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The Princess And The Frog – A Live-Action Casting call

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The Princess And The Frog image
Walt Disney Studios

Have you ever thought about who would be best to take the lead roles in a live-action adaptation? We’re going to look at the casting for The Princess And The Frog and hope that someday it happens.

Over the last several years Disney has delighted us with a few live-action remakes of their classic animated films. Such as Cinderella, Beauty and the Beast and the Lion king to list a few. There have also been whisperings of more to come. These include The Hunchback of Notre Dame, Pinocchio and of course the long-awaited Little Mermaid. Which has been promised to us for the last 10 years. There’s also word out there that there may be a remake of Snow White and Peter Pan as well… But, do we really need another Snow White or Peter Pan live-action Film? Is the mighty ‘Hook’ from 1991 not enough to keep our Peter Pan longings at bay?

Come on Disney, instead of trying to rehash the poison apple, speaking mirrors and pirates of old. All this has been done to death by plenty of film companies. Remake a film that really made waves in the ’00s, which not only got nominated for several Academy awards but also had one hell of a soundtrack. Come on Princess and the Frog live-action remake where are you?

Unfortunately, there’s not a single plan yet put forward for this remake. But as there are so many amazing actors that could fill some of these roles. We thought we would cast the film for Disney in hopes that they would carry on where we left off and make it!

Tiana

Back when they were casting for the original film, according to IMDB, Jennifer Hudson, Alicia Keys, and Tyra Banks were all in the running to voice the role. With both Keys and Banks personally rallying for the part. The part was finally offered to Hudson’s, Dream Girls co-star Anika Noni Rose.

As the Princess and the Frog (2009), was the Studio’s first musical film, since Beauty and the Beast (1991), where all the voice actors do both the speaking and singing parts. It’s only right that for the live-action version we give it the same courtesy. And cast as many parts as we can with actors that can do both.

China Anne McClain – For this casting option for The Princess and the Frog we’ve picked someone that has been right under the studio’s noses. Disney Channel alumni China Anne McClain.

McClain is the perfect candidate for the role of Tiana. Not only has she got experience acting and singing in both ‘A.N.T. Farm’ and the Disney Channels film franchise ‘Descendants’. She is also known for being the kick-ass female superhero ‘Lighting’ in Netflix ‘Black Lightning’. Giving her the best experience to play the inspirationally strong-willed Tiana.

Granted, it looks like she is currently thinking about an acting break and working on some of her own projects. But maybe the lure of a Disney princess status and the fact that half of the job will be voice acting, something she hasn’t done much of yet, may persuade her to say yes to the role.

Prince Naveen

In the original movie, Prince Naveen was voiced by Bruno Campos. A Brazilian actor who imitated a French accent for the role. This fit Prince Naveen’s character as he is from the made-up country of Maldonia. Yet, as it is a made-up land it doesn’t really matter which accent the Prince has. But as it worked in the original, why not cast an actor whose first languages are Spanish like Bruno Campos or French Like Prince Naveen.

David Alvarez – David Alvarez, known for being one of the original Billy’s in Broadway’s Billy Elliot. He’s a highly successful dancer and actor across some of the world’s most famous stages. He is also soon to hit the big screen for the first time as one of the main characters ‘Bernardo Vasquez’ in Steven Spielberg’s film adaptation of the 1957 musical West Side Story rumoured to be released December 10th 2021.

Alvarez, would make the best Prince Naveen. Not only in physical likeness but his acting, singing and dancing credentials alone make him the number one casting option.

Charlotte La Bouff

The outgoing friend of Tiana will need someone just as bubbly as she is. Although she isn’t the main subject of the film, as much as she would have wanted to have been, there is still quite a big role here. There are some big shoes to fill from the original voice actor Jennifer Cody.

Maddie Ziegler – Dance moms favourite Maddie is the best formula of energy and sassiness which she could harness and use to really make this character her own. The dancer, actress, author and model has already appeared in a host of roles including Sia’s iconic music videos. She is also set to feature alongside our Prince Naveen pick – David Alvarez, as Velma in West Side Story later this year.

Dr Facillier (Shadow Man)

The main Antagonist Dr Faciller could be one of the trickier characters to cast. Not because he is a difficult character to master. But because there is a whole host of actors that could do him justice and I’m sure would like to take on the role. Even the original voice of the Shadow Man, Keith David could play the live-action part.

Other names that have been considered in casting for the Princess and the Frog include Terrence Howard (who was the original voice of Tiana’s Father), Forest Whitaker, Morris Chestnut, and even Will Smith. But when we really thought about it there’s only one legendary actor that would really nail the character for us.

Don Cheadle – After almost four decades of acting and a plethora of Emmy and Academy Award nominations.

Cheadle has played almost every kind of role you can think of from staring in the Marvel franchise, Portraying comedy character’s, serious biographical character’s all the way to his small role in The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air. But I think The Shadow man is one that Cheadle can really put all his experiences into. This is one character we really want to see happen!

Laurence

Originally voiced by Peter Bartlett there is an argument to cast him for the part. Or even the likes of Timothy Spall as he has done similar roles like this in Enchanted (2007). But this character is the only one that is up for interpretation as he is not a huge role. Yet he is an important piece to the film’s narrative. He is the one that gets morphed into Price Naveen’s body. With the storyline the way it is, where he looking to get married to Charlotte a 19-year-old (as Naveen), it would make sense to go with a younger actor.

Gaten Matarazzo – We already know from his years as Dustin in ‘Stranger Things’ that this kid has the comedy chops! But what would be good to see is if he could portray the sneakiness of the character too, something we haven’t seen from him yet. We’re pretty sure he has it in the acting bank though.

Edora (Tiana’s Mum)

The incredible Oprah Winfrey voiced this part in the original. Again there’s nothing to say she couldn’t be cast for this part now. But there is one other actress and singer that could take this part and make it into a bigger one. After all, if you look at the remakes such as Beauty and the Beast (2017) where there were new songs added. Maybe we could add a song into this remake too, especially for Edora.

Jenifer Hudson – After the film upset of 2019 which was ‘Cats’, Hudson needs a bit of a redo on the animated to live-action film front. Known as a singer first but still an amazing actress she can follow on the desire to have a full cast that performs all their parts especially if she gets a new song just for her.

James (Tiana’s Dad)

In the Lion King films, animated and live-action, they used the same voice for Mufasa (Simba’s dad), James Earl Jones. We’re proposing that The Princess and the Frog follow their lead. After all, he is only in the first scene but how cool would it be to get the original voice to come back for the part?

Terrence Howard – There’s no need for casting to look for anyone else when this guy is right here to play the part in The Princess and the Frog. Also after six seasons of Empire, it might be nice to see Howard in a softer role.

Mama Odie

For Mama Odie, to get the look and feel of the character right we do need to go a little older than the original actor Jenifer Lewis. To match with the cartoon, and we were thinking of going iconic for this quirky yet brilliant character.

Patti LaBelle – As a legendary singer and actress, LaBelle will knock this role out of the park, I can’t wait to hear her blast out ‘Dig a little deeper’, can you?

Big Daddy’ La Bouff

When you look at the characterisation of Big Daddy, and take his name into consideration, there’s no wonder they cast John Goodman as the voice. But 11 years after the film was released it might be a good idea to change the character up and go for someone else for the role.

Jack Black – What if the play on Big Daddy, was that he wasn’t that tall? If that’s something we could factor in. In later years Black has done quite a few family films and would make a great addition to the line-up.

Voice Roles

Ray

There are two main roles within this film which need to be cast too, Ray being one of them. Originally voiced by Jim Cummings. Ray is the heart and the soul of this picture and needs someone with experience to bring this strange but loveable little firefly to life.

Steve Buscemi – Over the years Buscemi has been cashing in on his voice acting work in films such as G-Force (2009), The Boss Baby (2017) and the Hotel Transylvania film series (2012 – 2021). He is more than equipped to voice the lovesick Ray.

Louis

The Alligator just wants to play the trumpet in the band. He’s a big voice to cast and again with some big boots to fill as Michael-Leon Wooley really gave him the personality he deserves in the first feature. The Alligator was named after the great Louis Armstrong so whoever we cast needs to live up to the expectations.

CeeLo Green – Singer-songwriter isn’t hugely known for his acting skills, but he has picked up some roles along the way, mainly as a performer. But for us, with his personality, there’s no one better to play the role.


Well, this is our idea of casting the main characters in The Princess and The Frog, what do you think? Do you have any other suggestions? If so, comment below and let us know.


Check out five Disney movies with hidden Easter Eggs HERE.

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9 Bands You Forgot Played Themselves In Movies

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Wayne's World image
Paramount Pictures

There are more bands than you think that played themselves on the big screen. Here are nine bands you might’ve forgotten appeared in movies.

1. Alice Cooper – Wayne’s World (1992)

Being a teenager in the nineties was great for many reasons. Two of those being the release of the Wayne’s World movies. The genius that is Mike Myers created one of the best music-based films of all time. Plus, he convinced one of the greatest rock musicians of all time to be in it. If you’re not a geek like me, you may have forgotten that Alice Cooper was featured in the film. It had the iconic scene of Wayne and Garth meeting, Alice, backstage on bent knees. We’re not worthy, indeed. Alice himself pulls off the diva Rockstar brilliantly, even though he’s a genuine, down-to-earth guy who plays a lot of golf.

2. Primus – Bill & Ted’s Bogus Journey (1991)

Let’s try and erase the recent Bill & Ted movie from our memory and head back to 1991 for their bogus journey. They come from the future to kill the non-robot versions of themselves and ruin their performance at a Battle of the Bands competition. What’s cool is the band who are playing before them. Californian alt-metal kings Primus. Although the clip is only short, they play themselves and sound as you would expect. Epic.

3. Fall Out Boy – Sex Drive (2008)

You’d be forgiven for forgetting about this one. The teen sex comedy from 2008 is forgettable and won’t really appeal to anyone apart from its teen target audience. If you can sit through all the cringe-inducing moments, you will spot pop-rockers Fall Out Boy. They are performing in a barn in front of some drunk Amish teenagers. There’s a reason for that, but I won’t bore you with it here. What is good, is the soundtrack of the film. As well as Fall Out Boy, it features Airbourne, AC/DC and weirdly, Kenny Loggins.

4. Twisted Sister – Pee Wee’s Big Adventure (1985)

Paul Reuben’s character Pee Wee Herman made his big-screen outing in 1985. The children’s show star had a scene where he is being chased through a studio parking lot. Unbeknown to him, glam rockers Twisted Sister are recording a music video on a car. Lead singer Dee Snider is always up for a laugh, so it’s no surprise they’re featured. The clip is brilliant. Pee Wee’s prop-laden bike is just about to crash into Twisted Sister and the look on Dee’s face is genius. Go check out the clip.

5. David Bowie – Zoolander (2001)

Who can forget the brilliant Zoolander? Starring Ben Stiller as the dippy model, it’s one of the funniest comedies ever made. One of the best scenes of the film is the walk-off. This involved Ben Stiller and Owen Wilson’s characters doing a catwalk-off. Of sorts. Can you remember who refereed it? The legend himself, David Bowie. It’s not the first time Bowie was in a movie – remember Labyrinth? But this time, he plays himself. And does it with all the cool swagger you would expect.

6. The Mighty Mighty Bosstones – Clueless (1995)

I can’t say that I was a massive fan of this teen comedy at the time. The plot revolves around Alicia Silverstone’s character giving her friend a makeover. The premise doesn’t sound like it lends itself to a cool band cameo. You’d be wrong, though. There’s a scene where the lead characters go watch a gig. The band that are playing are The Mighty Mighty Bosstones. The Boston ska-punk legends are only on stage for a moment, but it’s a slick clip. It certainly brings the film up a level on the cool stakes.

7. Daft Punk – Tron: Legacy (2010)

This sequel to the original sci-fi classic is a cracking movie. The visuals and effects are stunning, as is the atmosphere of the film. The music to the film is also rather special. A futuristic and dystopian movie could only have one act doing the score, and that’s Daft Punk. It works a treat. The music is intertwined into the movie and becomes a part of it. The delicious electronica is the perfect complement to the visuals. The French electronic masters also have a cameo at the end of the movie. They’re spinning the decks in a blink-and-you-miss-it scene.

8. Aerosmith – Wayne’s World (1993)

We’ve already had an appearance from the first film further up our list, and the second doesn’t disappoint either. The plot revolves around Wayne and Garth putting on their own music festival. Book them and they will come, is the advice given. And they certainly did. The headline band for the festival were none other than Aerosmith themselves. They do a sterling effort on stage as performers. And Steven Tyler also shows that he can handle his own on the acting front too.

9. Reel Big Fish – BASEketball (1998)

Trey Parker and Matt Stone star in this bizarre and hilarious sports comedy. Written by the king of spoof David Zucker, it’s become a cult classic. The soundtrack heavily features ska-punkers Reel Big Fish. They do a brilliant rendition of A-HA’s Take on Me, which they also perform in the movie. The band are the entertainment at the stadium where Parker and Stone are competing. You can tell by the footage that the band are clearly enjoying themselves. They add a touch more fun to an already hugely funny film.


That’s our list of nine bands who played themselves in movies. Did we miss any of your favourites? Let us know in the comments below.


Check out our list of actors in bands HERE.

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