Anika Noni Rose

Lester Cohen/

Disney has its new princess.

I have just learned that Dreamgirls starlet Anika Noni Rose has landed one of the most coveted roles among today's leading black actresses and singers.

Rose will voice the 19-year-old-heroine in Mickey Mouse studio's upcoming animated musical feature, The Frog Princess, a rep for Rose confirmed to me.

She will be the first black princess in Disney's long line of blockbuster princesses.



Rose, 34, costarred alongside Jennifer Hudson and Beyoncé as the third Dream in last year's big hit, Dreamgirls. Before that, she won a Tony Award for Best Performance by a Featured Actress in a Musical for her role in Caroline, or Change.

As I've reported, Hudson and Alicia Keys also auditioned for the role. A source now tells me others who tried out for it include Tyra Banks.

The Frog Princess takes place in 1920s New Orleans. Randy Newman is writing the music.

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