We’re all familiar with Disney and have seen the movie posters all over. Today we’ll be exploring how your favorite animated movies have changed as they made their way around the globe. We’ll be looking at movie posters!
First up is a classic: Cinderella. This is the original French poster version. The name itself is simply translated into French (not much you can do with a name), but unlike the typical US poster, this features the sad, servant Cinderella, as opposed to the happy princess most of us are familiar with.
Here we have another classic Disney film: Snow White and the Seven Dwarves. This, too, is translated absolutely literally. As a child, I’d never realized how odd the name “Snow White” was, until I saw it translated into Spanish. I’m not sure why, as nothing changes in the two languages, but hearing the phrase “Blanca Nieves” in reference to a girl still gives me a jolt, as I think, “That’s not a typical name…oh wait, yes, it is”. The two posters are almost identical as well; both feature Snow White, a castle, the Evil Queen, and, of course, the dwarves. Perhaps some ideas are simply universal.
Now, however, things begin to get interesting. The Russian version of Frozen is actually called “Cold Heart”, which fits the movie’s plot quite well. Still, I always wonder why the translators decided to change the title, as opposed to literally translating it. I can understand the changing during songs, as it’s nearly impossible to literally translate songs AND have them match the rhythms…but a title? Well, as for the poster itself, the version above doesn’t include Elsa and Hans, and Anna is holding a snowball, but other than that, the scenes are quite similar.
The Disney movie Hercules was based on the Ancient Greek myth of the same name, so is it any wonder I simply had to find the Greek version of it? Regretfully, I had some difficulty translating the Greek caption, however, I can confirm that the first word is Hercules. Besides the language change, though, the English and Greek posters are absolutely identical to each other. Interesting to see how some designers choose to rework the entire poster, while others barely change a thing.
Moving away from Disney and into the world of Studio Ghibli, we have Spirited Away. The title in English was actually shortened, as the literal translation of the Japanese is “Sen and Chihiro’s Spiriting Away.” Interestingly enough, the main character, Chihiro, stands in an identical pose on the English and Japanese poster, but the background changes. The English version shows a backdrop of houses.
I thought a repeat of Japanese might get a bit boring, thus, the next Studio Ghibili movie is translated into Italian (because Italian is lovely). Now, English speakers know this movie as “Howl’s Moving Castle.” The Italian translates to “The Wandering Castle of Howl,” or “Howl’s Wandering Castle” (due to the way possession is expressed in Italian). I’ve found many different versions of the posters, some featuring Sophie (the main character), and Howl, while others feature the castle. As you can see, this poster features all of the above.
And, of course, no multi-language post would be complete without the rather infamous video, Let It Go in 25 languages.
Yes, the song is overplayed, but I personally think that it’s worth a view.
Around the World is a feature about global geekery, exploring other cultures, and much more. To submit a post idea, simply leave a comment!