Despite some protests that the Disney makeover given to classic characters–Minnie Mouse and Daisy Duck, in particular–will send the wrong message to young girls, many are excited to see the finished product, which will debut in an animated short called “Electric Holiday” for Barney’s New York.
And classic characters aren’t the only ones getting an animated makeover; Sarah Jessica Parker, Naomi Campbell, and Lady Gaga are among the notable fashion-lovers who will be sitting in the front row in the film, watching Minnie Mouse and her friends make their runway debut.
The controversial film began making waves back in the summer, when a sneak-preview of the new tall, slender characters hit the web. Some parents were concerned that taking a character like Minnie Mouse–who is so iconic and is known by young girls everywhere–and morphing her into a thin model would be confusing and could possibly cause body-image issues.
The people at Barney’s insist they took this into consideration when the concept was being designed, but say the original characters wouldn’t work with what they had in mind. They wanted to take Minnie, Daisy, and Goofy and put them into designer clothing…something that hadn’t been done before and couldn’t be pulled off with the original proportions.
“When we got to the moment when all Disney characters walk on the runway, there was a discussion,” Barneys creative director Dennis Freedman said. “The standard Minnie Mouse will not look so good in a Lanvin dress. There was a real moment of silence, because these characters don’t change. I said, ‘If we’re going to make this work, we have to have a 5-foot-11 Minnie,’ and they agreed. When you see Goofy, Minnie and Mickey, they are runway models.”
The film was created as part of Barney’s iconic storefront window display and will debut on Wednesday, November 14th.