‘I Have to See This… for Nostalgic Purposes’: Brandy Continues to Inspire Young Black Girls with New Look as ‘Queen Cinderella’

It looks like Brandy Norwood and Paolo Montalban’s characters in the 1997 live remake of “Cinderella”  lived happily ever after. 

The Cinderella and Prince Charming characters recently sent the internet into a frenzy after confirming that they have reprised their roles for the upcoming film “Descendants: The Rise of Red.” 

Brandy Norwood and Paolo Montalban reunite. (@brandy/Instagram)

The fourth installment of the “Descendants” franchise features Norwood and Montalban portraying the Queen and King, who are parents to Chloe, portrayed by Malia Baker. 

The 44-year-old actress shared a magical video on her Instagram that gave viewers an unscripted inside look at the soon-to-come film. The announcement regarding the movie evoked feelings of nostalgia for some fans.

In the video, the “Moesha” star is seen rocking a long blue fishtail braid that perfectly matched her blue gown, as a large crown sat on her head. 

As for her King Charming, Montalban wore a gold button-up tunic with long blue trousers. 

Their gorgeous outfits seemingly paid homage to the ballroom ensembles they wore in Rodgers and Hammertein’s live film adaptation.

“Hi, this is Brandy and I play Cinderella,” Norwood said in the video.

Throughout the recording, fans could see the fictional couple embracing in a hug and posing beside each other for photos. 

“A royal occasion,” she wrote as her caption. “The original movie, #DisneyDescendants: Rise of Red coming.” 

Her video received over one million plays with over 4,200 comments from fans who confirmed that they will be tuning in to see the movie. 

“The WAY MY SPIRIT CAME OUT MY BODY! Y’all look so ROYAL! I am ready and WILL BE WATCHING OMG and to see you both back makes this even better!”

“I remember when the first movie premiered I was just 8 or 9 years old. I have to see this just for nostalgic purposes” 

“Oh, so we get to see Cinderella and her King + their offspring/descendants. I’m here for it”

News about Norwood and Montalban’s return to Disney passed through various social media platforms, including Twitter. Fans’ excitement for the film’s release caused the name Brandy to become a trending search on the app. 

“THEY’RE BOTH BACK OML Brandy does not age at all so excited to see her return as Cinderella,” one fan wrote. 

Norwood’s portrayal as “Cinderella” had young Black and Brown girls who never saw a darker-skinned person of color, who also had micro-braids, play a person of royalty. 

The multi-Grammy award winner broke down barriers by being the first Black Disney princess on camera. Her influential legacy continues to grow as fans prepare to see Halle Bailey star as Ariel in “The Little Mermaid” and Yara Shahidi portray Tinkerbell in “Peter Pan.” 

Rodgers and Hammerstein’s renowned film shifted how fairytales are looked at as a whole through their diverse casting choices. 

Montalban was Disney’s first Asian Prince, Whoopi Goldberg played his mother, the Queen, while Canadian actor, Victor Garber, played Montalban’s father, the King. 

The film also featured Bernadette Peters as the evil stepmother and the late Natalie Dessell Reid as one of Norwood’s step-sisters. 

And who can forget the ever-so-iconic Whitney Houston and her portrayal as Norwood’s fairy godmother. 

“Cinderella” was released nearly 26 years ago, and its impact on the culture truly speaks for itself; fans can watch the legendary movie any time on Disney+.

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