- “You know, I always thought it was me who rescued you from the Dragon's Keep [..] It was you who rescued me”
- ―Shrek regarding his love for Fiona[src]
In the first film, Fiona appears as a princess plagued by a curse that transforms her into an ogress each and every sunset. Locked in a dragon-guarded castle for several years until she is "rescued" by irreverent ogre named Shrek, whom she mistakes for a knight, Fiona is at first eager to have her spell broken via true love's kiss by Lord Farquaad so that they remain human, but later she comes to love Shrek.
Princess Fiona is initially portrayed as the archetypal princess from fairy tales, speaking formally in matters of courtship and presenting high expectations of how she is to be rescued, who is to rescue her, and so forth. She seems to give off an air of prissiness and even snobbery to a degree (however this is shown to be purely out of her concern for breaking her curse, of which she is ashamed). Later, Princess Fiona's true self emerges, as she is really a very down-to-earth and independent woman who is a match or even better than Shrek when it comes to farting, belching and other bad habits. She is a loyal friend, and unlike princesses of fairy tales, an expert in hand-to-hand combat with knowledge of martial arts. She also has very bad manners (just like Shrek), since she is an ogre. However, she is much more well-mannered when in front of her parents.
Fiona has special talents as well. For example, besides her martial arts skills, she is able to sing so high that birds explode. Fiona is much more patient and kinder to Donkey than Shrek is at times. She is shown to be a very loving wife and mother. However, in Shrek Forever After, her alternate self is shown to be aggressive, single-minded and driven at times. This is understandable, given the situation she is in.
This "new" Fiona is shown to have arrived at this point after being disillusioned because Shrek never came to rescue her. Bitter and angry, she is shown to still be passionate and fiery but not as gentle and sweet as she was in the other movies, however these traits have not completely faded.
Fiona is extremely insightful, and she also has the skill of rallying other people, shown in Shrek 3 when her speech rallies the princesses to break out of the dungeons.
Early storyboards of an alternate opening shows that she was originally born an ogress to her human parents who were the rulers of Duloc. They had her locked in the tower under the lie that she was "of such rare beauty" she was kidnapped. They died, and the kingdom was under the rule of "an ambitious regent" - hinted to be Farquaad. When she 'became of age' to ascend the throne she escaped the tower and encounters a witch named Bib Fortuna (a reference to the Star Wars character of the same name) - who has narrated the entire sequence through her tarot cards.
She gave Fiona a potion which would make her beautiful; however the potion has no effect. But Fortuna warns her the potion has a side effect - she will change between her human and ogress form until she finds her true love. Later she was whisked away by her dragon guardian and returned to the tower.
A person planned to voice her in Shrek was Janeane Garofalo, who was set to star alongside Chris Farley. However, she was fired from the project with little explanation. In June 2007, Garofalo stated: "I was never told why [I was fired]. I assume because I sound like a man sometimes? I don't know why. Nobody told me ... But, you know, the movie didn't do anything, so who cares?". Princess Fiona also performed the naming ceremony for Royal Caribbean's Allure of the Seas on November 28, 2010.
- Main article: Shrek
In the first film of the series, Fiona first appears as an option for a princess bride selected by Lord Farquaad, who desires to become king in order to access dominant authority, in order to accomplish this dream. Ignoring warnings of a secret possessed by Fiona, Farquaad proceeds with his plan and decides to search for the women so he may marry her and become a king, though she is soon encountered by Donkey and Shrek, and at first the group holds tense feelings toward one another. Eventually, Fiona warms up to Shrek and Donkey. She befriends Donkey and falls in love with Shrek. However, late one night, Donkey learns that because of a magical spell that had been cast on her years before, Fiona transforms into an ogress every night, but by morning reverts to her regular human form. Shrek half overhears this conversation which causes a misunderstanding between Shrek and Fiona followed by Shrek bringing Lord Farquaad to get Fiona, who then proceed to a marriage. Shrek and Donkey interrupt Fiona's wedding ceremony and try to cancel any possibilities of her wedding Lord Farquaad. Sunset comes and her ogre transformation spell is triggered. Shrek is actually quite happy about this but Farquaad is appalled and orders Shrek to be executed and Fiona to be locked back in the tower for the rest of her life. Dragon then bursts in at Shrek's command and eat Farquaad. Shrek and Fiona confess their love for each other and kiss, breaking Fiona's curse and reverting her into an ogre permanently. Shrek and Fiona marry and leave for their honeymoon as the movie ends.
- Main article: Shrek 2
In Shrek 2, Fiona convinces Shrek to meet her parents in the kingdom of Far Far Away (resembling the shallowness of Hollywood). They go, and her Fairy Godmother, who had her locked away in the tower to begin with, still believes she is under the original curse. When the Fairy Godmother finds out that she is in fact married to an ogre, Fairy Godmother plots to kill Fiona's husband so her son, Prince Charming, can marry her. It turns out that there was a semi-complex plan where Prince Charming, not Shrek, was supposed to rescue Fiona and marry her. It was the King's way of repaying the Fairy Godmother for a favour she had done him while courting Fiona's mother. Fiona is briefly returned to human form from the first film after Shrek drinks a "Happily Ever After" potion, which changes both the drinker and their true love into more beautiful forms. To make the change permanent however, she must kiss her true love by midnight. Fairy Godmother tries to get King Harold to give his daughter a love potion so that she'd fall in love with Charming and kiss him to make the potion's effect permanent. Both plans ultimately fail however. Harold, after seeing how much Fiona despises Charming, does not give her the love potion. When Shrek tries to kiss Fiona, she tells him that she wants to live happily ever after with the ogre she married. She and Shrek then turn back into ogres, and Donkey (who had turned into a white stallion) turns back into a donkey.
Shrek the Third
- Main article: Shrek the Third
In Shrek the Third, Princess Fiona becomes the regent queen of Far Far Away while her father is ill. After a disasterous day, Fiona tries to calm Shrek by saying how they will soon by home. She then brings up the possibility of having children, which Shrek is against, saying he has her and that's enough. After this her father passes away and Shrek sets out to find her cousin Arthur Pendragon (or Artie) in order to avoid having to become king himself. As he prepares to leave for his journey, she attempts to tell him about her pregnancy. As he pulls away on the ship, Fiona reveals to him that he is going to be a father. When he fakes excitement, she is relieved that he is happy about this and tells him she loves him. While she is having a baby shower, Prince Charming stages an invasion so that he can proclaim himself king of Far Far Away. Fiona organizes the resistance with her friends Cinderella, Snow White, Sleeping Beauty, Rapunzel and Doris the Ugly Stepsister, but Rapunzel betrays them to marry Prince Charming and become queen. Thanks to her mother's fighting abilities, they escape prison, and the other princesses 'cut loose' and become more independent. Artie ends up making a speech to convince the villains to go straight. In the end, she gives birth to the ogre triplets with Shrek.
Shrek Forever After
- Main article: Shrek Forever After
During the babies' birthday party, Fiona sees Shrek steadily more irritated and eventually losing his temper by smashing one of the birthday cakes. Outside Fiona confronts him about his outburst. Shrek responds that he is sick of not having his privacy respected and that he wishes everything as "back to the way they used to be...when the world made sense". When Fiona asks him if he means before he rescued her, Shrek cruelly confirms her fear. Fiona is shocked and upset by Shrek's actions, she tells him that he had everything he could have ever wanted: "three beautiful children", "a wife who loves [him]" and "friends that [adore] him". She goes back inside to the party, disappointed in him.
When Shrek makes his deal with Rumpelstiltskin, for a single day he is brought to a universe where he was never born. Here, Rumpel has seized power by tricking Fiona's parents out of ruling the kingdom of Fat Far Away. Fiona remains under the witch's curse from the first movie and is subsequently become the leader of a group of Ogre resistance fighters. Shrek initially believes that the relationship between him and Fiona is existent but when she doesn't even recognise him, he finally accepts completely that the reality, he is in, is not his own and Stiltskin has truly altered reality to be as if he never existed until now. Fiona is still shown to still be kind hearted and caring but bitterly cynical and disillusioned about the power of true love, because she was never rescued from her tower. She begins to fall in love in him again when he starts training with her, but still does not kiss him (having only started to find him likable). But Fiona's attitude toward Shrek changes and she and the other ogres head off to take down Rumpelstiltskin once and for all. During the day, Shrek realises that a loophole will negate the deal if he can receive a True Love's kiss Fiona. After a failed attempt, the realize that he had succeeded when Fiona's curse has been broken. The timeline returns to normal, and Shrek returns to the children's birthday party and warmly greets Fiona. This is the only movie where Fiona has her hair down. She also reveals that she always wanted to have a daughter named Felicia. We also learn that Shrek and Fiona's sons are Fergus and Farkle.
- Fiona is the second DreamWorks character related to the protagonist to change a decision concerning the protagonist. Rameses II (the first to do so) initially allowed Moses and the Hebrews to leave Egypt, but pursued them to the Red Sea trying to kill them; Fiona decided to tell Shrek about her curse before leaving with Farquaad, but didn't do so).
- There were over a hundred designs for Princess Fiona before a final decision was made.
|Shrek • Shrek 2 • Shrek the Third • Shrek Forever After • Puss in Boots • Puss in Boots 2: Nine Lives & 40 Thieves|
|Far Far Away Princesses|
|Snow White Cinderella | Beauty | Rapunzel | Fiona | Thumbelina ||