Frozen was an unprecedented global phenomenon, smashing box office records for animated films and triggering an avalanche of merchandising opportunities for Disney. Though they aren't known for giving their princess films cinematic sequels, Frozen 2 was pretty much a dead cert, but we've got a long time to wait, as most estimations put the release date at around 2018.
It's understandable that the production team want to take their time on Frozen 2: after the runaway success of the first film, hype and fan expectations are unbelievably high. They're gonna need a fascinating plot, a poignant development of the sisters' relationship, and a song to really blow Let It Go out of the water. That's one heck of a tall order, so can Frozen 2 live up to the hype?
There's a lot of ways Frozen 2 could fail, and the biggest is simply by dint of being a sequel. With the exception of Aladdin 3: King Of Thieves (equal to the original in my view), Disney has never really succeeded at sequels, and they preemptively curb their losses by sending the low budget movies straight to video.
But that's not something that's possible for Frozen 2, what with kids everywhere still singing Let It Go (and adults everywhere still trying to get it out of their heads). Which is another gigantic potential pitfall: with the high expectations for Frozen 2 to be even better than the original, it's almost impossible for the film to live up to people's hopes. After all, possibilities are always more appealing than reality.
Crucially, by having a release date so far in the future, Frozen 2 also runs the risk of losing their biggest fanbase to grumpy teenagehood. Kids are fickle, and forgetful, and they can only be drip fed Frozen merchandise so long until something else steals their adoration. Of course, with Disney appealing to such a large age range, people will definitely go to see the film in droves, but Frozen 2 will also have to work well as a standalone, as there will be plenty of new, younger fans to enthrall.
But that's not really the issue: yes people will go and see the film, but can they love it as much as the first? Here's how we think Disney can beat the sequel curse!
There's tons of possibilities for Frozen 2, but Disney have to be careful. Do something too different and they'll risk losing fans. Stick too closely to the first film's plot formula, and the critics will tear the film apart. The most obvious way to rise to the challenge is really just to create a compelling plot that will surprise fans, while retaining elements of the original film.
The peril needs to threaten Arendelle, and Elsa and Anna should work together with Kristoff to solve a new problem. The old favourites should return (obviously Olaf, but hopefully without a solo song this time), but there also need to be interesting new characters for fans to adore (with any luck, these newbies will add some racial diversity to the cast). And with Elsa's powers inspiring many a fan to create their own version of the ice queen, why not give us some more superpowered princesses?
The wishlist for Frozen 2 goes on and on, but suffice to say that with Elsa's powers still unexplained, there's plenty of plot possibilities for the highly anticipated sequel. But that's really just another pitfall: Disney can't please everyone and whatever they do, fans will be disappointed. At least director Chris Buck and writer Jennifer Lee have (at least) 3 years to get it right!
So what would you like to see in Frozen 2? Let us know in the comments, or write your own post!