Fact Check

Did Disney Cast Jada Pinkett Smith as Rapunzel in Live-Action 'Tangled'?

This online rumor was published by the Disney fan website known as Mouse Trap News.

Published Aug 7, 2023

Jada Pinkett Smith attends the 2022 Vanity Fair Oscar Party on March 27, 2022 in Beverly Hills, California. (Photo by Rich Fury/VF22/Getty Images for Vanity Fair) (Rich Fury/VF22/Getty Images for Vanity Fair)
Jada Pinkett Smith attends the 2022 Vanity Fair Oscar Party on March 27, 2022 in Beverly Hills, California. (Photo by Rich Fury/VF22/Getty Images for Vanity Fair)
Claim:
Disney cast actor Jada Pinkett Smith to portray Rapunzel in a live-action version of "Tangled."

On Aug. 5, 2023, the Disney fan website Mouse Trap News published an article with the headline, "Jada Pinkett Smith Cast as Rapunzel in Live-Action Tangled."

The beginning of the article read as follows:

Disney continues to pump out subpar live-action versions of their classic movies. The Little Mermaid is of course the most recent. Prior to that, we saw Pinocchio and The Lion King. Both are objectively terrible remakes and a disgrace to the original animated film. However, Disney doesn't learn. In fact, a live-action remake of Tangled is in progress and Disney cast Jada Pinkett Smith to play Rapunzel.

However, while some websites had reported that a live-action version of "Tangled" may have been in the works, the part about Pinkett Smith purportedly being involved in such a project was not true.

Mouse Trap News is a satire website, as described on its "About" page.

Pinkett Smith appeared to have been targeted in the satire piece due to the fact that, in the past, she had shaved her head and suffers from alopecia areata, a condition that causes hair loss.

In Disney's animated film "Tangled" from 2010, the character of Rapunzel was known for her long, blonde hair.

Pinkett Smith's diagnosis made headlines in late March 2022 following the moment when her husband, actor Will Smith, slapped stand-up comedian Chris Rock on live TV during the 94th Academy Awards. Rock was the evening's host.

The slap stemmed from a joke that Rock had told onstage about Pinkett Smith's lack of hair. If viewers didn't know that she was suffering from alopecia before the broadcast, they likely learned this fact afterward, as the news of the shocking moment spread around the world.

Sources

Hair Loss Types: Alopecia Areata Overview. https://www.aad.org/public/diseases/hair-loss/types/alopecia.

"'Hunchback of Notre Dame' and What We Know so Far." YouTube, The DisInsider, 4 Aug. 2023, https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=N3Ht-cmFFtE.

"Jada Pinkett Smith Cast as Rapunzel in Live-Action Tangled." Mouse Trap News, 5 Aug. 2023, https://mousetrapnews.com/jada-pinkett-smith-cast-as-rapunzel-in-live-action-tangled/.

Nishanth, A. "Tangled to Get Live-Action as Disney Officially Runs Out of Original Ideas After Tom Hanks Couldn't Save Studio With Pinocchio - FandomWire." FandomWire, 5 Aug. 2023, https://fandomwire.com/tangled-to-get-live-action-as-disney-officially-runs-out-of-original-ideas-after-tom-hanks-couldnt-save-studio-with-pinocchio/.

Noveck, Jocelyn. "Oscar Moments: The Night Emotion Won, for Better and Worse." The Associated Press, 28 Mar. 2022, https://apnews.com/article/2022-oscars-top-moments-f26255e20fd810a3fe0d6722eb9df5ac.

"Watch the Uncensored Moment Will Smith Smacks Chris Rock on Stage at the Oscars, Drops F-Bomb." YouTube, Guardian News, 27 Mar. 2022, https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=myjEoDypUD8.

Jordan Liles is a Senior Reporter who has been with Snopes since 2016.