Once Upon a Choice

A humorous, original fairy tale dealing with sex-role stereotypes.
Year Released
Film Length(s)
15 mins


Once Upon A Choice is a humorous, original fairy tale in which an unconventional princess faces the conventional dilemma of deciding which prince to marry. Instead, she decides to choose her own fate...

In this fairy tale, the princess decides for herself what it means to live "happily ever after" - and raises important questions about marriage, independence and responsibility.

Featured review

This charming film succeeds in challenging the stereotypes that have limited us for so long.
Jean Kilbourne
Creator, "Still Killing Us Softly"


The King and Queen have decided that their daughter Princess Frances is old enough to choose a prince to marry. Frances must decide who will be her husband: the clever Prince Premium of Upper Fiduciary, the brave Prince Gauntlet of Skirmish-on Avon or the charming Prince Rapport of Outer Begonia.

"What does it take to make a happy marriage?" Frances asks herself. "Or is that something you worry about after you are married and not before?" In striking contrast to the passive princesses of traditional fairy tales, Princess Frances surprises her parents by choosing an option that wasn’t offered to her. Before she can consider marriage, Frances decides to take a journey for a year and a day. And so, at the end of the film, Princess bravely sets out to explore her own kingdom.

Once Upon A Choice offers a change from the traditional fairy tale myths by showing that there are real, desirable, and attainable alternatives to “waiting for Prince Charming".

With rich detail and warm humorous characters, this film raises important issues of conventional sex-roles, marriage, careers and perental expectations.


FIVE STARS! It was good and we learned something.
Tracy Morris
age 8
Lavish sets and costumes, plus excellent performances by the actors, help make this film amusing but also thought-provoking. It could be used with young adult discussion groups or with parents' groups to stimulate discussion on parental expectations and their effects on children's lives. Just about any kind of audience would find something to talk about in this delightful film.
Jack Neher
American Psychiatric Association
Shatters a few myths - at last! ...represents one small but important step toward breaking down myths and reinforcing alternative images for women.
Mary Crowe
Equal Times
This film is funny, polished and effective, with sumptuous settings and a wonderful sense of place and time. It's a perfect adult and young person's discussion starter.
Nat Segaloff

Awards and Screenings

National Broadcasts: HBO, USA Cable, Cinemax
Best Films of the Year, Learning Magazine
Silver Medal, Houston International Film Festival
The Children's Channel, London, broadcast
Golden Eye Award, Association of Media Educators
Museum of Modern Art, New York

Promotional Material

Promotional Stills

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