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The gender-fuelled motivation behind Disney changing Rapunzel to Tangled

03.09.2010

There's usually pretty clear motivation behind a title change of a major movie. Usually it's something about testing or vulgarity (in Kevin Smith's case), but the reasoning behind Disney's latest move to change the name of their upcoming animated feature RAPUNZEL to TANGLED is a bit more interesting.

The LA Times has a story about the logic behind the decision, and the fundamental reason? To attract more boys.

"The makeover of "Rapunzel" is more than cosmetic. Disney can ill afford a moniker that alienates half the potential audience, young boys, who are needed to make an expensive family film a success. "We did not want to be put in a box," said Ed Catmull, president of Pixar and Disney Animation Studios, explaining the reason for the name change.

"Some people might assume it's a fairy tale for girls when it's not. We make movies to be appreciated and loved by everybody."

Credit the underwhelming performance of THE PRINCESS AND THE FROG for this newfound change of policy.

"The Princess and the Frog" generated considerably less -- $222 million in global ticket sales to date. "Based upon the response from fans and critics, we believe it would have been higher if it wasn't prejudged by its title," Catmull said.

Let’s see, BEAUTY AND THE BEAST, THE LITTLE MERMAID, SNOW WHITE, MULAN and POCAHONTAS all had something female-ish in their titles, so I think this rationale is kind of a cop out if you ask me. Has Disney animation just lost their luster in favor of Pixar?

A good movie is a good movie. Pixar could name their next project LADY FRILLY PINK PANTS and if it was well done, it would still be a smashing success like all their other films. I think Disney’s just making excuses here.

Extra Tidbit: Floyd Norman, a retired Disney and Pixar animator, drew that picture making fun of the new name which he calls “beyond stupid.”
Source: LA Times

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