Seeing as Wreck-It Ralph was Disney Animation’s most well-received movie in quite a while, the studio has wasted no time in getting one of its main creative talents to work on a new project. Today they announced in a press release [via ComingSoon] that Ralph co-writer Jennifer Lee is not only going to be handling some writing duties on their upcoming animated feature, Frozen, but that she will also be serving as co-director alongside studio vet Chris Buck (Tarzan, Surf’s Up).
Frozen is an adventure tale about a magical kingdom that’s suffering under a spell that keeps it trapped in a perpetual winter. Its main characters are a brave young girl named Anna, a burly mountain man named Kristoff, and a reindeer sidekick named Sven. The main thrust of the film’s narrative is said to be this trio’s journey to find the Snow Queen and find a way to reverse her spell, which of course leads to them encountering treacherous mountain passes, all sorts of magical whatsits, mystical trolls, comical snowmen, and who knows how many other examples of weirdness along the way. Forgetting Sarah Marshall’s Kristen Bell and Enchanted’s Idina Menzel are already on board to supply voices.
Why, exactly, is Lee getting the chance to try her hand at directing on a project this big? Producer Peter Del Vecho explains, “Jenn has a real connection to the film and creates dynamic and relatable characters. Her sense of comedy, adventure and story structure paired with Chris Buck’s vast experience and incredible instincts create an ideal situation for this film.”
What do you think? Will Lee be able to bring some of that creative spark that made Wreck-It Ralph such a success over to this project, or was Ralph just a one time fluke from an animation studio that has looked increasingly outdated in recent years? And after seeing success by thinking outside the box, is it smart for Disney to go back to their usual strategy of making movies about young female protagonists and magical kingdoms? Only time will tell whether this one ends up being a success or a failure, but one thing is now certain: winter is coming.