film.

The controversy began when Rachel Zegler, cast as the lead character, made remarks suggesting a modernized portrayal of Snow White that differed from the original narrative. Zegler mentioned that in the new adaptation, Snow White would not be saved by a prince but would instead aspire to be a leader:

“I just mean that it’s no longer 1937. We absolutely wrote a ‘Snow White’ that … she’s not going to be saved by the prince, and she’s not going to be dreaming about true love; she’s going to be dreaming about becoming the leader she knows she can be and her late father told her that she could be if she was fearless, fair, brave and true.”

Alongside changes to other characters and the story, these remarks resulted in a firestorm of criticism, with many fans expressing they want the film to stay true to its original form. However, Ginnifer Goodwin, who portrayed Snow White in ABC’s ‘Once Upon a Time’ for seven seasons, chose to remain diplomatic.

Disney’s Previous On-Screen Adaptations

Disney’s live-action adaptations include films like ‘Aladdin,’ ‘Beauty and the Beast,’ and ‘The Lion King,’ which achieved significant box office success. However, the adaptation of ‘Snow White’ has proven to be a challenging task, with the company standing on the fine line between modernizing the story and respecting the elements of the classic.

The backlash over ‘Snow White’ is not the first one. Disney previously faced criticism for its casting decisions in ‘The Little Mermaid’ as well, with Halle Bailey becoming the first Black Ariel in Rob Marshall’s live-action adaptation.

With the film’s release now set for March 2025, the company has an opportunity to address the concerns of its critics while still aiming to give fans a film that goes along with modern notions. The coming months will likely reveal more about how Disney plans to balance these.

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