A designer working on Rachel Zegler's live-action Snow White movie spoke out about the controversy surrounding the film's dwarves.
While Disney's latest retelling of an animated classic is still some time away, the modern Snow White remake has failed to stay out of the headlines.
The upcoming Gal Gadot and Rachel Zegler blockbuster made waves earlier this year after it was seemingly revealed the movie would not use the story's classic seven dwarves, opting for seven diverse merrymen instead. This was seemingly done to "avoid reinforcing stereotypes" for the fan-favorite characters.
However, a recent image from the movie showing Zegler's Snow White with more traditional-looking CGI dwarves has some wondering if Disney made a change to the characters to avoid being called "woke" by certain corners of the internet.
Snow White Movie Designer Denies Dwarf Change
One designer on the upcoming live-action Snow White film has taken issue after the film was hit by accusations it would not be including the seven dwarves seen in the 1937 animated classic.
After the film was accused of adding the dwarves back in after it was previously reported by the Daily Mail they would be replaced by diverse full-sized actors, hair, makeup, and prosthetics designer Nadia Stacey revealed on Instagram (via the Disinsider) that "Daily Mail [got] it wrong again:"
“Daily Mail gotting it wrong again. That’s not the original cast. Nothing has changed. Neither is it either actor they say it is.”
According to the Disinsider's Elliott Bullock II, the "Seven Dwarfs [were] in the film from the get-go," with the group of actors seen earlier alongside Rachel Zegler's Snow White being a different cohort of characters from the film:
"So, according to Nadia Stacey and her team, who's doing hairstyle and makeup for Disney's live-action 'SNOW WHITE,' The Seven Dwarfs are in the film from the get-go and those Seven Bandits belong to Andrew Burnap's character Jonathan who's the leader."
This comes days after Disney revealed a new image from the upcoming film, featuring Zegler's titular princess surrounded by never-before-seen CGI versions of the classic Disney dwarves.
What Is Going On With Live-Action Snow White?
This story is just the latest in a string of controversies surrounding the live-action Snow White reboot.
The film has officially been pushed out of 2024, with an expected release not coming in 2025, so either all these bumps in the road will be forgotten by the time the movie hits theaters or even more will come to light for audiences to pick at.
As for the dwarf controversy, it seems - at least given the information fans have now - that all the worry and ill-will may have been for naught.
This particular pressure point seems to have been a miscommunication with outlets reporting on a change to the dwarves because of a leaked set photo when they seemingly did not have all the context surrounding the image.
Star Rachel Zelger has also drawn the ire of some thanks to comments about changes coming to the movie and the fact that she is a Latina actress playing a character that has traditionally been caucasian.
Some of these changes to the film include Snow White being given more agency, no longer “dreaming about true love” but rather being set on “becoming the leader she knows she can be” (via Variety).
This is not the first time Disney modernized a plot for one of these live-action remakes.
Some of The Little Mermaid was significantly reworked for its 2023 reboot. This was done as "culture and sensitivities have changed" since the animated original release, so the filmmakers needed to be "respectful to those changes" yet maintain the essence of the original story as well.
While The Little Mermaid was only 34 years old when it got the live-action treatment, Snow White will be 88 by the time it hits theaters, so some changes are needed to better fit the world it will be released into.
Snow White is currently set to release sometime in 2025.