'Wreck-It Ralph' Writer Jennifer Lee is Co-Directing Disney's 'Frozen'
by Ben Pearson
November 29, 2012
Wreck-It Ralph was a big hit for Walt Disney Pictures this year, so it makes sense that the Mouse House would want to retain some of the talent that worked on that picture to help bring a future project to life. A press release reveals that Disney has hired Jennifer Lee, who co-wrote Wreck-It Ralph with Phil Johnston, to co-direct their upcoming animated fantasy comedy Frozen alongside Tarzan helmer Chris Buck. Lee got the job because of the work she did rewriting Frozen, but this will be her first time directing a feature. The movie is already in production and is slated to open on November 27th, 2013. More below!
Frozen, loosely based on Hans Christian Anderson's "The Snow Queen," stars Broadway legend Idina Menzel as Elsa, a queen in self-imposed exile, and Kristen Bell as her sister Anna, who, along with a mountain man named Kristoff and his reindeer Sven, travels into the icy wilderness to find her sister and bring her home. Bobby Lopez (Book of Mormon, Winnie the Pooh) and his wife Kristen wrote the music, and this will be a return to the musical format for Disney after going easy on the songs with Wreck-It Ralph.
When I visited Walt Disney Animation earlier this year, I got a look at some concept art for Frozen that reminded me a lot of classic Disney films like Sleeping Beauty and Cinderella. The locations, from gorgeous castles to wondrous mountain ranges, were pretty breathtaking even in concept art form, so I'm excited to see how the team brings those early renderings to life on screen.
Lee only has Wreck-It Ralph on her resume as of now, but she also wrote an original film optioned by Leonardo DiCaprio's Appian Way and a separate script called The Acts of King Arthur and His Noble Knights on the way. If she can bring the same sort of humor and heart to Frozen that she did to Wreck-It Ralph, then we're in for a treat with this one.
I'd love to see a traditionally animated movie from the House of Mouse again. I know everyone goes gaga over the digital stuff nowadays, but there's something magical about classic Disney films. Will be interested in further updates on this project.
Thexn on Nov 29, 2012
Me too. Not really too sure why they don't do them really. Even a digital hybrid like Beauty and the Beast. There is less and less animators at a high level for that stuff though.
Carpola on Nov 29, 2012
YES!! I can't wait to hear the songs! Disney seemed kind of hesitant on making a musical cartoon after Princess and the Frog didn't do very well in theaters. I'm SOO glad Disney is looking at the people with talent and creativity and actually PUTTING THEIR WORK OUT THERE! Creativity's voice must be heard to prove to the average man why cinematic entertainment isn't just a money maker.
RobotProphet on Nov 29, 2012
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