Disney’s next new princess adventure, with the titular Polynesian heroine Moana, has found the voice for its lead character. Fourteen year old Oahu native Auli’i Cravalho has landed the part after Disney auditioned hundreds of young women in the Pacific Islands.
“From baby time to now, I wanted to be a Disney princess and then I wanted to be a singer or an actress,” Cravalho told People, adding that she didn’t necessarily feel confident enough to audition, “I was getting through my freshman year, and there were already so many great submissions over YouTube.”
But when directors Ron Clements and John Musker (The Little Mermaid, Aladdin) met with Cravalho during a call back, they asked her to play the part.
Moana is set 2000 years ago and follows the titular princess as she sets sail to fulfill a quest left unfinished by her ancestor. Moana will encounter a demigod named Maui voiced by Dwayne Johnson.
“Moana is such an amazing character,” says Cravalho, “She’s brave, she is so empowered, she knows what she wants and she’s not afraid to get it, and I think that’s something that I can relate to as well. I just love watching how she goes along in this wonderful movie and grows as a person and helps her culture along the way.”
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