Disney’s D23 Expo tends to close out its studio panel in a very big way, and they did that by giving attendees a first look today at some scenes from Frozen 2. A sequel to 2013’s massively successful Frozen, the animated film continues the adventures of Anna (Kristen Bell) and Elsa (Idina Menzel), who journey with their friends Olaf (Josh Gad), Kristoff (Jonathan Groff), and Sven (also Groff) outside of the comfort of the kingdom of Arendelle, to discover the truth about Elsa’s powers and what happened to their parents. Along the way, they will discover where Anna and Elsa’s parents were going and that the past isn’t what it appears to be. See more below for our on-site coverage from D23.
Directors Chris Buck and Jennifer Lee (who was recently named chief creative officer of Walt Disney Animation Studios) stepped out on stage to talk about the film as well as make a few announcements. We’ve known that Evan Rachel Wood and Sterling K. Brown had roles in the film, but what those roles are remained a mystery… until now. Wood will be playing Queen Iduna, Anna and Elsaâ€™s mother, while Brown voices Lieutenant Destin Mattias.
We got a small sample of what to expect from the characters in a few scenes that were shown. In one, we see Mattias, a dear friend of the Arendelle royal family, give some advice to Anna, who has questions about her family’s past. It remains to be seen if Mattis has a much larger role than this.
In another clip, we see Queen Iduna sing “â€œAll Is Found,â€ a lullaby to Anna and Elsa. It’s a comforting song about how the river meets the sea and how that place is full of memories. Of course, Anna and Elsa’s father is also missing, but I suspect we will learn more about him in the days leading up to the film’s release.
We learn that the sequel will start with a prologue, which could not be shown at the convention, but they were able to share a scene that involved the new family. In it, Anna is playing a game of charades with Elsa, Kristoff, and Olaf. The two sisters are on one team, while Kristoff and Olaf are on another. Meanwhile, Sven is keeping time. Anna is into this, and Olaf even more so as he can rearrange his body to different shapes and forms. But Elsa’s mind is elsewhere, almost as if she is distracted. Soon we hear distant whispers, and she stops playing the game.
After Elsa leaves, Kristoff uses this as an opportunity to propose to Anna, who is too busy to notice since she is very concerned for her sister’s well-being.
Seeing that Elsa needs someone to comfort her, Anna sings the same song that their mom sang to them when they were kids. It soothes and calms her down, and the two fall asleep.
But those whispers are heard again, and Elsa leaves the room thinking she can get away from them. She breaks out into song (“Into the Unknown”) about how she can hear it, but chooses to ignore it. She describes it like it is a ringing in her ear, and though she acknowledges it, she chooses not to listen to it.
As the song continues, Elsa exits the castle hallways and walks out to an open field and straight into the darkness. This allows her to use her ice magic to put on a dazzling light show where the ice becomes moving images. As she runs straight towards a cliff, her ice powers create an extension, and when she reaches the edge, her ice powers explode creating a thousand of diamond-like snowflakes that surround her.
After the clip was shown, Menzel, Bell, Groff, and Gad took to the stage to give a live performance of “Some Things Never Change,” which brought everyone in the arena to their feet.
Kristen Anderson-Lopez and Robert Lopez, the Oscar-winning songwriters from Frozen, wrote seven new songs for the sequel.
Frozen 2 opens in theaters on November 22, 2019.
You can click here for much more out of D23 Expo 2019!