If you think "Frozen" was a revolutionary, refreshing and empowering Disney film, then you'll be grateful the writers spent so much time drafting it — because it almost wasn't.
Die-hard fans of Disney's 2013 smash hit probably already know that the ice queen Elsa (Idina Menzel) was originally supposed to be a more typical evil villain, and Anna (Kristen Bell) the more typical hero.
But now in a new Entertainment Weekly interview with the film's producer, Peter Del Vecho, we're getting all the plot details on an earlier "Frozen" draft.
First of all, Anna and Elsa weren't even sisters.
Del Vecho said,
When we started off, Anna and Elsa were not sisters. They weren't even royal. So Anna was not a princess. Elsa was a self-proclaimed Snow Queen, but she was a villain and pure evil — much more like the Hans Christian Andersen tale. We started out with an evil female villain and an innocent female heroine and the ending involved a big epic battle with snow monsters that Elsa had created as her army.
The whole movie opened with a prophecy that “a ruler with a frozen heart will bring destruction to the kingdom of Arendelle.”
So, we assume that's Elsa, the evil snow queen who is totally unrelated from the hero of the story, Anna.
Elsa's "heart is frozen" because she was stood up on her wedding day by a man.
So Evil Elsa attacks Anna with snow monsters just because she's evil, and Kristoff comes and saves Anna.
Prince Hans starts a massive avalanche to stop Elsa's attack, not caring that he would kill Anna and probably a lot of other people.
Luckily, Anna convinces Elsa to stop the avalanche before it does.
And at the end of the movie, you find out the frozen-heart prophecy was actually talking about Hans as the potential murderer, not Elsa.
So Elsa realizes she can be good, after all.
Look, it's not a terrible story, but I much prefer the ending they actually went with — that an act of sisterly love broke the curse on Anna.
Del Vecho explains why they didn't like the original ending as well, saying,
The problem was that we felt like we had seen it before. It wasn't satisfying. We had no emotional connection to Elsa — we didn't care about her because she had spent the whole movie being the villain. We weren't drawn in. The characters weren't relatable.
Then he explains how the writers found their way to the plot of "Frozen" that we all know and love.
Making them related led us to the idea of her living in fear of her powers. What if she's afraid of who she is? And afraid of hurting the ones she loves? Now we had a character in Anna who was all about love and Elsa who was all about fear.
And as for the twist ending they landed on, the one that sets this Disney princess film apart from so many others, Del Vecho said,
One of the things Chris Buck had in most versions of the film was a moment where Anna's heart was frozen and needed to be thawed. Chris said, 'Does it always need to be true love's kiss that solves that problem? Does it always have to be the man who comes in and rescues the female? Could it be something different?' and that led to a different ending.
Big thanks to the writers who took the time to make this movie as perfect as it is.