The Disney franchise Frozen snowballed back into our lives yet again with the official release of the Frozen 2 trailer. The highly anticipated sequel, which is already breaking industry records, definitely has Marshmallow-sized shoes to fill. According to the Guinness World Records at the time of this writing, Frozen remains the highest-grossing animated movie of all time. Plus it won two Oscars. No pressure, Disney!
According to Forbes, the sequel’s trailer has a noticeably darker tone compared to Frozen and its lighthearted shorts Frozen Fever and Olaf’s Frozen Adventure. “It’s less of just a sequel. It’s sort of a continuation of the first story. Bigger, more epic,” co-writer and co-director Jennifer Lee told Variety.
What could be in store for Arendelle’s Elsa, Anna, Kristoff, and Olaf? What new (or old!) characters will enter their world and wreak havoc? And, perhaps most importantly, what new Frozen songs will we need to request at future karaoke parties? Dive into our avalanche of Frozen theories to get yourself (and the kids!) ready for its theatrical release on Nov. 22, 2019. Warning: spoilers ahead!
Arendelle's threat in Frozen 2 is linked to Elsa's past
According to The Hollywood Reporter, during the 2019 Annecy Animation Festival, head of animation Becky Bresee said that “many of the questions raised in the first movie become the mysteries that our gang are trying to solve in this film.”
One obvious question a Frozen fanatic might have: Why does Elsa even have powers? Well, apparently Frozen 2 may explore this. According to THR, Bresee and head of effects Marlon West shared key art with festival attendees, which showed Elsa’s father, King Agnarr, relaying “a battle that happened in the forest long ago when the spirits of the forest faced off against the people of the kingdom.”
Another question a fan might ask: What if Elsa broke bad? That thought certainly played into earlier drafts of Elsa’s character backstory, which was loosely based on the Hans Christian Andersen fairytale “The Snow Queen.” Regarding Elsa’s initial traits, producer Peter Del Vecho told Entertainment Weekly, “[Elsa] was a villain and pure evil.” So, what if Elsa turns to the dark side and Arendelle is in the danger?
Elsa and Anna's parents are actually alive and may be in Frozen 2
Sure, the sisters’ parents, King Angarr and Queen Iduna, allegedly died at sea in a horrible, raging storm. But what if they didn’t?
The Nerdist touted this theory about Frozen 2, sharing that the “first half of the trailer’s devotion to Elsa” featured her “taking on the very beast that took her parents from her so long ago: waves.” The article noted, “We can’t help but imagine that Elsa would only take on the very thing that killed her parents if not to, perhaps, save her parents.”
Another theory, sparked by Frozen‘s co-director Chris Buck from the creators’ Reddit AMA, was that the parents’ voyage lasted for a while — long enough for Iduna to become pregnant with a baby boy. They did endure a shipwreck, but they landed on the shores of an island and built a treehouse before then perishing after a leopard attack. So, the baby boy is subsequently raised by gorillas. Sound familiar? That’s because it’s the opening scene of Tarzan, another Disney classic Buck directed. “In my little head, Anna and Elsa’s brother is Tarzan,” Buck told MTV News. But is this actual Frozen canon? We can dare to dream.
Frozen 2 reveals Elsa got her powers from her mom
This theory involves key moments from Frozen 2‘s teaser and trailer. For starters, one teaser scene shows a girl in a forest looking back at a boy being lifted in the air. According to IGN, the kids could be Anna and Elsa’s parents, King Angarr and Queen Iduna, when they were younger, and it’s worth noting that the forest resembles the setting of another scene featuring Anna, Elsa, and the gang in the teaser.
“We might be getting a hint at the origins of the elemental powers similar to the ice abilities their daughter later possesses,” IGN reported, adding, “Perhaps the journey to understand Elsa’s powers ends at the place where her parents first uncovered these powers.”
Furthermore, in one trailer scene, a character who appears to be Iduna looks at the northern lights. According to The New Yorker, Nordic folklore views the northern lights as having “highly equivocal powers,” elaborating, “They can predict the weather, but they can also whisk people away.” So, in the forest flashback, could we actually be seeing Iduna using wind powers she perhaps got from the northern lights?
The four elements play a major role in Frozen 2
The voice behind Frozen‘s Olaf, actor Josh Gad, mysteriously tweeted a teaser poster that held “quite a few surprises.” The image showed four different symbols inside a snowflake, each at a different point of the flake. These symbols were also peppered throughout the teaser and trailer — including one scene showing the symbols on Stonehenge-esque pillars.
What do these symbols mean? According to head of animation Becky Bresee and head of effects Marlon West via Variety, the story King Angarr tells young Elsa and Anna shares how he visited the “enchanted elemental forest, before something went horribly wrong. … Since then, there has been a disconnect between the people of the town and the elements: Air, fire, water and earth.” Bingo!
Elsa’s icy powers are associated with water and winter. Could other individuals beyond Arendelle control an element and season like Elsa? PopSugar seems to think so, as the site suggested that new characters could have “the ability to induce the other seasons (fire for Summer, wind for Fall, and earth for Spring).” The promos so far seem to drop major hints regarding wind and fire elements, at least.
Anna finally unleashes her own magical powers in Frozen 2
According to The Hollywood Reporter, head of animation Becky Bresee and head of effects Marlon West revealed that Frozen 2 picks up three years after the first movie. A lot can change in three years. Perhaps a main character’s dormant powers will finally emerge?
If the theory about Queen Iduna having powers is true, then there’s a solid chance Princess Anna also has powers like her sister. Although co-director Chris Buck told HitFix that Anna’s “superpower is love,” Screen Rant brought up a great point about Anna’s would-be powers: “When the troll removed ‘all magic, even the memory of it‘ from Anna when she was a child, it somehow prevented Anna from realizing that she has powers at all.”
While wild theories run amok on Reddit regarding Anna having either fire powers, Anna’s fierceness is still evident based on what we’ve seen in the trailer. Remember when Anna saved Kristoff from wolves and from falling off a cliff? Well, in this next go-around, she leaps from a cave, falls down a waterfall, and swings Kristoff’s sword at something in the forest.
Most of Frozen 2's action takes place outside of Arendelle
In the Frozen 2 trailer, troll Pabbie instructs Elsa to “go north across the enchanted lands and into the unknown,” but he warns, “Be careful.” This definitely indicates that the majority of the story will take place outside of Arendelle. Co-director and co-writer Jennifer Lee also confirmed this in a Variety interview.
But where exactly is the group? The movie’s IMDb description says they’ll travel to “an ancient, autumn-bound forest.” Could it be the “enchanted elemental forest,” as head of animation Becky Bresee and head of effects animation Marlon West mentioned in their interview with Variety? Maybe. Or perhaps it could be the Enchanted Forest seen on Once Upon a Time. Who knows. Regardless, The Hollywood Reporter also made note that previews seem to heavily emphasize “the importance of leaves and the fall.”
On the flip-side: What if the group is actually in Arendelle, and it’s now overrun by a “magically induced season,” as PopSugar theorized? That plot point would certainly mirror Elsa’s accidental eternal winter in the first movie.
Frozen 2 features even catchier songs
Parents worldwide likely dread another never-ending, exposition-filled earworm like Frozen‘s “Do You Want to Build a Snowman,” “For the First Time in Forever,” and the franchise’s anthem, “Let It Go.” But sorry, mom and dad. With Oscar-winning songwriters Bobby Lopez and Kristen Anderson-Lopez back for the sophomore film, new catchy hits are inevitable.
“We have a new song that I think is an evolution,” co-director and co-writer Jennifer Lee told Variety. “We’ve been working with [Bobby and Kristen] for two years and this song came in and I love it.” Lee also shared that the sequel will have a total of seven songs.
Kristen Bell, who voices Anna, told Access that Frozen 2 has “all very, very, very good songs.” She noted, “There’s a song that is not as anthemic as ‘Let It Go,’ it’s a little bit more of a ballad, but I will tell you it has been stuck in my head since the moment I heard it.” Alright, get your Frozen Spotify playlists ready!
Frozen 2 reveals the trolls are actually evil
Now, this might be a stretch, but there’s an interesting fan theory floating around that the Valley of the Living Rock trolls aren’t who they say they are. Well, they are still Kristoff’s unofficial guardians, but they’re allegedly loyal to a fault. Cracked explored this theory in an article, noting, “The Trolls are creatures of immense power but with little insight into human manners.”
Knowing the trolls have powers to erase and alter memories, Cracked wonders what would happen if they used it to their advantage. “What have the Trolls got against Hans? Nothing — he just gets in their way,” theorized Cracked. “They want the happy ending meant for him to go to their own human boy, Kristoff. … the Trolls are self-professed love experts; they know how to make things work in their favor.”
But when HitFix posed the trolls-turned-Hans-bad theory to co-directors Chris Buck and Jennifer Lee, they debunked it immediately. “We gotta give Hans all the credit for what he did,” Lee said. Still, with the ominous tone Frozen 2 seems to be casting, this twist could potentially fit right in.
Prince Hans returns in Frozen 2
Hans entered the Frozen universe as a handsome, kind, and charitable prince who became engaged to Anna, and he left the movie a stone-cold villain banished from Arendelle indefinitely. Audiences did see a cameo of Hans in Frozen Fever, shoveling horse manure into a cart back in his Southern Isles homeland. But what’s Hans up to now? Will Elsa, Anna, Kristoff, and Olaf have an impromptu reunion with him in the sequel?
According to the movie’s IMDb cast page and The Hollywood Reporter, Santino Fontana, the voice of Hans, is reprising his role. However, his return hasn’t been mentioned in previews or teaser images. Good Housekeeping reported that maybe creators are “trying to keep his appearance a secret.”
Perhaps Hans learned his lesson and won’t ever attempt to usurp Nordic kingdoms, assassinate their queens, and break the hearts of doe-eyed women again. Maybe this sequel’s his redemption story and he helps Elsa figure out her past.
Elsa has a female love interest in Frozen 2
Since Frozen‘s release, fans have speculated a connection between Elsa’s upbringing and her potential homosexuality. “While they accept that Elsa was born [with powers], the royal couple decides that it would be best to lock her in her room until she learns to control and conceal her ability,” one fan wrote, adding, “The many years that Elsa spent in her room, locked away from her sister and the rest of the kingdom, absolutely resembles the misery of the closet.” According to The Guardian, the song “Let It Go” has become a “coming-out anthem for lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender people.”
Cosmopolitan UK reported that LGBTQ+ fans have been rallying for Disney to make Elsa explicitly queer. They even started a petition and a #GiveElsaAGirlfriend campaign. After fans watched the Frozen 2 teaser with a new female character and heard the rumors that Evan Rachel Wood, who is openly bisexual, may join the cast, the Twitterverse revived the campaign, cheering on Elsa. Will we actually see Elsa fall in love in the sequel? That’s a big maybe. But Idina Menzel, who voices Elsa, is all for it. Regarding the campaign, she told Entertainment Tonight, “I think it’s great.”
Anna and Kristoff get married in Frozen 2
According to The Hollywood Reporter, Frozen 2 takes place three years after the first movie. That means the relationship between Anna and Kristoff has likely grown even stronger since their first kiss. In Frozen Fever, Kristoff belted out his love for Anna in the last half of the short’s song, declaring, “I love you, baby!” and “I do!”
“Is this a sign of things to come in Frozen 2? Is there a marriage in the works? Perhaps a royal baby on the way? We don’t have answers to any of these questions, but hey, it never hurts to speculate,” Oh My Disney, Disney’s official media site, wrote in regards to Kristoff’s part in the song. Could a royal wedding be coming to Arendelle?
Let’s not forget that when Once Upon a Time dipped into Frozen territory, the couple’s storyline picked up right after the first movie. The couple planned their wedding in the show, and they officially tied the knot in the mid-season finale. Could this wedding carry over into the sequel?
Scandinavian lore has a significant presence in Frozen 2
While the first movie gave us a taste of Scandinavian and Nordic culture, Frozen 2 seems to share more of the Nordic culture’s mystical side. In the trailer, Elsa has an abrupt encounter with a water horse figure. According to Newsweek, the creature is a “Nokk,” a water spirit “that takes the form of a horse and uses the power of the ocean to guard the secrets of the forest.”
The trailer also features rune-like symbols (perhaps the elemental symbols). The runes are an “ancient alphabet” used by the Nordic people, according to Newsweek. “As well as being a system of writing, runes often held magical significance,” the publication reported. Also in the trailer is a giant rock monster, and, as Newsweek reported, “…the rocky wilderness of Jotunheim was the home of the giants. These monsters would turn to stone when exposed to sunlight.”
Furthermore, while the trolls seem to play a role in Frozen 2, the Frozen Broadway musical actually reimagined them as “elven ‘hidden folk’ drawn from real-life Scandinavian folklore,” according to Variety. Perhaps we’ll see the elven folk in the sequel.
More emotional drama unfolds between the sisters in Frozen 2
The heart of Frozen is the complicated relationship between sisters Anna and Elsa. In an interview with /Film, co-director and co-writer Jennifer Lee shared how she and co-director Chris Buck didn’t plan on a sequel. “We just made the mistake of talking about something and going, ‘Oh my gosh. That’s the thing we still haven’t explored, and it’s important,” Lee shared.
In the same interview, Lee detailed her approach to writing Anna and Elsa’s emotions, revealing how she wrote journals from each sister’s point-of-view. Kristen Bell told Entertainment Weekly that Lee consulted her to help shape Anna’s character, detailing moments she thought would resonate with Anna, and Lee wrote them into the script. “But there are a lot of very, very intimate moments for me in this movie that feel like they’re from my real life,” Bell stated.
Though the creators have been tight-lipped about the sequel’s plot, Buck told MTV News, “We have two very strong female leads,” adding, “We will keep that going in the next one.”
Other Disney characters make cameos in Frozen 2
It’s widely know that Disney loves including blink-and-you’ll-miss-them Easter eggs throughout their movies. For instance, did you see Rapunzel and Flynn at Elsa’s coronation?
According to one fan theory that BuzzFeed shared, King Angarr and Queen Iduna were allegedly headed to Rapunzel and Flynn’s wedding before the waters swallowed their ship, which is why the couple felt the need to go to Elsa’s coronation. Another fan theory notes that Anna and Elsa’s parents’ sunken ship could be the same vessel where Ariel finds thingamabobs in The Little Mermaid. BuzzFeed makes a convincing argument for these theories, sharing how Norway (where Frozen‘s set), Denmark (where The Little Mermaid‘s set), and Germany (where Tangled‘s set) are all geographically near one another.
Since we’ve already seen cameos in Frozen, we’re convinced we’ll witness another surprising appearance in Frozen 2. Perhaps Moana will sail in to help Elsa combat the ferocious ocean? We’ll just add that to our archive of you-never-know-what-could-happen Disney theories.
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