Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Meet the Leading Ladies!

Last week we were guessing as who would be the next release in the Leading Ladies Series. Guesses ranged from Jane Porter from Tarzan, Captain Amelia from Treasure Planet to Giselle from Enchanted, even a few Princesses were included .. Ariel from The Little Mermaid, Aurora from Sleeping Beauty and Tiana from the upcoming The Princess and the Frog. When the 3rd Quarter announcement was made a few days later, we found out the next release in the series would be Jasmine from Aladdin.

Jasmine, sculpted by Dusty Horner will join the Leading Ladies Series in September 2009 and will be Limited to Production Year 2009.

What characteristics define a Leading Lady?

They are daring and brave. They are fighters and protectors. They are stealthy and seductive, sacrificial and heroic. On top of it all, they are women.

These are but a few of the characteristics the Disney Leading Ladies embody. Of course they've been blessed with loveliness, but what is really beautiful to behold is how they wholeheartedly express a spectrum of emotion. Whether they are steering small animals from harm or matching wits with evil, showing a little leg or a lot of vulnerability, these heroines have vividly complex intellects that reach far deeper than their gorgeous shells.

Still, you can't celebrate leading ladies without addressing their near perfect physical traits. What's different about a Disney Leading Lady, however, is that looks aren't just for show. In this Kingdom, make that queendom, of heroines, there is a reason for every detail. For example, long, flowing hair symbolizes a certain air of freedom. When Pocahontas is first discovered by John Smith and he raises his gun toward her, her facial expression and body language remain stoic and self-contained. But as her hair swirls around her, it's as if she has summoned the spirits of the earth to protect her.

Then there's Megara. Her hippy sway and over the shoulder glances communicate both unequivocal self-reliance and a romantic heart. And when her constant glare eventually widens to a hopeful stare as she
strives to save Hercules, while her own fate is at risk, we feel promise right along with her.

Look deeper, though and you'll see their incredibly beauty is surpassed by an even greater element - sacrifice. It's what makes them so extraordinary yet refreshingly ordinary. it's what makes them different. It's what makes them Disney.

On the silver screen, where glitz and glamour are typically the female lead's load to bear while all guts and glory triumphs are inherited by the males, a Disney Leading Lady get to play all parts. She is a mixture of Tinseltown and tomboy, with a heaping helping of warrior and a splash of girl next door. She is a representation of our aspirations because while she gets the guy if she chooses, she more importantly
overcomes fear, misjudgment and jealousy. We are fascinated by her multiplicity and ever hopeful we might learn a thing or two.

One thing we know for sure, she will live happily ever after. What we don't know is how she will get herself there, for more often than not, it is because of her dreams and actions that happy endings are truly
possible. And she does it all without ever asking for credit.

Whether she's a friend, love interest, teacher, student, mediator or fighter, the Disney Leading lady never gives up until all is right with the world. Especially Megara who, facing the loss of her very soul, steps up to take one last hit for the team, quite a heavy burden for such delicate shoulders to withstand. Nevertheless, if these ladies can triumph against such insurmountable odds, perhaps we can too. For hope is what we find at the leading lady's core, hope that fuels courage, ignites love and seals victory bringing forth something rather
beautiful indeed.

To honor these extraordinary heroines, the WDCC proudly presents the Leading Ladies Series.
The Leading Ladies Series made its debut in March, 2004 and Jasmine joins the following previous releases:
  • Jessica Rabbit from Who Framed Roger Rabbit-1st release in series, sculpted by Kent Melton. Jessica was the 2004 Spring Event sculpture (March 26-28, 2004), a Numbered Limited Edition (NLE) of 5,000.
  • Megara (Meg) from Hercules-2nd release in series, sculpted by Kent Melton. Megara (Meg) was Limited to Production Year 2005, released in May 2005.
  • Pocahontas from Pocahontas-3rd release in series, sculpted by Margi Wray. Pocahontas was Limited to Production Year 2006, released in April 2006.
  • Esmerelda from The Hunchback of Notre Dame-4th release in series, sculpted by Kent Melton. Esmerelda was Limited to Production Year 2007, released in March 2007. Esmerelda was joined in July 2007 by Quasimodo and Clopin.
Special Note: Content of this blog entry is from Sketches (Volume 13, Number 1) when the Leading Ladies Series made its debut. Special Thanks to Matthew for researching out this article. Thanks Matthew!

1 comment:

Herc said...

There are so many leading ladies to be added to this series. I hope they keep up on this one.