Wepa! Disney has finally created a Latina princess.
Princess Elena of Avalor, a confident and compassionate teenager from an enchanted fairytale kingdom inspired by diverse Latin cultures and folklore, will be introduced in a special episode of Disney Junior’s hit series Sofia the First.
Even more exciting is that the Sofia story arc will usher in the 2016 launch of a brand new animated series, Elena of Avalor. The announcement was made today by Nancy Kanter, Executive Vice President and General Manager, Disney Junior Worldwide.
“Our creative team has delivered a universal story with themes that authentically reflect the hopes and dreams of our diverse audience,” Kanter said. “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.”
Voiced by Aimee Carrero (ABC Family’s Young & Hungry), Princess Elena’s journey is one that began long ago when her parents and kingdom were taken from her by an evil sorceress named Shuriki. Elena bravely faced the sorceress to protect her grandparents and little sister, Princess Isabel, but in the process, was pulled into her magical amulet, which saved her life but imprisoned her at the same time.
Decades later, Princess Sofia will discover the truth about the amulet she has worn since joining the royal family of Enchancia, leading her to restore Elena to her human form while helping her return to Avalor. And, while Elena is the rightful heir to the throne, she’s is only 16 years old, which means she’ll need help from her Grandfather Tito, Grandmother Cici and Royal Advisor, Duke Esteban. Together, they’ll form a Grand Council and act as her guides as she begins to understand the requirements of her new role: thoughtfulness, resilience and compassion – all the traits of truly great leaders. She’ll also have magical friends by her side: Mateo, a wizard-in-training, and Skylar, a magical flying creature.
As with all Disney Junior programming, Elena of Avalor stories will be guided by an established curriculum that nurtures multiple areas of child development: physical, emotional, social and cognitive; thinking and creative skills, as well as moral and ethical development. Created for kids age 2-7 and their families, the stories are designed to communicate positive messages and life lessons about leadership, resilience, diversity, compassion and the importance of family and family traditions.
The series will be presented in 25 languages on Disney Junior channels, and in daily programming blocks for kids age 2-7 on Disney Channels, and in 154 countries around the world.
Photo credits: Disney Junior