Keira Knightley bans daughter from watching some Disney films

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Keira KnightleyImage source, Getty Images

Keira Knightley says she has banned her three-year-old daughter from watching Disney films whose portrayal of women she disagrees with.

Edie Knightley Righton is not allowed to watch Cinderella or Little Mermaid.

Knightley told Ellen DeGeneres that 1950's Cinderella "waits around for a rich guy to rescue her. Don't! Rescue yourself. Obviously!"

She said of Little Mermaid: "I mean, the songs are great, but do not give your voice up for a man. Hello!"

The actress added: "And this is the one that I'm quite annoyed about because I really like the film. I love The Little Mermaid! That one's a little tricky - but I'm keeping to it."

Image source, Moviestore/REX/Shutterstock
Image caption,
Keira Knightley played Elizabeth Swann in the Pirates of the Caribbean franchise

Knightley, who starred in another Disney franchise, the Pirates of the Caribbean, said not all Disney films were barred from her home.

Finding Dory, which was voiced by DeGeneres, "is a big favourite" and "Frozen is huge, Moana is totally fine."

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Knightly is currently promoting a Disney film of her own, The Nutcracker and the Four Realms, in which she plays the Sugar Plum Fairy.

Kristen Bell, who played Disney princess Anna in Frozen, has also waded into the debate on Disney and feminism.

Image caption,
Kristen Bell, who plays Frozen's Anna, has a problem with Snow White

She told Parenting Magazine that Snow White sends the wrong message about consent to children.

She spoke about her daughters Lincoln, five and Delta, three and said: "Every time we close Snow White, I look at my girls and ask, 'Don't you think it's weird that Snow White didn't ask the old witch why she needed to eat the apple?

"'Or where she got that apple?'"

She added: "Don't you think that it's weird that the prince kisses Snow White without her permission?'

"Because you can not kiss someone if they're sleeping!"

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Disney's more recent representations of heroines now include the trailer for Ralph Breaks the Internet: Wreck-It Ralph 2, which comes out in November, and includes Bell's Frozen character Anna.

It features a joke between one of the newest Disney princesses, Vanellope von Schweetz and the likes of Alice, Sleeping Beauty and Pocahontas.

Rapunzel sarcastically says to Vanellope, "Do people assume all your problems got solved because a big, strong man showed up?"

Vanellope replies, "Yes!! What is up with that?"

The scene also features some of the most recent additions to the Disney Princess world, including Merida from Brave, Elsa from Frozen and the 21st century version of Tiana from The Princess and the Frog.

These films, alongside Tangled, which is a new look at the story of Rapunzel, have taken strides to move away from the cliche joked about in the Wreck-It Ralph trailer, and to create films with strong female protagonists.

So perhaps if Keira and Kristen are looking for a film suited to their feminist credentials, then those newer Disney films might tick a few boxes.

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