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Tiger Lily (Peter Pan)

Tiger Lily (Peter Pan)

Tiger Lily is a fictional character in J. M. Barrie's 1904 play Peter Pan, or The Boy Who Wouldn't Grow Up, his 1911 novel Peter and Wendy, and their various adaptations.

Tiger Lily is the daughter of Great Big Little Panther, the chief of the Piccanniny tribe, the fictional tribe of Native Americans living in Neverland. Barrie describes her as "a princess in her own right. The most beautiful of dusky Dianas and the belle of the Piccaninnies, coquettish, cold and amorous by turns." She is apparently old enough to be married, but refuses any suitors because of her feelings towards Peter. She is jealous of Wendy and Tinker Bell. Tiger Lily is kidnapped by Captain Hook and his pirates but is rescued by Peter Pan.

  • In the 1924 silent film Peter Pan, she is played by Anna May Wong.
  • In the Disney animated film of the same name, Captain Hook kidnaps Tiger Lily. This leads her father Big Chief to suspect that the Lost Boys were responsible. Hook leaves her to drown at Skull Rock, but she is saved by Peter. He returns Tiger Lily to her tribe. While the tribe celebrates, Wendy becomes jealous of how Tiger Lily is flirting with Peter. Unlike other females in Neverland, Tiger Lily has no hostility towards Wendy herself. In the film, she has no speaking lines (except for a brief "HELP" when she almost drowns provided by an uncredited voice actress).
  • In Cheshire Crossing, an older Tiger Lily is responsible for saving Wendy's life after she is stabbed, both having previously been romantically involved.
  • Tiger Lily appears in Peter Pan & the Pirates voiced by Cree Summer. She and her brother Hard-to-Hit sometimes tag along with and aid their friends Peter Pan, Tinker Bell, the Darling children and the Lost Boys on their many adventures.
  • In P. J. Hogan's 2003 film, she is played by Carsen Gray, who is of Haida Indigenous and mixed descent. In this version Tiger Lily is attracted to Wendy's younger brother John.
  • In Neverland, she is portrayed as Aaya, played by Q'orianka Kilcher. Aaya means "lily of tiger" in her native language.
  • Tiger Lily appears in Pan portrayed by Rooney Mara where her casting in this role created a controversy due to claims of whitewashing. She appears as a love interest to a younger James Hook.
  • Tiger Lily appears in Once Upon a Time portrayed by Sara Tomko. In this version, she started out as a fairy that was the fairy godmother to a baby Rumplestiltskin and a friend of the Blue Fairy. At some point, Tiger Lily gave up her fairy wings and relocated to Neverland where she had a history with Captain Hook. Though she would later regain her wings at some point.
  • She is the protagonist of the book Tiger Lily (2012) written by Jodi Lynn Anderson, told from the point of view of Tinker Bell.
  • Tiger Lily appears in Jonathan Green's role-playing gamebook Neverland: Here Be Monsters! as a playable character. This version is a fierce warrioress who rides a saber-toothed tiger as a steed and has proven herself in battle against the dinosaurs roaming Neverland.
  • Canadian Cree actress Alyssa Wapanatâhk portrays Tiger Lily in the film Peter Pan & Wendy, which premiered on Disney+ on April 28, 2023. Unlike the original film, this version of Tiger Lily has a larger role as she is shown to be friends with Peter Pan, the Lost Boys, and later the Darling children. She even calls Peter "Little Brother." Throughout the film, Tiger Lily speaks Cree in addition to English.

The character has attracted controversy due to accusations of racism and Native American stereotyping.

Controversy also arose from the name given to her tribe, "Piccanniny", a term now widely interpreted as a racial slur.

The Disney animated sequel Return to Never Land (2002) avoided controversy by leaving out the Indians entirely, although Peter and Jane briefly visit their monument. The book series Peter and the Starcatchers, also commissioned by Disney, replaces the Indians with a Samoan tribe called the People of the Mollusc, with a girl named Shining Pearl serving as the analog of Tiger Lily.

  • Media related to Tiger Lily at Wikimedia Commons

Text submitted to CC-BY-SA license. Source: Tiger Lily (Peter Pan) by Wikipedia (Historical)