By Hannah Wong , FashionnStyle Reporter | Oct 23, 2012 09:18 PM EDT
The "Sofia" Disney controversy has stirred up outrage among fans. Disney Co.recently revealed their latest princess, Sofia, a so-called "Latina" character. However, fans have questioned the character's blue eyes, nearly red hair, and pale skin as not seeming "Latina enough."
The new Disney princess is the main character in the upcoming series: "Sofia the First: Once Upon A Princess." Disney representative originally claimed that Sofia was their first Latina character. However, once images of the princess were released, members of the Latino community criticized her features. Sofia's mother, however, has darker skin and darker hair.
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Nancy Kanter, senior vice president of original programming and general manager for Disney Junior worldwide, corrected the statements previously made by Disney reps.
"Some of you may have seen the recent news stories on whether Sofia is or isn't a 'Latina princess,' " Kanter wrote on Facebook. "What's important to know is that Sofia is a fairytale girl who lives in a fairytale world. All our characters come from fantasy lands that may reflect elements of various cultures and ethnicities but none are meant to specifically represent those real world cultures."
"The writers have wisely chosen to write stories that include elements that will be familiar and relatable to kids from many different backgrounds including Spain and Latin America," she continued.
Kanter also stated that the fictitious land where Sofia's mother is from is inspired by Spain. Episodes will include Sofia and her family celebrating a holiday similar to "a Scandinavian Christmas" and go on a picnic in "an Asian-inspired kingdom."
"Sofia's world reflects the ethnically diverse world we live in but it is not OUR world," Kanter continued. "Together, this creates a world of diversity and inclusion that sends just the right kind of message to all children -- "Look around you, appreciate the differences you see and celebrate what makes us all the same."
Sofia's voice will be provided by Ariel Winter of "Modern Family." Her mother, Miranda, will be played by Sara Ramirez of "Grey's Anatomy." Wayne Brady and Tim Gunn will also be lending their voices for the Disney series.
Catch "Sofia the First" on on Sunday, Nov. 18 from 7-8 PM/ET on the Disney Channel and Thursday, Nov. 22 at 9-10 AM/ET on Disney Junior.
Check out a preview below!
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