Fans of Elsa and Anna rejoice, as the Frozen phenomenon is long from over. Today, Disney announced a new partnership with the Lego Group to bring Frozen to TV and bookshelves. Frozen Northern Lights, a new original story featuring the characters from Arendelle, is being shared in a series of new books and animated shorts. Meanwhile, over in Orlando, Florida, guests at Epcot are being treated to the grand opening of Frozen Ever After, a new ride located in the Norway pavilion.
Disney Frozen Northern Lights: Journey to the Lights, a new book published by Random House, is set to be released in July.
“Natural phenomenon meets cultural phenomenon in this all new story,” said Andrew Sugerman, executive vice president, Disney Publishing Worldwide. “We’re excited to share this new adventure and offer fans great new ways to connect with their favorite characters thanks to a host of related books, digital games and activities.”
Favorite characters from the Frozen movie (Anna, Elsa, Olaf, Kristoff, and Sven) are being re-imagined as Lego characters in a Lego world, much like other Lego properties, including Lego Batman and Lego Star Wars. The deluxe novelization is slated to come before a collection of new books that feature a brand new character: Little Rock.
In addition to the books, the Lego Group is producing a series of four new animated shorts based on the new stories that will be featured on the Disney Channel this fall.
“The shorts are unbelievably cool. I know fans are absolutely gonna love it,” says actor Josh Gad, who voices the character of Olaf in both the original film and the new Lego counterparts. “All of the original voice talent from the original film is back. This is gonna be unbelievable guys!”
Gad went on to gush about the franchise and the huge impact the original film has made on our society.
“I fell in love with Frozen because of the amazing story, characters and music and I am so honored to continue to be a part of it. My kids also happen to be huge fans and it’s really special to voice one of their favorite characters. It has been so extremely gratifying to see families and children form instant connections with the characters and watch the millions of YouTube videos that pay homage to the movie. The fans have truly made this the global phenomenon that it is today.”
Gad also stated that while he is a fan of Lego as well, he has some difficulties with the building block toy and would be no match against voice co-star Jonathan Groff (Kristoff) in a “building battle.”
“I think that Jonathan Groff would probably win because he has such swift delicate hands and mine are chubby and get in the way of the little teeny Lego. I can handle the like big Lego pieces, but when it comes to the those like teeny flowers and crowns that you put on any Lego thing, I fail miserably because it’s like I have Jaba hands.”
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Meanwhile, Theme Park Insider reports that Epcot has introduced a new ride based on Frozen. Thousands of fans waited up to four hours to see the new Frozen Ever After attraction that is housed in the former Maelstrom ride location. Waiting guests who surrounded the World Showcase lagoon were given water by Disney staff.
— Theme Park Insider (@ThemePark) June 21, 2016
The new ride features the familiar “Let It Go” and other music from the award-winning film and uses some of the same technology that has been featured in the Magic Kingdom’s Seven Dwarfs Mine Train Ride and kept the surprise when passenger’s boat turns around and falls backward down a tall drop.
Disney had planned a press event for the new ride but canceled it after the Pulse nightclub shooting that occurred last week.
To promote the two new projects further, Disney is updating its Frozen website with new activities that tie into the new storyline and will launch a Frozen-inspired Instagram account (@DisneyFrozen).
The original Frozen film became an instant hit when it came to movie theaters in 2013. It made more than $1.27 billion in global box office sales, received two Oscars, a Golden Globe, BAFTA Award, PGA award, five Annie Awards, and two Grammy Awards. Frozen will make its TV debut this Christmas, the Broadway musical is set to begin in New York in 2018, and two theme park attractions have been created based on the film: Frozen Ever After in Epcot in Orlando, Florida, and the stage show Frozen Live at the Hyperion is currently playing at Disney’s California Adventure.
[Image via Disney]