Auli'i Cravalho

Why Do People Hate Auli’i Cravalho?

Auli’i Cravalho is an American actress and singer who rose to prominence for voicing the title character in the 2016 Disney animated film Moana.

While Cravalho has many fans and supporters, she has also faced some backlash and dislike from certain groups over the years. Here is an in-depth look at some of the main reasons why some people dislike Auli’i Cravalho:

Unknown Before Being Cast in Moana

One of the most common criticisms of Auli’i Cravalho is that she was relatively unknown before being cast as the lead in a major Disney movie.

Cravalho’s Background

  • Born in 2000 in Kohala, Hawaii
  • Mixed Native Hawaiian/Puerto Rican descent
  • Attended small local schools in Hawaii
  • Performed in community theater productions as a child

Casting Seen as Unfair by Some

  • Open casting call for Moana received hundreds of submissions
  • 14-year-old Cravalho was cast after just one taped audition
  • This was her first ever film role
  • Some felt casting unknown was unfair or risky for such a major role

Many felt an unknown teenager should not have been given the prestigious lead role in a Disney Princess movie when many talented, experienced actresses of Polynesian descent could have been considered.

Seen as Underqualified or Undeserving

Some saw Cravalho as undeserving or underqualified compared to more established Polynesian and Hawaiian entertainers. This led to perceptions that she only got the role due to luck or connections rather than talent.

Faced Accusations of Being Chosen Just for Diversity

Another common criticism of Auli’i Cravalho is that she was chosen mainly for diversity reasons rather than her acting or singing talent.

Moana Praised for Representation

  • Moana was praised for its cultural authenticity and diversity
  • First Polynesian Disney Princess
  • Features all-Polynesian main cast

Claims Cravalho Chosen for Ethnicity Rather than Talent

  • Some argued Disney prioritized casting a native Hawaiian over acting ability
  • Claimed Cravalho was picked more for her ethnicity than talent
  • Said she was chosen just to appeal to diversity efforts

Disney stated they chose Cravalho because of her outstanding audition. But some felt an inexperienced non-professional was unlikely to give the best audition and assumed ethnic representation was prioritized.

Seen as Affirmative Action by Some Critics

Some critics of diversity and affirmative action initiatives argued Cravalho only got the role because she was a young Hawaiian native, rather than being the most qualified.

Faced Backlash for Her LGBT Activism

Auli’i Cravalho has been outspoken in supporting LGBT equality and rights. However, this activism has also sparked some backlash from more conservative groups.

Cravalho Publicly Came Out as Bisexual

  • In 2020, Cravalho came out as bisexual during a livestreamed Pride event
  • She frequently speaks out in support of LGBTQ issues and representation

Faced Criticism from Conservative Groups

  • Her LGBT advocacy has led to criticism from some religious and conservative figures
  • Some believe she is too young to speak out on these issues
  • Or feel Disney is pushing a “woke agenda” through her activism

“Traditional Values” Groups Oppose Her LGBT Stances

  • Groups promoting “traditional family values” oppose Cravalho’s pro-LGBT efforts
  • Call her bisexual identity and activism inappropriate for someone her age
  • Want Disney to avoid discussing sexual orientation in “children’s” movies

This backlash stems from disagreement with the causes Cravalho advocates for, rather than with the actress herself. But it has still fueled negativity from some.

Made Anti-Trump Comments

Auli’i Cravalho sparked some controversy in 2018 when she made critical comments about President Donald Trump during an interview.

Called Trump “A Sexist, Racist Ass” in Interview

  • In a 2018 interview with Variety, 17-year-old Cravalho openly criticized Trump
  • Referred to him as “a sexist, racist ass” who “stands for the opposite of the values I stand for”

Faced Backlash from Trump Supporters

  • Her anti-Trump comments received backlash from the President’s supporters
  • They felt her statements were disrespectful due to her age
  • Argued she should not speak publicly on politics

Led to Wider Criticisms of Hollywood Liberals

  • The incident fed into conservative criticisms of liberal Hollywood
  • They felt a Disney star should not make vulgar political statements
  • Saw it as “proof” of Hollywood bias against conservatives

While Cravalho stood by her comments, they added to negative perceptions from Trump supporters.

Was Involved in Some Controversial Movie Remakes

Another source of criticism for Auli’i Cravalho is her involvement in several controversial remake projects, like The Little Mermaid and Rise of the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles.

Cast as Ariel in The Little Mermaid Remake

  • Cravalho was cast as Ariel in Disney’s upcoming live-action The Little Mermaid
  • This remake faced criticism over casting Halle Bailey as black Ariel

Voiced April O’Neil in Animated TMNT Remake

  • She voiced April O’Neil in the 2019 animated reboot of Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles
  • This remake also proved very divisive among fans

Remakes Seen as Inferior to Originals

  • Many accuse Disney of ruining classics with “soulless” remakes
  • Argue that reboots like TMNT cannibalize nostalgia
  • Blame actors involved rather than studios or executives

While remakes are often divisive, Cravalho’s involvement added to negative perceptions of her among protective fans.

Some People’s Image of a Hawaiian

Some of the dislike towards Auli’i Cravalho stems from her not fitting certain stereotypical images of Hawaiian natives.

Does Not Align with Tourist Expectations

  • Many tourists envision Hawaiians as ukulele-playing surfers and hula dancers
  • Cravalho does not match this narrow, tropical stereotype
  • She breaks expectations by being a more modern, “mainland” actress

Looks Too Caucasian for Some Critics

  • Cravalho is mixed-race and does not have a “full blooded” Hawaiian appearance
  • Some argue she looks too Caucasian or continental to represent native Hawaiians

Heritage Called Inauthentic or Insufficient

  • There have been occasional doubts raised over her Hawaiian background
  • Some do not consider her truly Hawaiian enough in looks or ancestry
  • Lead to perceptions of her identity being inauthentic

These criticisms judge her worthiness by appearance rather than her actual origins or cultural identity.

Criticized for Her Singing Ability

Another angle of criticism towards Auli’i Cravalho is skepticism over her singing skills and voice talent.

Moana Songs Required Dubbing

  • Cravalho’s singing vocals were dubbed by other singers in parts of Moana
  • This included the signature song “How Far I’ll Go”
  • Indicated potential issues with her live singing ability

Live Performances Called Pitchy or Weak

  • Compared to the studio recordings, live concerts have received some criticism
  • Called out instances of seeming pitchy, shaky, or thin vocals
  • Noticed reliance on backup singers and vocal enhancement

Seen as Not a True Triple Threat

  • Some argue that while she can act and dance, her signing is lacking
  • Dispute her talents as a “triple threat” in musical theater
  • Allege she lacks the vocal range or power expected

Questions over her singing could contribute to negative perceptions from musical theater fans.


In summary, Auli’i Cravalho has faced her share of criticism and backlash for a variety of factors. Being an unknown cast in a major role, activism on controversial topics, involvement in disputed remakes, not fitting Hawaiian stereotypes, and doubts over her singing have all fueled negativity from some groups.

However, these dislikes often stem from larger issues rather than anything she has direct control over. Overall, Cravalho remains admired and respected for breaking barriers as Disney’s first Polynesian Princess and continues to build an acclaimed acting and music career at a young age.

While no public figure is universally loved, the dislike she gets likely says more about her critics than about Cravalho herself. Her talents, principles and resilience in the face of backlash are admirable.


What controversies has Auli’i Cravalho been involved in?

Cravalho has faced some backlash for her LGBT activism, anti-Trump comments in interviews, and involvement in controversial remakes like The Little Mermaid and Rise of the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles. These stances and roles have angered some conservatives and fans of the original properties.

How has Cravalho’s ethnic background been criticized?

Some have claimed Cravalho was only chosen for Moana because she is Hawaiian/Pacific Islander, rather than her acting talent. Others argue she does not look “Hawaiian enough” or question the authenticity of her Polynesian heritage.

What singing criticisms has Cravalho faced?

There have been doubts raised over the quality of Cravalho’s live singing, with arguments that she relies too heavily on auto-tune, backup singers, and pre-recorded tracks during performances. Some feel she lacks the vocal talents to be considered a “triple threat.”

Why was there controversy over casting Cravalho as Ariel?

Cravalho’s casting as Ariel in the live-action Little Mermaid remake was controversial because many felt she did not match the physical appearance people expected, compared to the animated version.

How did conservatives criticize her anti-Trump comments?

Conservatives argued a young Disney star should not make vulgar political statements. Her anti-Trump comments fed into right-wing criticisms about alleged liberal bias in Hollywood.

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