Moana And Elena Of Avalor To Not Join The Disney Princess Lineup

Moana And Elena Of Avalor To Not Join The Disney Princess Lineup

What does this mean for Moana and Elena and the Disney Princess lineup in the present and the future?

This is the biggest year for the Disney Princesses. Disney is not adding one princess, but two. Later this month, Disney will introduce the very first Latina Princess, Elena in Disney Junior’s brand new series, “Elena of Avalor”. Then, this Thanksgiving, Disney will introduce the first Polynesian princess, “Moana” in theaters. To make Moana more special, Disney cast a random Hawaiian teenager, 15-year-old Auli’l Cravalho to voice this feisty princess. Not only is Disney getting more diverse, but also little Hispanic and Polynesian girls get their own princess to celebrate themselves. But, wait a minute.

In late May, the creator of Elena, Craig Gember announced that Elena will not join Snow White, Tiana, and Merida at the big Disney Princess castle. Now, this is very expected because unlike the other girls, Elena is in a TV show. TV shows fade and expire. I thought this was the reason why Elena isn’t joining the lineup, but then I read something extremely shocking. In early July, a Disney spokesperson announced that Moana is not joining the Disney Princess lineup. This is shocking beyond belief because a. Pocahontas is a daughter of a chief, just like Moana and b. Mulan, the only current Asian “princess”, is not even a princess and yet she’s still in the lineup. She’s clearly only there to add diversity in the lineup. The reason why Moana isn’t joining? Because “they don’t speak of her lineage in the movie.” This is clearly a lie since most of the princesses don’t speak of their lineages in their movies. Meanwhile, Elena will be here for a while because they’re planning five seasons of “Elena of Avalor.” Hence, the show will end in the late 2010’s/early 2020’s. Because of this, Elena can join the lineup for a while. It’s one thing that a TV character isn’t joining the lineup because of her numbered days, but an actual princess with a movie that will last forever not joining? Something is off.

1. Merchandise + Race

Let’s discuss the elephant in the room and no, it’s not Jasmine’s friend Abu as an elephant. Could it be possible that Elena and Moana aren’t joining the lineup because…they’re not white? What will it mean for Hispanic and Polynesian girls to see their girls not with the famous white princesses? That Elena and Moana aren’t beautiful enough to be with the white girls? Or Polynesian and Hispanic women are not important as white women? There have been complaints on the Internet that there is not enough merchandise of the "Princesses of Color" (Jasmine [who’s Arabic], Pocahontas, Mulan, and Tiana [who’s black]). One angry poster on Tumblr pointed out that there was no Tiana merchandise to be found when she was at Target with an employee checking back and everything, but yet Target was flooding with Frozenmerchandise. Another angry poster revealed that while visiting the Disney Princess aisle at Target, there was not one mention of the POC Princesses, even in the packaging, except for a Tiana doll who was packaged with six white dolls. Does Disney ignore the "Princesses of Color" altogether?

In 2014, a chart revealed that the most-selling princesses were Cinderella, Rapunzel, Snow White, and Ariel while two of some of the least selling princesses were Tiana and Jasmine with shockingly Belle as the least-selling princess with only $6,687 worth of merchandise. So, does Disney not believe that diversity sells?

2. Franchise=$$

This is the most realistic possibility. It should be noted that the Frozen” princesses (with one becoming queen), Anna and Queen Elsa are not in the Disney Princess lineup. As a result of the shocking popularity of the movie, Anna and Elsa have their own franchise that includes toys, books, and more. It is clear that Disney’s logic is if Anna and Elsa are with the other princesses, little girls will focus on the sisters more than the other princesses. Hence, girls would rather want to buy Anna and Elsa separately. Disney’s logic is very successful -- Frozenmerchandise made $107 billion dollars as of May 2015. Like Anna and Elsa, Moana is the main star of her movie and might be popular, so thus little girls will want to focus on her more than the princesses. If “Moana” is successful like Frozen,you can bet that Disney will be rolling in the money. Meanwhile, Elena already has her own franchise that includes nightgowns, costumes, dolls, backpacks, and books. If franchise is the reasons why Moana and Elena are not going to be in the lineup, that is very smart on the behalf of Disney’s business side. But, it would still be excellent to see even more diverse princesses standing with the white princesses.

3. Disney just doesn’t want any more Princesses in the lineup.

When Merida from Pixar’s “Brave” joined the lineup, I frequently thought to myself, “How many more princesses Disney will take after “Frozen?” As of right now, there are 11 princesses in the lineup. If you add Anna & Elsa, Elena, and Moana, it would climb to 15 princesses. That would be princess overload. Can you imagine try to stuff 15 girls in one package, website, or commercial? And then trying to break them up into groups for merchandise? Talk about stress! Then, with possibly more princesses in the near future, there would be even more cramming. There’s a reason why past Disney heroines, such as Tinker Bell, Esmeralda from “The Hunchback of Notre Dame,” and Meg from "Hercules" were removed after a while and even princesses such as Vanellope from “Wreck-It Ralph,” Elionwy from “The Black Cauldron” and Kida from “Atlantis: The Lost Empire” didn’t make the cut (It should be noted that Giselle from “Enchanted” was slated to join the lineup until Disney realized that they would have to pay the actress, Amy Adams for royalty). “Elena of Avalor” creator Gember added in a tweet, “Being an "official Disney Princess" is not determined by the "line-up" anymore,” so it sounds like Disney isn’t taking any more “Disney Princesses” for now. However, Disney has one final test, so we can understand what’s going on.

Disney’s next fairy tale is “Jack and the Beanstalk” and it’s titled “Gigantic.” Because of even more story problems (which also delayed “Gigantic” from this November to 2018), “Gigantic” is moved to Thanksgiving 2018, having “Wreck-It Ralph 2” take the March 2018 slot. And since this is a fairy tale, we need to have a princess. Meet Imna.

(c) Disney

Unless Disney dramatically changes the movie during the delay a la Pixar’s “The Good Dinosaur,” Imna is planned to be a princess. According to a live feed from the D23 Expo while the announcement was going on, she is the princess of the Storm Giants and her currently-unnamed father, who happens to be the villain, is the cruel King of the Storm Giants. And she’ll be another ground breaker. Obviously, Imna would be the only non-human Disney princess, as she is a giantess. Since “Gigantic” takes place in Spain, Imna will be the first “real” Spanish Disney Princess. Plus, she is only 11, being the “first” real child Disney Princess, despite Vanellope, “Sofia the First” from Disney Junior, and Melody, Ariel’s daughter as seen in “The Little Mermaid 2.” This will be a test because connecting to my points:

1. Imna is Spanish.

2. Because Jack is, of course, the real focus of “Gigantic,” Imna might be useless for her own franchise.

3. Disney could possibly squeeze one in last princess since she is from a movie unlike Elena and not the central focus, unlike Moana.

Really, at this point, the only things that might mess up Imna’s chances are the fact that she’s a 60-foot giantess and her young age since the princesses, including Elena and Moana who are both 16, are 14 and up. But, we will find out Imna’s royal fate in mid 2018 or early 2019. In fact, we will find out at the Disney Expo next year if Imna is officially a princess in the film or not.

Despite not being in the lineup as of right now, this could certainly change within the next 10 years. It is quite possible that at least Moana (along with Anna and Elsa) will join the lineup when her buzz dies out. The important thing is that being excluded in the lineup does not make Moana and Elsa any less of a princess than Snow White, Pocahontas, and Tiana and even Giselle and Kida. All of the Disney Princesses have something to be celebrated about, lineup or not, and I’ll be sure to celebrate these two fine diverse princesses when they are released to the public this year. Hispanic and Polynesian girls should celebrate because of the wonderful role models they’ll have. Long live Elena and Moana!

Cover Image Credit: The Walt Disney Company

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What Your Hogwarts House Says About You

Get yourself sorted and find out where you belong in the world of witchcraft and wizardry.

Sorting at Hogwarts is a big deal. Being sorted into a house is essentially being placed into a family while you are away from home learning about witchcraft and wizardry. Your house is made up of the people you will live with, go to classes with, play Quidditch with and everything in between. You basically spend 24/7 with them. Your Hogwarts house is your home away from home.

When you get sorted into a house, it is based on your personality traits. The people in your house are typically like-minded people who display the same characteristics as you.

When you’re a first year at Hogwarts, the minute you set foot in the castle you are swept into the Great Hall to have the ancient Sorting Hat placed on your head. This Sorting Hat decides which “family” you’ll be spending your seven years with.

For some, it is very obvious which house they will be in, due to certain personality traits they possess. For others, they may exemplify traits that fit a multitude of houses and are uncertain where they may end up.

To find out where you belong, you can take the official "Harry Potter" Sorting Hat quiz at For all you muggles out there, these are the characteristics that the houses possess and what your house says about you:

Gryffindor: The house of the brave, loyal, courageous, adventurous, daring and chivalrous. Those who stand up for others are typically Gryffindors. Brave-hearted is the most well-known Gryffindor characteristic, and Gryffindors are also known for having a lot of nerve.

Gryffindors are people who hold a multitude of qualities alongside the ones listed, making them a very well-rounded house. People who are Gryffindors are often people who could fit nicely into another house but choose to tell the sorting hat they want Gryffindor (there's that bravery). "Do what is right" is the motto Gryffindors go by.

Being a Gryffindor means that you're probably the adventurous and courageous friend, and you are usually known for doing what is right.

Ravenclaw: The house is known for their wisdom, intelligence, creativity, cleverness and knowledge. Those who value brains over brawn can be found here. Ravenclaws often tend to be quite quirky as well. "Do what is wise" is the motto they strive to follow.

Though Ravenclaws can be know-it-alls sometimes, they most likely do know what the wisest decision is.

If you are known for being the quirky friend, the smartest in the group or just great at making wise decisions, you're definitely a Ravenclaw.

Hufflepuff: This house values hard work, dedication, fair play, patience, and loyalty. Hufflepuff’s are known for being just and true. "Do what is nice" is their motto.

Hufflepuff is known as the “nice house” and believes strongly in sparing peoples feelings and being kind. This is not to say that Hufflepuffs aren't smart or courageous. Hufflepuffs just enjoy making others happy and tend to be more patient towards people.

If you ever find that you are too nice for your own good and cannot bear to hurt someone’s feelings, congratulations, you are a Hufflepuff.

Slytherin: This is the house of the cunning, prideful, resourceful, ambitious, intelligent, and determined. Slytherin's love to be in charge and crave leadership. "Do what is necessary" is the motto of this house.

Slytherin is a fairly well-rounded house, similar to the other houses. They are loyal to those that are loyal to them just as Gryffindors are and are intelligent as Ravenclaws.

Slytherin house as a whole is not evil, despite how many dark wizards come out of this house. That is merely based on the choices of those wizards (so if your friend is a Slytherin, don’t judge, it doesn’t mean they are mean people). Slytherins do, however, have a tendency to be arrogant or prideful. This is most likely due to the fact that everyone in Slytherin is exceedingly proud to be there.

What Hogwarts house you’re in says a lot about the person you are, the traits you possess and how you may act in some situations. But in the end, your house is really just your home that is always there for you. Always.

Cover Image Credit: Warner Bros Pictures

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Just A Little Further: Finding Your Point B

When you find yourself giving up, ask, "Can I go any further?"


I despise running.

Ever since I was an out of shape fifth-grader in desperate need of conditioning before basketball season, and my mom forced me to start using the treadmill, I have held a deep and personal hatred for running close to my heart.

Nonetheless, as I've gotten older, I've begun to appreciate running, both for its many health benefits and also the feeling it can bring - not the exhausted, "I wanna die" kind of feeling, but the release of adrenaline a good run can bring. A "runner's high," as it's called. So despite my loathing of the activity, I run. No, no no. I run, not "I Ran . . ."Credit: Wikipedia

In a seemingly unrelated tangent, I'm currently writing this during a temporary break in my college coursework - but a break I know won't last for long. Last week, I had two big exams, an important group presentation, and a paper all due within two days, and next week I'll be busy studying for a difficult physics exam on Friday, all as I try to prepare for the next phase of my group project. While I wish I could say this is merely a temporary uptick in my course load, it isn't. I've been just as busy for the last month or so, and it doesn't look like I'll be catching a break anytime soon.

That's all well and good, you say, but hey, college is tough for everybody. And what does my disdain for running have to do with my ever-increasing amount of homework?

Well, the answer lies in finding your "Point B." Allow me to explain.

I'm out on a jog. It's hot, the air is sticky, and I'm getting tired. While I may not notice it, my strides have gradually gone from long & powerful to short and choppy, and I'm on the verge of quitting. In all-too-familiar situations like this, there's one mental strategy I routinely go back to, to give myself that extra push I need to run on a little bit farther. And that's finding my "Point B."

What I do is I pick a landmark out in front of me - an intersection, a tree, a telephone pole - it doesn't matter what, but preferably it's something I can see. And then I have a conversation with myself.

Okay, I think. See that tree right up there? You can make it there, right? It's not that much farther. You've already made it this far. And lo and behold, a minute or two later I find myself there. But I'm not done yet.

Okay, you made it. You've got some more left in the tank, right? See that stop sign up ahead? Go for that. So I keep going.

And that's the essence of finding a "Point B." You use all the energy needed to get to that point, and once you make it there, you take a mental inventory. If you do need to stop and walk for a little, that's totally fine. You made it there. But if you think you can keep going, don't stop. Throw that Point B out further in front of you - and do that again and again and again, until finally have to stop. Try it on your next jog; I guarantee it'll improve your endurance.

But the real beauty of this tactic is that its applications go far beyond just suffering through an evening jog. You can utilize "Point B's" at work, in class, and even just during everyday life. This isn't some revolutionary new approach at all; in fact, I think we all do it at least on a subconscious level. Ever told yourself, "I just gotta get to this weekend & my life will get easy?" Of course you have; we all have. But once you can make this type of thinking more of a conscious objective, you'll find that it can do so much more for you. We've all been here a few times before.Credit:

And that's all the "Point B" system is, really. You find a fixed landmark out ahead of you - whether it's the tree you gotta make it to, or Friday night after your test - and you make it there. And once you get there, you see if you can go any further.

So this week, once I finally manage to start cramming for a physics test that I am, at least at the moment, woefully underprepared for, this is how I'm going to be thinking. And I want you to try it, too. That's right, as a reward for making it this far into my article, I'm assigning you homework. It's your own fault, really.

Next time you're starting to fall behind on a jog, or you find yourself pulling an all-nighter to cram for that test you forgot was tomorrow, or even if you're just going through a rough patch in your life, pick your Point B.

When you find yourself giving up, ask: "Can I go any further?"

Because I'm willing to bet that you can.

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