Anastasia  picture image

Anastasia

Anastasia (1997) was one my favorite movies back in the day. It was made by our old pal Don Bluth and came out on November 14th 1997 under 20th Century Fox. In many ways this film is the definitive princess movie and people sometimes mistake it as Disney movie as it uses that sweet, sweet Disney formula and did well at box-off as well garnered two Academy Awards nominations for the music. But is the movie good or is it bad? It’s a little bit of both.

Dmitri, Anya and Vlad Anastasia  picture image

Dmitri, Anya and Vlad

PLOT! The film tells us that everything in 1916 Russia was just peachy (sure movie) that is till creepy-pants Rasputin gets fired from being best pals with Tsar Nicholas II and curses him and his family as he sold his soul because he is pissed off. The curse makes the “spark of unhappiness in Russia fan into a flame” that destroyed Imperial rule and ushered in communism. The movie doesn’t use that word and blames it all on Raspy. The night of the attack on the Romanovs, Anastasia goes back to her room with Grandmama Marie to get a music box and young boy gets them out a special exist. Rasputin tries to stop Anastasia but is killed when he falls through the ice. Anastasia and Marie then get separated and Anastasia gets Amnesia.

Ten years later, Marie is offering a lot of money for Anastasia’s return as the rumor goes she survived the February Revolution and gossip is the only thing to entertain the Russian because communism isn’t any fun…? Dmitri and Vlad are two conmen who plan on getting that money by hiring an actress to play Anastasia. Dmitri thinks he has an in as he has Anastasia’s music box, though he thinks it’s a jewelry box. As this is happening Anastasia is now called Anya and is getting released from an orphanage. Anya decides to go to Paris intend of going off to a job at some fish place as she has necklace that says “Together in Paris” and believes that is where her family is located. She first heads to St Petersburg along with her new puppy Pooka that she met on the road. She is told that to get to Paris she needs travel papers and she should speak to Dmitri at the Old Palace.

She goes to the Old Palace to meet him and has deju-vu moment. Dmitri, who isn’t having much luck hiring an actress thinks Anya could pass as Anastasia so he convinces her to join them. As she just wants to get to Paris, she agrees. Rasputin’s bat minion, Bartok is hanging out with source of Raspy’s power, a reliquary when he notices that the reliquary is stirring in Anya’s presence which convinces him that she is Anastasia and then the relic plunges Bartok into the underworld where Rasputin is in limbo because the curse failed.  Raspy the plans to kill Anya as he has the source of his with his power back.

Rasputin tries to axe Anya a few times on the journey and fails but he does cause a lot of collateral damage. While Raspy fails, Dmitri and Vlad transform into Anya into a proper lady and teach her how to prove she is Anastasia, via song montage.

The gang reaches Paris and the meets Sophie, Marie’s cousin and Vlad’s old flame. Sophie interviews Anya and she proves to Dmitri that she is really Anastasia as he was the one who helped Anastasia and Marie out of the Palace as a kid. This bums Dmitri out since he is in love with her after all the bickering they did. They go to ballet to have Anya meet with Marie, however Anya overhears Marie chewing out Dmitri as a conman and this whole thing was just about the money, so Anya slaps him and decides to peace out of Paris that night, at least she got her Paris fun song montage.

Dmitri then kidnaps Marie and takes her to Anya’s room and shows her the box. Anya’s memories re-surface with the power of smell and the music box, which her keepsake necklace opens and the two are reunited.

Dmitri is offers the reward but doesn’t accept and peaces out. Anya then forced into her showdown with Rasputin which results is a lot of damage to both a nice bridge and her princess gown, that bastard. But Dmitri comes back and helps Anya defeat him and Raspy bits the dust, literally. Anya and Dmitri then elope and Grandmama is cool with it.

Anya and Pooka against St Petersburg Anastasia  picture image

Anya and Pooka against St Petersburg

Let’s not mince word here, the reason why Anastasia is bad is because it takes a very bloody tumultuous period of history and fantasizes it. This movie is only accurate to people’s names and nothing else. To enjoy this movie you pretty much have to forget this is based on historical figures. Really they didn’t get anything right. It’s not like Romanovs or Rasputin haven’t been depicted in films before but the movie really makes light of the historical climatic of Russia. I mean it’s a sad when a disco song is more historical accurate about Rasputin (it’s a fun song though).

To the film’s somewhat credit, they know this was fantasy and in classic Disney fashion follows their clues from a classic movie, in this case the 1956 Anastasia
movie starting Yul Bynner and Ingrid Bergman. However reading stuff on the film from The Art of Anastasia, it says that they wanted a My Fair Lady type story where a girl is transformed from something ordinary to something glorious and apparently the world princess got kicked around a lot so this was the story they decided on.

Would it have been better to not include this period of Russian history and instead have a clearly fictitious story with clearly fictitious characters with a Russian setting? Hard to say because the Anastasia myth captured the world’s imagination for a long period time. It’s an impossible story to tell cleanly for kids but clearly the people who worked on the film loved it tried hard even if it is  grossly inaccurate. Should we pass it because it’s children movie? No, that shouldn’t reason pass off this kind of stuff. It’s historically inaccurate, it’s just fact.

Vald, Anya, Pooka and Dmitri Learn to do it Anastasia  picture image

Vald, Anya, Pooka and Dmitri

If you can for 90 minutes tell your purist part of your brain to shut-up, Anastasia is a good movie. It has great pacing, a solid script, lovely animation, some great songs and some memorable characters. Vlad is likable, Pooka is adorable, Dmitri while a snarky lair does get a decent arc, Bartok thinks Raspy’s plan is dumb and Marie is somewhat harsh but kind. You understand them and that is something you don’t often get in movies.

Rasputin though is weak. I know we turned off our purist brains but the real Rasputin was a really intriguing figure and this movie doesn’t even try to capture him except one part of his death, the ice.

Rasputin and Bartok Anastasia  picture image

Rasputin and Bartok

This Rasputin is pissed off for getting fired or something so he tries to kill the royals. I mean Nicholas shouldn’t have fired crazy but really that is his motivation for selling his soul to the Dark Forces? Side note, movie can’t say Communism or evil or demonic. They can say comrade and dark forces though, so lame.

Rasputin as the antagonist is both obvious and contrived. He always took the indirect methods to kill Anya. Once made the train go crazy and destroyed a bridge, second to sneak in her dreams and tried to get her to jump off a boat, and the third to drown her by destroying another bridge. Rasputin doesn’t like bridges apparently, but likes water. He could used his dark minions to stop her heart or something but he had to go for theatrics and cause infrastructure damage. If you want  to watch a movie about Rasputin either watch Agony (which is a communist propaganda movie and he is a gross figure) or if you find it, Rasputin: Dark Servant of Destiny, staring Alan Rickman.

Anya journey to the past  Anastasia  picture image

Anya

Anya/Anastasia is great character. She’s tough and no-nonsense but she is compassionate and fun. She knows exactly what she wants; family and a home so she can know her past so she understand herself.

This makes her follow Ariel in a way, as Ariel knew what she wanted; the people world. The other Disney Princesses (and most of the non-Disney Princesses, looking at you Yum-Yum) are more vague in their wants and desires. Anya, unlike the more classic Disney Princesses works at what she wants. She seeks out Dmitri for help but he needs her more than she needs him, she helps with getting out Raspy’s train plan and she kills Raspy, twice. Girl even fights in her princess gown. Anya is probably the closet to Mulan in activeness and Ariel is knowing what she really wants from life but she never feels like she it directly copying the Disney Princesses.

Anya and Dmitri being snarky train scene Anastasia  picture image

Anya and Dmitri being snarky

Anya and Dmtri’s romance is interesting. They spend enough time together to form an attraction that starts off as snarky but over time they come to respect each other. It is formulaic but enjoyable.

Anya singing Once Upon a December Anastasia picture image

Anya singing Once Upon a December

The animation is really good for the most part. The CG work looks dated and forced but hand-drawn stuff is lovely. They do repeat animation but you hardly notice.

The songs run the gambit from amazing to ok. Once upon a December is the best song in the movie. It’s beautiful and haunting. Journey to the past is a good I want song and did get an Academy Award nomination for Best Original Song. In the Dark of the Night is a cool enough song but the bugs should have been skeletons or demons or something cool and creepy and there is some silly lyrics. The rest of the songs are ok. No complaints on the music it’s solid. And like Thumbelina the music numbers are all theatrical which is fun and memorable.

Some fun little Trivia- Helene Segara of Notre Dame de Paris, sang a cover of Once upon a December for the French Soundtrack and I used play Once upon a December on the Piano, I had the sheet music, it was my jam in the day.

Anya and Pooka Anastasia  picture image

Anya and Pooka

Anastasia suffers for its gross historical white washing but otherwise it’s a good entertaining movie. Did I mention this movie has a fucking puppy in it? PUPPIES! And not one but THREE PRETTY DRESSES!

Disney Princesses/Characters are  common choices for costumes but usually one or costume is chosen more than what that character wears in the movie. But let us see which costumes of each character is the most cosplayed. Characters must have at least two costume changes in the movie. I will go through the first 100 cosplay pictures of the character  in google images.  I will search them by their name and word “cosplay” and in Jane and Anna case, Disney was added. Keep in my mind Google Images change a lot.

 

Snow white picture image

Snow white

 

Snow White

Yellow – 100
Rags – 0

 

 

 

 

Cinderella

Cinderella

 

Cinderella
Casual -1
Pink Gown – 0
Ball Gown -99

 

 

 

 

 

Aurora

Aurora

 

Aurora
Briar Rose -29
Pink Gown -50
Blue Gown -21

 

 

 

 

Ariel Disney The Little Mermaid picture image

Ariel Disney The Little Mermaid

 

Ariel
Mermaid – 50
Ship wreak – 3
Pink Gown -11
Blue Dress – 36
Wedding – 0

 

 

 

 

Belle

Belle

 

 

Belle
Casual -13
Green dress – 0*
Pink – 1
Yellow Gown -86

 

 

 

 

Jasmine

Jasmine

 

 

Jasmine
Casual -93
Disguise -0
Purple Dress -1
Slave – 6
Purple End – 0

 

 

 

 

Esmeralda as a Disney Princess picture image

Esmeralda as a Disney Princess

 

 

Esmeralda
Casual – 84
Red dress -12
Prisoner – 0

 

 

 

 

mulan

Mulan

 

Mulan
Casual – 15
Gown  – 61
Warrior 24

 

 

 

 

Jane

Jane

 

Jane
Yellow -70
Jungle -2
(all I saw)

 

 

 

 

 

Tiana

Tiana

 

 

Tiana
Waitress – 9
Almost there dress -0
Princess costume 1 – 0
Princess costume 2 kiss – 8
Ball Gown -83
Wwdding- 0

 

 

 

 

Elsa picture image frozen

Elsa

 

Elsa
Coronation Gown -16
Snow Queen -84

 

 

 

 

 

 

Anna, Frozen, picture image

Anna

 

Anna
Coronation Gown- 7
Snow Dress – 93
Ending Dress – 0

 

 

 

 

 

 

I’m not surprised by the common costume but some of the numbers are surprising. I thought Belle would have more for her Blue Dress.

*saw 1 under Jane

Which Disney Princess Matches Your Zodiac Sign? If you’re a Scorpio,rejoice you’re Esmeralda according to ChaCha.com.  here is the write up;

Esmeralda Disney Hunchback of Notre Dame picture image

Esmeralda Disney Hunchback of Notre Dame

Scorpio is known as The Fascinator, a secretive sign, like Esmerelda from ‘The Hunchback of Notre Dame.’ You are passionate, emotional, loyal and determined, and you love solving puzzles! Silvermist from ‘Tinker Bell’ would also be a Scorpio.

 

You can find your Disney Princess Zodiac here;

Which Disney Princess Matches your Zodiac Sign

Which one Princess is your Zodiac? I got Cinderella

Disney characters Cosplay  is a major presence at Fan Conventions (Anime, Gaming, Video Game, Comic etc). Groups of with these classic characters are big attention grabber but a group can deviate from it the characters traditional to make their both fun and a stand-out.

Here are some Ideas of what you can  do to jazz up any Disney Princess/Heroine group. Some have been done before and some haven’t.

Princesses to Extreme

Yaya Han as Mulan

Yaya Han as Mulan

Basically, you take basic design of the Disney Princesses & Heroines  dresses and make them even more opulent. You can use beading, fancy fabric anything you want to push it in to super ultra fancy.

Bollywood
Rework the  costumes into a chiffon sari. Don’t forget the bangles, tika and lots of kohl.

Steampunk
Put a Victorian spin of the costumes and then add a leather corset and googles.

Zombies

Zombie Disney Princesses

Zombie Disney Princesses

Shred the costumes, add blood and ghoulish make up.

Hipster

Hipster Jasmine, Ariel, Alice and Snow White ComicCon2012

Hipster Jasmine, Ariel, Alice and Snow White ComicCon2012

Modernize the costumes, add big black framed glasses and a clever phase about how you were ahead of the mainstream or just cooler in general.

Can Can

Can-Can dancers’ costume are all about the skirt that is covered with colorful ruffles on the inside. It’s a costume that is both fun and sexy.
FFX-2 Dress Sphere

Disney in Final Fantasy X-2 Dress Sphere inspired costume

Disney in Final Fantasy X-2 Dress Sphere inspired costume

The Dress Sphere was the Battle System in Final Fanatsy X-2. Basically the main characters change their clothes and they have a different set of abilities. The group was based of Fan-art by  Skirtzzz but given the variety of Disney Characters and Dress spheres the options are endless. What would a songstress Esmeralda look like?

Mermaids

Rework the Disney Princesses & Heroines costumes into mermaids like Ariel. Tails would match skirts, So, for explain, Esmeralda would have a purple skirt (if based on her normal look) and a white top. But how would you add her corset? There is a lot of creativity  with the details with this idea.

Warriors

Instead of dainty and pretty costume toughen up the Disney Princesses & Heroines into ass-kicking ladies.

Superheroes

Superhero Disney Princesses by Heykannaya

Superhero Disney Princesses by Heykannaya

Like the Warriors idea the Disney Princesses & Heroines would be more Kick ass looking but with capes and masks.

Sexy

Sexy Disney Princesses

Sexy Disney Princesses

Shorten the hems and drop the neckline and you can sex up the Disney Princesses & Heroines costumes.

Haute Couture

Designer Disney Princess Cosplay Collection by Street Angel

Designer Disney Princess Cosplay Collection by Street Angel

Instead of big poofy gowns rework the costume is sleek and elegant fashion inspired creations. http://street-angel.deviantart.com/art/Designer-Disney-Princess-Cosplay-Collection-335017438
Gender benders

Tinkerbell in more boyish clothes

Tinkerbell in more boyish clothes

Rework the Disney Princesses & Heroines costumes into male-ish costumes.

Magic Girls/ Sailor Scouts

Manon Yapari did a Fan-art of the Disney Princesses & Heroines as Sailor Scouts (from Sailor Moon), this would be an attention grabber at any Anime Con but you could take the classic Magic Girl Costume tropes and apply them to Disney Princesses & Heroines costumes.

Wedding

Rework the Disney Princesses & Heroines costumes into wedding gowns. I know Disney has  dolls of the Disney Princesses in wedding gowns but pending of you own style you can make an amazing gown for the princesses and/or the heroines What would Esmeralda wedding gown look like?
Ballerinas

Rework the Disney Princesses & Heroines costumes into Ballerinas.  You can design wo get a pancake tutu, a classic or a bell. This would a great group for those who can stand on pointe or just fans of ballet.

If you do any of these ideas with or without Esmeralda send them to me ^^.

The Disney Main Female is more of a canon than a line of characters that Disney deems as important. So are Esmeralda’s behaviors in Hunchback of Notre Dame applicable to how other so call Disney’s Princess Behaviors? Let’s compare Esmeralda against the  the rules presented in the Video “How to make a guy like you” and see how she does.

( Note There are 21 Rules, they write 16 twice, Video is meant to be funny)

21. Show him you can look good no matter what you’re wearing.

Check

Esmeralda, Quasimodo and Phoebus Disney Hunchback of Notre dame picture image

Esmeralda, Quasimodo and Phoebus leaving Notre Dame

 

 

 

 

 

 

20. Use Body Language.

Check, Esmeralda is working it

Disney Esmeralda Hunchback of Notre Dame Dance picture Image

Esmeralda’s Dance Disney Hunchback of Notre Dame

 

 

 

 

 

 

19. Make him jealous.

Check, she kisses all main three guys @_@

Esmeralda and Frollo Disney Hunchback of Notre Dame picture image

Esmeralda giving Frollo a peak on the nose Disney Hunchback of Notre Dame

Esmeralda getting close to Quasimodo Disney Hunchback of Notre Dame

Esmeralda getting close to Quasimodo Disney Hunchback of Notre Dame

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

18. Be a friends to nature’s animals.

Check, at least Djali, she doesn’t interact that much with other animals

Djali, Esmeralda, and Phoebus Disney Hunchback of Notre Dame picture image

Djali, Esmeralda, and Phoebus Disney Hunchback of Notre Dame

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

17. Act scared of him.

No, not even, she clocks him right in the face

Phoebus Disney Hunchback of Notre Dame picture image hit in the face by Esmeralda

Phoebus being hit by Esmeralda Disney Hunchback of Notre Dame

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

16. Rush into it. Don’t bother getting to know each other ahead of time.

Check, a kiss on the lips is what seals it in a Disney movie

Phoebus and Esmeralda Kiss Disney Hunchback of Notre Dame picture image

Phoebus and Esmeralda Kiss Disney Hunchback of Notre Dame

 

 

 

 

 

 

15. Look deeply into his eyes.

Check, she’s guilty

Esmeralda and Phoebus Disney Hunchback of Notre Dame picture image

Esmeralda and Phoebus Disney Hunchback of Notre Dame

 

 

 

 

 

 

14. Pretend like you would want him even if he wasn’t a prince. (yeah, right.)

No, there is no royalty in the movie and she is more put off by Phoebus’s position as a Knight/ Nobel

Esmeralda and Djali Disney Hunchback of Notre Dame picture image

Esmeralda and Djali reactiom to Phoebus’ name Disney Hunchback of Notre Dame

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

13. Having a wicked step-mother never hurts.

N/A, This Lady just looks like Lady Tremaine (Cinderella) doesn’t she?

Frollo's Female Doppelganger singing a line in God Help the Outcast Disney Hunchback of Notre Dame picture image

Frollo’s Female Doppelganger singing a line in God Help the Outcast Disney Hunchback of Notre Dame

Lady Tremaine Disney Cinderella picture image

Lady Tremaine Disney Cinderella

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

12. Never do what your parents tell you to do. They only want what’s best for you.

N/A, no one really ever told her what to do and she doesn’t have parents to get in her way

Esmeralda Disney Hunchback of Notre Dame picture image

Esmeralda exerting some power Disney Hunchback of Notre Dame

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

11. Be constantly happy. Bottle up any negative emotions you have until after the wedding bells have rung.

It’s hard to say, she’s no negative-nelly but she’s not little miss sunshine either, mmmm after some thought I’m going to say yes, Check

Esmeralda Disney Hunchback of Notre dame picture image

Esmeralda Disney Hunchback of Notre dame

 

 

 

 

 

 

10. Trust EVERYONE.

Pretty much

Archdeacon and Esmeralda Disney Hunchback of Notre Dame face picture image

Archdeacon and Esmeralda Disney Hunchback of Notre Dame

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

9. Don’t bother being intelligent. It won’t help you that much.

No, I guess I’d give her Street Smarts though.

Esmeralda, Djali, Brute and Oaf Disney Hunchback of Notre Dame picture image

Esmeralda, Djali, Brute and Oaf Disney Hunchback of Notre Dame

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

8. Always be prepared, even if this mean carrying around glass shoes in your pocket.

Check, note the knife strapped to her calf

Esmeralda and Quasimodo Disney Hunchback of Notre Dame picture image

Esmeralda defying Frollo by helping Quasimodo Disney Hunchback of Notre Dame

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

7. Be Sweet and innocent…until you want to kiss him.

No, No, No, “She’s been around,” consult the DVD Audio Commentary  for more

Esmeralda and Phoebus Disney Hunchback of Notre Dame picture image

Esmeralda and Phoebus Disney Hunchback of Notre Dame

 

 

 

 

 

 

6. Disregard his personal boundaries and make him feel like an idiot.

Check, Kind of a Derpy looking Phoebus huh?

Phoebus Disney Hunchback of Notre Dame cross eyes picture iamge

Phoebus crosse-eyed Disney Hunchback of Notre Dame

 

 

 

 

 

 

5. Cry…simple, but effective.

No, she sulks

Esmeralda sulks Disney Hunchback of Notre Dame picture image

Esmeralda sulks Disney Hunchback of Notre Dame

 

 

 

 

 

 

4. When you first meet, remain completely anonymous.

Check, they don’t even speak until their third encounter

Achilles Disney Hunchback of Notre Dame picture image

Achilles Disney Hunchback of Notre Dame

 

 

 

 

 

 

3. Pretend like you’re dead.

Check

Esmeralda and Quasimodo Disney Hunchback of Notre Dame picture image

Quasimodo thinking Esmeralda has died Disney Hunchback of Notre Dame

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

2. Sing to them (why this works, I shall never know.)

No, but Belle never sang to Beast and yet it counts in the video,  Esmeralda does sing a solo though which more than Jasmine got. 1/2 point

Esmeralda singing God Help the Outcast Disney Hunchback of Notre Dame picture image

Esmeralda singing God Help the Outcast Disney Hunchback of Notre Dame

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

1. ALWAYS leave hims wanting more.

Check, in spades

Esmeralda Disney Hunchback of Notre Dame picture image

Esmeralda Dancing Disney Hunchback of Notre Dame

Esmeralda Disney Hunchback of Notre Dame picture image red dress

Esmeralda Disney Hunchback of Notre Dame

Disney Esmeralda Hunchback of Notre Dame Dance picture image

Esmeralda’s Dance Disney Hunchback of Notre Dame

 

 

 

 

 

 

Because I’m not counting the parental questions that makes 19 in total. She scores 13.5.   13.5/19 = 71%

Well, well, well Esmeralda acts more like a Disney Princess than some give her credit for, too bad she doesn’t cry or have Parental units.

What do you people think, should Esmeralda be made a Disney Princess? Remember, it’s an archetype not a hierarchical position.

The Someday reviews are coming… someday (Lame Joke, tis my destiny)

Esmeralda Disney Hunchback of Notre Dame picture image

Esmeralda Disney Hunchback of Notre Dame

 

Esmeralda is the most divergent character in the Disney version from the book in both looks and personality. I already talked about her personality, now let’s look at her looks.

Esmeralda Disney Hunchback of Notre Dame picture image

Disney Esmeralda Hunchback of Notre Dame dancing

 

 

The Disney Esmeralda looks 100% Romani (Gypsy). She has a darker complexion, dark hair, and light green eyes (with no glint). Her eyes also do not change color pending on how much light is in the space, which kind of makes them look witchy.  She keeps her hair pulled back and the way she does it, it creates a big poof. This poof makes her look older. When her hair is down she looks younger. Her hair also has a slight curl. Though in the middle of the epic running away from Frollo, her hair looks straight but that could just  be inconsistencies in animation or the wind, take your pick. But it does look straight.

 

 

Esmeralda Disney Hunchback of Notre Dame picture image

Esmeralda complimenting Quaismodo Disney Hunchback of Notre Dame

 

Her age is very vague. Most of the Disney characters have a rough age range or they just say how old they are like Ariel and Jasmine. With this shift in Disney heroines being somewhat more independent and less dreamy, they appear to be older than the typical “Disney princess” (except Tiana, I would say she is like a compromise between the archetypal Princess and the confident independent heroine of the late nineties). The question is how old is Disney’s Esmeralda. With the age inflation that Disney implements, I’d say she most likely 22 at the youngest, which is old for a Disney heroine. The long and short of it is, Esmeralda is meant to be older like “she’s been around.” This is not my phasing, watch the commentary, it’s the scene where Esmeralda is helping Quasimodo from the pillory. To listen to the commentary, The DVD

 

19th Century Illustration of Esmeralda with Djali

19th Century Illustration of Esmeralda with Djali

Disney Esmeralda Hunchback of Notre Dame Dance picture Image

Esmeralda’s Dance Disney Hunchback of Notre Dame

 

 

 

 

 

 

Against the original novel by Victor Hugo, Esmeralda’s looks are very different. Esmeralda is never described in graphic detail but she’s described as very beautiful frequently by many characters. Disney Esmeralda is meant to be beautiful certainly (what Disney main female character isn’t?) but she is never called beautiful in the movie. The closest mention to her looks is Clopin saying she’s “The Finest Girl is France.”

Esmeralda Illustration Image picture

19th century Illustration of Esmeralda

Disney Esmeralda Hunchback of Notre Dame Dance picture image

Esmeralda’s Dance Disney Hunchback of Notre Dame

 

 

 

 

 

 

Esmeralda in the book is not 100% Romani (Gypsy). Her mother is a French women and while her Father could have been a Gypsy, it is never actually mentioned who was her father. Esmeralda has a golden skin tone, black hair and black eyes. Part of Esmeralda’s charm in the book is her innocence and her total unawareness of her own beauty. Disney Esmeralda is the complete and utter opposite; she knows her appeal, exploits it and given that quote by the director Kirk Wise that I mention earlier, I’m not sure how innocent is in the movie. (I still wonder if the production actually read the book or just confused it with other Hunchback films) So it safe to say that Disney did not use Hugo for even  a basis of Esmeralda’s design.

 

Concept Art for Esmeralda Disney Hunchback of Notre dame picture image

Concept Art for Esmeralda Disney Hunchback of Notre Dame

Concept Art for Esmeralda Disney Hunchback of Notre Dame picture image

Concept Art for Esmeralda Disney Hunchback of Notre Dame

Concept Art for Esmeralda Disney Hunchback of Notre Dame picture image

Concept Art for Esmeralda Disney Hunchback of Notre Dame

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Looking at the concept art, Esmeralda started off looking more youthful and somehow along the way she lost  the youthful look. My guess the vocal inspiration turned the tables on the character design. Alas Demi’s Moore doesn’t sound youthful, at least not when the film was recording the voices. For More Concept Art of Hunchback

 

 

Esmeralda and Frollo Disney Hunchback of Notre Dame picture image

Esmeralda giving Frollo a peck on the nose Disney Hunchback of Notre Dame

 

It’s actually not Disney’s fault that Esmeralda’s looks/acts sexy whereas Hugo’s Esmeralda  did not. The fault lies in the film history of Hunchback movies. Esmeralda has long been depicted as sexy or at least no stranger to  feminine charms. Esmeralda has also been depicted by actresses who are more known for their sex appeal over acting prowess. Such actresses have been Stacia Napierkowska, Theda Bara, Gina Lollobrigida and Salma Hayak. Also Disney models their characters after the voice actor playing them, so with the choice of Demi Moore it was  inevitable that Disney Esmeralda was going to be sexy and follow the line of sexy Esmeraldas.

In a featurette of the movie, Moore said she could see herself in Esmeralda’s animation. While Disney took their cues from the 1939 version, I think Esmeralda’s look was based somewhat on Gina Lollobrigida’s Esmeralda  as well as Demi Moore (maybe, I can’t really tell, I haven’t seen a ton of Moore’s films discern her mannerism and/or acting style in Esmeralda’s animation.)

Demi Moore image picture

Demi Moore

Esmeralda Disney Hunchback of Notre Dame picture image red dress

Esmeralda Disney Hunchback of Notre Dame

Gina Lollobrigida as Esmeralda Hunchback of Notre Dame 1956 image picture

Gina Lollobrigida as Esmeralda Hunchback of Notre Dame 1956

 

 

 

 

 

 

Next Time Phoebus

Phoebus Disney Hunchback of Notre Dame picture image

Phoebus Disney Hunchback of Notre Dame


Next Character: Esmeralda; The Heroine

Esmeralda Disney Hunchback of Notre Dame

Disney Esmeralda Hunchback of Notre Dame dancing

Esmeralda Disney Hunchback of Notre Dame picture image

Esmeralda Disney Hunchback of Notre Dame

Esmeralda is a gypsy dancer who is the subject of the three male main characters’ affections. She’s very beautiful and sensual. In this version Esmeralda is 100% Romani. She has a dark complexion (darker than Jasmine), thick black hair and emerald green eyes (attributive to her name). She wears a white chemise blouse that off shoulder, a blue corset with thin gold stripes, a purple skirt with a darker purple kercheif

Esmeralda Disney Hunchback of Notre Dame red dress image picture

Esmeralda Disney Hunchback of Notre Dame Dancing

worn at the hip with coin trim. She wears some gold jewelry; bracelets, an anklet and one gold hoop. She were a pink scarf in her hair to keep her hair back. She has a second outfit, that is used as an formal dance costume. It’s red with purple flutter sleeves and a purple sash at the waist. In addition to her normal jewelry she where a bindi and a crown.

 

 

Esmeralda and Quasimodo Disney Hunchback of Notre Dame picture image

Esmeralda helping Quasimodo Disney Hunchback of Notre Dame

Esmeralda and Djali Disney Hunchback of Notre Dame picture image

Esmeralda and Djali Disney Hunchback of Notre Dame

Esmeralda is a very different type of Disney Heroine, she’s  mature and not a dreaming of new life. She deals with her lot in life and gets by the best she can. To make a income she dances.She also dabbles in fortune telling. She is also in the company or her goat Djali. Djali acts are her security system, warning her of danger and trying to protect her from would be harm. In the Disney version, Djali doesn’t get her into in trouble like in book. Infact Djali helps her get out of trouble by helping her deguise as an old begger man.

 

Esmeralda Disney Hunchback of Notre Dame picture image

Esmeralda demanding Justice Disney Hunchback of Notre Dame

Esmeralda’s main motivation is social justice for mainly her own people but also for those on the outskirts of the social order (i.e. Quasimodo). It’s in this way she is the opposition of Frollo and she hates  him and defies him every chance she gets. Prior to her defiance she teased/mocked him with her flirtatious dancing during the festival of fools.  She also wary of those in power positions. That’s why she didn’t take a shining to Phoebus at first, but his persistent charm and wit won her over (plus saving an innocent family that almost cost him his life didn’t hurt much either).

 

Esmeralda Disney Hunchback of Notre Dame picture image

Esmeralda dealing with soldiers Disney Hunchback of Notre Dame

Esmeralda and Frollo Disney Hunchback of Notre Dame red dress picture image costume

Esmeralda mocks Frollo Disney Hunchback of Notre Dame

Esmeralda and Quasimodo Disney Hunchback of Notre Dame picture image

Esmeralda defying Frollo by helping Quasimodo Disney Hunchback of Notre Dame

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Esmeralda and Phoebus Disney Hunchback of Notre Dame picture image

Esmeralda and Phoebus Disney Hunchback of Notre Dame

Speaking of Phoebus and Esmeralda here is a little point I would like to make. A few people feel that it was shallow of Esmeralda to choose Phoebus over Quasimodo. In movies, couples are usually established early, you can usually tell whose going to end up together. As a I mention in another post Esmeralda and Phoebus only have one scene without either Frollo or Quasimodo and that is where they are both introduced, meaning that their relationship was established before either of them met Frollo or Quasimodo. Also I can’t see Esmeralda and Quaismodo being anything but friends. She treats Quasimodo with kindness and politeness  and comes off like an older family member; she really does treat him with kid gloves. There is no  passion unlike  Esmeralda and Phoebus. The creators wanted a romance  between Esmeralda and Phoebus and  that what the movie worked towards.

Esmeralda, Phoebus, and Quasimodo Disney Hunchback of Notre Dame picture image

Quasimodo accepts Esmeralda and Phoebus as a couple Disney Hunchback of Notre Dame

 

 

 

Esmeralda and Djali Disney Hunchback of Notre Dame picture image

Esmeralda and Djali having a little fun Disney Hunchback of Notre Dame

As far of Esmeralda’s personality, she’s kind, she has a dry wit and she’s loyal to her friends. She is  very resourceful, for example Phoebus owns his life to her make-shift sling shot that saved him from decapitation. She also has a bit of mischievous streak. During the chase after she frees Quasimodo she looks like she is legitimately having fun avoiding arrest while raising some hell.  She also uses her feminine charms to get what she wants. She uses it to earn money from dancing but she also gives Quasimodo a peak on the check to get him to allow her to visit him. She is very physically fit; she dances, very agile in a fight (or chase), she can swim underwater, hold her breath long enough to get Phoebus out of his armor and pull up in record time. She also has seems to have some sway in the Court of Miracles as she can stop executions

Esmeralda Disney Hunchback of Notre Dame picture image

Esmeralda exerting some power Disney Hunchback of Notre Dame

and order the people to leave. She also can seem to refer people to the Court, not sure if that map/cryptic instructions she gave Quasimodo are standrad issue in the Court of  Miracles or if she is some high rank there. Not only that but the other Gypsies wouldn’t devalue her location, meaning either they’re loyal to their fellow gypsies or she is respected. She also seems to have a close relationship to Clopin who like in the book is leader in the Court of Miracles. She performs with him and he not put off with her meddling in the hanging of Quaismodo and Phoebus, which Clopin seem to be enjoying. It seems to me that she must hold some power amongst her people or the Court of Miracle is egalitarian.

 

Esmeralda Disney Hunchback of Notre Dame singing "God Help the Outcast" picture image

Esmeralda singing “God Help the Outcast” Disney Hunchback of Notre Dame

Esmeralda is not a dynamic character. She remains  consistent throughout the movie; she’s mature, self-confident and kind at the beginning and she remains that way thoughout the end. The only aspect about that changes is her feelings towards Phoebus. In defense of static characters, Esmeralda is not a dynamic character in the book either and Disney doesn’t do dynamic characters very often.

 

 

 

Esmeralda and Frollo Disney Hunchback of Notre Dame grope picture image

Frollo gropes Esmeralda Disney Hunchback of Notre Dame

Esmeralda Disney Hunchback of Notre Dame picture image

Esmeralda avoiding Frollo’s hunt Disney Hunchback of Notre Dame

Esmeralda and Frollo Disney Hunchback of Notre Dame picture image

Frollo arresting Esmeralda Disney Hunchback of Notre Dame

 

 

 

 

 

 

Esmeralda is not a typical heroine, the scarps she gets into are serious. She’s almost arrested, assaulted in a church, threaten, hunted down by a control-freak mad man, almost burned, nearly dies of asphyxiation and then chased with a six foot sword a top a massive edifice. Makes other Disney heroine’s tribulations look like a child’s play. All she really did to get into all that trouble was being a Gypsy and a defing a powerful public offical; she stayed in trouble because of her beauty and sex appeal.

Esmeralda Disney Hunchback of Notre Dame picture image stake

Esmeralda on the stake Disney Hunchback of Notre Dame

Esmeralda and Quasimodo Disney Hunchback of Notre Dame picture image

Quasimodo thinking Esmeralda has died Disney Hunchback of Notre Dame

Esmeralda and Quasimodo Disney Hunchback of Notre dame picture image

Esmeralda and Quasimodo being threaten Disney Hunchback of Notre Dame

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Esmeralda Disney Hunchback of Notre dame picture image

Esmeralda Disney Hunchback of Notre dame

I admit it was refreshing to see a different type of heroine when I first saw the movie in 1996 and it’s great that  Disney ventured outside the profitable typical Disney heroine. If Hunchback had come out before this shift in heroine  Esmeralda could have easily fit into the Disney princess line. Now if your thinking “Esmeralda’s not a princess” well I would say neither is Mulan but let me explain some minor points. The Disney Princess brand isn’t actually about the characters being princesses  it’s about how their movies did with girls in a certain age demographics, hence why Esmeralda isn’t in the line up already.  But if Esmeralda behaved more like Ariel, Belle, or Jasmine (dreamer wanting more) she may have done better with young girls, though it’s hard to say. I suppose the creators thought Quasimodo fit  dreamer model better than Esmeralda and she would do better as an agent of Quasimodo’s liberation from being a focused shut-in. But another point worth mentioning is Esmeralda in the book fits the Disney princess mold very well and she was very well regarded in the Court of Miracles. So making like a princess wouldn’t have been a stretch and she does dream of a different life with regards to Phoebus. I wonder if Disney regrets this since the Disney Princess line was establish in 2001.

Esmeralda, Quasimodo and Phoebus Disney Hunchback of Notre dame picture image

Esmeralda, Quasimodo and Phoebus leaving Notre Dame

 

 

Next Character –Phoebus

Phoebus Disney Hunchback of Notre dame picture image

Phoebus Disney Hunchback of Notre Dame