Disney is pulling from sale a number of children’s items tied to its upcoming release “Moana” amid controversy over whether they are examples of cultural misappropriation and insensitivity toward Pacific Islanders.
In the film, set thousands of years ago, a girl named Moana (voiced by Hawaiian-born newcomer Auli’i Cravalho) wants to learn to be an ocean navigator and is aided by the demigod Maui (voiced by Dwayne Johnson). In the film’s official description, “Moana fulfills the ancient quest of her ancestors and discovers the one thing she’s always sought: her own identity.”
The costume garnering the most attention depicted Johnson’s character of Maui and featured brown-colored shirt and pants replicating the character’s tattooed skin. A number of protesters declared on Twitter, “culture is not a costume.”