A 2021 theory has suggested that Moana died in the opening scenes of the film during the storm, though this is not supported by any official word.
Moana is the 2016 Disney film which came about as a result of Disney’s push to have female-centred narratives that did not rely on the female character needing male intervention to save the day.
The animated film was so popular and critically acclaimed that it earned a nomination for the Best Animated Feature Film at the Oscars.
Moreover, the film has proven to be a popular rewatch for many. In 2021, a conspiracy theory circulated that Moana died in the opening scenes of the film. This is as her boat was shipwrecked during a storm and she later woke up on an island with Maui.
Why was Moana removed from Disney+?
Disney+ is one the latest paid subscription video-on-demand platforms introduced into the market. One of the platform’s selling points is that countless Disney animated films are available to stream on the platform.
Therefore, some users were shocked to discover that Moana is no longer available on Disney+. This is because the film is not considered suitable for the “Kids” profile, therefore, access to the film is restricted.
So technically, the film has only been removed from the Kids profile, but it is still available on Disney+.
Moana: Did Moana die in the storm?
Moana is an animated film that is premised, “In Ancient Polynesia, when a terrible curse incurred by the Demigod Maui reaches Moana's island, she answers the Ocean's call to seek out the Demigod to set things right,” according to IMDb.
Moana is human and she is the daughter of the chief of their island. She embarks on this journey with the endorsement of her grandmother, who hands her the Heart of Te Fiti, and Moana sets out on her adventure.
As she sails, for the first time, beyond the seas of their island, she is caught in a storm that shipwrecks her boat. Thereafter, the movie cuts to Moana waking up on an island with Maui.
It is this sequence that led to the conspiracy theory that Moana died in the storm that left her shipwrecked. The conspiracy theory was given credence by the events that took place thereafter.
Firstly, Moana had the ability to communicate with demigods, gods, and her deceased grandmother later in the film. This happened as she was about to confront Te Ka, and her grandmother appeared in spirit manifested as a spirit animal, the stingray.
Moreover, another attributing factor is that Moana was able to survive her journey to Lalotai, the Realm of Monsters. A trek which supposedly cannot be survived by humans. But Moana not only survived it, but she traversed the journey with much ease.
Countering Moana death conspiracies
Despite the conspiracy that Moana died in the storm in the opening scenes of the film, there are those that remain firm in that she survived and was alive throughout the film.
The first basis of this stance is the relationship that Moana has with the water, which is evident when Maui tries to throw her off the boat.
This suggests that as much as Moana may have been unconscious, the water carried her to where she was supposed to go and find Maui.
Secondly, her travelling companion and chicken, Hei Hei, is alive, so, how would it be able to see Moana? Lastly, Moana returns home, where she is welcomed and celebrated.
Therefore, how could she have died, given the Heart of Te Fiti back, and returned home if she were dead.
What does Disney say about Moana death conspiracy theories?
The only way fans will get definitive answers on the matter is if Disney entertains or corroborates the conspiracy theories by sharing an official word regarding the speculations shared by fans.
But to date, Disney has yet to interact with or react to the running conspiracy theory that Moana died in the opening scenes of the film. As such, there is no way of knowing for sure if Moana did die or not.
Will there be Moana 2?
A sequel to the 2016 original film is another way that Disney can lay the conspiracy theories to rest. Fans of the animated film were excited when it was confirmed that there would be a sequel to Moana.
However as a consequence of the pandemic and the subsequent delays it resulted in the film and television industry, production of the sequel was delayed.
Therefore, currently, there has been no further details shared about the film’s premise, release date, or casting for the much-anticipated Moana sequel.