“Maybe your gift is being in denial.” – Encanto
Bursting with color and energy, Walt Disney Animation Studios released the teaser trailer for their upcoming kid-friendly (and animated) film, Encanto, set to be released on November 24, 2021.
While the “chosen one” archetype remains popular in many books and movies, namely through characters like Harry Potter and Katniss Evergreen, Encanto takes a different spin on this overused trope. Is this new Colombian princess, Mirabel (Stephanie Beatriz), a chosen one of some prophecy? Nope. Instead, she’s more like the un-chosen one, the only person in her world who doesn’t have the “gift” or any special powers.
In Encanto, Mirabel is unlike any other princess we’ve seen from Disney.
There’s nothing outwardly special about Mirabel, like Elsa’s ice powers or Cinderella’s fairy godmother, on her side. Mirabel wears large green glasses and certainly doesn’t look like your typical Disney princess. She even gets a present from a man who names it the “not special special” in order to make her feel better for not having any powers.
In the trailer, we can see one character shapeshifting from a kid to a middle-age man to an old lady with tropical, upbeat music in the background. We also see a character boasting extra strength, lifting up two pianos. And there’s also a boy who can communicate extremely well with animals. These scenes give us some early, colorful glimpses of characters displaying their unique powers.
In Casa Madrigal (the setting of Encanto), not only do the characters have powers, but random everyday objects animate in this enchanted land. From the floorboards and teakettles moving around to bright pink flowers blooming instantaneously, Casa Madrigal is clearly an extraordinary world of its own. As the trailer puts it, the setting is “where all are exceptional.” Well, everyone but Mirabel, at least at first glance.
With original songs by Lin-Manuel Miranda (who previously wrote music for Moana, Hamilton, and recently In the Heights), Encanto takes viewers on a bright and lively ride through a fantastical depiction of Colombia. Focusing on a character with built-in flaws, viewers may see Mirabel as a strong, relatable character they’ll quickly come to love.
Encanto is slated to be released in theaters November 24, 2021.