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Frozen II came out this weekend, bringing families back to Arendelle. If you missed it, however, this isn’t the article for you! Spoilers abound.
Animated movies take years to come together between scripts being written, characters being voiced and the major processes involved with actually animating the story. A lot of times animated stories change from Point A to B to C, but Frozen II lead actress Kristen Bell recently revealed the ending of the new animated feature was cemented from the start.
In a recent interview, Kristen Bell confirmed that filmmakers Jennifer Lee and Chris Buck had Frozen II’s ending in mind from the start, and filled in the other moving pieces as the movie went along. Per Bell:
Anna would be queen and Elsa would be free. Anna is the best type of leader. She is selfless, she loves being of service, she's thoughtful, conscientious, and she sees the bigger picture and she also sees the smaller picture. And Elsa, who is different and more unique than anyone else, doesn't deserve to fit inside a box.
In Frozen II, Elsa starts out as Queen of Arendelle, but then a journey into the nearby enchanted forest inspires her to find her true path as a fifth element, connecting the magical elements with humanity. She ends up spending time with the Northuldra clan in the woods, where she can feel free.
Meanwhile, Anna is someone who lives to serve others. She, Kristoff and Sven return to run Arendelle in the wake of Elsa finding her true purpose. It’s a story we didn’t necessarily know we needed, but it certainly helps to wrap the story begun during 2013’s original Frozen movie.
Frozen II’s ending is fitting for the overall franchise as a whole and Jennifer Lee and Chris Buck mentioned to USA Today they feel the narrative in the first two movies tells a complete story, so there are currently no plans for Frozen 3. This fits in with what franchise actor Alfred Molina previously said, feeling as if there really isn't room for more story in a third movie.
Along with having the Frozen II ending in mind, the filmmakers recently told CinemaBlend that one sequence in particular made it all the way through the film’s development from start to final produce. That sequence was a huge moment in the Frozen II trailer and featured Elsa using her powers to try to tame the ocean, eventually befriending an underwater horse.
According to what Jennifer Lee shared with us:
The Dark Sea, for sure. We had that, I think, before we ever had a script. I'd say in different iterations of it, but I think that showed us the potential of Elsa up against nature, and trying to learn more about her powers in the situation, and it was so inspiring and I think it helped shape a lot of the movie. That one was from very early on.
The good news is, even though Anna and Elsa are going to have to learn to come into their own while actually living apart, they still have plans to hang out on the regular. The Northuldra apparently don’t live that far away, and Elsa is still game to drop by and play charades! (Although I think it’s worth pointing out she’s absolutely garbage at the game.)
Although your kids won't be able to scream "Into The Unknown" from the top of their lungs from the comfort of their own home yet, the original Frozen is actually available on Disney+ and the new service is still offering a free 7-day trial for households to try out.