New American Girl

The American Girl of 2009 is a newbie at school, lives in an extended-family household and loves to swim and work on crafts. And she's learning to stand up to a bully. She'll also be the first contemporary American Girl character brought to life in a movie.

"Chrissa" is the latest creation of the Mattel-owned American Girl brand that includes dolls, megastores with restaurants and theaters, books and a monthly magazine.

While the movies have covered such eras as the Great Depression and Colonial times, the annual dolls always are contemporary. The Chrissa doll has a bouncy, medium-brown hairstyle, blue eyes and an overall free-spirit look. Like those before her, she is a fourth-grader.

A full-length DVD of her story, "An American Girl: Chrissa Stands Strong," is available for sale starting today. Sammi Hanratty will bring Chrissa to life on-screen.