FROZEN Crossover Planned for ABC’s ONCE UPON A TIME

by     Posted 171 days ago

frozen-once-upon-a-time-crossover

It seems like just yesterday that we were expressing delight at Disney’s decision not to rush into a sequel to Frozen in order to milk the highest grossing animated film of all time for all its worth.  Though the studio is currently focused on developing a Broadway Musical adaptation of the Oscar winner for Best Animated Feature, it appears that the Frozen “franchise” will actually be expanding this fall.  During last night’s season finale of the ABC (which is owned by Disney) series Once Upon a Time—a show that has routinely pulled from Disney IP to bring recognizable characters into its ranks—the addition of Elsa from Frozen was teased.  Indeed, the plan is to involve the animated character in live-action form when the series returns to the small screen this fall, making for a disappointing yet unsurprising crossover.

Hit the jump to watch the scene and to hear why the producers decided to incorporate the character.

First off, you can watch the Frozen scene from the Once Upon a Time finale below.


frozen-once-upon-a-timeSpeaking with TV Line, executive producers/showrunners Adam Horowitz and Adam Kitsis revealed that it was actually their idea to bring Elsa into the Once Upon a Time universe:

ADAM HOROWITZ: That is Elsa. We fell in love with the movie Frozen when we saw it, my daughters are obsessed as is Eddy’s son… It is something that ever since we saw it would gnaw at us, “Is there a way to fit it into our world?” And we cooked up a way to do it. We pitched the studio and the network and they were kind enough to say, “Go do it.”
EDDY KITSIS: What’s funny is that people think Disney called us up and was like, “You need to do Frozen,” and it’s really actually quite hard to get these characters. It’s not like they call you up and say, “We’d like you to do this.” It’s actually quite the opposite. You have to work at it and have a vision and the spirit.

frozen-elsa-once-upon-a-timeThe duo maintain that they have a unique take on the character:

HOROWITZ: Look, we had an idea for how we wanted to approach this story, and we are very well aware of how beloved the movie is, so we’re very careful that we want to tell a story that is uniquely ours but also honors that movie and those characters that everyone fell in love with this past year.
KITSIS: The thing we love about Elsa is she is a character that is perceived to be a villain but is clearly misunderstood, and that goes to the heart of our show.

They revealed that they haven’t started casting for Elsa just yet, but they get to work on season four in two weeks, at which point they’ll focus on filling the role.

Once Upon a Time isn’t exactly a show known for its critical praise, and I’m personally not too thrilled about them mining Frozen for material.  Though the decision apparently came from the producers and not the studio, it still feels like a lazy way to draw in more viewers and it also dilutes the Frozen “brand”.  Whether Elsa will become a main character in the show or not is unclear, but I’d be surprised if she was simply a small guest star.

What about you, readers?  Does the inclusion of Elsa in Once Upon a Time rub you the wrong way or is all fair in the world of corporate synergy?

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  • Holli

    I would like Idina Menzel to reprise her role as Elsa, but unfortunately she is not blond. Maybe the producers can convince her to dye her hair.

    • Leo Spaceman

      Wigs.

      • RunnerX13

        They already blew their wig budget on Regina, which is why Snow’s wearing a dead animal on her head.

      • RunnerX13

        They already blew their wig budget on Regina, which is why Snow’s wearing a dead animal on her head.

  • milo

    I don’t really see what’s the big deal considering the whole point of the show is doing a mashup of disney characters from all the different movies. It all comes down to execution and whether it’s consistent with the animated movie.

  • Arthur

    It was an interesting move and i personally have no problem with them having Elsa or anyone from Frozen on the show. Its all about how they approach the storyline, the Peter Pan/Neverland storyline was handled horribly in the first half of season 3 but the 2nd half with the Wicked Witch and Oz was executed quite well surprisingly, so as long as they don’t destroy the story Elsa could be a very good addition to this show.

  • Tyler

    You cannot be freaking shitting me. What the hell does Frozen have to do with Once Upon a Fucking Time?

    • AJD1984

      What does the Wicked Witch have to do with it? Frozen (The Snow Queen) is more a fairytale than the Wizard of Oz and I welcome the addition.

      • http://djamesmax.wordpress.com/ Daniel J. Max

        The problem is that Frozen has as much to do with The Snow Queen as Tangled has to do with hair styling. To use idea that The Snow Queen is an old story as a response doesn’t make sense. As I said in response to the original comment, if they wanted to use The Snow Queen they could do that but instead they use Elsa specially and she is the polar opposite of the queen in the old story.

    • AJD1984

      What does the Wicked Witch have to do with it? Frozen (The Snow Queen) is more a fairytale than the Wizard of Oz and I welcome the addition.

    • MJ

      Do you know how silly you sound, dude?

      Like this is really a serious worry for you…LOL

      • Tyler

        Maybe it is, but what does Frozen have to do with Once Upon a Time? Why do they have to have these wild crossovers that have nothing to do with their canon.

      • MJ

        Well, you do have a point there. I guess $$ are the reason.

      • Jamie

        Have you watched Once Upon a Time? THE ENTIRE SHOW is based around the thin premise of crossing over the heroes and rogues from Disney’s own catalogue and other literary fantasy characters that aren’t copyrighted. Frozen is the former and basically any Disney IP is free to be shoehorned into the show.

    • http://djamesmax.wordpress.com/ Daniel J. Max

      Exactly! I agree with the statement that this could “water down” the Frozen brand. If they wanted to use The Snow Queen they could do that but instead
      they use Elsa specially and she is the polar opposite of the queen in
      the old story. It’s all about $$$. My three year old loves Frozen but there is a snowball’s chance in hell I’d ever let her watch that show.

  • RunnerX13

    I really don’t get the “lazy writing” criticism, The show doesn’t do great in the ratings, so they’re adding something that they know people will like.

    • milo

      The show does fine in the ratings, it’s ABC’s third highest rated drama after Scandal and Grey’s.

  • HeSaidSheSaidMv

    I have never seen a show take something that was a strength and pound into a pulp to the point it’s nothing more than a blatant and tired gimmick at this point.

  • MJ

    Maybe they should add the Frozen characters to the Fantastic 4 and X-Men mash-up new universe.

    (sarcasm)

    • The Flobbit

      Because Frozen is clearly one of Disney’s strongest efforts, full of pathos and heart and a great message.

      (sarcasm)

      • milo

        Except that there are plenty of people who think that it actually is.

  • DEADP00L

    I am proud to be the only one who actually found Frozen to be boring, predicable and baffling.

    • The Flobbit

      I am proud to second you on that it poorly done, lacking in message, and pop-y.

      • DEADP00L

        ‘Oh no! Don’t you understaaaad? The princess doesn’t get married in the end! She doesn’t have to! All disney characters and princesses before Frozen always got maaaaaaried…’ 22 year old woman

        Me: “Um Pocahontas, Merida and I’m pretty sure Aladdin and Jasmine didn’t get married until the third movie?”

        ‘ YOU DON’T UNDERSTAAAAND HER SISTER SACRIFICES HERSELF!!’

        Me:’ Um… So does Belle?’

        ” You don’t understand…”

        Me: “-_-* You’re right, I don’t have a selective memory and I am not fluent in idiot .”

        Swear it’s times like those that I literally feel like I’m in the twilight zone…or died and went to some kind of fucked up intellectual hell.

      • milo

        Ah, backlash.

      • DEADP00L

        It’s quite something.

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  • Clarence Boddicker

    Hmmm…yeah putting the T1000 on Once Upon a Time is risky, but it could work i guess

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  • http://djamesmax.wordpress.com/ Daniel J. Max

    Hey, how about they add Jennifer Lawrence as Mystique? That’s a Disney IP now. Or how about Jar Jar Binks?

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