The Swan Princess
The Swan Princess
Directed by
Produced by
Written by
Music by
Editing by
Production company(s)
Release date(s)
Running time
Gross revenue
Based on Swan Lake by Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky
Disney counterpart
Preceded by
Followed by The Swan Princess and the Secret of the Castle
External links

In the '90s, Disney was getting big bucks with their animated musicals. So, what is poor unknown studio Crest Animation to do? Why, make their own, of course! The Swan Princess is designed specifically to fool people into thinking it's a Disney movie, not only by copying their famous formula, but also by merchandising and sequelizing the hell out of it. Disney's making dolls of their female characters? The Swan Princess has dolls up the wazoo! Disney's making direct-to-video sequels of their most popular movies? Cue The Swan Princess and the Secret of the Castle and The Swan Princess: The Mystery of the Enchanted Treasure. Disney stopped making sequels, but now they're making computer-animated Tinker Bell movies? Cue The Swan Princess Christmas and The Swan Princess: A Royal Family Tale. And all this over a film that bombed at the box office. I guess that's where Anastasia succeeds where The Swan Princess fails, since Anastasia had the backing of a much larger company, had much better advertising, and its marketing tie-ins more closely resembled what Disney put out, whereas the only people The Swan Princess was fooling were the folks who weren't familiar enough with Disney to realize that's not what Disney packaging looks like.

Plot Summary

Disney Formula
Hero/Heroine Odette
Main Character Goal To be free and human again
Deceased Parent(s) Odette's mother and Derek's father
Love Interest Derek
Sidekick(s) Jean-Bob, Speed, Puffin, Bromley
Parent or Mentor
Villain Rothbart
Villain's Sidekick Bridget
Opening Narration
Catalyst Odette is taken to the lake by Rothbart
Journey Begins Derek decides to avenge Odette by hunting down and killing the Great Animal
Meet Cute Odette and Derek are set up in an arranged marriage meant to join their countries
Harrowing Scene Derek goes after Swan!Odette with a bow, thinking that she is the Great Animal
Romantic Moment The romantic leads have a distant duet
Preclimax Odette tries to make it to the ball before Derek makes a vow of everlasting love to Bridget
Climax Rothbart transforms into the Great Animal to fight Derek. Rothbart gets arrow'd, and explodes. It was mercifully short.
Happy Ending Odette and Derek are married, and live happily ever after (until the sequels)
Opening Number "This Is My Idea"
"I Want" Song
Sidekick Song "No Fear", "Princesses On Parade"
Villain Song "No More Mr. Nice Guy"
Romance Song "Far Longer Than Forever"
Award Bait Song "Eternity"


Disney's Revenge

So, it's no secret that The Swan Princess steals a lot from Disney. Bromley looks like LeFou from Beauty and the Beast. The town looks like the one from Pinocchio. The ballroom scene during "This Is My Idea" looks like the ballroom scene from Sleeping Beauty. None of this escaped Disney's notice, which is why years later in The Princess and the Frog, Disney appropriated elements of The Swan Princess for their own movie. The way Naveen acts is similar to Jean-Bob, and the sphere of water when Facilier's spell is broken looks just like the one that appears when Odette transforms. This pissed off quite a few The Swan Princess fans... y'know, the same people who blame Disney for their favoritest movie bombing at the box office, and don't realize who ripped who off first.