Disney’s New Movie ‘Moana’ Renamed In Italy Because Of Famous Porn Star

Disney’s new movie Moana will be released in Italy under the name Oceania to avoid confusion with a porn star that bears the same name, TMZ is reporting.

Moana Pozzi is regarded as Italy’s most popular adult actress. She performed in over 100 movies and sold over 1 million video tapes as a star in the 1980s and 1990s. She died in 1994 at age 33 of liver cancer.

In 2007, her husband revealed that he had euthanized her by letting air into her IV. This caused air bubbles to travel to her brain and caused her death. Despite her death, Pozzi is still revered in Italy and graced over 50 major magazine covers during her lifetime.

Disney Italy has not commented on the name change. However, an Italian marketing expert revealed it is really a no brainer as to why the name alteration went ahead. According to him, the Walt Disney Company is simply trying to avoid an awkward situation where children would Google the name of the animated flick’s Polynesian princess and have porn videos or a famous Italian adult star pop up in search engine results.

“There are two very simple reasons for the title change, one is that if you type ‘Moana’ and do a Google search in Italy you risk coming up with porn videos. And it’s very expensive and a waste of money to try and change that…in any Italian focus group ‘Moana’ is Moana Pozzi the porn star.”

This is not the first time that the name of a movie would be changed because of national sensibilities. In 2015, Eye In the Sky, a warfare thriller starring Helen Mirren and Breaking Bad’s Aaron Paul was changed to Invisible Enemy in Latin America. Movie executives expressed concerns that because of the large Catholic population in the region, it could be a reference that God was looking down from above.

Moana is due out on Thanksgiving Weekend. However, many Pacific Islanders are far from impressed with the movie because they feel Disney has inaccurately depicted the culture by creating a Polynesian fantasy they can milk for profit. Anne Keala Kelly, a Hawaiian journalist and filmmaker, said she was angry that Polynesia was depicted as a race.

“Polynesia isn’t a race and so that already is very problematic. There are millions of people in the Pacific, hundreds of languages.”

Disney created a group of academics, anthropologists and experts to help the creative direction of the animated flick. Critics have slammed the initiative for a lack of transparency. Vince Diaz, a professor at the University of Minnesota said different areas from multiple ethnic groups were reeled into the movie to represent one culture which is very wrong. The professor said from the trailer he noticed Fijian music, Tahitian drumming and Samoan tattoos, a same old story that the Pacific exists only to entertain.”

“Who gets to authenticate Polynesia especially in a historical context in which Polynesia gets to stand for the entire Pacific? For all the bling, all the eye popping visuals, the beautiful music, amazing colors, it’s the same old story of the Pacific existing to entertain, to mesmerize, to make modern humans feel good about themselves.”

Diaz said some Pacific Islanders had expressed concerns to Disney over the cultural misappropriation and were seeking financial compensation. The Minnesota professor said the company had offered a scholarship program of $500,000 for students of Asian and Pacific Island decent. The program, tagged the Asian & Pacific Islander American Scholarship Fund, would provide 150 scholarships in three years. Critics have said it is not good enough considering Disney is worth $85 billion.

The upcoming movie stirred another round of controversy when Disney halted the sale of a Maui Halloween costume, a character played by Dwayne Johnson. Critics had slammed the movie giant for portraying brown skin as a costume. The company pulled it down and apologized in a statement.

“The team behind Moana has taken great care to respect the cultures of the Pacific Islands that inspired the film, and we regret that that the Maui costume has offended some.”

[Featured Image by Flory/iStockPhoto]