Moana Reo Māori launches

The recent Māori language report, Te Ahu o te Reo, highlighted a desire from whānau and some communities for more Disney films to be made in Māori. Today that dream came to fruition with the launch of Moana Reo Māori.

Disney's only Polynesian princess has a new voice.

Jaedyn Randell says, "I've always wanted to be a singer and share music with the world and I think this is a good platform for me to do so."

Moana is the first Disney film ever to be translated into te reo Māori.

"Marvel, DC comics should be translated into te reo too," says Piripi Taylor, the voice of Maui.

Rob Ruha has brought the Māori soundtrack to life, putting the songs in a te reo Māori context.

"The hardest thing for us was translating some of the American slang and jokes into a Māori context."

It was a learning journey for much of the new cast, with only two of them being fluent in te reo Māori.

"Despite only a few being fluent in Māori, the rest of the cast had no trouble projecting their characters in Māori," says Ruha.

The movie is set to premiere tonight in Auckland, kicking off Māori Language Week with a bang.