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Female Supporting Characters in Disney Films That Deserve an Origin Story

The opinions expressed in this article are the writer’s own and do not reflect the views of Her Campus.

There are so many adventurous, clever, brave, loyal, and strong Disney princesses, but what about the supporting characters? Female supporting characters in Disney movies are often overlooked, but they contribute as many laughs, quotable phrases, and memorable moments as any of the main leads. It’s about time these magnificent ladies had their own origin films so that we can get to know them better!

Grandma Fa

Some might call her a harbinger of chaos, but Grandma Fa truly has her granddaughter Mulan’s best interests at heart. Some of this character’s finest moments include: gifting Mulan a cricket for luck, nodding towards the fence hinting that she knows Mulan can climb over it, and saying the iconic line “Sign me up for the next war!” However, we’re first really introduced to this character when she proceeds to walk across a busy roadway in order to prove her belief that crickets are “lucky.” I’m dying for an origin story of what Grandma Fa was like as a young girl. Was she rebellious like Mulan, and is that why she supports her granddaughter now? I demand answers!

Life Lucky Cricket GIF by Disney - Find & Share on GIPHY
Life Lucky Cricket GIF By Disney

Edna Mode

After seeing her featured in the short film “Auntie Edna,” I’ve been dying to see more of this character. How did Edna Mode become the exclusive fashion designer for all superheroes? Was there some magical fashion school she attended? Personally, I love the theory that Edna was friends with Elastigirl (aka Helen Parr) before Edna was known professionally as a designer. Edna Mode, despite having only a couple of scenes in the Incredibles franchise, is a Pixar fan-favorite character that isn’t soon to be forgotten. All the more reason to give her her own origin story!

The Incredibles Cape GIF - Find & Share on GIPHY
The Incredibles Cape GIF

Gramma Tala

While there is no doubt that Moana herself is an independent, capable, and phenomenal role model, let’s not forget who nurtured that resilient spirit! Gramma Tala is in her own words, “the village crazy lady,” but that’s not all. She’s also easygoing, kind, and spiritually gifted, so much so that she was able to predict what animal she’d be in her next life. Talk about powerful and all-knowing! Audiences deserve a film about how Tala gained a strong connection with the island and if she ever wanted to be chief too.

Failure Sail GIF - Find & Share on GIPHY
Failure Sail GIF

Madame Adelaide

Have you ever watched a movie with an older character and had the realization that that’s who you wanted to be when you grew up? For me, that character is definitely Madame Adelaide from The Aristocats (1970). Even though she’s only in a few of the movie’s scenes, her eccentric presence certainly stands out. What I love about Adelaide is that she turns the old crazy cat lady trope on its head. Instead, she’s just a lady who loves animals and dresses fabulously. I’d love an origin film where we’d get to see how Adelaide became so wealthy. Was she born into money or did she marry someone rich? The way I see it, her story can go two ways: either she was born into money and has always loved her attorney Georges, or she killed her mean husband for all his money (a “no body, no crime” situation).

The Aristocats GIF by Maudit - Find & Share on GIPHY
The Aristocats GIF By Maudit

The Three Good Fairies

It would be impossible to split up this original trio! Flora, Fauna, and Merriweather are equal parts comic relief and spunky guardians to Princess Aurora. They may be the supporting characters in Sleeping Beauty (1959) – but think about it – they have the most lines! The material for an origin film is already there – throughout the events of Sleeping Beauty, these fairies seem like an unlikely trio, so how did they ever become friends/allies in the first place? Is another fairy forcing them to work together? Are they in a relationship, former college roommates, exclusively work friends? And, more importantly, what is their connection to Maleficient? Have they battled her in the past? I demand answers!

Sleeping Beauty Disney GIF - Find & Share on GIPHY
Sleeping Beauty Disney GIF

Megara

While the Hercules (1997) film did give audience members some insight into Meg’s background, i.e., making a deal with Hades to save her boyfriend’s life, there’s got to be so much more to this interesting character. Without a doubt, Meg is one of the most sarcastic, complex, and unconventional female leads in any film ever, yet we know surprisingly little about her. All we know about her is through Hercules’s point of view, and that’s too much of a patriarchal lens. Besides the one failed love affair, what made Meg so jaded and distrustful? How long has she been working for Hades? Has she ever had any other run-ins with Olympian gods? Meg undoubtedly deserves her own origin film just for this iconic feminist quote alone: “I’m a damsel. I’m in distress. I can handle this.”

Disney Hercules GIF - Find & Share on GIPHY
Disney Hercules GIF
I'm part time yoga teacher and a full time reader. I never miss an opportunity to listen to audiobooks on a car ride, or to read ebooks during breaks in my classes. I'm a senior at Susquehanna University where my major is creative writing with a minor in women and gender studies.
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