There’s a new Disney princess and she’s Southeast Asian! Here’s what we know so far…

Disney introduced a new princess in a trailer released on Wednesday morning – Raya, a warrior on the hunt for the last dragon in Kumandra. In this world, humans and dragons lived together in harmony… until an evil force threatened the land and the dragons sacrificed themselves to save humanity.

The story unfolds as evil returns five hundred years later and it’s now up to the lone warrior Raya to find the legendary last dragon in order to restore the fractured land and bring back peace. Along her journey, she will learn that it will take more than a dragon to save the world!

From the creators of Moana and Frozen, directors Don Hall and Carlos López Estrada, co-directors Paul Briggs and John Ripa, producers Osnat Shurer and Peter Del Vecho, and ‘Crazy Rich Asians’ writer Adele Lim present ‘Raya and the Last Dragon’.

The newest Disney princess is voiced by ‘Star Wars’ star Kelly Marie Tran who is Vietnamese-American (originally Filipino-Canadian actress Cassie Steele), while the last dragon named ‘Sisu’ is portrayed by ‘Crazy Rich Asians’ star Awkwafina.

(This “Star Wars” Actress Will Be Voicing Raya, Disney’s First Southeast Asian Lead Character)

At first look, we see the princess warrior wears what seems to be a salakot, a native Filipino farmers’ hat. Meanwhile, netizens were also quick to spot Raya’s weapon in combat which resembles the national martial art of the Philippines, Arnis.

We are yet to confirm these, tho it will surely not come as a surprise as the upcoming Disney movie is said to be inspired by Southeast Asian cultures.

With over 400 artists who worked on the film remotely after the pandemic struck at around the beginning of production, it will finally make its release in U.S. theaters on March 12, 2021. Watch ‘Raya and the Last Dragon’ trailer below:

Were you able to spot other Filipino-inspired elements in the trailer? Tell us in the comments!


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