Latest Announcements from the Ultimate Princess Celebration!

Earlier this year, Disney launched the Ultimate Princess Celebration, a year-long event to honor all things princess. In August, the event culminated with World Princess Week, during which they premiered the music video for "Starting Now," the newest Disney Princess anthem. However, the festivities did not end there. To continue the celebration, Disney just released the first doll from their new set of designer princess dolls, the Ultimate Glamorous Collection. Instagram has also been abuzz with upcoming Disney Princess goodies including a sneak peek at Disney Princess: The Concert and the 30th anniversary of the classic animated Disney version of "Beauty and the Beast." Let's dive in to explore the latest announcements from the Ultimate Princess Celebration!

Ultimate Glamorous Collection designer Jasmine doll

Princess Jasmine takes the spotlight this month with the first release from the Ultimate Glamorous Collection, the newest set of Disney Princess designer dolls. I was hoping that Disney would release concept artwork of all the dolls in this set, but unlike previous sets, which were based on artwork by Disney animator Steve Thompson, these dolls were all designed by different artists. As a result, it looks like they are being kept under wraps until each monthly doll release. There were rumors that the collection would include every official Disney Princess, which would take over a year to complete at the rate of one new doll per month, but right now, the official website only lists Jasmine, Pocahontas, Ariel, Mulan, Tiana, Aurora, and Merida, which seems like a more reasonable number for one collection.

Jasmine is the only doll that has been released so far from the Ultimate Glamorous Collection. She looks a bit off-brand swathed in oversized red ruffles from Disney designer Mark Monterroso, who took inspiration from the sultan's palace for the mushroom-shaped sleeves and overskirt. Red is a bold choice to use instead of her standard turquoise, as it gives her a stronger resemblance to Elena of Avalor, especially without her iconic double ponytail. I am not a fan of the giant metal feather overlay running across her chest and think the dress would look much better without it. Since the other dolls in the set will be based on artwork from other designers, this doll will probably not serve as an example of what to expect for future princess releases, and for that I am glad. It doesn't feel like Jasmine to me, although it is certainly a daring creative take on the Arabian princess.

Next up is a very special "super-secret sneak peek" of the new Disney-certified version of the Broadway Princess Party, now called Disney Princess: The Concert. Musical Director Benjamin Rauhala shared this preview on his Instagram last week, giving us a look at some of the changes that were made to the show after it got bought out by Disney. Following the controversial removal of Laura Osnes, the entire 2021 leg of the concert tour was canceled due to Covid, meaning that we would have had a pretty long wait to get an idea of the look and feel if not for this Instagram post. The video gives us a peek at the actresses' longer and flowier gowns as well as the new projections and lighting that will accompany them for this higher budget version of the show.

The new official Disney Princess anthem, "Starting Now," has been added to the tour, making it very on-brand with the Ultimate Princess Celebration, as well as other Disney numbers that were not part of the original Broadway Princess Party, likely to replace other non-Disney Princess numbers. This preview gave me goosebumps and made me eager to see it in 2022. Susan Egan, Courtney Reed, Christy Altomare, and Aisha Jackson's voices blend beautifully together and bring back memories of when I saw Jodi Benson, Paige O'Hara, Lea Salonga, and Anika Noni Rose harmonize together at the D23 Expo in 2011. The new projections of Disney Princess animations are more or less what I was expecting from this upgraded version of the Broadway Princess Party, and I am excited to see it in person when I attend in February.

Beauty and the Beast 30th Anniversary Logo

The final big announcement is the 30th-anniversary celebration of Disney's animated classic, Beauty and the Beast. If there had been a D23 Expo this year, there would have been a beautiful celebratory panel filled with singing, interviews, and glamorous staging, like they did for The Little Mermaid two years ago. Unfortunately, times have changed, and the film will have a quieter celebration in the form of a new Blu-Ray DVD with original cover art by the voice of Belle herself, Paige O'Hara. After her foray as Belle, Paige began painting fine art for Disney, some of which has already been used on DVD covers. There will be a slew of other merchandise to celebrate the release just like Disney did for The Little Mermaid, including this lovely limited edition doll from Saks 5th Avenue.

Belle doll from Saks 5th Avenue

The Ultimate Princess Celebration is still in full swing with upcoming dolls, shows, and celebrations. Right now, I'm most excited about seeing the upgraded version of the Broadway Princess Party in the repackaged form of Disney Princess: The Concert. What about you? Will be waiting until the stroke of midnight to purchase one of the new Ultimate Glamorous Collection dolls? Or are you more excited for new Beauty and the Beast 30tth anniversary merchandise? Let me know your thoughts in the comments!

Comments

Lady Culturina said…
True, this feather don't suit the Jasmine doll...And red is her "slave girl" color right? What an unfortunate choice...
Lisa Dawn said…
Yes, I suppose they wanted to give her a color that she wore in the movie but we rarely see her in. However, considering the circumstances of why she was forced to wear that outfit, there's probably a good reason she rarely wears it in merchandise...
Lady Culturina said…
Purple would have been wiser as she wear it in the end. And yes, the circumstances of wearing the red number are cringy (especially given she's 15). I was not surprised that the costume was not in the live action remake , or the Broadway show.
Hope35 said…
Yeah the 1st thing I thought when I looked at that doll was "Wow, that's a nice fancy take on Elena of Avalor."

For all the reasons that have been mentioned, red is just a bad color choice for Jasmine. Purple or even Indigo or a nice medium-dark blue would've been much better.

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