Tv host Oprah Winfrey has joined the voice cast of the upcoming Disney animated film “The Princess and the Frog“. At presentation in Hollywood last Wednesday chief creative office at Walt Disney Animation Studios, John Lasseter, revealed that Winfrey is now on board of the new awaited Disney project as the voice of Eudora, the mother of the main character, Princess Tiana, voiced by Anika Noni Rose (Dreamgirls).
Winfrey, who has lent her voice to other fantasy films such as “Charlotte’s Web” and “Bee Movie” is one of America’s most rich and influetial women and owe her popularity to her talk show, The Oprah Winfrey Show.
Composer Randy Newman (Toy Story) has written six new songs for the feature and performed one of the tunes, titled Down In New Orleans” at the Disney presentation mentioned above.
“The Princess and The Frog” is the big return of Disney to the 2D animated musical formula” and is directed by
John Musker and Ron Clements who are responsable of some of Disney’s best movies from the 90’s such as The Little Mermaid, Aladdin and Hercules. Set in New Orleans the film features Voodoo pretty prominently. The “Disney Villain” this time is indeed a Voodoo worlock called Facilier and voiced by Keith David, while the fairy godmother is a 200 years old Voodoo priestess, named Mama Odie, who is blind, living in the swamps and always brewing with Gumbo in which she has magic visions. She’s been described as a combination of Moms Mably and Star Wars’ Yoda.
The prince of the story is Prince Levine. Arriving to the French Quarter of New Orleans seeking out jazz he is lured in by Facilier, who turns him into a frog. The twist on the fairy tale is the frog’s kiss. When Tiana kisses the Frog she doesn’t turn it back into a prince but she becomes a frog herself. They start a great adventure in the Bayou as frogs trying to find a way to become human again Among their funny encounters there are Louis, a giant swamp alligator, reminiscent of Peter Pan’s crocodile, who is a jazz fan and Ray, a lovesick hopeless romantic Cajun firefly.
The Princess And The Frog will reach cinemas in 2010 as hinted by the official teaser trailer (images below).
Images taken from the official “The Princess and The Frog” teaser Trailer – Copyright Disney