Disney Animation has announced their 2016 movie, and it will be reteaming their classic filmmakers Ron Clements and John Musker, who wrote and directed The Little Mermaid and Aladdin. They're returning to the sea, but this time it's the South Pacific, and they're dipping into local folklore for Moana.
In the ancient South Pacific world of Oceania, Moana, a born navigator, sets sail in search of a fabled island. During her incredible journey, she teams up with her hero, the legendary demi-god Maui, to traverse the open ocean on an action-packed voyage, encountering enormous sea creatures, breathtaking underworlds and ancient folklore.
“Moana is indomitable, passionate and a dreamer with a unique connection to the ocean itself,” Musker said. “She's the kind of character we all root for, and we can't wait to introduce her to audiences.”
It's going to be a fantasy take on Polynesian culture, it seems, similar to how Frozen played with Norway. That brings Disney back to the South Pacific, where it played for Lilo & Stitch, and gives them a chance to make another girl-power character like Elsa and Anna.
Maui is, of course, a Hawaiian island, but he's also a real character in Polynesian folklore. He's a pretty big deal, as he's the guy who made the sun go slower so the day would last longer and who brought fire to the earth. He also tries to attain immortality for humanity by climbing into the vagina of the Goddess of the Night, who closes her legs on him and cuts him in two, killing him and making humanity mortal forever.
That will probably not be depicted in Moana.