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Disney Dream Portraits by Annie Leibovitz: Behind The Scenes With Queen Latifah as Ursula

George Savvas

by , Director, Public Relations, Disneyland Resort

Continuing our look behind the scenes of the latest Disney Dream Portraits by Annie Leibovitz, today we’re going to spend some time with the wonderful Queen Latifah as she takes on the role of the most slippery of all Disney villains, Ursula from “The Little Mermaid.”

The shoot took place last November in Los Angeles, just a few days before Thanksgiving. I had been wondering on the way to the studio that morning just how in the world Annie and her amazing team were going to pull this one off.

Once I walked in, I got my answer. A costume like no other!

Set for 'The Little Mermaid' Annie Leibovitz Photo Shoot with Queen Latifah as Ursula

When Queen Latifah tried those tentacles on for size, the energy in the room became palpable. As you’ll see in this video, she told me she has always wanted to play a villain, and I think she made a fantastic choice for her nefarious debut.

This was a really memorable shoot that resulted in another stunning portrait. Being in the presence of two great artists coming together to create something so unique was an unforgettable experience.

Queen Latifah as Ursula from 'The Little Mermaid'

Queen Latifah as Ursula from 'The Little Mermaid' Queen Latifah as Ursula from 'The Little Mermaid' and Annie Leibovitz Queen Latifah as Ursula from 'The Little Mermaid'

Please check back tomorrow for our behind the scenes visit with Alec Baldwin, who “reflects” on his favorite Disney Parks memory.


  • Ok Annie…I want a photo session with you!!!!! Maybe I’ll look good if YOU are taking the pics!!! That would be so fun!!!

  • I love this Disney concept, do they make a book with all these photos in it?

  • Awesomeness!!!

  • Love it! Thanks for sharing the behind the scenes!

  • I never expected that there was a real model of octopus at the first time I saw the photo.
    I thought it should use a mix of ps and actress.
    Wow! Amazing! Very real!

  • A neat setup, but I think the last several of these photos have been lacking something…

  • Now all she needs to do is sing Poor Unfortunate Souls and it’ll complete the whole character!

  • I don’t like the hair in the portrait, I wish they would have kept the hair Queen was using while taking the pics.

  • Queen Latifah is by far the most AWESOME Ursula ever! Kudos to her, Annie and the rest of the team for bringing the magic to this portrait.

  • How TOTALLY cool! We love the process as much as we enjoy the final product! Can’t wait to see MORE!!!

  • Incredible!!!! Awesome pictures!!!! 🙂

  • More, please! Love all of the Dream Portraits so far – are they available to purchase?

  • EPIC <3

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