The most anticipated animation! at least for me, because i’m such a huge fan of Disney’s classic 2D musical tale 🙂 While i thought this is the classic adaptation of the tale, the story take us way back to the 1920s Southern Jazz-age New Orleans. Tiana (Anika Noni Rose, from Dreamgirls :D) is an energetic young girl, determined to fulfilling her late father’s dream: opening a restaurant of their own. Working hard, saving, and almost doesn’t have time for herself, Tiana had her eyes on the old property on the market which would be perfect to be her future diner.
Meanwhile, the city is in festive season of Mardi Gras, and beehiving about the arrival of the charismatic fun-loving Prince Naveen of far-off country Maldonia. Noone knows he actually had his allowance cut off and simply looking for a girl from a wealthy family to be married with. From the dark side of the town, Dr. Facilier or well known as Shadow Man the magician-slash-voodoo sorcerer sniffing an opportunity of using Prince Naveen on his own interests. Shortly, he turns the Prince into a frog, while put the Prince’s greedy aide – Lawrence, into Prince’s body.
Later that night, Eli ‘Big Daddy’ La Bouff -the richest man of town threw a big party at his mansion. Tiana’s childhood friend -Charlotte Lebouff asked her to cater the party. Being a hopelessly romantic and obsessed by fairy tale, Charlotte expect the ‘Prince’ to come. After several incidents at the party, Tiana finds out that her dream-property is about to go off the market. When she snuck out of the party to feel all gloomy about it, she met this frog on the balcony. And suddenly, it talks.
As the shrieks stop, the adventure begins. When the frog convinced her it’s a real Prince Naveen, and according to the classic tale she must kissed him to turn him back into human, imagine the catastrophy when Tiana also turned into a frog by the kiss! :))
I should stop right here. You should take the whole fun ride yourself 😉 Hail to Ron Clements and John Musker, these two ‘guilty as charge’ for bringing Disney’s magical touch back to its best. Previously directing Little Mermaid, Aladdin, and Hercules, you’ll find the exact nostalgic feeling. Add Randy Newman to do the music and voila! Disney’s tasty heartwarming dish for all! 🙂 The timeless story, the lovable characters (Ray the lovesick fireflies and Louis the jazzy-alligator), the musical magic (they pick New Orleans for a reason. Swing, swing, jazz all the way!), this movie will make you laugh hard and drown you in tears. Old school southern style never been this amusing! 9/10
Princess Tiana: I am not going to kiss a frog and eat a bug in one day!
Jennifer Hudson, Tyra Banks & Alicia Keys were all considered for the Tiana’s role. Keys and Banks personally lobbied the studio for the part. But it was Hudson’s co-star on Dreamgirls, Anika Noni Rose who scores the part.
Louis, the trumpet playing alligator was named after the great jazz legend Louis Armstrong, as an honor
Michael-Leon Wooley did Louis’s voice over. He was also featured on Dreamgirls as Tiny Joe Dixon.