A mom took her son to watch Disney’s Encanto and has shared why she feels representation and diversity are important in kids’ movies.
Kah Brand and her 2-year-old, Kenzo, watched Encanto for the first time this week, without thinking too much of it. But it turns out, it was way more significant than she thought it would be…
Brand realized that partway through the movie, her son was looking intently and smiling when the character, Antonio, came on the screen.
And the reason why was because Kenzo thought the young boy looked just like him.
“He seemed to be in awe, just smiling and staring at the screen,” she said as per POPSUGAR.
“Then he stood up and looked back at his dad and me, still smiling. For him, I truly believe that he thought he was seeing himself because of the resemblance between him and Antonio.”
And it seems like social media were blown away by the resemblance too, after she posted a picture on Instagram of Kenzo stood next to a paused image of the character…
“It’s very important for children to see images of themself on TV beautiful,” one person wrote.
While another commented: “Loved how this movie represented the diversity in skin tones of Latin people!”
Brand clearly shared Kenzo’s excitement about the similarities, “As a mom, I’m always trying to capture ‘these’ moments,” she said. “I was amazed at his reaction. It just truly made me smile and my heart happy.”
The resemblance was something that struck a chord with Brand, as there is shockingly little black representation in kids’ movies, and was even less when she was a child.
“It was the impact of feeling seen,” Brand added. “It is essential for Black children to feel seen and to be connected to positive and empowering images for their self-esteem.”
“We didn’t have this growing up. What’s so special about Encanto was that it didn’t stop at just showing us brown characters. It showed the diversity in hair textures and skin tone. I’m so grateful for moments like this because I’m aware of its impact, especially for brown boys and girls. It brings joy to our family.
“There’s power in representation and magic in creativity. This generation and future generations will experience inclusivity because the film industry is moving in a direction that reflects the true diversity of our world.”
Way to go Disney!