Disney finally has its first young hero, and fans on the internet are overjoyed.
“Reflect” is a short film now on Disney+ about a young ballet dancer named Bianca who struggles with her body image. Although the film was released on the platform in September, as part of the film the studio’s Short Circuit Experimental Films seriesMany social media users are now celebrating “Gogoeta” as a victory for the representation of young girls.
“When I was 16 I needed this Disney short before I left ballet because I didn’t want to be the fat girl in class anymore.” said one Twitter user. “I’m glad the little ones have this. 10/10 for reflection!”
“I think you guys don’t understand, this is my Ariel,” one TikTok user said in a video, “(Disney+) really got me into my feelings.”
Disney did not immediately respond to CNN’s request for comment.
Body positivity is something that director Hillary Bradfield strongly believes in, she said in an interview featured at the start of the short. He explained that making the film from a dancer’s point of view is natural.
“Part of being an officer is looking at your posture and checking things in the mirror, so I thought it was a really good way to put him in that environment where he has to look at himself and doesn’t want to,” Bradfield said.
In summary, Bianca is able to overcome her negative feelings and dance freely. But body positivity and self-acceptance can be easier said than done, Bradfield said.
“When people see the short, I hope they feel more positive about themselves and how they look, and feel good about the hard parts of their journey,” Bradfield said. “Sometimes you go to a dark place to get to a good place. And that makes a good place much more beautiful.’
Disney has taken multiple steps in recent years to improve the diversity of its characters in its animated films. Earlier this year, the show “Baymax,” a spin-off of “Big Hero 6,” featured a transgender character. In 2020, Disney’s Pixar released its first animated film featuring a black character, “Soul.”
These latest depictions are a departure from those seen in many of the company’s previous films. The 2008 Disney/Pixar film “Wall-E” portrayed human obesity in a negative light as synonymous with environmental destruction – a lazy depiction that lacked nuance, according to some critics.