Why Frozen II’s Songwriter Thinks Its Oscar Snub Is ‘A Shame’

Elsa singing "Some Things Never Change"

After months of ceremonies and speeches, Awards Season has finally come to a close. Last year's biggest movies were recognized at events like the Golden Globes, BAFTAs and SAG Awards. But it all comes down to the annual Academy Awards, and who takes home an Oscar. Disney's animated blockbuster Frozen II hit song "Into the Unknown" was nominated for Best Song, it was noticeably snubbed from the Best Animated Feature category. And now the film's composer has spoken out in defense of the movie.

The Frozen franchise is a pop culture phenomenon, inspiring countless sing-a-longs, merchandise, and Halloween costumes. The original movie took home two Oscars, for Best Song and Best Animated Feature. So it was especially noticeable when the sequel was snubbed by the Academy. Songwriter Kristen Anderson-Lopez spoke to the nominees on the Oscars red carpet, saying:

We were surprised. We were surprised and it's a shame because Jennifer Lee is one of the great female directors. She's the first female of a Disney (animated) musical, and she's the first female head of Disney Animation. The fact that it's not being celebrated in the way that I think it should be just speaks to an unconscious bias that I think is happening in our industry that we need to talk about.

Well, she certainly didn't hold back her opinion. The past few years have seen an ongoing conversation about inclusion and equality in the film world, and it looks like Kristen Anderson-Lopez believes that it ultimately affected how Frozen II was received by the film academy.

Kristen Anderson-Lopez's comments to Variety came from the red carpet of the Academy Awards. She and husband Robert Lopez wrote the music for Both Frozen and its sequel, and were nominated for their work on Frozen II's breakout song "Into the Unknown." But she was disappointed that the movie wasn't nominated, and therefore director Jennifer Lee's work was not either.

This year's Best Animated Feature category was a competitive one, with some very unique projects originating from theaters and streaming services. Disney wasn't completely shut out, in fact Toy Story 4 ended up winning the Oscar this year. But the other nominees pushed Frozen II out of the running, with projects like Klaus, Missing Link, I Lost My Body, and How To Train Your Dragon: The Hidden World.

Personally, I think Frozen II had more to offer than the final How to Train Your Dragon movie. While it had a fun story and cool visuals, Frozen II was dealing with some really high concepts for a kids movie. The movie addressed grief, indigenous people, and existentialism-- accompanied by laughs and a great soundtrack. Alas, Frozen II wasn't recognized, and it lost the Best Song award to Elton John and Rocketman.

Frozen II is available for home purchase now. Be sure to check out our 2020 release list to plan your next trip to the movies.

Corey Chichizola
Movies Editor

Corey was born and raised in New Jersey. Double majored in theater and literature during undergrad. After working in administrative theater for a year in New York, he started as the Weekend Editor at CinemaBlend. He's since been able to work himself up to reviews, phoners, and press junkets-- and is now able to appear on camera with some of his famous actors... just not as he would have predicted as a kid.