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Frozen was such a massive hit for Disney that a sequel seemed like a foregone conclusion, even for a studio that doesn't really do theatrical sequels. However, Frozen II is coming and Kristen Bell wants to assure fans that the movie has a purpose. There's a reason for this next story to be told, beyond the fact that the first film made money.
It's been six years since we all visited Arendelle, which means that little kids who fell in love with the original film are now a bit older. The 10-year-old that couldn't stop singing "Let it Go" could drive to see the sequel, assuming she doesn't think the movie is going to be "for kids." Kristen Bell recently noted at Comic-Con those former kids will still love the new movie, as the characters themselves have also grown up, and thus the story of the new movie will resonate with older audiences a bit more. According to Bell...
It’ll still be appropriate for kids and kids will still love it, but these girls have grown up as well a little bit. I think the original fans of Frozen, who were little girls and now might not think it’s for them, will be pleasantly surprised.
While little girls were largely the reason that the original Frozen became a massive hit, and the reason we couldn't stop hearing "Let it Go" for a solid year or more, it was still a movie that could appeal to broad audiences. To understand the way it subverted traditional Disney princess tropes, you have to understand the tropes to begin with. While many of those little girls have probably seen many a Disney classic princess movie, elements like that were really meant for the adults who had grown up with Disney and really understood the way things were changing.
The fact the story has matured with the characters is part of the reason that the movie took six years to make it to the screen. Kristen Bell also told ComicBook.com that time was needed for writers Jennifer Lee and Chris Buck to find the story that needed to be told. Frozen II's plot is the next major moment in the lives of Anna and Elsa, not simply an excuse to make a movie...
It is a story that we waited a long time so that it would reveal itself to the creators. What is the next progression in these characters’ lives that needs to be told? Not just like, ‘What’s another storyline we could do?'
The best movies give us something new each time we watch them. We might enjoy a film as a child but then discover jokes that we didn't get as children or find themes that originally went over our heads. It sounds like Frozen II is very much trying to be that sort of movie.
We'll find out how well it succeeds in November.