Zegler’s Snow White Is No Longer Disney’s

in Movies

Rachel Zegler on a still of Snow White looking shocked

Credit: Inside the Magic

If there’s one Disney project that has united fans and viewers by pure hatred, it’s Snow White (2025), but the problem might run deeper than just a bad remake of a classic film from Walt’s day.

Rachel Zegler in West Side Story and Snow White together
Credit: Inside the Magic

Trouble has stalked this modern adaptation of Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs (1937) since day one. From the discord involving the presence of dwarves to Rachel Zegler’s onslaught of controversial comments , Marc Webb’s reinterpretation of Walt Disney’s original animated classic is getting nowhere fast, especially not with its 2025 pushback.

Related: Gal Gadot Is Apparently an “Appropriate” Evil Queen

It’s safe to assume that the reception for this remake is overwhelmingly negative. Along with the chorus of movie-goers chanting how Disney has gone woke with this not-so-Disney adaptation and the departure from the traditional formula, a bigger problem might lie with Snow White herself.

The Saga of Snow White

Rachel Zegler in her Snow White garb
Credit: SplashNews.com

It’s been said before, but it certainly bears repeating: Disney remakes have had a stigma surrounding them since Beauty and the Beast (2017), but not even Favreau’s Lion King (2019) was as criticized as Snow White, and it’s not even been officially released yet.

To say that much of the blame lies with Rachel Zegler wouldn’t be incorrect, but her behavior surrounding the project is definitely a deterrent. For someone cast as Disney’s first princess, she’s been anything but.

Related: With Disney’s ‘Snow White’ Delay, Studio Officially Lacks Major 2024 Release

Zegler has outright slammed the original animated feature, pushed for a narrative that completely deviates from the original story, and even referred to co-star Andrew Burnap’s Prince Charming character as a “stalker.” The list of problems with the actual production process goes on and on, but those only criticizing Zegler or the rest of the cast and crew are entirely missing the big picture.

It’s Not Disney’s Snow White Anymore

Rachel Zegler fired 'Snow White'
Credit: Edited by Inside the Magic

You could fill a book with all the negative takes surrounding the Snow White remake, everything ranging from the removal, then CGI replacement of dwarves, to the astounding multitude of potential movie-goers ripping Rachel Zegler to shreds. However, the core problem facing the Disney live-action remake has nothing to do with the presence of little people, race-swapping, Zegler’s behavior on and off set, or anything woke, but rather what it’s doing to Walt’s original vision.

Related: Snow White To Speak Spanish Amid “Woke” Film Claims

Fans aren’t upset that Disney is making a new Snow White movie; they’re upset that the studio is trouncing on the world’s first animated feature by taking away core elements that made it so great. In short, they’re not just adapting the original story by the Brothers Grimm; they’re adapting Walt Disney’s version, and they’re doing it wrong.

Evil Queen as an Old Crone giving Snow White the poisoned apple
Credit: Disney

It’s easy to understand why so many fans and studios use Disney’s version as the template. After all, Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs was one of the first, if not the very first, film adaptations of the famous story.

Related: The Evil Queen Saved Snow White, Theory States

From Sydney White (2007) to Snow White and the Huntsman (2012), various adaptations take from the Disney original. An evil queen obsessed with beauty, a magic mirror who knows all and tells all, and seven eccentric individuals all shacked up under one roof definitely fit the description of more than just Disney’s version. That all being said, it’s a safe bet that whenever someone hears the name “Snow White,” they think of Walt Disney’s heartfelt adaptation.

There’s nothing inherently wrong with holding all other variations to Walt Disney’s standard. Walt Disney Pictures set the bar pretty high when it adapted it for the screen. When the title reads “Disney’s Snow White,” or even just “Disney Presents…” there is little room for error.

It’s Disney’s, But Not Walt’s

Walt Disney with Mickey Mouses
Credit: D23

Another reason many Disney fans are almost entirely against the movie is that it is tampering with a narrative and experience cultivated by Walt Disney himself. Anytime something penned or created by Walt Disney goes under the knife, fans start swarming like sharks around an injured seal.

Related: “He’s Not King Dwarf,” Other Actors Blast Peter Dinklage’s ‘Snow White’ Backlash

Disney’s rendition of Snow White established the studio as the animation juggernaut we know today. Not only was it a massive success, it was a tremendous gamble that would have annihilated the animation medium if it failed.

A live-action adaptation of Walt Disney’s version isn’t necessarily a bad idea, but what fans have seen up until recently has been nothing like the version he put to the screen so many years ago. Reports of Disney removing the traditional love story, the dwarves, and the innocence of Snow White as a character are what have truly set things on fire.

Disney Is to Snow White as Flemming Is to Bond

Opening to a James Bond film
Credit: MGM

Adapting a story that’s been in the public domain since before Walt put pen to paper is no problem, as fairytales lend themselves to a multitude of mediums. The biggest problem facing Disney’s Snow White, apart from the audience backlash, is the fact that the studio has been trying to change Walt Disney’s.

Changing Walt’s vision of the character is as ludicrous as taking Bugs Bunny and making him a dimwitted march hare with an aversion to carrots; it doesn’t make sense.

Various film appearances of Ian Flemming's James Bond
Credit: Inside the Magic

@fromgregawithlove on TikTok explains this issue better with his dive into the James Bond franchise by Ian Flemming. The creator states that any adaptation that deviates from the author’s description of James Bond, represented by Sean Connery in the original films, ceases to be Flemming’s.

Although many fans have petitioned for the character of 007 to be played by an actor of color or for Hollywood to make a gender-swapped variant for a new generation, it wouldn’t be the official  James Bond anymore.

Related: Disney Brings Back the Seven Dwarfs After Abandoning Them in ‘Snow White’ Scandal

As much as this writer would love to see Bond played by the incredible Idris Elba, making the MI6 agent of Her Majesty’s Secret Service, anything other than what was described by the creator  would have some soon staring down the barrel of a golden gun. The same phenomenon can be seen in the upcoming Snow White adaptation.

Snow White singing to Doves on a wishing well
Credit: Disney

In almost all variants of the classic Snow White fairytale, she is described as a beautiful girl with “hair black as ebony, lips red as blood, and skin white as snow,” cinema has done a pretty consistent job of portraying that. Even Disney played by the rules set by the original story.

Related: Disney Princesses Are Good for Your Children, Report Says

By deviating too much from the animated classic that inspired it, Zegler, Disney, and those involved with the upcoming movie have earned the ire of even the most loyal fans. It’s not about making a movie that’s nothing like its inspiration —and it never was— but it’s about stamping the Disney name on something that clearly isn’t the original creator’s vision.

Adapting Disney’s Original Snow White

Up close clip of Snow White
Credit: Disney

Many fans, even the most dedicated Disney buffs out there, are livid  about what they’ve seen from the studio regarding this project. Even though Disney has just celebrated its 100th anniversary, this hardly feels like some thing that represents what a century of creative genius can do.

Related: Gal Gadot’s ‘Snow White’ Sabotaged by Media Frenzy

It’s understandable why Disney would want to reimagine and re-interpret a classic fairytale, they’ve done it many times before with Tangled (2010) and Frozen (2013) and have been quite successful. However, the version that they are trying to adapt has gone too far off the rails for it to represent the magic of the studio. Adapting Disney’s Snow White doesn’t have to be such a nightmare.

Snow White and Dopey
Credit: Disney

As beloved and timeless as the original animated feature was, it really isn’t that deep. In fact, it’s perhaps the most one-dimensional Disney movie the company has ever produced, and that’s perfectly fine.

Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs is a film that thrives on emotion rather than logic; that’s why everything in the film is so grand, expressive, and almost opera-like. Adapting it for a more contemporary audience with a desire for strong female characters, alternative values, and bold new directions caused so much grief because the story doesn’t need them.

Related: Walt Disney’s Anti-Nazi Message Removed by Studio

People read fairytales and fantasy novels because they want to escape and expose themselves to fanciful elements that might not be at home anywhere else. Snow White doesn’t need narative-heavy or symbolic elements to make it a likable adaptation, it just needs the magic.

Happily Ever After?

Snow White's true love's kiss
Credit: Disney

After being so heavily bombarded by controversy and backlash, it will be tough for Disney to come back after the Snow White scandal. Dwarves and delays aside, it does at least look like attempts are being made by Disney and the filmmakers to get the film on track toward something that resembles the original.

With that in mind, the studio might be a dollar short and a day late for any damage control to have a lasting effect. Zegler’s comments are still on the record, the reputation of the production has soured viewers’ perspectives, and audiences have essentially detested the film since day one.

Related: Disney Abandons Walt’s Instructions for the Studio

The deck is undoubtedly stacked against Disney, and nothing short of a Walt-Disney-level miracle will pull the remake from the swirling depths of discord. However, if Disney is indeed repentant of its misgivings, there’s a chance that the film might find an audience if it at least tries to stick to Walt’s vision to some degree.

Do you think Snow White can yet be saved? Let Inside the Magic know in the comments down below!

in Movies

View Comments (3)