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There is going to be a 'Frozen 2' and everyone is excited - even the markets

There are also tentative plans for a Broadway show, following in the footsteps of ‘The Lion King’.
Mar 12th 2015, 11:55 PM 11,648 21

DISNEY ANIMATION HAS announced that a follow-up to the animated mega-hit “Frozen” — which raked in nearly €1.2 billion in global ticket sales — is in the works.

“Forecast: Winter weather ahead! Disney Animation developing #Frozen2,” the studio said on Twitter, adding that directors Chris Buck and Jennifer Lee would be back for the second installment of the musical tale.

“At last, I can say – FROZEN 2!!!! I’m beyond excited to create alongside my Frozen family!” Lee tweeted, along with a photo of Queen Elsa and her sister Anna — the stars of the blockbuster Oscar-winning flick.

Beyond being Disney’s top box-office hit, “Frozen” is the fifth top-grossing film of all time, according to industry tracker Box Office Mojo.

It won two Oscars last year for best animated feature — Disney’s first in the category — and best original song for the ubiquitous “Let It Go.”

Beyond the booming ticket sales, the film’s princess stars and sidekick ‘Olaf the Snowman’ are also cash generators in the form of merchandise, theme park attractions and – appropriately – ice shows.

The film’s soundtrack — boosted by the popularity of “Let It Go” and other tunes like “Do You Wanna Build A Snowman?” — has been a best-seller.

There are tentative plans for a Broadway show, following in the footsteps of “The Lion King” and “Aladdin.”

Loosely based on Hans Christian Andersen’s “The Snow Queen,” the film tells the story of princess Anna, who sets off on a journey to find her sister Elsa, whose hard-to-control icy powers have trapped the kingdom of Arendelle in eternal winter.

The dynamic sisters are set to star in an animated short, “Frozen Fever”, to be released with Disney’s live-action feature “Cinderella” on Friday — a twin bill that experts say is likely to boost “Cinderella” sales.

- Twitter explosion - 

“Frozen 2″ quickly became one of the top trending topics on Twitter.

Actress Kristen Bell, who portrays Anna, tweeted a photo of herself smiling and sleeping on a bag of ice cubes, with the message: “Dreams really do come 2!!! #FROZEN2.”

The announcement from Disney — also made at an annual meeting with shareholders — is hardly a surprise, given the massive success of the 2013 original, which focused more on sisterly love than a romance.

The studio’s last animated release, “Big Hero 6,” has so far taken in just €569 million worldwide in comparison, despite largely positive reviews and this year’s Oscar for best animated feature.

Disney also offered news on another major franchise — the “Star Wars” films.

It revealed the title of its first stand-alone film featuring “Star Wars” characters — “Rogue One” — and said Oscar-nominated British actress Felicity Jones had been cast in the film set for release in December 2016.

Episode VIII in the original series will be released in May 2017.

Disney shelled out $4 billion to buy “Star Wars” founder George Lucas’s Lucasfilm in October 2012.

Disney chairman and chief executive Robert Iger today hailed the entertainment giant’s good financial health.

“We’ve had four straight years of record results,” Iger told shareholders.

Driven by extraordinary creativity, innovative technology and global expansion, 2014 was in fact the best year in our history.

Revenue was up eight percent to €45.95 billion, a company statement said.

Disney shares were up 3.5 percent to €100.32 in late trade — a sign that investors were pleased with the announcements.

- © AFP, 2015

Read: Robert Downey Jr surprised a young fan with his very own ‘Iron Man arm’

Read: Trailer watch: Which movie should you go see this weekend? 

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Daragh Brophy

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