Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs was the first full-length animated movie that brought awe and wonder to those who watched it for the first time. The animation is a classic and despite being a favorite for many, it does indulge in a few stereotypes. I mean, come on; Snow is pale, thin and beautiful, she starts doing chores for seven other men and she needs a gorgeous man to save her.
So you would think that when a new Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs comes out in 2017, stereotypes would be done away with. In the new poster for Red Shoes and the 7 Dwarfs — a reimaging of Snow White — things still look very much the same. More than that, the poster promoting the movie is upsetting many.
What’s upsetting people is the question posed on the movie’s promo poster. What’s worse is that this movie, and its poster, are targeting young girls who will be asking themselves this same question. “What if Snow White was no longer beautiful and the 7 Dwarfs not so short?”
The movie, which has no association with Disney, seems to have crossed a fine line here. Maybe they are provoking us simply to add hype to the movie. Still, this question has gone right into body-shaming territory.
The question has us implying that being curvy and short is not beautiful. It’s also implying what for many years has been the trend, that being thin and tall is the only way to be beautiful. This is unfair and untrue, and it is disrupting the work of so many women who are leading a strong body positive campaigns.
The poster got many talking on Twitter. It’s probably exactly what the marketing team behind the movie have been hoping for. Twitter users called out the people behind this poster and asked how they could pose such a question on a poster that is aimed at young people.
Plus model, Tess Holiday, who takes the lead for creating a body positive campaign has spoken out on Twitter about the movie’s poster. She asked, “How did this get approved by an entire marketing team? Why is it okay to tell young kids being fat = ugly?”
Other Twitter users were quick to add to Holiday’s tweet. "This is fucking outrageous," one user wrote. She added, "My nine-year-old son will be pissed too, because even he knows this is utter bullshit."
Another user tweeted about the sexualization in the trailer. “The trailer is even worse,” she tweeted. “Plus incredibly sexualized, dwarves watching Snow White getting undressed…felt so grim!”
11. ‘Incredibly Disturbing’
Other Twitter users were in on the conversation. They even address Chloe Grace Moretz who stars in the movie. “@Tess_Holliday @ChloeGMoretz as a mother of a teenage daughter and a woman in general this is so incredibly disturbing. #WTH” tweeted one user.
Despite the provocative poster and trailer, it seems that the aim of the movie is to promote body positivity. This is what Locus Creative Studios have written on their website when describing the movie. Could be these people just have good marketers.
On the website, the movie is described as Snow being “a normal girl born into extraordinary circumstances, she’s a Princess who doesn’t fit into the celebrity world of Princesses — or their dress size. She wants to stay true to herself but Fairy Tale Island is all about looks, so it makes hard not to want to be like the others…In her quest to find her lost father, she learns not only to accept herself, but to celebrate who she is, inside and out.”
It seems like the description of the movie is on the right track but from what we’ve seen so far, this movie needs be great to get us on board. By great, we mean giving body shaming a run for its money. It could also do away with any of the usual stereotypes.
For now, things don’t look too good. What we’ve seen so far is a sexualized Snow and we’ve been presented with the idea that being short and curvy isn’t beautiful. Even if it is a mere marketing provocation, this world doesn’t need another poster implying that being thin and tall is the only way to be beautiful.