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'Princess and the Frog' star's dream realized

Hollywood Wrap with George Pennacchio
November 24, 2009 12:00:00 AM PST
Disney returns to its roots in classic hand-drawn animation for its latest film "The Princess and the Frog."Along with the onscreen animated artistry you'll see, you'll also hear music from composer Randy Newman, and the voices of several actors, including "Dreamgirls" star Anika Noni Rose.

Actress Anika Noni Rose lends her voice to the newest Disney heroine in "The Princess and the Frog." The Tony-Award-winning actress is thrilled that her latest role will introduce her to a much younger set of fans.

"I love that -- I think that you need 10-year-olds," said Rose. "I think there is nothing like hearing wonder in a child's voice, hearing laughter, hearing a baby laugh because it's so honest and full, especially when they get that little hiccup at the end, that's my favorite thing. So I feel it's a very, very special thing to be in that position," said Rose.

The character of Tiana is a very focused, hard-working young woman. Rose had no trouble relating to her animated alter ego.

"I think that she's very much like me but not like 'little me.' Certainly by the time I was 19, I was very clear about what I wanted to do, and I think this is the character that I've played that is the most like me, which is very, very moving to me actually, because I come from like 'nowhere' America, and here I am, a Disney princess.

"Who would have thought? I didn't think at all, ever, that this is what it was going to be. I didn't think that I would never do something, it just wasn't in my scope. So my dream wasn't quite as specific. My dream was to be a Disney voice, but this is beyond even what I dreamed," said Rose.

"The Princess and the Frog" is playing exclusively at the theater at Walt Disney Studios. It opens citywide on December 11.

Disney is the parent company of ABC7.


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