After having seen her in the Broadway musical Wicked, and heard her voice on the Rent soundtrack, I remember considering it something of a crime that Idina Menzel would play a role in Disney's musical Enchanted and not be given at least one song in which to flex her substantial vocal muscles. Fortunately, it sounds like Disney Animation's upcoming film Frozen will make better use of Menzel's singing talents. And Kristen Bell, who's known for her ability to carry a tune as well, will also star in the computer-animated feature film.
Walt Disney Animation Studios made the announcement today that they plan to unveil their epic adventure Frozen into theaters November 2013. Produced by Peter Del Veccho, and directed by Chris Buck (Tarzan), Frozen has Kristen Bell (Forgetting Sarah Marshall, Hit and Run) voicing the role of Anna, " a young dreamer about to take the adventure of a lifetime." Meanwhile, Menzel (Glee) has been cast to voice the role of Elsa the Snow Queen. Broadway's Robert Lopez and Kristen Anderson-Lopez are set to contribute original songs to the film. Robert Lopez' recent credits include co-creating the Tony award-winning musical The Book of Mormon with Trey Parker and Matt Stone. That's a soundtrack well-worth listening to (for those who have a sense of humor when it comes to the subject of religion, anyway).
Disney's announcement also mentions the role of a "mountain man" though there's no word (yet) on who will voice that part...
In “Frozen,” a prophecy traps a kingdom in eternal winter, so Anna (voice of Bell) must team up with Kristoff, a daring mountain man, on the grandest of journeys to find the Snow Queen (voice of Menzel) and put an end to the icy spell. Encountering Everest-like extremes, mystical creatures and magic at every turn, Anna and Kristoff battle the elements in a race to save the kingdom from destruction.
Between the cast (so far), Lopez' involvement on the music, and the premise, Frozen's already showing some real promise.
If you're a regular viewer of Fox's Glee, you've gotten a few great demonstrations of Menzel's vocal skills. And here she is singing Wicked's "Defying Gravity" with Kristen Chenoweth at the Tony's (Menzel's the one in green)…
And Bell has shown off her singing abilities on numerous occasions, so there are likely better examples of her singing out there, but this too-brief partial-tune is one of my favorite little moments from the gone-but-not-forgotten CW series Veronica Mars...