When Snow White first debuted in cinemas in 1937, Walt Disney not only invented the hand-drawn animated feature film, but reinvented traditional fairy tales for the modern audience, creating a new genre. He removed the cruelest and more disturbing parts of the stories, added musical style songs and funny animal sidekicks. Then, over the last twenty years, his company has moved progressively away from conservative and patriarchal clichés: female characters are now more interesting, independent and equal to their male counterparts, love at first sight has given way to more unpredictable and sparkly relationships, ethnic diversity was introduced with Arab, Native American, Afro-American and Polynesian  princesses. There is only one aspect of the fairy tales the American cartoon factory has a hard time letting go of: the royal status of its heroines.

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