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16 Disney Black Actresses We Need to Celebrate Soulfully 

Racism ran rampant in the entertainment industry back in the day. Black actresses had to fight for their freedom and for a chance to showcase their talents.

However, the number is increasing by the day, with most leaving a trademark to be followed by upcoming black actresses. 

In this post, we’ve compiled a list of the top 16 Disney black actresses we should always celebrate. They’ve brought their unique style, intelligence, and many other talents to Disney movies over the years.

Here we go!

1.   Keke Palmer 

Keke Palmer is a multi-talented American singer, activist, actress, and television host who became the main character in Disney’s True Jackson VP. She has also been featured in Disney films, such as Akeelah and the Bee.

Palmer is known for her powerful voice that touches the hearts of her listeners and has received several accolades, including a Screen Actor Guild Award for her hard work and dedication. 

2.  Raven Symone 

Raven has been a Disney household figure since her inception in The Cosby Show, and her career skyrocketed ever since. She also acted in the Disney film That’s So Raven.

Though she stepped out of Disney and demonstrated her versatility in movies, theatre, and TV shows, she stepped back and portrayed her character in Disney in Raven Homes

Her humorous timing and relatable contributions have left an indelible mark on her fans and the Disney industry. 

3.  Anika Noni Rose 

Anika Noni is an American singer and actress known for her stage presence after portraying the role of Princess Tiana in The Princess and the Frog. 

That led her to become the first African American princess. Her passion for acting has made her a role model for many and left a mark in entertainment history. 

4.   China Anne McClain 

China  McClain is an American singer and actress who began her career at only 7 when portraying Alexis in The Gospel film. 

She also found her breakthrough in the Disney A.N.T Farm TV series when she starred as Chyna Parks.

Her captivating performance makes her continue making a mark in her acting career. 

5.   Zendaya 

Maree Stoermer Coleman, fondly known as Zendaya, is a talented actor who rose to prominence through Disney’s Shake It Up as Rocky Blue, which saw her become a global icon. 

She has featured in Disney sitcoms like K.C. Undercover and the Superhero Film Spider-Man Homecoming. She is also known for her advocacy and impressive fashion.

6.   Raven Baxter 

Raven Baxter is a black Disney actress who is ahead of her time. She started her career young and raised the bar so high.

She is known for fashion trends, and the beauty of her career is that she got the famous film That’s So Raven named after her. It teaches black women valuable lessons from discrimination to racism. 

7.   Kyla Pratt 

Kyla Pratt is an actress who gave the voice of Penny Proud in The Proud Family, a Disney Channel animated series.

In addition to her Disney roles, she has featured in several films, including Fat Albert and Dr. Dolitte. Her acting prowess has seen her achieve great success in her acting career. 

8.   Viola Davis 

Viola is an American producer and actress who voiced in the Disney Junior original series Sofia the First.

She has also featured in countless films, including How to Get Away with Murder, The Help, and Woman King.

Viola is among the few black Disney actresses to win an Emmy, Oscar, Grammy, and Tony award.

9.   Gabrielle Union 

Gabrielle Union is an American actress who started acting in the 90s and has made dozens of appearances on Television sitcoms.

In Disney, Gabrielle has voiced Sydney in Splendor in the Mud and The Proud Family. She portrays in Don’t Do That Thing You Do, among others.

Her charisma and talent are visible throughout her journey and remain a significant legacy. 

10. Taraji P Henson 

Taraji is a multi-talented American actress who started her career in 1992. Her career skyrocketed when she voiced the Disney animated series Ralph Breaks the Internet. Taraji features in Smart Guy as Leslie and the Muppet’s Haunted Mansion

She has also been featured in other films and has become a symbol of resilience and empowerment for her admirers throughout her career. 

11. Octavia Spencer 

Octavia Spencer has received several awards and accolades, all thanks to her acting career.

From Disney, Spencer portrays the role of Dr Evilini in the Disney channel series Wizards of Waverly Place. 

In 2016, she also voiced Mr. Otterton in the Disney animated film Zootopia.

Over the years, Octavia has demonstrated her dedication to growth in the entertainment industry, making her a notable figure worth celebrating. 

12. Angela Bassett 

Angela Bassett is an American actress and a recipient of numerous accolades.

In Disney, she voiced in the 2007 Disney animated film Meet the Robinsons as Mildred and Dorothee Williams in the Disney 2020 film Soul. 

She also featured in other Disney films, including What’s Love Got to Do with It as Tina Turner, where she was nominated as the best actress in the film and received an Academy Award. 

13. Whoopi Goldberg 

Carlyn Elaine Johnson, fondly known as Whoopi Goldberg, is a celebrated American actress, comedian, voice actress, television personality, and author. She is famous for her work in many films and TV shows. 

For Disney, she voiced in the 1994 Disney animated film King Lion as Shenzi and Snow Buddies as Miss Mittens.

She was also featured in The Muppets and posed in Where Your Every Wish Is Our Command as Genie, to name a few. 

14. Niecy Nash 

Carol Denise Betts, professionally known as Niecy Nash, is an American Television host and actress who began her career in the late 90s.

In Disney, she played Gloria in A Million Little Things, a 2009 Disney sci-fi comedy film, The Rookie as Simone Clark, and That’s So Raven as Madame Cassandra. 

15. Aisha Tyler 

Aisha Nalaja Tyler is an American talk show host, actress, and Daytime Emmy Award winner.

 She portrayed The Santa Clause 2 & 3 and The Escape Clause as mother nature. 

She featured in the 2008 Disney films The Bedtime Stories and Diary of Future President, among others. She stole the scene in every movie with her hilarious personality and delivered a timeless act. 

16. Regina King 

Regina King is a multi-talented American film director and actress with many achievements in her portfolio.

She portrayed Cecily Banks in Mighty Joe Young from Disney and voiced for the Fire and Rescue animated Disney film. 

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The contributions of black actresses to Disney movies have been significant and deserve recognition. The actresses we’ve listed herein have truly entertained us and left an indelible mark as black actresses in Disney’s history. Let’s continue to celebrate their talent, diversity, and representation in the world of Disney and beyond.

Nikita Waruguru

Nikita Waruguru is a Kenyalogue freelance writer who focuses on TV, celebrity gossip, and pop culture. She's been interested in TV and entertainment from a young age. She wrote her first blog post 10 years ago and has since written more than 3000 news articles, features, and lists. When she's not writing about the latest Netflix reality shows, you can find her binge-watching one or listening to music.

Nikita Waruguruhttp://kenyalogue.com
Nikita Waruguru is a Kenyalogue freelance writer who focuses on TV, celebrity gossip, and pop culture. She's been interested in TV and entertainment from a young age. She wrote her first blog post 10 years ago and has since written more than 3000 news articles, features, and lists. When she's not writing about the latest Netflix reality shows, you can find her binge-watching one or listening to music.
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