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Disney Snow White Remake

OpEd: Disney No Longer Making ‘Snow White,’ Remake Doomed from the Start

It was a movie intended to be reimagined for everyone. Now, it’ll be a film no one will be happy with it, and not even the movie Disney set out to make in the first place.

Since first announcing a live-action remake of its cornerstone classic, Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs, Disney made one change after another to–putting it quite bluntly–pander to criticism from today’s boisterous and socially sensitive (AKA woke) audience. A woman of color was cast as Snow White. The male lead was changed to supposedly remove the negatively-perceived stereotypical “straight white cis savior” role. And now there is a chance that Disney could remove all Dwarfs from the film together. In an effort to appear apologetic, empathetic, and forward-thinking, Disney has lost all control of its remake, and it is disastrous. The studio needs to come to terms with the fact that whatever movie it is making now, is no longer a retelling of Snow White.

Snow White Coffin

Credit: Disney

Read More: Peter Dinklage Criticizes Disney’s Upcoming Remake of the “Backward Story” of Snow White

Here’s the problem: Snow White is the antithesis of what the digitally vocal want movies to be today. Meanwhile, the purists–and everybody else who understands storytelling and film history–still admire the film for what it was and what it did for The Walt Disney Company and the film industry as a whole and will get upset by every change simply due to the commitment to objective storytelling. If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it, right? (There are always going to be racists and sexists who will hate Disney for casting people of color as well as casting white people and men or women, but we are excluding them and their irrational hatred from this argument, and that is all I will say on that matter.)

Grumpy, Snow White

Credit: Disney

That divisiveness has turned Snow White into a tragic Goldie Locks. Every socially-inspired change will be–and has been–viewed as either too much or not enough; too blasphemous to tradition, or far too close to the “offensive” original with whatever is “just right” nowhere in sight. At this point, Disney should throw the white flag, reframe the whole project, and introduce Miss Zegler to Disney fans as a brand new Disney Princess instead of insisting that she’s still starting in a legitimate retelling of The Brothers Grimm’s Fairy Tale.

Before you jump back to social media to state your protests, please don’t get me wrong: I love Rachel Zegler. She is an extremely talented actress, and I could think of no one better to play Maria in Steven Spielberg’s West Side Story. I love and respect Peter Dinklage. He is a fantastic actor, and his story of overcoming adversity is one that all ambitious people should look to emulate. Both celebrities’ social crusades are valid, and I see people’s hunger to “fix” old stories by essentially rewriting them with more woke remakes.

But the “fixing” has gone too far this time, not necessarily in socio-political matters, but in objective relations to the original source material. The general push of intersectionality and other outside input that is being entertained by Disney is ultimately going to result in a whole new movie. Daring to call it Snow White is just objectively wrong. It is a whole different movie, so let’s move forward treating it as such.

Reinventing Snow White the Disney Movie

Snow White

Credit: Disney

Walt Disney’s Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs, the world’s first feature-length animated film, would have never been made today. The Twittersphere would be in an absolute uproar about a mainstream movie studio distributing a movie that dared to define the pinnacle of feminine beauty as having “skin white as snow,” have all of the life-threatening tension rest on the fact that the Evil Queen was nothing more than a jealous woman who couldn’t stand to hear she has a step-daughter prettier than her, AND little people are depicted in a very cartoony manner.

Five minutes on Twitter and the comment threads of FB and IG will prove that people still feel the need to lash out at this movie for those reasons despite the fact the flick came out almost 90 years ago! And at this point, I’m not even counting the cries people have made against the whole “kissing her awake” bit.

Snow White and her Prince, Disney

Credit: Disney

Related: Will Saoirse Ronan’s Snow White Movie Ever Happen?

Even though we are entrenched in this culture wave, Disney insisted on adding Snow White to its list of animated classics set to receive the “Live-Action Remake Treatment,” with the caveat that the remake will be much more politically correct to fit today. And since the project’s announcement, that idea has come to fruition, especially in three key ways previously mentioned in this article.

No more love story between Snow White and her Prince. No more Doc, Happy, Grumpy, Sleepy, Bashful, Sneezy, or Dopey. But, what’s the point of the movie anymore? Obviously, I see how people can get offended nowadays, so why even bother walking a tightrope you’re going to get pushed off no matter what?

Seven Dwarfs

Credit: Disney

So, just to get it out of my system, here was my “Wish List” for the Dwarfs Casting:

  • Doc – Dan Akroyd
  • Happy – Aziz Ansari
  • Sleepy – Seth Rogan
  • Sneezy – Bill Murray
  • Bashful – Jon Favreau
  • Grumpy – Clint Eastwood
  • Dopey – Bob Chapek (But give him one line and leave him out of the credits.)

I would have also cast the Prince as Miss Zegler’s prince from West Side Story, Ansel Elgort.

Now, I know that Disney’s 1937 classic was already a far departure from The Brothers Grimm’s original story. So, many of you are probably thinking, “we changed it before. We can change it again!” That’s a fair point to make. But what is the source material for this live-action feature? Is it the original fairy tale, or is it the Disney movie? Also, how different is Walt Disney’s original animated film from its source material?

Well, let’s talk about that next.

Revisiting Snow White, the Original Fairy Tale

Snow White Fairy Tale

Credit: Wikipedia

Related: Snow White Actress Rachel Zegler Wins the Golden Globe

The complete and final version written by Jacob and Wilhelm Grimm can be found here, provided by pitt.edu. And here is a link to the original version.

In this final edition, we learn why Snow White gets her name. She was born out of a mother’s love. Through a window with a black ebony wood frame, a drop of her mother’s blood lands on the snow, and she says, “If only I had a child as white as snow, as red as blood, and as black as the wood in this frame.” But as Snow-White was born, her mother died.

After that, most of the story remains the same, save a few details. The Queen tells the Huntsman to bring back her lungs and liver instead of her heart; the seven dwarves are not given individual names, and they search for gold and ore in the mountains instead of gems; the Queen visits Snow White not just once but three times.

But here’s the part that many might be very pleased by–a reward, then, for sticking with me this long:

There is no kiss in The Grimm Brothers’ original tellings of Snow White.

There is no other “foul play” of any other kind either. The prince fell in love with Snow White on-sight as he was passing through the land. He preserved her dignity and insisted on being in her body’s presence. So, he had his servants carry her coffin around when…

First version:

One time one of them opened the coffin, lifted Snow-White upright, and said, “We are plagued the whole day long, just because of such a dead girl,” and he hit her in the back with his hand. Then the terrible piece of apple that she had bitten off came out of her throat, and Snow-White came back to life.

Final version:

But then it happened that one of them stumbled on some brush, and this dislodged from Snow-White’s throat the piece of poisoned apple that she had bitten off. Not long afterward she opened her eyes, lifted the lid from her coffin, sat up, and was alive again.

It is definitely a more deadpan comedic turn of events than a romantic one, but she still falls in love with her prince, and they live happily ever after.

Last Thought: Let’s Make Something New

Disney Movie Intro

Credit: Disney

Looking at the story and Disney’s movie, it is clear that on a cold, logical, objective level, Snow White is not Snow White without Little Snow-White portrayed as “a child as white as snow, as red as blood, and as black as the wood in this [ebony] frame,” nor without the seven dwarfs who allow her to stay in their home so long as she keeps house for them, nor without a love-drunk prince with whom she falls in love, nor without an evil queen driven mad with superficial jealousy and the desire to kill her.

If Disney can’t make a movie with those specifications for any reason, then it is better for Disney to make something new. So why not?

Let’s have another original Disney princess story with a Latina princess, a queer prince-type character, and all of the representation and other types of political correctness demanded by Disney’s targeted audience nowadays. New is always better than recycled–or essentially conquered–, and we Disney fans are here for it!

Disney, this movie can be groundbreaking and exciting! Especially if it means we get to see Gal Gadot bring a new Disney Villain to life! But if you are really trying to pass this off as Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs, I’m sorry, but it’s not that.

The opinions in this article are those of this writer and may not reflect the opinion of Disney Fanatic as a whole.

About T.K. Bosacki

TK is a writer and editor based in Tampa, FL with a passion for all things Disney, and adventure.