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Disney's 'Sofia the First': What does a real Latina princess look like?

Screen shot from SpanglishBaby's #LatinaPrincess Pinterest board

Parents have been sending in photos to a blogger's call to "Let’s Show What a #LatinaPrincess Really Looks Like," in response to a recent flap over a Disney character.

Last month, when a Disney executive producer  told reporters that a new princess in the upcoming animated telefilm "Sofia the First" would be Latina, a minor scandal ensued. While some cheered such a character, there were Latino media watchdogs, parents, bloggers and Disney fans who were incensed.

Why, they asked, was Disney not making a bigger deal about the new Princess Sofia's ethnicity, making her the child of a mother hailing from a fictional country with "Latin influences" (as one Disney spokesperson explained), but little more? And why did she have medium brown hair and blue eyes? The latter controversy launched a very public, and heated, discussion of just what Latinas/Latinos are supposed to look like — a question for which there is no easy answer.

In the end, Disney clarified that Sofia — who debuts Nov. 18 at 7 p.m ET/PT on the Disney Channel —  isn't really Latina after all. Her mother comes from a fairy-tale kingdom called Galdiz that's "inspired by Spain," as Disney described it; her father hails from a fictional land that's ostensibly farther north. Sofia is bicultural, but not quite Latina.

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