15 Details About Disney Princes That Are Often Overlooked
Although Disney princesses are the main focus of viewers’ attention, the princes also deserve recognition. Over the decades, there have been several changes in the way they have been portrayed, going from being the generic Prince Charming to heroes with their own names and personalities. This is how they show details that reflect part of the plot and make them as relevant as their companions.
At Bright Side, we researched Disney’s princes to reveal parts of their stories that are often overlooked in the excitement of the movies.
1. Eric was the first prince to be rescued by his princess.
Disney princesses are almost always the ones rescued by their love. But in The Little Mermaid, Eric became the first prince in the franchise to be saved by the protagonist who, throughout the story, actually rescued him on 2 occasions: the first was when he fell into the sea and the second was when he confronted Ursula at the climax of the film.
2. John Smith really existed.
John Smith was a soldier and explorer who had been captured by the natives of America when he settled on their lands. It is believed that he was rescued by a girl of the tribe that held him hostage, but the accuracy of the event could never be proved.
The Disney version of John Smith, besides being physically different from the historical character, also had a different personality. While the real guy was authoritarian and had a hard character, the fictional Smith is kind and cordial. He was also way older than Pocahontas and they never had a romantic relationship in real life, according to certain documents.
3. The feather in Aladdin’s turban indicated when he was telling a lie.
Aladdin pretended to be Prince Ali, someone he wasn’t, when he first met Jasmine. He feared that she wouldn’t accept him for who he was, so he put on a fake façade, something that really annoyed Jasmine. Not only that, but every time he lied, the feather of his hat would flop over.
4. Li Shang was the first Disney prince to not kiss a princess.
In the first Mulan movie, Li Shang never kissed the protagonist of the story, even though they liked each other. Besides that, he was the first Disney prince to show gratitude and respect for the heroine’s attributes.
5. John Smith did not stay with the princess.
Because John Smith was injured in the first part of Pocahontas, he had to return to England for medical treatment. He invited her to travel with him, but she refused, as she felt she was needed in her tribe.
And in the sequel, Smith invited her to travel the world. Unfortunately, Pocahontas had already overcome her feelings for him, so she again refused. He then decided to let her go and leave on his journey.
6. Flynn was supposed to be an anti-hero.
The producers of Tangled wanted to move away from the classic Disney male hero, considering them “rather soft” at times. So they decided that Flynn, instead of being a prince, should be a charismatic and charming thief, adding a worldly touch to contrast with Rapunzel’s limited view of the outside world.
7. Hans is the only Disney prince to be a villain.
Of all the Disney princes, Hans is the only one who’s actually a villain. This makes him peculiar since he presents himself as a kind person who empathizes with the lonely princess, managing to make her fall in love after their meeting. Thus, he manages to manipulate her to finally reveal his true intentions.
While there were many villains pretending to be good at Disney, the case in Frozen is different, as Hans gave no hint of being evil. Usually, the viewer already knows when a character is evil and pretends to be on the protagonist’s side. But here, Hans managed to hide his true nature until almost the end of the movie.
8. Naveen kissed Tiana more than once.
Almost at the beginning of the movie The Princess and the Frog, Tiana kissed Naveen when he was an animal. However, there were also other occasions when they exchanged kisses, thus being the couple that has kissed the most in Disney movies.
9. Eric was the only Disney prince to become a father.
Although there are several Disney princess movies that had sequels, only in The Little Mermaid was it possible to see the main couple form a family. Prince Eric became the father of a little girl named Melody, whom he cared for with great affection. When she escaped to the bottom of the sea, he even moved an entire fleet to recover her.
10. Aladdin is the only Disney prince to be a leading man.
While there are many films with male protagonists, Aladdin is the only one in the “Disney princess” franchise to feature a prince as the main character. On top of that, he was the first to earn his royal title by marrying a princess.
11. Prince Phillip was the first one that had an actual name.
While in Snow White and Cinderella the princes’ names are never revealed, in Sleeping Beauty it is mentioned at some point in the story. He is also the first in the franchise to have more dialogue than his predecessors and to defeat a villain, thus fulfilling the role of prince and hero.
12. Snow White’s Prince Charming should have had a bigger role in the movie.
Snow White’s prince is perhaps the character with the fewest appearances on screen, as he is only seen at the beginning and end of the movie. It was planned for him to have greater relevance, but due to animation problems, the producers decided to cut his scenes.
13. Kristoff and Li Shang are tertiary characters.
What Li Shang and Kristoff (the Disney princes of Mulan and Frozen) have in common is that they are tertiary characters. Besides that, they also have other similarities such as being thoughtful, shy, and logical, compared to the princesses, who have a more adventurous spirit. And none of them got married until later, in the sequels.
14. Naveen and Beast did not show their human form in most of their films.
The films Beauty and the Beast and The Princess and the Frog have in common that the princes do not show their human appearance for much of the story. While Beast regains his humanity near the end, Prince Naveen is seen as human only at the beginning and during the denouement of the movie.
15. The Beast was inspired by buffalo.
When it came to bringing Beast to life, the creator of the character’s design said he was inspired by the head of a buffalo. But as he did sketches, he also integrated other animals such as a wild boar, a lion, a gorilla, a bear, and a wolf.
His goal was to create an animal-like figure, as he wanted to move away from the alien version of the original story. After taking parts of different creatures, he managed to create an anthropomorphic being that matched the environment in which the film was set.
What do you admire about the Disney princes? Which of them would you like to see in their own movie?