Bobby Lopez and Kristen Anderson-Lopez have a unique collaborative process when it comes to songwriting. As they’re wont to joke, they were working out of their apartment in Brooklyn, and over telecommuting services, before it was cool—or necessary due to the coronavirus pandemic. But as they reflected on the global phenomenon that was Frozen 2 a half-year later in a Zoom press conference, and ahead of a new documentary series about the movie set to premiere on Disney+, they revealed even they’re desperate for things to return to normal… so much so Kristen Anderson-Lopez joked about being desperate enough to work on “Frozen 3.”
Mentioning that she’s been asked repeatedly about when work might begin on Frozen 3, Anderson-Lopez said with a smile, “How about you guys get us a vaccine. When there’s a vaccine, we’ll start trying to talk about Frozen 3.” She went on to add, “I have no power to make Frozen 3 happen. But I do have the power to at least think about what Frozen 3 might look like if my children go back to school because there’s a vaccine.”
To be clear, Anderson-Lopez was joking about beginning work (or “thinking about” beginning work) on Frozen 3. For starters that’s a potentially multibillion-dollar focal point for The Walt Disney Company. Additionally, Anderson-Lopez’s fellow creators on both Frozen and Frozen 2, including directors Jennifer Lee and Chris Buck (who they share a story credit on the sequel with), are visibly not ready to have that conversation.
“We didn’t start talking about a sequel until a year after the first one came out,” Buck said during the same press conference. “These movies as you will see [in the Disney+ docuseries] are so exhausting, emotionally and physically, that you don’t really have the headspace to even think about it. So all I can say is we’ll see.”
And for her part Lee added, “I just want to stress this is all news to me, guys… No, this isn’t any announcement of Frozen 3, no.”
However, it is a funny proposition and at least shows some openness to the idea from Anderson-Lopez, who along with her husband Bobby Lopez were instrumental to the success of both Frozen films. Indeed, the pair added their first Oscars to their EGOT status when they deservedly won for writing the generational anthem, “Let It Go.” And as folks who watch the Into the Unknown: Making Frozen 2 documentary will realize, the pair are intimately involved in the narrative creative process. The new series documents them in their Brooklyn apartment songwriting and also telecommuting on a weekly (or daily) basis with Lee, Buck, and other Walt Disney Animation Studios creatives back in California.
“We didn’t quite realize when we said ‘sure that sounds fine’ that it would be so weird when a camera showed up,” Anderson-Lopez said about inviting the documentary filmmakers into their home. “We write in an apartment in Brooklyn. We were Zoom workers before Zoom workers were a thing. We’ve been Zoom commuting for 10 years now… We don’t put on real pants! This isn’t new for anybody else now that you’ve been in a pandemic, but that was before we lived before a pandemic.”
Indeed, having three cameramen, plus a sound recorder with a “fuzzy” microphone in their faces brought a new appreciation to the availability of space in New York housing.
As Bobby noted, “For us, songwriting is a very private thing that happens between a man and a woman.” Kristen continued, “When two people love each other very much, they go into a room and they start playing the piano and they give birth to a song.”
Audiences will have the chance to see just how the mechanics of that work when Into the Unknown premieres on Disney+ on June 26. Also check back at Den of Geek later in the week for more coverage on the in-depth documentary.