A lot of Indian kids grew up on American popular culture, and nothing excited us more than Disney shows. If your childhood was anything like mine, you'd wake up every day to catch an episode of Little Mermaid, Winnie The Pooh, Mulan or Kim Possible. However, as much as we loved these characters, we couldn't relate to a single one of them. Luckily for desi kids growing up in this day and age, that's about to change.
For the first time ever, Disney is going to introduce an Indian female character. And the best part--she will be cast in the lead role, and an entire series will revolve around her! The series will be titled Mira, The Royal Detective, and will follow a young Indian girl (yes, called Mira) given the title of a royal detective by a fictitious Jaipur-born queen. The storyline will feature an intelligent protagonist, her two sidekicks (who happen to be mongooses--isn't that adorable?) and it's set against a vibrant and colourful backdrop. And because it'll be based in India, plenty of fun music and dance are also going to be a part of the series. We can already tell that it's going to be a big hit!
And we haven't even gotten to the best part yet--the show's star-studded cast. No, they will not be played by Caucasian actors with a fake Indian accent. Freida Pinto, Jameela Jamil, Kal Penn and Utkarsh Ambudkar will be voicing the characters of the show, and 16-year-old Leela Ladnier will be the voice of Mira, who will be undertaking her first professional acting role.
This is probably the first time a mainstream animated western show will portray an Indian character and Indian culture. With shows like this, it's very easy to mess things up and venture into cultural-appropriation territory. However, we appreciate Disney's efforts in casting an all-desi ensemble of actors. Sascha Paladino, the producer of the show, has also roped in a cultural expert to make sure it is as authentic as possible.
The show is all set for release on March 20 in India and the States. And yes, I might be a fully-functional 28-year-old adult, but you can bet that I WILL binge watch it the day it releases.
Featured Image: Instagram