Dr. Facilier's friends on the other side are a sinister legion of spirits and demons who aid the villainous witch doctor, Facilier, in his plot to rule New Orleans in Disney's 2009 animated feature film, The Princess and the Frog.
Role in the film
After luring Prince Naveen and his valet, Lawrence, into his emporium, the spirits ominously watch in secrecy as Facilier manipulates the two victims into making a deal; Naveen wanting wealth and "green", while Lawrence wants Naveen's privileged lifestyle. Settling it with a handshake. As the spell upon the two are cast, the spirits chant, dance, and sing alongside the doctor, while simultaneously providing him a magical talisman that'll grant Lawrence's wish by disguising him as Naveen, while the prince is turned into a frog.
Later on, thanks to his bumbling, Lawrence allows Naveen to escape, leaving Facilier to ask for help from his friends. While glaring at him, his "friends" silently ask what they would get at the bargain which Facilier nervously understood. Promising they'll have all the wayward souls their dark hearts desire once the city is under his control, they grant him Shadow Demons to obey his every command and capture Naveen. They head off into the Bayou and find pieces of a balloon with Naveen's scent. Some of the shadows caught Naveen and began to head back to their dark master until they are destroyed by Mama Odie. Later on, when Tiana and the others return to New Orleans, the shadows are able to capture Naveen.
Back at the city, Naveen escapes yet again and manages to give Ray the firefly the talisman used for Facilier's plan, resulting into the demons resuming their work. They are halted by Ray, who battles the shadows with ease until he is killed by Facilier. The other shadows follow Tiana, who now has the talisman but she soon destroys it. Furious at Facilier's failure to live up to his end of the bargain, the demons suddenly arrive at the cemetery to take his soul as payment instead. Though Facilier pleads for mercy, the witch doctor is dragged against his will into the voodoo spirit world, where he is doomed to remain for all eternity.
List of demons
The head mask appears to be the leader of the legion, as the others look to it for guidance and approval. The mask also serves as a gateway to the hellish "Other Side". It provides Doctor Facilier with his voodoo hayacall, it releases the Shadow Demons from its mouth and it sucks Facilier inside it when the hayacall is destroyed.
Various other masks are seen in the film, plastered along the walls of Facilier's emporium, disguised as ordinary decorations. They serve as the primary background vocalists during Facilier's spells, chanting with deep, booming voices.
Miniature, living voodoo dolls who beat tribal drums during Facilier's larger spells, in addition to dancing alongside the doctor during their finales. They repeat the beating of the tribal drums during Facilier's musical demise. Unlike the other spirits, the voodoo dolls neither speak nor vocalize.
A legion of black shadows who were bestowed upon Facilier to serve as henchmen in the fields, with an order to capture Prince Naveen, and prevent others from foiling their plot. They can only be defeated by enchanted light, which is shown when they faced Mama Odie and Ray.
Sentient shrunken heads that briefly appear during "Friends on the Other Side", and its reprise. They physically appear as the heads of deceased and decayed humans, with human-esque eyes and facial structures.
Two snakes who appear during "Friends on the Other Side", in which they tied themselves around a captive Naveen, preventing him from escaping. After the spell to turn the prince into a frog, the snakes never appear for the remainder of the film. However, as Naveen's transformation takes place, the snakes can be seen dissolving midst the chaos.
The demons are often used as elements during Facilier's section of a certain show most of the time. They do not make meet and greet appearances whatsoever. Some shows they appear in include Tiana's Showboat Jubilee, Disney's Maleficious Halloween Party and Villains Mix and Mingle.
In Sorcerers of the Magic Kingdom, the demons are briefly used by Doctor Facilier to retrieve the legendary crystal of the Magic Kingdom. The demons find and deliver the crystal to the doctor, but are soon defeated by the park guests. The snake spirits also appear to hold down a captive Tiana at one point.
In 2013, the voodoo dolls appeared as walk-around characters during Disneyland Paris' Disney Dreamers Everywhere! event. In 2016, the Shadow Demons appeared as walk-around characters during Disneyland's Frightfully Fun Parade, leading off Facilier's unit.
- One of the Shadow Demons summoned by Facilier is tall, skinny, and has large, oval shaped eyes, leading many to believe that this is supposed to look like Jack Skellington.
- The dance the voodoo dolls share with Facilier at the end of "Friends on the Other Side" is an homage to Bert's dance with the penguins in Mary Poppins.
- The presence of Facilier's Friends on the Other Side makes it the second time the main antagonist of a Disney film is in some way a subordinate.