Photo Credit: Disney
Disney has its own trademark animation style; everyone knows that. The fact that almost all the fathers are squat fat men with thick mustaches and all the old women look like Angela Lansbury feels like one big in-joke. And while no one expects Disney to change the way its animators draw, the character recycling in The Princess and the Frog feels a little bit too obvious.
Now, let me be sure to state that The Princess and the Frog is a very good movie, probably the best traditionally animated film that Disney has put out in ages. That being said, isn’t it all too apparent that Prince Naveen is just The Little Mermaid’s Prince Eric with a haircut and a tan? Have you looked at the two of them side by side? Maybe the two are long lost cousins or something (those royal families do tend to intermarry). At least character-wise, Naveen is very different from Eric, definitely an original. You can’t say as much for his valet, Lawrence.
Lawrence happens to be a doppelganger of Nathaniel, valet to Prince Edward in Disney’s Enchanted. The jowly and jealous Nathaniel gets seduced into betraying his prince by his movie’s female villain. That’s completely different from the jowly and jealous Lawrence who gets seduced into betraying his prince by his movie’s male villain. See?
At least they didn’t put that villain -- the tall, lanky, long-jawed, wispy-mustached Dr. Facilier -- in a Jafar turban.