One of the directors of “Frozen” has a theory that the Disney films “Frozen” and “Tarzan” are connected.
Last year in a Reddit AMA, “Frozen” co-director Chris Buck explained that when Princess Elsa and Anna’s mother and father sailed away and their ship was lost at sea, they didn’t die on the boat. The queen gave birth to a baby son and they were washed up on shore on a jungle island where they built a treehouse. Tragically, both the king and queen were then eaten by a leopard.
If that plot sounds familiar, it should — it’s the beginning of another of Disney’s animated films, “Tarzan,” which Chris Buck was also a director on back in 1999. That would mean that little Tarzan was the brother of Anna and Elsa.
In an interview with MTV News this August, Buck confirmed that while directing “Frozen” he had connected the two worlds in his mind [emphasis ours]:
When you’re working on a feature, you have a lot of time to think about stuff because it takes four years to make one. I think Jen [Lee] and I were walking to a meeting, and I just start to tell her the entire story.
I said, ‘Of course Anna and Elsa’s parents didn’t die. Yes, there was a shipwreck, but they were at sea a little bit longer than we think they were because the mother was pregnant, and she gave birth on the boat, to a little boy. They get shipwrecked, and somehow they really washed way far away from the Scandinavian waters, and they end up in the jungle. They end up building a tree house and a leopard kills them, so their baby boy is raised by gorillas. So in my little head, Anna and Elsa’s brother is Tarzan — but on the other side of that island are surfing penguins, to tie in a non-Disney movie, ‘Surf’s Up.’ That’s my fun little world.
It’s a cute theory, but it probably won’t be official Disney doctrine anytime soon. First of all, the ship in “Tarzan” was on fire when it sank; the “Frozen” ship was caught in a storm.
And here’s a comparison of the parents in Tarzan and the parents in Frozen. Their clothes and hair look pretty different, but there are a few similarities:
Though Buck seems only half serious about this idea, Disney super fans have long connected the universes in these stories. “Frozen” has also been tied to “Tangled” — fans believe that wedding the king and queen were sailing to was actually Rapunzel and Flynn Rider’s wedding. The pair later allegedly make an appearance at Elsa’s coronation.
And according to one popular fan theory, “Frozen” and “The Little Mermaid” could also be linked. When Elsa and Anna’s parents’ ship sinks, some Disney addicts think it could later become the shipwreck where Ariel spends so much time exploring with her best friend Flounder.
But while it’s one thing for fans to dream up these connections, it’s very rare for a director to tie the worlds together in a public statement, albeit couched by saying it was all in his imagination.
“I say, whatever people want to believe, go for it,” Buck told MTV News. “If you want to tie them all together, then do it. That’s the spirit of Disney.”
Disney has not responded to a request for comment at the time of this post.*
*Note: This story was originally published on Tech Insider in 2015.
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