While Disney has created multiple princess characters, only 12 of them are deemed official Disney Princess. Characters like Snow White, Cinderella, and Moana have received this title. However, other characters of royal lineage have not.
We’re here to look at all the princesses Disney has created that haven’t been officially entered into the Disney Princess line. While not every Disney Princess actually has to be a princess (Mulan, for example, received the designation even though she didn’t marry royalty), we’re only going to be looking at leading ladies who do have a royal background. We will also be taking Disney’s live-action princesses into account, even though the official Disney Princess line only contains animated characters.
It’s time to bow down to Disney’s under-appreciated rulers. Here is a ranking of the greatest unofficial Disney Princesses.
10 Princess Eilonwy
If you don’t remember Disney’s 1985 dark fantasy The Black Cauldron, we don’t blame you. The film only made back around half of its budget at the box office and has since faded into the background. However, we can’t overlook the main female protagonist — Eilonwy — who is indeed a princess.
Like the film she came from, Eilonwy isn’t the most remembered of Disney's leading ladies. However, she is brave and heroic, escaping the Horned King’s dungeon alongside Taran. She has earned herself the nickname the “Forgotten Disney Princess.” That being said, she could be considered a queen, being that both of her parents have died.
The main protagonist of the direct-to-video The Little Mermaid II: Return to the Sea is indeed a princess, as the daughter of Ariel and Prince Eric. She has the opposite dream of Ariel, wishing to adventure into the sea rather than gain legs (which she already has).
We love Melody for being adventurous and independent. We’re also fans of her cute and rebellious friendship with Sebastian that mirrors the friendship her own mother held with the crab. Melody is also the first child of any Disney Princess.
8 Nancy Tremaine
While Giselle might come to mind before Nancy when you think of Enchanted — the 2007 live-action comedy about a princess who wanders into New York by mistake — Nancy is actually the one who marries into royalty.
After Robert runs off with Giselle, Nancy falls for Edward when he discovers the glass slipper she left behind fits her foot. The two head back into the fairytale world of Andalasia and get married. He’s a prince, which automatically makes her a princess.
7 Kida Nedakh
Kida, the main female character of 2003’s Atlantis: The Lost Empire, is indeed a princess even if she doesn’t fulfill the role of a typical damsel. Filmmakers gave her a strong personality and a slightly different look, ultimately deeming her Atlantis’ warrior princess.
Unfortunately, Atlantis wasn’t as popular as other Disney films, and despite fans’ push for Kida to become “official,” it never happened. However, she appears in the My Princess Collection and The Art of the Disney Princess books. Her age (which is somewhere over 8,000 years old) also didn’t help her secure an official Disney Princess title.
You’re probably thinking, “What? Elsa’s not an official Disney Princess?” Nope. She’s not.
Though she is a primary human character that was introduced in an original Disney film, she doesn’t have an animal sidekick. Also, she becomes queen toward the beginning of the film. And finally, her film — Frozen — blew up the box office. Frozen didn’t need to join the Disney Princess line because its lead characters were popular enough to have their own line of merchandise and films. Can you name a different Disney Princess who got her own theatrically released sequel? We’ll wait.
Of the Frozen sisters, Anna is the more qualified of the two to fit the official Disney Princess bill. She has a sidekick (Olaf) and is indeed a princess. However, she still comes from Disney’s most successful princess film of all time. This means she won’t be getting a coronation at Disney parks anytime soon.
Anna is cute and awkward, and she owns it. She proves that female characters don’t need to be tough to be strong, and for that, we think she's swell.
Who's ready for November to come so that we can see her journey continue in Frozen 2?
Megara is a princess in Greek Mythology, and while the end of the original film doesn’t conclude with her gaining this title, she becomes a princess in Disney's Hercules: The Animated Series after marrying the titular character.
Despite this, she’s never entered the Disney Princess franchise. That being said, we’re still obsessed with her. Meg ends up falling in love when she is young but falls on the wrong side of a bargain to rescue her boyfriend from Hades. He leaves her for another woman, and this makes her lose belief in love. However, she slowly opens up her heart again and cautiously falls for Hercules when she realizes not everyone will treat her poorly. Her strength and hope is admirable.
3 Mia Thermopolis
The star of The Princess Diaries, played by Anne Hathaway, is an awkward high schooler who learns she is royalty. Her grandmother Clarisse attempts to groom her into the perfect princess during the first movie, and during the second, she searches for a husband so that she can retain her rightful place as ruler.
Mia is funny and relatable, as even once she becomes more refined, she retains her signature sass. She is also caring toward others and has incredible relationships with her grandmother and quirky best friend.
2 Princess Leia
Disney announced its deal with Lucasfilms in 2012. Lucasfilms owns the Star Wars franchise, meaning that Princess Leia — played by the beloved Carrie Fisher — became one of Disney’s star princesses. That being said, Leia is no damsel in distress. Fisher’s strong character is a symbol of female empowerment, tackling every challenge that comes her way and always keeping up with the boys.
She’s set the standard for many fictional badass women who have come after her and truly elevated Star Wars to a whole new level.
1 Vanellope Von Schweetz
Vanellope von Schweetz from Wreck-It-Ralph might not be the first character that comes to mind when you think of a Disney Princess, but boy, does she fit the bill.
During the first film, Vanellope’s memory has been altered causing her to forget that she is actually the rightful ruler of the video game Sugar Rush. After winning a race, her memories are restored and she has a Cinderella-style dress transformation.
In Ralph Breaks The Internet, Vanellope stumbles upon the official Disney Princess (plus Anna and Elsa) chilling together on the Oh My Disney website. They quiz her about her past, enthusiastically determining she is a real princess because people assume all her problems were solved because a “big, strong man showed up.” Though Vanellope isn’t an official Disney Princess, she definitely deserves some royal recognition.