Disney introduces Elena, Its First Latina princess

Photo+Courtesy+of+www.independent.co.uk%0D%0A

Photo Courtesy of www.independent.co.uk

This time it seems to be for real – Disney is introducing its first Latina princess, Elena of Avalor, an olive-skinned beauty who will make her debut in a special episode of “Sofia the First,” the Disney Junior hit TV show, and then will go on to have her very own spin-off, according to foxnews.com.

Elena’s own eponymous spinoff series is set to premiere in 2016 on Disney Junior, as well as Disney Junior’s programming block on the Disney Channel. Aimee Carrero of ABC Family’s “Young & Hungry” will voice the role, reported cnn.com.

“What excites us most is the chance to use distinctive animation and visual design to tell wonderful stories influenced by culture and traditions that are familiar to the worldwide population of Hispanic and Latino families and reflect the interests and aspirations of all children as told through a classic fairy tale,” stated Nancy Kanter, the executive vice president and general manager of Disney Junior Worldwide.

In fall 2012, Disney faced harsh criticism after a producer of the “Sofia the First” series announced that the title character was Latina. Disney Junior executives later clarified that the princess’ ethnicity had been misrepresented, adding that “all our characters come from fantasy lands that may reflect elements of various cultures and ethnicities but none are meant to specifically represent those real world cultures,” according to Nancy Kanter.