2-year-old boy reacting to 'twin' Encanto character proves why representation matters
6 January 2022, 17:01
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"I truly believe that he thought it was him."
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An adorable photo of a two-year-old boy named Kenzo is going viral because of his uncanny resemblance to Encanto character, Antonio.
If you haven't seen Disney's Encanto yet then trust us you're seriously missing out. The story centres on the family Madrigal who all have been blessed with a unique magical ability expect for the second youngest grandchild, Mirabel. From the killer soundtrack to the touching story of Mirabel trying to save her families magic despite having no powers of her own, Encanto has it all.
But as well as being an outstanding movie, it's also shown why representation matters. Little Kenzo Brooks, who hails from New York City, has recently gone viral thanks to his uncanny resemblance to Antonio Madrigal. Antonio (voiced by Ravi-Cabot Conyers) is the youngest of the magical Madrigal family and his gift allows him communicate with animals.
And just like Kenzo, Antonio is dark-skinned, with curly black hair and dark brown eyes. Kenzo himself even recognised their similarities during a movie night with his parents Kaheisha and Keith, who captured the sweet moment of Kenzo watching the movie on camera.
"I truly believe that he thought it was him," Kenzo's mother Kaheisha told ABC. "He just kept staring at the screen and looking back at us and smiling."
Kenzo's father Keith then added: "Just to see how ecstatic he was. He clapped. He was just excited. He was able to see someone that looks like him. I know growing up for me that wasn't necessarily often something you see.
"For me, it did make me feel a little bit emotional to think that my son was able to see this and have this experience. Just for so many other Black and brown boys and girls to be able to have that same experience now, I think that was amazing."
The photo of Kenzo and Antonio went viral as well as the hashtag #RepresentationMatters. In a multicultural society, representation allows people of colour to feel validated, heard and seen. That's why it's more important than ever to amplify the voices of minorities.
People applauded Disney for finally including more POC characters in their movies.
First Disney character to look like my son. It took long enough he said! @disneyplus @EncantoMovie #DiversityandInclusion #Diversitymatters #RepresentationMatters #DisneyPlus pic.twitter.com/J8S5CqOoZe— DMM (@Donnamm_72) January 2, 2022
This is so wonderful. Representation is important. But if it's not consistent, it can be harmful. https://t.co/wnYbdvdlSs— Cheryl Lynn Eaton (@cheryllynneaton) January 2, 2022
My heart❤🤎 https://t.co/YTXdFtfpmC— Carolyn Hinds 🇧🇧 - Respect Black Women (@CarrieCnh12) January 1, 2022