Disney defends new Hispanic-influenced princess - CBS News 8 - San Diego, CA News Station - KFMB Channel 8

Disney defends new Hispanic-influenced princess

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This undated publicity photo released by Disney Junior, shows the character Princess Sofia, right, who stars in a TV animated movie titled "Sofia the First: Once Upon a Princess," airing Sunday, Nov. 18, 2012  on the Disney Channel. (AP Photo) This undated publicity photo released by Disney Junior, shows the character Princess Sofia, right, who stars in a TV animated movie titled "Sofia the First: Once Upon a Princess," airing Sunday, Nov. 18, 2012 on the Disney Channel. (AP Photo)

LOS ANGELES (AP) — The Walt Disney Co. is defending its newest princess following a backlash over her Hispanic-influenced ethnicity.

A new character named Sofia will star in the TV movie "Sofia the First: Once Upon a Princess" airing Nov. 18 on the Disney Channel and Disney Junior. Hispanic advocacy groups questioned whether the fair-skinned, blue-eyed young princess is an accurate representation of the Hispanic population and wondered why Disney isn't doing more to promote its first princess with Hispanic-inspired roots.

"Sofia the First" co-executive producer Craig Gerber said in a Facebook post Friday that Sofia is "a mixed-heritage princess in a fairytale world." Gerber said Sofia's mother and birth father hail from kingdoms inspired by Spain and Scandinavia, and Sofia was born and raised in a make-believe kingdom patterned after the British Isles.

Copyright 2012 The Associated Press.

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