Prince Phillip

I know you!
I walked with you once upon a dream
I know you, The gleam in your eyes is so familiar a gleam
Yet, I know itís true that visions are seldom all they seem
But If I know you, I know what youíll do
Youíll love me at once
The way you did once upon a dream

Once Upon A Dream
Tchaikovsky


Prince Phillip is the dashing hero from Sleeping Beauty (1959).

Prince Phillip is betrothed to Aurora from her birth. Their fathers believe their union with join their kingdoms (sound familiar?). When the wicked Maleficent appears and places a curse on Aurora that she will die on her 16th birthday by pricking her finger on a spinning wheel, the good fairy Merryweather counters it, saying that she won't die, but fall into a deep sleep, and will only be awoken by true love's first kiss. Merryweather and her two companions, Flora and Fauna, take the princess deep into the woods and raise her as a peasant, in an attempt to protect her. Phillip, years later, runs into the peasant Briar Rose, and falls in love with her, enchanted with her heavenly voice and her stunning looks. She falls for him too, and promises to meet him at her cottage later. When he returns, he's surprised and shocked to find Maleficent there waiting for him, having found the cottage. Rose has already been returned to her palace, crushed that she won't be able to see her handsome suitor again, and Phillip is taken to Maleficent's castle and chained in the dungeon. The good fairies come to his rescue, supplying him with a sword and a shield, the tools of righteousness and truth he needs to fight Maleficent's evil. He rushes to the castle to find that Aurora has fulfilled Maleficent's curse, having fallen asleep. He hacks through the wall of thorns that Maleficent puts up around the castle, and facing the dragon that Maleficent has turned into, is able to thrust his sword into her heart, defeating her evil for good. He finds the girl he fell in love with in the castle tower, and when he wakes her up with a kiss, she's pleased to discover her betrothed and her love are the same. They share a dance on their wedding day.

Phillip is voiced by Bill Shirley.


Prince Phillip is betrothed to Princess Aurora from birth, and although, as little boys will do, he didn't warm at first to the idea. When he ran into a mysterious girl in the woods, he was sure that was the girl of his dreams. In a magnificent twist of fate, the girl in the woods turned out to be Princess Aurora, and the two are married.
Maleficent is by far one of the most elegant and evil villains in the Disney pantheon, and she proves the blackness of her soul several times over in the course of this film. She wasn't planning on that whole Sword of Righteousness thing... fortunately.
My thoughts...

As a film, as a work of art, as a symphony, this film is glorious. It's one of the best films of its age, animated or otherwise, a study in stylized art and character design, in line and color, in sound and picture. The love story is somewhat fairy tale, something we've heard and seen a hundred times, but it's romantic, charming and innocent. The themes about good triumphing over evil (literally) pour from this film, the likes of which current PC-Hollywood would hardly churn out (at least not at Disney). It's an excellent film. Phillip is interesting and somewhat deep, definitely not falling into the PWP category (Princes Without Personality) so common at the time. When he falls for Briar Rose, it feels natural and familiar, like something everyone has felt.



Pictures of the good Prince



Quotes from Phillip...

Phillip: (to his horse) Hear that, Samson? Beautiful! What is it? Come on, let's find out. (turns Samson around, but it struggles back) Oh, come on! For an extra bucket of oats, and a few carrots? (Samson nods with his head) Hop boy! (They ride off towards the singing. While Samson jumps over a log, Phillip gets caught in a tree and falls off) Ohhh! (Phillip is heard splashing into the water. Samson holds and looks at him. Phillip splashes water at Samson) No ... carrots!

Phillip: You know Samson, there was something strange about that voice. Too beautiful to be real. Maybe it was a mysterious being, a wood sprite... (Samson sees the animals running off with the clothes and neighs) There, stop!

Phillip: I'm awfully sorry. I didn't mean to frighten you.
Briar Rose: Oh it wasn't that. It's just that you're a, a...
Phillip: A stranger?
Briar Rose: Mm-hmm.
Phillip: But don't you remember? We've met before!
Briar Rose: We, we have?
Phillip: Of course, you said so yourself: Once upon a dream!

Phillip: Who are you, what's your name?
Briar Rose: Hmm? Oh, my name. Why, it's, it's ... Oh no, no, I can't, I ... Goodbye! (runs off)
Phillip: But when will I see you again?
Briar Rose: Oh never, never!
Phillip: Never?
Briar Rose: Well, maybe someday.
Phillip: When, tomorrow?
Briar Rose: Oh no, this evening.
Phillip: Where?
Briar Rose: At the cottage, in the glen.

Hubert: Hurry, boy, hurry, and change into something suitable. Can't meet your future bride looking like that.
Phillip: Well, I have met her, father.
Hubert: You have? Where?
Phillip: Once upon a dream. (Starts to sing, lifts his father and starts to dance with him)
Hubert: Oh Phillip, stop it, stop that, why, Phillip, put me down! (Phillip puts him down) Now, what's all this dream nonsense?
Phillip: It wasn't a dream, father. I really did meet her!
Hubert: Princess Aurora? Good heavens, we must tell Stefan! Why this is the most...
Phillip: I didn't way it was Aurora.
Hubert: You most certainly did, you said...
Phillip: I said I met the girl I was going to marry. I don't know who she was, a peasant girl I suppose. Hubert: A peasant g-g-girl? You're going to marry a... Why Phillip, you're joking! (to Samson) Isn't he? (Samson shakes his head) No! You can't do this to me! Give up the throne, the kingdom, for some, some nobody? By Harry, I won't have it. You're a prince, and you're going to marry a princess!
Phillip: Now father, you're living in the past! This is the fourteenth century. Nowadays...
Hubert: Nowadays I'm still the king, and I command you to come to your senses.
Phillip: ... and marry the girl I love.
Hubert: Exactly!
Phillip: Goodbye, father! (rides off)


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