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91 Moana Facts: Things You Surely Did Not Know About The Movie

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A modern Disney Princess, breaking the barriers and facing challenges head-on with her loyal and cute little pig Pua, Moana is every kid’s new favorite.

The daughter of a Polynesian chief of the island of Motunui, Moana is the chosen one to find a mystical relic and return it to Te Fiti, the Goddess who protects Motunui. Despite having a lot of restrictions, the movie shows how Moana answers her calling and takes on the challenge of getting Motunui back to its happier and healthier days.

She goes against her parents, who are adamant about keeping her away from the ocean to accomplish this. The movie is set around Polynesian mythology and depicts the story of Te Fiti using a Pounamo stone as her heart, which she used as her source of power to blow life into the oceans and thus benefit the islands and villagers. The stone is stolen by Maui, who, according to Polynesian mythology, is a trickster seen as a hero. This leads to Te Fiti losing her power and disintegrating. Maui, the demigod, is then attacked by a volcanic demon, causing him to lose both the Pounamu stone and his prized possession of a giant magical fishhook. Did you know that in several languages of the Polynesian region, Moana’s name means ‘Ocean’!

After reading some interesting facts about the popular Disney film, also check out Mulan facts and Tangled facts.

Fun Facts About Moana

 There are so many facts about Moana that it would be nearly impossible to cover them all in one go, but we will try our best. So let’s look at some fun facts about Moana:

  • Moana, unlike other Disney Princesses, was not showcased as having a petite figure by design.
  • It was a creative decision to show Moana with a realistic figure, as that which can be attributed to Polynesian women.
  • The directors made trips to the Southern region of Oceania to do in-depth research for the movie.
  • Other Disney characters, including Olaf and Flounder, had appeared in the film.
  • The songs in the movie were the creation of popular Hollywood singer and songwriter Lin Manuel Miranda.
  • The directors of the movie were accompanied by Disney’s animation team for their research trips, and during these trips, they formed the Oceanic Story Trust.
  • Moana’s red feathers, which she wears at certain ceremonies, symbolize Royalty.
  • In one idea during the initial creation of the film, Moana was designed as a modern millennial who time travels to find out about her ancestors and is equipped with all modern technology. However, this idea was quickly scrapped.
  • The name Moana is a word in the South Pacific language that means Ocean, making it a gender-neutral word and name.

Disney’s Moana perhaps tops the list for the number of special effects used as about 80% of the film is composed of special effects.

Facts About The Characters In Moana

 Here are some facts about the different characters in Moana:

  • The Lalotai monsters were so named because they belonged to the region of Tomatoa. In Proto Polynesian language, Lalo means below, and Tai means the sea; combined, it means below the sea is where they lived.
  • Pua the Pig and Hei Hei, the rooster, were supposed to be based on the Directors of the film John Musker and Ron Clements.
  • In the original script, Pua was written as accompanying Moana on her adventure; however, later discussions led to the directors deciding against it.
  • Originally, Hei Hei the rooster was not supposed to be stupid or not as seen in the movie; and was supposed to be based on Musker, while Pua was based on Clements.
  • To provide the pig noises, the creators of Disney’s Moana did not artificially create sounds but used actual Pigs.
  • The voice of Moana was lent by a 16-year-old girl named Auli’i Cravalho.
  • The actor who voiced Tui, Moana’s father, chief of Motunui, was Temuera Morrison, who played the role of Boba Fett in Empire Strikes Back and The Mandalorians. He also did a reprise version in the Maori language iteration of the film.
  • The character of Moana has very detailed dresses. There are a total of seven outfits that Moana wears.
  • The most elaborate costume worn by Moana is only showcased in the film for a mere six seconds; however, it is extremely detailed.

Part of the reason for creating the characters of Hei Hei and Pua is that while on research in the Pacific Island, the researchers saw a lot of pigs and roosters and considered them a big part of the region.

Writers conceived the movie’s original story during their time in Pacific Islands.

Facts About Maui From Moana

Here are some fun Maui facts:

  • Maui was originally designed to be bald.
  • Maui was voiced by Dwayne The Rock Johnson.
  • The Magical fish hook of Maui was created after a constellation in Oceania called Scorpio.
  • The character of Maui is actually based on a character of Polynesian mythology named Maui as well.
  • This character is important in Polynesian culture as his stories form a big part of Polynesian traditions and folklore.
  • The character of Mini Maui was created to give Maui a softer side. Mini Maui, who is known as Tiny, serves as Maui’s conscience and is even his best friend.
  • Inspiration for the look of Maui came directly from Dwayne Johnson and his grandfather.
  • The eyebrow lifts and dimples were taken directly from Dwayne’s appearance.

The casting team was always clear on wanting Dwayne Johnson to voice Maui and, as such, did not hold any auditions at all.

Unknown Facts About The Movie

Here are some unknown Moana facts:

  • The Oceanic Story Trust was composed of a group of educators, anthropologists, cultural advisors, linguists, and many more experts who advised on various areas to Disney’s creative team.
  • All of the costumes worn by the characters were made of materials that would have been available 2000 years ago.
  • The actors who lent their voices to the movie’s characters went to the movie’s premiere in Samoa dressed closely as the characters they voiced.
  • The team of advisers, particularly the astronomers, spent a lot of time in the Pacific Islands, trying to determine the appearance of the night sky 2000 years ago so that they could accurately depict it in the movie.
  • Disney’s Moana is the 56th animation film by Disney.
  • Lin Manuel Miranda found out he would be a dad the same week he was contacted to be a part of Moana.
  • Moana was a secondary character in the original idea, while Maui was ideated as the primary character.
  • Moana puts her hands in the water to determine the angles between the star and horizon for ascertaining her latitude.
  • Since a young age, Lin Manuel Miranda has been a Disney movies fan and named his son Sebastian after his favorite character Sebastian from Little Mermaid.
  • The national airways of Hawaii, the Hawaii Airlines, painted Moana’s characters on their planes to celebrate the movie’s release.
  • The research process for this film was so detailed that even to get the correct depiction of Moana’s hair when wet, they invited people who had a similar hair texture to the Walt Disney Animation Studio to get their hair dunked in water.

Here at Kidadl, we have carefully created many interesting family-friendly facts for everyone to enjoy! If you liked our suggestions for 91 Moana Facts: Things You Surely Did Not Know About The Movie, then why not take a look at The Little Mermaid facts or Lilo and Stitch facts.

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Kidadl Team

The Kidadl Team is made up of people from different walks of life, from different families and backgrounds, each with unique experiences and nuggets of wisdom to share with you. From lino cutting to surfing to children’s mental health, their hobbies and interests range far and wide. They are passionate about turning your everyday moments into memories and bringing you inspiring ideas to have fun with your family.

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