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Disney’s Encanto tells the story of Mirabel and the enchanting family madrigal, but a change of perspective could have changed the film’s magic.

Disney’s Encanto tells the story of Mirabel and the madrigals, but a change of perspective could have changed the magical moments of the film. Mirabel Madrigal (Stephanie Beatriz) is perhaps the most determined member of the Madrigal family. Many of the madrigals receive magical gifts that improve their fellowship. For example, Luisa (Jessica Darrow) has the power to lift donkeys and move churches. However, Mirabel does not get a special gift. Though the lack of magic hurts her relationship with Abuela Alma (María Cecilia Botero and Olga Merediz), nothing stops Mirabel from investigating why her family might be losing their powers.

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Encanto went through several changes before the final film. Disney’s Art of the Encanto reveals behind-the-scenes secrets of the film and shows that several characters could have been very different. For example, Isabela (Diane Guerrero) once had a love interest, although Disney ultimately dropped the character from the film. Also, Pepa Madrigal (Carolina Gaitán) once had a very different power that made the character indestructible. However, the filmmakers changed that because it was too similar to Luisa’s gift.

Related: Why Mirabel’s Tragic Gift Shortage in Encanto Was Inevitable

The madrigals are undoubtedly magical Encanto, but another film change could potentially have changed that. Associate Production Designer Lorelay Bové explains in Art of the Encanto that the film almost had a change of perspective between Mirabel and Abuela Alma. According to Bové, the film almost played with the colors in the world around Mirabel to show that her feelings influenced her. But that was to change in the third act. “Mirabel would stop narrating and the ending would be from Abuela’s point of view, where everything would look more realistic and photographic‘ said Bove. Ultimately Disney and the Encanto Filmmakers didn’t go down this route because it was too distracting, and the move may have saved the film’s magic.


Encanto was right in preferring escapism to realism


Encanto Mirabel and Abuela embrace

Encantos Escapism is a big part of his success. Viewers have fallen in love with Mirabel, her family, her magical home and the city they live in. The family and the city in Encanto feel like they might actually exist somewhere, magical and all. If the film were more realistic, it could take away some of its escapism. Worse, it could potentially invalidate Mirabel’s perspective and show that her fantastical visions of her family’s powers are not rooted in reality. By switching to a more realistic view, Disney has been incredibly successful Encanto could have taken away from its escapism and the magic that enchants viewers worldwide.


Nevertheless, there is a possibility that the change of perspective would have worked. Art of the Encanto does not explicitly state that the realism in the change of perspective would change the magic of the film. So the change of perspective could potentially have added to the story by simply showing things in a new light thanks to Abuela Alma’s point of view. Though the film ends up trying to show Alma’s point of view in “Dos Oruguitas,” a change of perspective could have made Alma more endearing. In the end, the filmmakers made it Encanto exactly how it should have been, which is pretty magical in itself.

More: Encanto: Why Pedro had to sacrifice himself



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