Raya and the Last Dragon has Filipino audiences excited thanks to a few details laced in the trailer. Let’s get the praise and hype explained.

What was your favourite film growing up?

We all had a selection of films we’d watch tirelessly in our youth, maybe even squeezing in daily viewings at some point.

There are perhaps a wealth of titles which spring to mind. However, we imagine many of you will have at least one Disney film in the mix.

The Mickey Mouse house has defined many a childhood, offering audiences unforgettable characters, songs and stories which taught and reinforced valuable life lessons during our formative years.

On the other hand, it’s worth noting that the fire never went out for many.

There are passionate Disney devotees of all ages and those who grew up with Disney princesses as role models have been introduced to new ones in recent years.

Now, Raya and the Last Dragon is set to continue making leaps in the realm of representation for the studio…

still from Raya and the Last Dragon, Walt Disney Pictures et al., IMDb

Raya and the Last Dragon: Filipino influence explained

Directed by Don Hall and Carlos López Estrada, Raya and the Last Dragon is a new Disney film scheduled for release in 2021.

The trailer was recently unveiled, giving viewers an insightful glimpse into the world of its titular protagonist (voiced by Kelly Marie Tran), a brave warrior in search of a dragon.

As noted by ABS CBN News, the Southeast Asia-inspired animated film has already attracted praise from viewers for the trailer’s inclusion of Filipino culture.

Many were quick to highlight that Raya appears to be using Arnis – the national martial art of the Philippines – when facing down a foe.

Speculation was kickstarted because of the imagery of the sticks she uses to fight.

The film itself is likely to take influence from numerous cultures, as the previous source addresses that the film’s fictional setting – Kumandra – reportedly blends elements from cultures of the Philippines, Thailand, Vietnam, Cambodia, Laos, Myanmar and Malaysia.

Also, the trailer shows characters wearing a salakot, which is a traditional headgear worn in the Philippines to protect from rain and sun.

Fans praise Raya trailer details on Twitter

Since the trailer dropped, so many have placed emphasis on the Arnis imagery and praised its inclusion.

As you’d expect, lots have taken to Twitter to highlight its importance.

Check out a selection of tweets:

When is the release date?

Raya and the last Dragon is set for theatrical release in the United States on Friday, March 12th 2021.

Of course, there is potential for the release date to be impacted by the pandemic. Nevertheless, this is the date given at the moment.

In other news, can you solve this riddle?