‘RALPH’ SE­QUEL PACKS A PUNCH WITH STRONG FE­MALE CHAR­AC­TERS

Techlife News - - Summary - On­line: https://movies.dis­ney.com/ralph-breaks-thein­ter­net-wreck-it-ralph-2

“Ralph Breaks the In­ter­net” may star an ar­cade bad guy with pow­er­ful ham­mer-like fists, but the an­i­mated se­quel is also pack­ing a punch with strong fe­male char­ac­ters.

Sarah Sil­ver­man, who re­turns as the voice of Vanel­lope von Sch­weetz, cred­its Dis­ney for in­clud­ing more im­pact­ful fe­male roles in the new film, which comes out Wed­nes­day. Her char­ac­ter is one of the lead­ing ladies, along with new cast mem­bers Gal Gadot’s Shank and Taraji P. Hen­son, who plays Yesss.

“I love it,” said Sil­ver­man, an out­spo­ken co­me­dian known for ad­vo­cat­ing for women’s rights. “You see how far Dis­ney has al­lowed it­self to grow and change, and be more in­clu­sive and more pro­gres­sive? You can’t keep on ex­ist­ing if you don’t change and grow with the times. With me, Taraji and Gal’s char­ac­ter, it’s nice to see.”

In the past, Dis­ney has been crit­i­cized for hav­ing a lack of self-suf­fi­cient fe­male char­ac­ters who fo­cused more on their phys­i­cal ap­pear­ance and be­ing re­liant on a man. That pat­tern be­gan to

change over the years in films such as “Tan­gled,” “Brave” and “Frozen.”

With the “Ralph” se­quel, the stu­dio is tak­ing “girl power” a step fur­ther as di­rec­tors Phil John­ston and Rich Moore wanted to in­cor­po­rate more “strong and com­pli­cated” fe­male char­ac­ters.

“This stu­dio is the birth­place of a lot of these stereo­types,” said John C. Reilly, the voice of the mas­sive, over­all-wear­ing Ralph. “It’s re­ally an amaz­ing and com­mend­able thing that Dis­ney has rec­og­nized . ... As a man, it’s not re­ally my lane to talk about these is­sues. But I do think if things are go­ing to change, men and women have to both talk about this stuff and em­brace gen­der equal­ity, and think of women’s rights as hu­mans. I was a strong ad­vo­cate for bal­ance in our story.”

The se­quel is a fol­low up to the 2012 Os­carnom­i­nated “Wreck-it Ralph.”This time, Ralph and Vanel­lope’s friend­ship is tested af­ter leav­ing Lit­wak’s video ar­cade to travel through a Wi-Fi con­nec­tion that ul­ti­mately de­liv­ers them into the fast-paced in­ter­net di­men­sion. They ven­ture into an un­fa­mil­iar world ex­plor­ing ma­jor brands from Twit­ter to Ama­zon, on­line shop­ping, the dark web and vis­its in­side Walt Dis­ney Stu­dio’s web­site.

John­ston said the film’s imag­i­nary of the in­ter­net mim­ics the look of a New York City or Tokyo. It’s where Ralph and Vanel­lope meet Gadot’s Shank, a gritty street-rac­ing star, and Hen­son’s Yesss, who is the head al­go­rithm of the trend-mak­ing web­site BuzzzTube.

“It’s like they’re small-town kids who are now in the big city,” said Moore, who di­rected the first “Ralph” film and the Academy Award-win­ning “Zootopia.”“This is a movie about change. I’m glad that we took the more chal­leng­ing road.”

“Ralph Breaks the In­ter­net” of­fers an an­i­mated glimpse in­side their par­ent com­pany’s web­site show­ing sev­eral char­ac­ters from Mar­vel to “Star Wars.”The film also high­lights the Dis­ney princesses in a scene where all stereo­types and cliches as­so­ci­ated with the an­i­mated icons are dealt with head-on.

Ini­tially, the princess scene faced back­lash from fans in Au­gust af­ter a pub­lic­ity photo sur­faced on­line show­ing Princess Tiana with lighter skin and a thin­ner nose com­pared to the ver­sion in the black char­ac­ter’s stand-alone Dis­ney movie, “The Princess and the Frog.”The stu­dio ul­ti­mately re­an­i­mated the char­ac­ter af­ter meet­ing with ac­tress Anika Noni Rose, who voiced Tiana in the 2009 film, and mem­bers of Color of Change, a civil rights ad­vo­cacy or­ga­ni­za­tion.

“Our goal is to make this film as per­fect as pos­si­ble as we can,” John­ston said. “I hope ev­ery­one knows we love this char­ac­ter as much as any­one.”

Hen­son called Tiana’s re­an­i­ma­tion a “bril­liant move” by Dis­ney.

“If you know about it, you do bet­ter,” said the ac­tor, who is black. “But Dis­ney has a his­tory of pleas­ing the peo­ple and ap­peal­ing to the peo­ple. They’re a standup com­pany. They did the right thing. I’m glad I’m in the film. I’m glad I’m in busi­ness with peo­ple who are on the right side of his­tory, with no ego. Lis­ten­ing to the peo­ple who pay their money to see the film is a smart busi­ness move, but it also shows you care.”

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