The log flume ride — which is based on the controversial 1946 film “Song of the South” — isn’t going anywhere. Instead, it will be rethemed to star the characters from the 2009 animated film, “The Princess and the Frog,” which features Disney’s first Black princess.
Splash Mountain has been a mainstay at Disney (DIS) parks since its creation in 1989. The new changes to the ride will be implemented at Disneyland park in California and Magic Kingdom park in Florida.
The move comes amid fans urging Disney to retheme Splash Mountain because of the racial stereotypes from the film it is based upon. “Song of the South” — which is best known for the song “Zip-a-Dee-Doo-Dah” — has long been criticized for its stereotypical and offensive portrayals of African Americans as well as a romanticized view of the antebellum South.
The film is so controversial that Disney has locked it away for decades — even keeping it off the extensive library of its new streaming service, Disney+.
“While the ride is considered a beloved classic, its history and storyline are steeped in extremely problematic and stereotypical racist tropes,” the petition read. “There is a huge need for diversity in the parks and this could help fill that need.”