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Elsa the Snow Queen

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ElsaPose
Elsa
Background information
Feature films Frozen
Television programs It's a Small World: The Animated Series (cameo)
Video games Disney INFINITY
Frozen: Free Fall
Park attractions World of Color
Disney Dreams!
Disney Magic on Parade
Celebrate the Magic
Festival of Fantasy Parade
Portrayed by
Portrayed by
Animators Tony Smeed
Voice Idina Menzel
Eva Bella (as a child)
Spencer Lacey Ganus (as a teenager)
Performance model
Designer Brittney Lee
Bill Schwab
Jin Kim
Inspiration Kai and the Snow Queen from the Hans Christian Andersen fairy tale "The Snow Queen"
Honors and awards
Character information
Full name Queen Elsa of Arendelle
Other names Snow Queen
Queen Elsa
Monster (referred to by the Duke of Weselton)
Personality Elegant, powerful, caring, fierce, reserved, regal, warm, protective, kind-hearted, mysterious, intelligent, playful
Appearance Slender, pale skin, light freckles, rosy cheeks, pink lips, long platinum blonde hair, blue eyes
(in her coronation outfit): Her hair in a French braided crown twist bun, grayish-pink eye shadow, magenta lipstick, teal dress with a sweetheart bodice with bronze lacing, black sleeves, cyan gloves, dark teal stockings, dark brown shoes, magenta cape
(in her Snow Queen outfit): Her hair in a left side braid woven with snowflake incrustations, and wisps of her bangs slicked back on top of her head, purple eye shadow, dark pink lipstick, off-the-shoulder crystal-blue dress with a right knee-high slit, a crystallized bodice, powder blue sleeves, long transparent glitter trail cape, ice high heels
Birthday
Occupation Princess of Arendelle (formerly)
Snow Queen (briefly)
Queen of Arendelle (currently)
Alignment Good
Affiliations
Goal To suppress her powers for the safety of her family and subjects (formerly)
To allow Arendelle access to the world and use her powers to bring joy to others (succeeded)
Home Arendelle
Relatives Anna (younger sister)
the King and Queen of Arendelle (parents; deceased)
Pets
Allies Anna, Olaf, Pabbie, the trolls, Marshmallow, Kristoff, Sven, Kai and Gerda, the citizens of Arendelle, the Duke of Weselton (formerly)
Minions Castle Guards
Marshmallow (formerly)
Enemies Hans, the Duke of Weselton and his thugs (currently), Arendelle Citizens (formerly)
Likes Her family, chocolate, having fun with her powers, bringing joy to Anna and her kingdom, Olaf, having fun with Anna, acceptance, peace, being able to use her powers safely, tea, geometry, studying, her powers (currently)
Dislikes Her powers (formerly), Hans, fear, being treated as a monster, her magic doing harm to others or those she cares about, conflicting moments with her sister, the idea of Anna marrying someone she hardly knows, Anna and her home in danger
Powers and abilities Magical control over ice, frost and snow
Cold resistance
Weapons
Fate Finally comes to peace with herself and Anna and returns to Arendelle to rightfully take her place as Queen, restoring summer and peace to the land
Quote "The cold never bothered me anyway."
"No... what have I done?"
"Love will thaw."
"You'll never see me cry!"
In Arendelle's fair kingdom, a ruler did appear.
Born with a secret power so great, alone, she stayed in fear.
Although the force was hidden, one day she let it go.
And all the land was covered in eternal ice and snow.
Frozen trailer's narration

Elsa the Snow Queen of Arendelle is the secondary protagonist of Disney's Academy Award-winning 2013 animated feature film Frozen. She is the older sister of Princess Anna and was next in line for Arendelle's throne, until her powers over ice and snow led her to become the famous Snow Queen, ruler of winter. She is voiced by Idina Menzel. Along with Anna, Elsa is set to become the 13th official member of the Disney Princess line-up.

Elsa is loosely based on the title character of "The Snow Queen", a short story by Hans Christian Andersen. While the character from the original fairy tale was an antagonist, Elsa was rewritten as a protagonist.

Background

Development

Voice

Broadway actress Idina Menzel, best known for performing Elphaba from Wicked, was cast to voice Elsa. Director Chris Buck believed that Menzel's vocals would help in the portrayal of the character, saying, "Idina has a sense of vulnerability in her voice. She plays a very strong character, but someone who lives in fear—so we needed someone who could portray both sides of the character, and Idina was just amazing."

In an interview with Menzel, she acknowledged the similarities between Elsa and Elphaba. She mentioned they were both very powerful and misunderstood individuals, and she herself could relate to the characters, having hidden her singing talent from her peers at school. "I didn't want to alienate anyone," she explained. "If everyone was singing along in the car to a Madonna song, I didn't join in because when we're younger we're afraid of sticking out or showing off, when in fact we should own those things that make us really unique."

Characterization

Following the casting of Idina Menzel, Elsa's characterization underwent several alterations. According to Menzel, she was originally scripted as a one-dimensional antagonist but was gradually revised as a more vulnerable, multifaceted figure. Menzel further described her character as "extremely complicated and misunderstood".

Director Jennifer Lee stated that Elsa is largely driven by fear throughout the film. Producers identified the scene in which Elsa sings "Let it Go" as a pivotal point in the character's development, as the scene depicts her choice to "let go" of her fear of using her powers and be herself. Character design supervisor Bill Schwab said, "Before 'Let it Go', Elsa is really buttoned up, her hair is up—everything is perfect. During the song, she gives herself permission to be who she is and everything changes — her hair is more wild, her gown is magical. She's finally free — even if she is all alone."

Lead writer Paul Briggs explained that Anna's support is what Elsa needs most when her secret is exposed. "The strength of the family bond is what makes this story so powerful because it's her sibling who's willing to look beyond her powers and stand between her and the world if that's what it takes."

Official Disney Bio

From the outside, Elsa looks poised, regal and reserved, but in reality, she lives in fear as she wrestles with a mighty secret—she was born with the power to create ice and snow. It's a beautiful ability, but also extremely dangerous. Haunted by the moment her magic nearly killed her younger sister Anna, Elsa has isolated herself, spending every waking minute trying to suppress her growing powers. Her mounting emotions trigger the magic, accidentally setting off an eternal winter that she can't stop. She fears she's becoming a monster and that no one, not even her sister, can help her.

Personality

As the queen regnant of the kingdom of Arendelle, Elsa appears calm, reserved and regal, and unlike her sister, is experienced in grace and poise. Beneath this elegant appearance however, Elsa is quite complex; in truth, Elsa is troubled with her abilities, a trait that stems from a traumatic incident as a child. When she was younger, she had cared strongly for Anna and, although she was the more mature of the two, Elsa was quite playful. However, ever since her magic nearly caused her sister's death, Elsa had lived in fear for a great amount of her life, too nervous to let her powers overdevelop. As a result, she desired isolation from everyone she cared about, including Anna, out of fear that she could hurt them, and chose to keep things to herself rather than communicate or be around anyone.

From said concern, Elsa is sensitive towards other people and their well-being, as Elsa always felt she had to be far away from people as much as possible in order to keep them as safe as possible. As such, she felt that she could not truly rule a kingdom because of this flaw, although she tried as best as possible to repress her abilities for the sake of the kingdom. Often, although Elsa demonstrates her willingness to sacrifice her own happiness for everyone else's, she herself feels irritated from the restraints she is forced into, most evidently on her coronation day when she was to become queen even though she was very apprehensive from the threat of her wintry power, and simply be accepted for who she is. It is also apparent that Elsa had tried her best to suppress her abilities for her parents' sake in order not to hurt others and to be a good ruler for Arendelle when her time came, and so gained a great sense of responsibility at an early age.

Growing up believing her emotions were unstable caused Elsa to cut interaction with Anna fearing she could not control her powerful emotions when Anna was around to spur them. Despite her moral reasoning, she came off as aloof and cold towards anyone who wished to see her. Because Anna had to lose the memories of Elsa's magic in order to survive Elsa's curse, Anna did not understand why Elsa's isolation was so dire and simply believed Elsa was uncaring. However, Elsa truly loved Anna and always wished to be with her whenever Anna asked, a chance Elsa greatly regretted refusing and was left in deep despair when Anna became the only family she had left. She also believes that she thinks she does not belong in Arendelle as she sees herself only as a force of destruction, implying that Elsa has low self-esteem towards herself in an extreme case, as she constantly blames herself to be the sole cause for most of her life's misfortunes despite others stating she is not, to the point that she labels herself as a living storm and distances herself from everything in general.

Although she had avoided Anna for most of her life, Elsa was more than willing to share some words with her, even sneakily tricking the Duke of Weselton into dancing with Anna, showing more of her mischievous and playful side.

Despite her fear, Elsa shows to truly care about her family and her kingdom as more than just a position quite selflessly, as she was evidently frightened when she realizes that she had created a winter over her kingdom when she had tried so desperately to avoid them from her danger. But due to the influence of her magic, Elsa does not like to confront things she had caused, for she has always believed she can only create winter, not remove it.

However, during "Let it Go", Elsa reveals a liberated side to her personality. Without stress or fear of hurting others, Elsa is strong and unafraid, yet with an air of elegance still surrounding her. Armed with a sense of freedom, she is confident in her abilities, letting them roam free with grace and beauty, all the while no longer worried or daunted by her restraints. In the segment, which was entirely about letting go of her fears and being herself, Elsa abandons what others had wanted out of her, including her parents, so that she can be free to be herself. During this time, Elsa proves herself to be incredibly artistic and a daring young woman willing to remain far from what she was destined to be, and rejects her own fate as Arendelle's queen for the choice of her own freedom.

However, Elsa's strongest part of herself is her love for her sister, a trait that gives Elsa the ultimate motivation to save Anna. Although she feels responsible for the chaos she has caused, the bond Elsa shares with Anna is stronger than she knows, as the feeling itself is her reminder that she is not truly alone when there is someone else who cares for her as well. With love, Elsa finds a stronger grip over her abilities in order to save those she cares about. From this, Elsa confronts her fear, and learns how to use her powers for good instead of imbalance, and in doing so, gains the will to control it.

After she conquers her fear and gains recognition from the kingdom, Elsa's personality becomes warm and playful once again, as she happily attends ice skating with Anna and the others, and even helps Anna to ice skate without fear of freezing her as well as creating a snow cloud to help Olaf remain during summer.

Interestingly enough, although she is passive compared to Anna, it is implied that she ironically enjoys more thrilling activities then her sister. Immediately after thawing Arendelle, without hesitation, she creates an ice rink for everyone to use. While Anna is somewhat hesitant, she skates without fear, even encouraging her to join in.

Physical appearance

Elsaoutfit
Elsa in her coronation outfit (left); Elsa in her Snow Queen outfit (right).
Hey1234Added by Hey1234

Elsa is a strikingly beautiful young woman with a tall, slender figure, long platinum blonde hair that reaches a few inches above her elbows, blue eyes, and pale skin (Elsa's skin appears to be fairer and brighter than Anna's skin) with a light dusting of freckles (a trait she shares with her sister Anna, though it looks like she has fewer freckles than her younger sister). She has the face of her mother, as during her coronation, she bore a striking resemblance to the Queen, albeit with a different hair color. In her pre-Snow Queen state, she wore a teal dress with a sweetheart bodice with bronze lacing, black sleeves and magenta cape, and her hair was kept back in a French braided crown twist bun. Ever since the accident with Anna at age 8, Elsa wore white gloves to contain her powers, but at her coronation, she wore longer, cyan gloves that go with her outfit.

In her Snow Queen state, Elsa wears her hair in a left side braid woven with snowflake incrustations, and swisps of her bangs slicked back on top of her head. She wears a crystal-blue, off-the-shoulder dress made out of ice with a right knee-high slit, a crystallized bodice, powder blue sleeves and ice high heels. At the back of her bodice is a long, transparent cape of sheer ice draped down from her sleeves and decorated with big snowflakes.

Powers and Abilities

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Elsa's snow magic.
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Listen to me, Elsa. Your power will only grow. There is beauty in it... but also great danger! You must learn to control it. Fear will be your enemy.
―Pabbie

Elsa is most iconic being the Snow Queen, and as such, she has complete and total control over the element of ice and snow (also known as cryokinesis and frigokinesis). With her abilities (that she was apparently born with), Elsa can conjure up and shape various things from snow flurries to blizzards. Most of her powers are unleashed via her hands, and controlled by her emotions. If she's happy and at peace, her powers would be under her complete control, but if she's stressed or fearful, she will lose control and cause great harm to those around her. Near the end of Frozen, it appears that she has gained more control over her powers.

Some of what her powers can do are seen throughout the film. In the beginning, she was able to turn the castle's ball room into a winter wonderland. She is also able to create enchanted snowmen (both large and small), ice structures such as her ice palace, deadly blizzards as mentioned above, and more. She's also been seen being able to move ice structures at will. It also appears that she can control transitional forms of snow, as she was not only able to create solid forms such as ice, but gaseous forms as well; for instance, she created a snow cloud for Olaf at the end of the film. Interestingly, it would seem that nearly her entire being can conjure ice and snow, as seen when she stepped onto the river water at the coronation fjord, immediately freezing it the moment her foot touched the liquid.

Her powers are most prominently featured during "Let it Go" in which Elsa frees herself from the fear and stress she held, allowing her abilities to run wild. In the sequence she created her ice palace, a stairway for entrance, Olaf, as well as her ice gown. During the song she even points out that her powers protect her from the effects of cold.

It is also shown that despite not having any formal training, she is capable of being a fierce fighter with her magic. At one point in the story when her ice palace is raided, the Duke's thugs attacked her and she was able to hold them both off on her own.

It's also interesting to note that in times when Elsa is truly frightened, her powers might act on their own in order to protect her. As mentioned before when she was initially attacked, an arrow was shot at her from a cross bow. Elsa's powers reacted to this instantly, forming a wall of ice in front of her to block the incoming arrow. So it's possible her ice powers may have a will of their own to some extent, where they respond to whatever Elsa feels. This possibility could explain why she was able to create Olaf and Marshmallow. Theoretically, in having a mind of its own, it would make sense if the ice powers split part of its sentience off into these external shells created by Elsa, each of whom represent a certain aspect of Elsa's personality. It also appears that her powers depend on which emotion she feels; if she is in sorrow, all the snow particles in the air stand still as if time has stopped, while anger creates a similar effect to fear but with an offensive direction instead of chaotic versatility.

The only way thought to conceal her powers was by wearing gloves on her hands, which appeared to negate her icy touch on other objects. However, it's possible this is nothing but a psychological mindset that helped to keep her anxiety and any icy outbursts under control all her life. Because it was her father, one of the few people she trusted, that claimed that wearing them would stop her abilities, Elsa believed it to be true, so by wearing gloves she thought truly stopped her powers, as a result of said belief, they did. This is supported by the fact she was able to freeze through the hand shackles in Arendelle’s prison cell, in her desperation to get away, proving that covering her hands does not actually stop her power, but rather, sheer force of will and belief.

Elsa Snowflake Symbol
Elsa's Signature Snowflake.
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It is shown that if she casts her magic on a living being directly, the victim will not only freeze to death, but slowly transform into an ice statue, and the process only hastens if they are in cold conditions. While the curse can be removed if the magic affects the mind, the heart is the most vulnerable and if this is the case, the victim can only be cured by an act of true love. While Elsa had thought she cannot undo the frosty effects she creates, it is revealed that that she is capable of removing such curses through her love for others, as it is the warmest emotion of all.

One interesting thing to note is that when the animators were creating her character, and coming up with ways for her to use her abilities, they came up with a Signature Snowflake for her. This snowflake can be seen multiple times through out the film on almost everything she creates. Such instances are when she slams her foot into the ground to create the floor of her ice palace, the pattern on the doors that led to the balcony of her ice palace, and it is the snowflake shown within the film's logo.

Appearances

Frozen

A Saddened Past

Do the magic!
―Anna to Elsa
Images-3
Elsa working her magic in front of young Anna.
Xd1358Added by Xd1358

At a young age, Elsa realized that she holds an ancient ability over ice and snow, and often used her abilities to play with her younger sister Anna. Elsa shared a close bond with her free-spirited younger sibling, and the two were the best of friends. They often at night would make it snow in the royal ballroom. However, one night while the two were playing in the ballroom, Anna falls down from the high snow slopes Elsa had created. Elsa tries to save her by using her magic, but accidentally strikes her sister instead. Their parents, the King and Queen, immediately seek aid for Anna by visiting the legendary trolls, whose leader, a shaman named Pabbie, is able to stabilize Anna's condition since it had only affected the head, not the heart, which would have been fatal. To be safe, Pabbie then removes Anna's knowledge and memories of magic, much to Elsa's despair. Pabbie takes the time to explain the true strength of Elsa's abilities, telling her that her power will only grow and there's not only beauty in it, but danger, and that she must learn to control them at all cost, or fear will be her enemy. While the King promises to help Elsa control her powers, the incident leaves Elsa traumatized by them. As a result, the King and Queen order the gates to be locked for Elsa and Anna's safety.

From then on, Elsa forcibly spent the rest of her life distanced from the kingdom, including Anna, trying to keep her powers from growing out of control and harming those she cares about. Even so, the persistent Anna tried time and time again to spend some quality time with her sister, but failed at every turn, leading her to eventually believe Elsa despised her.

The Death of the Royals

Do you have to go?
―Elsa's last words to her parents
Elsa's loss
Elsa grieving over the loss of her parents.
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Throughout the years, Elsa's only true human contact was with her parents, who calmly tried to help their daughter control her abilities, teaching her to remain calm for fear and stress would only cause chaos. To help further, the king bestowed upon Elsa a pair of gloves, which were able to suppress her powers (teaching her to conceal it, don't feel it, don't let it show), making life much easier, though still heavily fearful. And despite better control, Elsa still refused to contact Anna, truly terrified of harming her yet again. One day, during Anna and Elsa's teenage years, the king and queen left for a trip, and though Elsa was torn about their parting, she bid them farewell as they were off. However, this would be her last time with them, as the royal parents die during a powerful storm. A funeral was held, though Anna was the only one of the sisters to attend. Elsa, instead, too afraid to even go to the funeral out of fear of hurting someone with her powers, stayed within her bedroom, mourning for the loss of her parents, alone. Because of her devastated emotions, her powers corrupted the bedroom, freezing everything inside and reflecting the sorrow of the event. With the passing of her beloved parents and contact with Anna, her only family left, still deemed too dangerous, Elsa was now truly alone.

The Coronation

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A nervous Elsa during her coronation.
ByzantinefireAdded by Byzantinefire

Three years later, Elsa is chosen to be crowned the new queen regnant. To celebrate the momentous occasion, Arendelle invites royalty from far and wide to join in the festivities, such as the dashing Prince Hans and the pompous Duke of Weselton among others. Whilst Anna, the citizens of Arendelle, and the visiting royals couldn't be more excited, Elsa is beyond reluctant, fearful the major contact with the world will lead to the discovery of her powers. Even so, she accepts that it's all merely for a day, and tries her best to conceal her emotions, though the task proves to be difficult. At the cathedral, Elsa's crowning takes place, but because she must wield the traditional scepter and globus cruciger without her gloves, her abilities are nearly revealed. Fortunately, she's able to withstand the near exposure, and the festivities commence with a nightly ball. There, Elsa and Anna are reunited for the first time in years, and they share their very first conversation for quite some time, with Elsa leading the way. Both sisters appear to be very joyous to finally share some time together, and although Elsa's enjoying herself and quality time with Anna, Anna's open desire to have moments like the occasion at hand frequently causes Elsa to become reserved once again, reluctantly telling Anna her wish simply cannot be, and without any further explanations as to why, breaking the younger princess' heart and prompting her to leave.

The Curse

Look it's snowing, it's snowing! The queen has cursed this land!
―The Duke of Weselton
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Elsa's powers revealed at the ball.
Xd1358Added by Xd1358

Meanwhile, Elsa continues on with the party, meeting visiting dignitaries for a while before Anna returns, but with Prince Hans by her side. After a small introduction, the two announce their newfound engagement and asks for Elsa's blessing upon the marriage. Elsa's baffled by the shocking news, but Anna and Hans couldn't appear more excited, going on to ramble about the wedding arrangements. Elsa ceases the sudden rambling by denying the marriage, much to Anna's heartbreak. The queen asks to speak to Anna alone in private, likely to finally confess her abilities and why it's not wise to marry a total stranger without causing a scene that would surely get her true magical nature exposed, but the younger princess refuses any private conversation, stating whatever Elsa has to say can be said to both her and Hans. Becoming frustrated, Elsa outright forbids Anna of marrying someone she just met, indirectly telling the princess she knows nothing about true love, causing Anna to hiss back, telling Elsa all she knows is how to shut people out. Although Elsa is visibly hurt by this, Elsa continues to refuse, and the argument only worsens when Elsa orders the guards to end the party and close the gates. But the heartbroken Anna confronts her sister, completely terrified of living life imprisoned within the castle again. With that, Elsa suggests that she leaves the castle so she can be happy. Things take an ultimate turn for the worst when, out of blind fury from Anna's constant questioning, Elsa's powers are finally revealed, causing ice shards to rise from the ground, nearly striking Anna and the other guests. Terrified by what she's done and the reactions it receives, Elsa flees, though Anna, Hans and the Duke of Weselton chase after her.

Elsa retreats into the fjords, successfully escaping her pursuers, and as she does, everything in the land begins to freeze, beginning with the entire body of water in the fjord, trapping all the ships before spreading throughout the rest of the kingdom. Having fail to retrieve her, Anna and Hans returns to the castle courtyard, where the guests have gathered. The Duke of Weselton begins to panic as it eerily begins snowing, declaring they must take action and put an end to Elsa's curse, but Anna refuses and volunteers to seek out Elsa herself and make things right, feeling its her fault for pushing her. With Hans being left in charge of the kingdom, Anna heads off on her horse to begin her search for her sister.

The Snow Queen

I'm never going back, the past is in the past!
―Elsa as she throws her crown
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Elsa the Snow Queen within her ice palace.
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Meanwhile, that same night, Elsa has since arrived at the Northern Mountain, miles upon miles away from Arendelle. At first, she's still dreadfully downhearted by all that's just happened. The loss of her sister, the abandoning of her kingdom and subjects, the pain of her past consuming her now that the public saw her as a demon for her winter magic. However, oblivious to the storm she caused, she starts to embrace her powers now that she is alone, letting them roam free and finally unleashing the beauty aspect that Pabbie told her about years ago, and in turn, this makes the new queen happier than she's ever been in years. Now that she's living without fear of harming those she cares about, Elsa has ultimate control over her abilities and creates herself an ice palace and her signature ice gown out of her magic, establishing herself as the Snow Queen and officially abandoning her place as queen of Arendelle, declaring she's never returning to her kingdom now that she's finally happy and completely free to be who she is.

During her spectacle, Elsa also recreates Olaf, the snowman she built with Anna as a child, but unknowingly imbues him with life. And with his new enchantment, Olaf heads off into the world, eventually stumbling upon Anna and leading her to Elsa's castle sometime afterwards.

Elsa and Anna/The Creation of Marshmallow

Elsa, we were so close...we can be like that again.
―Anna to Elsa
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Elsa losing control of her powers and freezing Anna's heart.
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From that day forth, Elsa lives peacefully in solitude, until one day when Anna enters her castle. While Elsa becomes slightly elated that Anna had come to visit her, she is still hesitant to return to Arendelle, as well as rekindle her bond with Anna, still fearful of harming her. Elsa then advises Anna to return home where she's safe, wanting her to be happy in Arendelle, but Anna refuses to do so just as Olaf rushes in, reminding Elsa of the whimsical childhood the sisters shared. It was enough to bring a smile to the queen's face until the memory of nearly killing Anna haunts her again, prompting Elsa to turn away, bidding farewell to her sister. Anna accidentally increases the discomfort and stress upon mentioning the kingdom's in danger, Elsa being horrified to learn that she had placed a curse upon it. Overcome by fear and guilt, Elsa unleashes her powers by accident once again, but this time, she inadvertently hits Anna in her heart. As Olaf and Kristoff (Anna's companion who offered to help guide her through the mountains to find Elsa) run to try and aid Anna, Elsa demands for them to leave her, as Anna belongs in Arendelle and she, however, does not. While Anna still insists she come back with them, telling her she won't leave any other way, Elsa is forced to create a gruesome snow beast known as Marshmallow, who throws the trio out of the castle.

A Monstrous Dread

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Elsa's Ice Palace reflecting the fear she feels inside her.
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Afterwards, Marshmallow becomes Elsa's official bodyguard, given that Elsa truly wants nothing more than to be alone, and disguises himself as snowy rocks outside of the castle to keep away any and all visitors who may harm her majesty in any way. Meanwhile, within the walls of the once beautiful ice palace, Elsa has shown to have, despite desperately trying to conceal her emotions, lost control over her powers once again, as the fear of endangering Arendelle has completely overcome her, causing ice shards to fill her castle, giving it a darker and fearful design, matching the monster Elsa fears she has become. Meanwhile, Anna becomes weak, with Kristoff correctly believing it's due to Elsa striking her. To find a cure, Kristoff leads Anna and their companions to the Valley of the Living Rocks, where Pabbie returns and informs them that unless Anna is able to perform an act of true love, Elsa's icy curse would eventually freeze her, killing her. To save herself, Anna and the others rush back to Arendelle to find and receive a kiss from Hans before it's too late, believing true love's kiss is the act that would break the spell.

Summit Siege

Queen Elsa! Don't be the monster they fear you are.
―Hans to Elsa
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A provoked Elsa in battle with the soldiers.
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Meanwhile, back in the mountains, Hans and a group of soldiers arrive to find Anna and arrest Elsa after believing the Snow Queen had Anna captive. Marshmallow immediately leaps into action, and Elsa, upon hearing the commotion, flees inside and tries to hide. As Marshmallow defends against the attack, two soldiers sneak past him and enter, searching for Elsa in an attempt to kill her as per the Duke's orders, defying Hans' orders to not harm her. They soon corner her, and Elsa is fearful at first, but eventually, after becoming very provoked, uses her abilities against the two, willingly, and comes close to killing them, completely furious at the harm they've brought upon her and her home, as well as destroying her vow to keep her powers from harming others. Outside, Marshmallow continues to battle, but Hans brutally injures him and causes him to go plummeting into a chasm to his apparent death, leaving Elsa devoid of protection and allowing Hans and his henchmen access into the castle, where Elsa has gained the upper hand against the Duke's goons. Just as Elsa was about to murder the two, Hans appears and stops her, telling her not to prove she's the monster they believe she is. Elsa settles down a bit at Hans' words, realizing the demon she was becoming and halts her magic. However, one of the soldiers aims his arrow at Elsa, still following the Duke's orders, and just as he is about to shoot her, Hans intervenes, causing the arrow to cut through Elsa's chandelier which then plummets towards the ground. Elsa tries to escape the collision, but is knocked out in the process. Hans and the soldiers then capture her and head back to the kingdom.

Elsa's Imprisonment

No...what have I done?
―Elsa as she looks at the disaster that she has brought to Arendelle
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Elsa's meeting with Hans whilst locked in the dungeon.
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Elsa soon awakens to find herself within the castle dungeon. She tried to move around, but her chains were stuck to the floor. Chained down in shackles, the snow queen finds herself trapped as she looks out the cell's only window, finally witnessing the disaster she's brought upon her former kingdom. Just then, Hans arrives to speak with her. Elsa asks for Anna's whereabouts, but Hans explains she hasn't returned, much to Elsa's concern. The prince then pleads for the queen to end the curse, telling her it'd make things better. but she regretfully denies, telling Hans that she's unable to. With that, Hans takes his leave, just before Elsa begs for freedom, to which Hans claims he'll do what he can. Once he's gone, Elsa's powers suddenly get the better of her chains and are able to destroy the cell, allowing her to escape. Elsa flees the castle and heads back into the fjords to return home, but her fearful emotions cause a deadly blizzard to consume Arendelle, making her retreat that much more difficult, just as Hans learns of her escape. Needing to put an end to the winter, Hans heads out to kill Elsa, believing her death would not only free the kingdom, but earn him praise and admiration, selfishly wanting to rule the land as a beloved king.

By Ice Be Shattered

Your sister is dead! Because of you!
―Hans to Elsa
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Elsa mourning over the death of Anna.
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Meanwhile, with Hans having betrayed Anna and revealing himself to be a ruthless murderer, her curse becomes stronger and her death process is nearly complete. Olaf, however, informs her that Kristoff is the one that truly loves her, and that he's the one she must kiss to save herself. Anna and Olaf retreat to find the mountain man, just as Hans confronts Elsa not too far away. Elsa pleads to be left alone, and asks Hans to take care of Anna for her, to which Hans responds by telling her about the curse she accidentally put upon Anna, and that she died from it despite his efforts to save her. Devastated by the heart wrenching news, Elsa collapses and mourns the death of her sister, ceasing the blizzard and giving Hans the chance to finally eliminate her, as she's now vulnerable. Hans slowly approaches the Snow Queen from behind and draws his sword, ready to decapitate her. However, Anna arrives on the scene, and although she was freezing to death quicker and quicker, she jumps in front of Elsa as her curse takes full effect, turning into an ice statue the second Hans' sword hits, causing him to fall back unconscious just before Anna's last, dying breath is lost.

Elsa recovers and sees her sister's fate, causing her to weep and clutch on to the statue while blaming herself for bringing this upon her. However, Anna's saving Elsa was an act of true love, and thaws her frozen heart, while bringing Anna back to life.

The Great Thaw

I love you.
―Anna to Elsa
Kristoff
The Great Thaw.
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Elsa is overwhelmingly joyous and relieved to see Anna alive and well, in disbelief at how Anna has risked her life to save her. Anna responds by telling Elsa she loves her, and Olaf explains the act of true love was Anna's sacrifice, and that's what thawed her heart. These words from the snowman give Elsa the realization that the curse can be lifted, and that love is the key to doing so. Realizing that love enables her to control her powers, Elsa is able to use this and focuses herself, removing the icy curse from Arendelle and bringing summer back to the kingdom. With peace restored, Elsa rekindles her bond with Anna and is praised by her people for freeing them from the curse, having learned she's far from a monster. She uses her abilities to give Olaf a snow cloud to prevent him from melting.

As Hans struggles to his feet, Kristoff tries to attack Hans, but Anna confronts him instead for his betrayal by berating him for his frozen heart and punching him in the face, so hard that Hans falls off the ship they were standing on, into the water below. Anna and Elsa share another hug again, rekindling their sisterly bond.

After returning to her rightful position as queen of Arendelle, Elsa cuts off trade with Weselton, deports Hans, the Duke and his men for their attempted assassinations, and names Kristoff the Official Arendelle Ice Master and Deliverer. Later, she creates an ice rink in the castle courtyard for the people of Arendelle to enjoy. Elsa declares to Anna that they will never close the castle gates again now that she is finally accepted and makes a pair of ice skates for Anna, and the two sisters join in the celebration of harmony, having the fun they used to share together at long last.

It's a Small World: The Animated Series

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Elsa and Anna make a small cameo in the animated mini-series in the episode "Little Birds, Frost and Pine", happily playing in the winter snow together, building Olaf.

Video Games

Disney INFINITY

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Elsa in Disney INFINITY
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Elsa is included as a playable character in Disney INFINITY. She was released both as a singular figure and with her sister Anna, in a dual Frozen Toy Box pack with two customization Power Discs.

Quests themed around Elsa (and her sister) include:

  • Frozen Hunt - Do you want to build a Snowman? Find and step on 4 buttons hidden around Arendelle to do just that. Watch out for thin ice!
  • Frozen Adventure - Experience an interactive adventure from various scenes of Disney's Frozen movie.
  • Anna's Quest - Arendelle has frozen solid! Go to the mountains and bring Elsa back to her throne so she can undo the spell.
  • Let it Go! - It's the anniversary of Queen Elsa's coronation, but she's missing and the Weselton thugs are causing a ruckus. Help!
  • Olaf's Race - Zoom around a racetrack featuring everybody's favorite snowman, Olaf.

Elsa also has her own exclusive adventure, however, called "Elsa's Slingshot Gallery". The aim of it is to hit targets with your slingshot to get as much points as you can within a certain time limit. Yellow targets yield 1 point while red targets yield 3 points.

Frozen: Free Fall

Elsa appears in Frozen: Free Fall both as a child and adult on various levels along with Anna, Olaf, Kristoff, Sven, Hans and Pabbie. Her special ability is her ice magic, known as 'glacier' in the game.

Disney Parks

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Elsa posing for a photo at Disneyland.
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Anna and Elsa now have meet and greets at Disneyland as well as Disneyland Paris in the winter; they have been making appearances ahead of their movie's release. As of November 2, 2013, the sisters are currently doing daily meet-and-greet sessions in the Norway Pavilion of Epcot. However, on April 20th, Anna and Elsa will be moved to the Magic Kingdom's Princess Fairytale Hall for their permanent meet-and-greet sessions. And due to their popularity, FastPass services will be available. The princess also appear in Disney Festival of Fantasy Parade, in the same park.

In California, Anna and Elsa are featured in a winter themed area of Fantasyland. Also, both princesses are now featured in Disneyland Paris' Disney Magic on Parade, on a float also featuring Olaf.

On October 22, 2013, Anna and Elsa began early meet-and-greet sessions at Disney's Hollywood Studios, though this was temporary because their meet-and-greet location at the Norway Pavilion was unfinished at the time.

In Disney California Adventure, Elsa makes a special appearance in Winter Dreams, the winter themed rendition of the nighttime spectacular World of Color. And during her appearance, she performs "Let it Go". In a similar role, Elsa appears in the Disneyland Paris spectacular, Disney Dreams!.

Elsa is also featured in the Magic Kingdom show, Celebrate the Magic, performing "Let it Go".

My Disney Experience

Queen Elsa can magically create snow and ice. But the love she shares with her sister Anna is the greatest magic of all.

Relationship with Other Characters

Allies

Anna

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Elsa and Anna.
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Since the two were young, Elsa and Anna have always been the best of friends and loved each other dearly. The two enjoyed playing together, and Anna loved it when Elsa used her magic to create a winter wonderland. However, after Elsa accidentally hit Anna with her ice magic and almost killed her, Elsa has been too scared to go near Anna out of fear her powers could harm her again, even when she later became all the family she had left when their parents died. While Elsa's desire to stay away from Anna was out of her love for her, Anna felt distanced from her and constantly tried to reconnect with Elsa without understanding or knowing about Elsa's powers, as the troll king removed all magic including memories of magic to revive her. During the coronation party, the two seemed to temporarily reconnect as they enjoyed themselves and Anna expressed her wish that they could always be close like this. Elsa, caught up in the moment, sincerely agrees but knows why they must keep their distance and closes herself off again, which they are both saddened by, though Anna was not aware of Elsa's feelings. They also seemed to reconnect by their love of chocolate, after Elsa saying what is that amazing smell and they both sniffed the air to the delight of finding it was chocolate.

When Elsa's powers are revealed to the kingdom after the two got into an argument about Anna's engagement to Hans and how Elsa always shuts everybody out, Elsa runs away and Anna, knowing it wasn't Elsa's fault as she was the one who pushed Elsa, volunteered to get her back, saying "She's my sister. She would never hurt me." When she got to Elsa's castle, she tried to get Elsa to come back home with her and fix the eternal winter Elsa had cast on the kingdom together, but couldn't persuade her as Elsa didn't know how to fix what she had done and was too afraid of, and distressed at, hurting others. Elsa's negative emotions explode unwillingly, striking Anna's heart. Nonetheless, Anna's love for Elsa prevailed and proved to be the thing Anna held most dear to her, shown best when she chose to not get saved by Kristoff but instead ran in front of Elsa to protect her from Hans' killing strike, freezing to solid ice and sacrificing her own life in the process.

This demonstrates just how deep Anna's love for Elsa is and that no matter what happens, their sisterly bond is the most important thing to her. This act of true love is also ultimately what saves Anna from Elsa's curse, as Olaf makes the connection that Anna's actions were an act of true love, which teaches Elsa how to finally thaw winter and control her powers, allowing her to restore her bond with Anna. Elsa and Anna truly care and love each other and while Elsa was too scared of hurting Anna to get close to her and Anna was at times somewhat pushy and insistent on helping Elsa (which could at times make things worse) the two will always love each other and do anything for the sake of the other's happiness.

Olaf

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Elsa recreating Olaf.
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Olaf was based on a snowman Anna and Elsa created when they were young and has a powerful connection with Elsa, as he is not only her living creation, but also the physical representation of Elsa's happiness and desire to be with her sister again like they were when they were children. Thus, Olaf's desire for summer is Elsa's desire to rekindle the warmth between her and Anna. When Elsa first saw Olaf alive, she was surprised, as she did not know she had imbued her beloved snowman with life. At first Elsa was happy, as he reminded her of the fun that her powers once brought the two sisters, but this also brought back the painful memory of how the fun times came to a tragic end when Anna was hurt by Elsa's powers. As a result, she tried to isolate herself from Olaf and Anna again to keep them away from her and her powers, but due to the latter's persistence, she had to use force by creating Olaf's "brother" Marshmallow to throw them out of her castle. However, Elsa saw the error of her ways when she realized how powerful her bond with Anna was, as Olaf was the one to realize that Anna's act of true love for Elsa thawed her frozen heart. Thus, Elsa learned that love was the answer to ending Arendelle's winter. When Olaf started to melt, due to the return of summer, Elsa saved his life by rebuilding the almost-puddle snowman and giving him his own flurry to keep him cool. In the end, he enjoys summer and helps Anna to skate with Elsa, much like when the three skated together in their earlier years, showing that Olaf loves both the sisters.

Kristoff

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Kristoff's new sled as Anna explains that Elsa promoted him to Arendelle's Official Ice Master.
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Although she had little interaction with Kristoff (including after she struck Anna in the heart with her powers, and at the ending), it is enough to show that although she is scared and wary to see him at first, as she is with pretty much everyone, she soon comes to accept him after knowing what he did for her sister. When Kristoff attempted to confront Hans for trying to kill the two sisters, Elsa seems touched by Kristoff's protectiveness over her and Anna. She even gives him the title "Official Arendelle Ice Master and Deliverer", so he can be with Anna. In the storybook app of the film, it is revealed that Elsa approved of Anna and Kristoff's love for each other.

Pabbie

Whilst Elsa and Pabbie's interaction was brief, the wise troll's words of wisdom stayed with the Snow Queen for the years leading up to her adulthood and coronation. The encounter between the two proved to be some of the most influential of Elsa's life, eventually leading to her isolation and understanding that, while her powers are indeed a beautiful gift, it can be very powerful and dangerous, should her control over them be lacking in any way. However, like the King and Queen, Pabbie's words weren't completely understood, as the troll stated fear would be Elsa's enemy. Whilst Elsa and her family believed it was the fear others would have, Pabbie truly meant Elsa's fear, as her emotions control her abilities. Being somewhat ancient, and highly mystical, Pabbie also holds the most knowledge and understanding over Elsa's mysterious powers, more so than any other character in the film.

Marshmallow

Unlike Olaf, who was created by Elsa's happiness, Marshmallow was born out of Elsa's desire to be alone, and his existence exhibits a hostile side to Elsa's nature. Elsa, fearing confrontation, had reluctantly created him when Anna refused to leave her even after she was accidentally harmed by Elsa. Although Marshmallow had excessively forced Anna and her friends out, he returned to Elsa's side loyally and took his role as her defender quite seriously. He had even tried his best to defend her when the castle, and by extension Elsa within it, came under attack. Elsa had watched Marshmallow fight the invaders, possibly out of concern that Marshmallow would not be able to keep them away from the castle. However, as other guards had swarmed into the castle and forced her to retreat, Marshmallow risked his own life to prevent other soldiers from getting in, but had fallen into the gorge in the process.

Enemies

Hans

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Hans confronting a saddened and scared Elsa about her accidental winter curse on Arendelle.
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Originally, it was Hans' plan to marry the soon-to-be queen regnant of Arendelle so he could rule the kingdom with her by his side. However, he gave up on the idea when he got word of her dislike of being near people. It was unknown to him that she was doing this to keep her subjects safe from her unstable winter magic. He did not learn of her abilities until she and Anna got into an argument about Anna and Hans' engagement. The instability of her emotions caused her to inadvertently reveal her powers to everyone at the ball. From then on, as each event unfolded, he had to constantly change his plan to become King of Arendelle. From making the Queen seem like a monster in the eyes of the public then killing her to end her accidental winter curse and become a hero of the people. His pursuit of the crown would be complete without having to marry Anna. There is also how he backed up Anna's claim about Elsa's innocence and dismissed the Duke's about the queen being a monster when she ran away and accidently unleashed a winter curse on the kingdom, when her powers were revealed, this was done to further get into Anna's good graces. This also required getting into Queen Elsa's good graces by stopping her from killing the Duke of Weselton's thugs after they provoked her into an angered state and appearing to show mercy towards her, when it was ultimately to get her to let her guard down for a chance to kill her with the chandelier, and locked her up in the castle dungeon and chained her down in shackles, then again after he lied to her about Anna already being killed by her accidental curse when chasing her out to the frozen fjords. However, Elsa was saved from his treachery by Anna and the plot for usurpation was foiled.

The Duke of Weselton

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The Duke meeting Anna and Elsa.
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Originally the Duke of Weselton was polite to Elsa even offering her a dance at the coronation, but this was all to exploit Arendelle's riches in trade. When her powers are revealed to everyone, he is the first to call her a monster and continued to believe so, even though Anna and Hans tried to reassure him that she was not and was just scared. When Hans goes off to find Anna, the Duke volunteers his henchmen and tells them that if they encounter Queen Elsa, they are to kill her, which they failed to do so. When Hans told him and the other Dignitaries (as one of his lies) that Anna had died from Elsa's magic, the Duke showed some sadness over Anna's alleged death and was the first to say that there was no doubt that Elsa was a monster and that they were all in danger. At the end of the film, Elsa cuts off all ties with Weselton due to the Duke's persecution of her.

Songs

Memorable quotes

  • "You okay, Anna. I got you."
  • "Conceal. Don't feel."
  • "You look beautiful."
  • "Thank you, only I don't dance... But my sister does."
  • "You can't marry a man you just met."
  • "Anna, what do you know about true love?"
  • "You asked for my blessing, but my answer is no."
  • "The party's over, close the gates."
  • "Give me my glove!"
  • "Then leave."
  • "Enough, Anna."
  • "Please, just stay away from me! Stay away!"
  • "I never knew what I was capable of."
  • "You don't have to apologize."
  • "I'm just trying to protect you."
  • "No, Anna, I belong here. Alone. Where I can be who I am without hurting anybody."
  • "No, I can't, I... I don't know how!"
  • "How?! What power do you have to stop this winter? To stop me?!"
  • "Yes, you are."
  • "Don't feel, don't feel...don't feel!"
  • "Get it together... Control it!"
  • "But I'm a danger to Arendelle. Get Anna!"
  • "Don't you see? I can't."
  • "You sacrificed yourself for me?"
  • "Love will thaw. Love... Of course! Love."
  • "Oh Olaf, hang on little guy."
  • "Are you ready?"
  • "We are never closing them again."
  • (As a child) "Ready?"

Reception

ABS-CBN writer Fred Hawson described Elsa as "an incredible character with a unique and interesting predicament because of the powers she possessed" and expressed the opinion that Frozen should have focused more on her rather than Anna. Deepanjana Pal of First Post (India) praised the decision to rewrite Elsa as a protagonist and said, "Elsa is no evil, frosty vision of twisted and toxic maternity like the original Snow Queen. She's a young woman in difficult circumstances, frightened, trying to understand her abilities and burdened by expectation and convention. It's easy to sympathise with her and marvel at her ability when she builds her spectacular castle in the mountains. Next to her, Anna is very much a child who needs to grow up and she does in the course of the film." Charlotte O'Sullivan from the London Evening Standard was more critical of the character, saying that she "resembles one of those brittle mentors on The X Factor. Purple eye shadow, tiny waist, kitten heels".

Magdalena Lachowicz, a film critic for The Heights, opinionated that Elsa's relationship with Anna was the most important part of the movie, and Stephen Holden of The New York Times liked that, in departure from traditional Disney formula, it was a sibling's love rather than romantic love that was able to "thaw the icy heart of the frightened Elsa". Tony Hicks of San Jose Mercury News wrote, "[Anna's] confusion and Elsa's anguish as she shuts herself away from the world -- and her sister -- is palatable."

Idina Menzel also received praise for her singing, and Amon Warmann of Cine Vue said her voice "positively soars in these musical ballads". Reviewers frequently focused on her performance of "Let it Go", described by Entertainment Weekly's Marc Snetiker as "an incredible anthem of liberation" in which Elsa decides to no longer fear her powers. Matt DeTruck of The Rochester City Newspaper wrote, "Menzel should be credited for providing as much power and passion to this performance as she did in her most famous role."

Gallery

Wiki
The Disney Wiki has a collection of images and media related to Elsa the Snow Queen.

Videos

Trivia

  • In all the songs she sings in, her powers are present too. ("For the First Time in Forever" - freezing jewelry box and candle-stick; "Let it Go" - creating Ice Palace and Olaf; "For the First Time in Forever (Reprise)" - accidentally freezing Anna's heart.)
  • Elsa's name (a variant of Elizabeth) is Germanic for "noble". It could also be a reference to Eliza, the heroine of another one of Hans Christian Andersen's fairy tales, The Wild Swans.
  • Elsa is 21 years old by the time of her coronation, according to Jennifer Lee, the Junior Novelization, and the age difference between her and Anna is 3 years.
  • Elsa may have been inspired by classic actress and the former Princess of Monaco, Grace Kelly. It should also be noted that director Alfred Hitchcock once described the cool and composed actress as a "snow-covered volcano." This comment may very well have inspired Elsa's passion, as seen in her 11 o'clock number.
  • When Elsa joins the Disney Princess line-up, she'll not only replace Cinderella as the oldest Disney Princess, but she'll be the only Disney Princess to not be a teenager.
  • Walt Disney had plans to adapt "The Snow Queen" in the 1940's, but after the character of the Snow Queen proved to be too hard to bring down to earth, the project was shelved. Oddly enough, during the 1950's, Disney films often used larger-than-life villainesses such as Lady Tremaine and Maleficent.
  • Elsa is the first Disney Princess who is the deuteragonist to have a solo of her own. Jasmine does not count since her solo was removed from her feature film.
  • Despite the fact Elsa controls ice and snow, which are both frozen forms of water, Elsa herself is never seen getting wet by water like the other Princesses have, which includes her younger sister Anna.
  • Elsa will be the first true blonde-haired, blue-eyed Disney Princess, and the only blue-eyed Disney Princess to not have red or reddish hair (her sister and Cinderella have strawberry-blonde hair while Ariel and Merida are the only true redheads).
  • As the oldest sister, Elsa has one braid in her hair, while her younger sister Anna, has two.
  • Elsa's coronation hairstyle is the same as her mother's hairstyle.
  • Elsa's favorite food is chocolate,a trait she shares with her sister, Anna.
  • Elsa's elegance and quiet sophistication may have been inspired by Briar Rose.
  • She is the second Disney Princess so far to wear transparent footwear, after Cinderella.
  • Anna and Elsa will be the fourth and fifth Disney Princesses to have their films take place in the 1800s. Cinderella, Ariel and Rapunzel all live in the 19th century as well.
  • Elsa bears some similarities to Merida.
    • Both feel bad for their actions they made (Merida in turning her mom into a bear and Elsa in trapping Arendelle in an eternal winter).
    • Neither had a romantic partner at the end of their films.
    • Both know how to defend themselves if attacked.
    • Both have younger biological siblings (Merida with her triplet brothers and Elsa with Anna).
    • Both wore capes.
    • Both had the topic of marriage as a source of conflict towards a family member (For Elsa it was against Anna marrying Hans whom she had just met, and for Merida it was against her mother marrying her off to one of the princes of the allying tribes), both which resulted in an argument.
  • Contrary to how most adaptations portray her, this version of the Snow Queen is not a villain, since the Snow Queen in the original fairy tale was not intended to be evil. Because of this, the real villain of the film is someone else (the two antagonists, Hans and the Duke of Weselton). Also, the fairy tale involved an evil troll (implied to represent Satan) building a mirror which he will use to turn everyone evil, only to accidentally smash it in the process, and one of the shards ending up hitting Kai. However, the Queen's usual villain portrayal may have been due to the fact that she is either merged with Satan or have Satan removed altogether as children would not want to hear about the Devil in a fairy tale. The Queen was based on a woman Hans Christian Andersen personally hated for being shrewd and distant.
  • Elsa may have been based on Kai, from the original "Snow Queen" fairy tale, who after ends up being kidnapped by the title Queen after he is unexpectedly stabbed by one of the broken shards of a magic mirror created by an evil troll which he was supposed to use to corrupt people and becoming cold and resentful, therefore prompting Gerda to try and rescue him, combined with the Snow Queen herself. In some adaptations, Kai and Gerda are actually siblings.
    • If that is the case, Elsa is the first Disney Princess to be based on a female and a male character from the source material.
  • Elsa, and the Snow Queen from the 2005 anime of the same name are the only two incarnations of the character to be portrayed as heroic characters.
  • At one point, Elsa was going to be the main character, where she is the cold-hearted queen of her own kingdom who despised anyone around her, freezing anyone who crosses her path, and just wanted to be alone until she was softened by a kind-hearted man.
  • At another point, Elsa was going to be portrayed as a villain when the film was going to be a straightforward adaptation of "The Snow Queen", where she and Anna are unrelated, and she and Kai were separate characters. Eventually, they decided to make the Snow Queen and "Gerda" sisters, to give the Queen depth. She would still be a villain but would ultimately reform at the end, and after the song "Let it Go", which was supposed to be her villain song, was written, Elsa's role was retconned so that she also took over the role of Kai and making her a heroine, as her motivations of self-acceptance and self-control were deemed too benign for villain to have. During various rewrites, Elsa's personality was originally very similar to that of Denahi's from Brother Bear, where instead of being caring, vulnerable and misunderstood, and constantly fearing her powers and blaming everything on herself, she would have been very arrogant, shrewd and resentful, and constantly angry for holding her powers back and constantly blaming everything on everyone including Anna, and would have made her the first villain to be biologically related to a Princess (much like what once happened to Ursula). Her evolving concept designs even reinforce this: her first concept art (made in the early 2000s), depicted her with an apparently sinister design not unlike Jadis the White Witch and appearing less humanlike, while her final design gave her a more angelic appearance. Also, Hans, the film's real villain, was created very late in development for this reason.
  • Elsa appears to be the ultimate inversion of the evil queen stereotype. While she shows some antagonistic traits and behavior, such as the ability to produce dangerous magic spells, having an unusually voluptuous design, and having her song "Let it Go" sound like a typical villain song despite her not singing about anything with malicious intent, she is actually good-hearted but misunderstood, and such behavior was most likely out of self-defense, and has not malicious intentions whatsoever. In fact, the only negative traits applied to her is fear and isolation, which in comparison to most traits of the stereotype, are the least malicious. She is even going to be the 13th Disney Princess, which is appropriate since 13 is often considered unlucky, (this also includes how many years she has isolated herself from the public and Anna), and the film was released in 2013.
  • Elsa's design resembles that of Queen Jadis the White Witch, as they are both females with ice-based powers. However, unlike Jadis, Elsa is not really evil, just misguided.
  • Idina Menzel, Elsa's voice actress, also originated the role of Elphaba from the musical Wicked (a musical that Melissa Fahn was in as well, as an understudy actress for the main actress that played Glinda). It should also be noted that both Elphaba and Elsa appear to have similar motivations, as do Anna and Glinda.
    • During Elsa's song "Let it Go", she faces the rising sun in the east meaning her ice palace is found in the western sky. This could be a direct reference to the lyrics, "So if you care to find me, look to the western sky" from Wicked's "Defying Gravity".
    • During "For The First Time in Forever (Reprise)", Elsa sings 'Yes I'm alone but I'm alone and free!' Which is very similar to Elphaba singing 'And if I'm flying solo, at least I'm flying free!' in her famous song "Defying Gravity".
    • Like Elphaba, Elsa runs away to live in a castle alone.
    • Elsa is considered a monster by everyone just like Elphaba is considered to be in Wicked.
  • Originally, Elsa's decision to flee the kingdom was because of an ancient prophecy claiming that Arendelle could one day be destroyed by a terrible winter, and since Elsa, who can control ice and snow, did not want to associate herself with this prophecy, ends up running away on her coronation day, only to end up fulfilling it instead. This story idea was not completely abandoned for the movie, however.
  • The scene where Elsa fires her ice magic at the camera from the top of a mountain does not appear in the actual film. This is most likely to make so it looks like Elsa curses her kingdom, thus giving an illusion that she is the main antagonist.
  • Elsa may also be similar to Wreck-It Ralph as the two are both misunderstood "villains" who were cast out by their own kind causing them to abandon their roles, and a sibling figure to go and bring them back (Felix to Ralph, Anna to Elsa), to prevent a bigger catastrophe from threatening their home, and even feeling bad for it upon returning for the first time.
    • Interestingly enough, Frozen writer, Jennifer Lee, once made a tweet jokingly suggesting that Elsa and Wreck-It Ralph would make a good couple during the 2013 D23 Expo.
    • Elsa is also similar to Vanellope, since they have been cast out from their kingdoms and made a temporary home in the mountains. Their unique ability is the reason why they were initially shunned, and both longed to lose this ability in Vanellope's case, to control it in Elsa's case. Finally, the villains both attempted to kill them.
    • Both of the films feature villainous characters voiced by Alan Tudyk.
    • Elsa also bears some resemblance to Rosalina from the video game Super Mario Galaxy, and later games that featured her as well, such as Super Mario 3D World, which was released the same day Frozen was released in a single theater. Rosalina bears similarities to Elsa in design; platinum blonde hair, blue eyes, an off-the-shoulder, light blue gown, and pale skin.
  • Elsa is the fourth Disney Princess to possess magical abilities, the first being Ariel, the second being Pocahontas and the third being Rapunzel. However Ariel and Pocahontas seem to use their magic unknowingly while both Rapunzel and Elsa have control over their magic.
    • Also like Rapunzel, both were locked away because of their magic powers. Although Rapunzel was taken by her main antagonist and locked away for Gothel's own purposes, while Elsa locked away herself for her sister's and the kingdom's safety. It should also be noted that the two have power over elemental opposites; Rapunzel representing summer and warmth, Elsa representing winter and cold.
      • In the Disney universe, Elsa and Anna artistically and thematically coincide with an aspect of nature, as did Rapunzel: Elsa (the cold moon) which stands alone and half in darkness, and Anna (the warm sun) which spreads over everyone (hence her optimism and positive outlook, enabling her to make friends easily). This can also be noted, for in the beginning of the film, Anna explains how the sky is awake when there was a bright moon, therefore she is. Even though the two are different, they complete each other, hence the film's ending of sisterly love saving the day instead of romantic love.
  • Since the Disney Princesses were designed to have all the Princesses unaware of each other's presence (however this is debatable given their interactions and scenes together in House of Mouse, at the Walt Disney World Resort and in the first Kingdom Hearts game), Elsa and Anna are the first and second to know of each other, however this could be since childhood. Ariel and Jasmine were seen together talking in The House of Mouse. Snow White was seen talking to Jasmine and Alice (even though she isn't a princess), along with Aurora talking with Cinderella in Kingdom Hearts. Additionally, Rapunzel has a cameo in the beginning of Frozen meaning she knows about both Elsa and Anna.
  • Anna and Elsa are the first two of all the Disney Princesses to be siblings and come from the same film, although Ariel has 6 older sisters (Ariel's sisters aren't included in the Disney Princess franchise).
  • Elsa is the second deuteragonist in 22 years to join the franchise, the first being Jasmine.
  • Elsa is the third official Disney Princess to become a queen, the first being Ariel, the second being Belle. Through Ariel and Belle become queens after marrying the princes, and in the franchise they both still remain as princesses, Elsa becomes a queen because of her parents' deaths, who were the rulers of Arendelle.
  • Elsa is the second Princess created by Disney to ever inherit her parents' throne and become a (ruling) queen, since she lost both of her parents over the course of the film (hers and Anna's parents are both killed in an accident at sea), after Kida. Snow White, Aurora, Jasmine and Rapunzel would inherit the throne, as they are the only children of their parents and thus the only heirs. These four Princesses would then become active rulers of their homelands. Additionally, since Snow White's family is dead, she does inherit her father's kingdom despite the fact there is no coronation.The other Disney Princesses are likely to become queen consort (Cinderella, and Ariel) or are not in line for any throne at all (Belle's Prince Adam seemed not to be in charge of anything but his castle, Pocahontas' father was chosen, Mulan had no royal ties at all and it seems unlikely Naveen would be King of Maldonia considering he happily settled down in New Orleans). Also, Merida after being given the choice of either marrying Young MacGuffin, Young MacIntosh and/or Wee Dingwall (originally she ended up with the first above) eventually decided that she didn't want to marry any of them since she realized that she doesn't need a husband anyway. Anna, of course, is unlikely to become a queen as mentioned above.
    • A queen consort (also empress consort), by contrast, is the wife of a reigning king (or emperor). A queen consort usually shares her husband’s rank and holds the feminine equivalent of the king’s monarchical titles. Historically, queens consort do not share the king regnant’s political and military powers unless he or a law grants them to her. A queen regnant is a queen in her own right with all the powers of a monarch, usually becoming queen by inheriting the throne on the death of the previous monarch (i.e. Elsa and Anna's parents); they have been far fewer in number than queens consort.
  • Other similarities to Kida include the fact that both Kida and Elsa have very fair hair (white and platinum blonde, respectively) and blue eyes (though Kida isn't Caucasian), the fact that they have water and crystal-based magic powers (Kida's powers are based on the Orichalcum crystals associated with Atlantis, while Elsa's are based on ice and snow), that both are queens of a kingdom whose name begins with "A", and both once used giant monsters to impede the heroes' progress (Kida had the Leviathan, while Elsa had Marshmallow). The only difference is that Elsa is Caucasian while Kida isn't, Kida spending most of her film as a princess and only becoming queen at the end, while Elsa was only a princess at the beginning and being a queen for the rest of the film, as well as the fact that Kida ended up with her own king (Milo Thatch) while Elsa remained single.
  • Also, Kida and Elsa's films were paired up with the Monsters Inc. films, separated by five months: Atlantis was released five months before the first Monsters Inc., while Frozen was released five months after Monsters University.
  • Rapunzel, Anna and Elsa are the only Princesses that are playable characters in Disney INFINITY. Coincidentally, all three also appear in Frozen (Rapunzel as a cameo for Elsa's coronation ceremony in the beginning of the film).
  • Elsa and Anna are the third and fourth of all the Disney Princesses to be orphans, the first two being Snow White and Cinderella.
  • Elsa is mostly seen wearing blue, while Anna wears green. Blue represents her powers over snow and ice and her sorrow when she is isolated.
  • Anna and Elsa are the 5th and 6th Disney Princesses to be seen as kids in their feature films, the first four being Cinderella, Tiana, Rapunzel and Merida.
Art of Frozen
Concept Art of Elsa and Anna with Elsa having short, spiked black hair. Taken from The Art of Frozen book.
IAmAPrincessAdded by IAmAPrincess
  • Originally, Elsa was going to have dark hair prior to her transformation into the Snow Queen. Her hair was also going to be shorter and pointing upward, making her resemble Periwinkle.
    • The accident with Anna strongly implies that Elsa's hair is platinum blonde because of her powers. It can be assumed that if she hadn't been born with her powers, she probably would have had brunette hair like her mother. Although some concept art show her mother as a blonde.
  • Elsa is similar to Simba from The Lion King, because they were young monarchs who have been blamed by their villains for threatening their kingdoms and running away only to let said villain take over because of their absence. Also, after abandoning their kingdoms, they both start to care less of ruling their kingdoms until one of their allies warns them about something terrible occurring to said kingdom, and their villains blame them for allegedly killing one of their family members they were very close to.(Anna and Mufasa)
  • Elsa is very similar to Beast from Beauty and the Beast, as they are both cursed royalty who were given fierce abilities (though in this case, the Beast was turned hideous and animalistic, Elsa was born with uncontrolled power) and both are misunderstood by the townspeople and referred to as a monster, so they try to avoid the people in fear of their strengths. Both of their film's villains also attempted to kill them (Gaston stabs Beast and almost killed him if he did not revive while Hans almost killed Elsa if Anna did not throw herself in his way.) Ironically, Anna's sacrifice depicts Elsa clutching around her sister's body in a manner similar to Belle's when the Beast died.
  • Elsa is also very similar to Ariel from The Little Mermaid. Both were inspired by the titular characters of their original source material (The Snow Queen, and The Little Mermaid) and both stories were written by Hans Christian Andersen. Both of them crave freedom and no longer want to be suppressed by the rules of their societies. They also each are magical and can control water or some form of water in Elsa's case. Additionally both Elsa and Ariel wear sparkling dresses created by magic that reflect the sun's rays. In the first appearance of these dresses both characters have their arms out stretched and are walking into their new destiny's. Interestingly enough both of those scenes occur just as the sun is rising.
  • When she joins the Disney Princess line-up, she will be the second Disney Princess who does not have a love interest, the first is Merida.
  • Elsa is the fourth Princess to run away from home, after Snow White, Ariel, and Jasmine.
  • Elsa is the fifth princess to have her hair braided, the first being Cinderella, the second being Pocahontas, the third being Rapunzel, and the fourth being Anna. Although, Cinderella, Pocahontas and Rapunzel only wear their hair braided for a brief time.
  • Elsa is the third Disney character to be portrayed by Idina Menzel, the first was Circe, the second was Nancy Tremaine.
  • Elsa is similar to Persephone from Classical Mythology as their absence from their home had led to the coming of winter, and her return resulting in the return of summer.
  • Storm from the X-Men, another Queen (of the fictional African nation of Wakanda) now owned by Disney, shares some things in common with Elsa. In addition to having most of their stories take place while they are women older than 20, they also have similarly-colored hair (Storm's is white while Elsa's is platinum blonde). Most significantly, they both have similar power over ice and snow. The differences are that Storm can also induce non-ice-related atmokinetic effects such as rain while Elsa can imbue her snow creations with life, but in both cases their powers are so closely tied to their emotions that they need to remain in constant states of emotional calm to keep from causing atmospheric disaster. Ironically, Storm's design also inspired that of Kida.
  • The gloves Elsa was forced to wear as given by the Trolls prior to her coronation as queen appear to serve as a stand-in for the mirror whose broken shards cause Kai to grow resentful and being kidnapped by the Snow Queen in the original story, with Elsa standing in for Kai.
  • There was a deleted song entitled "We Know Better" which shows young Elsa teaching Anna how to be a princess.
  • Elsa's I Want song is very notable for a Disney Princess for a general I Want song for them represents the Princess wanting a new life, or meeting new people, sometimes seeing new places. Elsa's song "Let it Go" is about her wanting to just to able to be herself and never have to worry about others (as she doesn't want to hurt them).
  • Elsa is one of the few Disney Princesses who has not been seen barefoot. She shares this trait with Snow White, Belle and Merida. However despite the fact she is never seen barefoot several times during the film there are direct shots of her feet she shares this trait with Rapunzel and Wreck-It Ralph.
  • During the song "Let it Go", Elsa discards the three accessories worn during her coronation that she views as restraints: her gloves (what holds her magic back), her cape (her authority over others), and her tiara (her queenly title), which is ultimately found by Marshmallow at the end of the film.
  • Ironically, in the lyrics in her song "Let it Go", she says "You'll never see me cry", but she did cry when Anna has turned into ice crystal and her tears are shown.
    • However, it should be noted that when Elsa sang the line, she meant she won't cry because she's out alone; she's happy, she at last can be herself, by herself.
    • And Anna was the entire reason why Elsa held her powers –– her entire self –– back, and now, after trying so hard to, "conceal, don't feel," she ends up losing the only person she really cares about. Thus, she is heartbroken at the thought of losing the only family member she has left, her best friend, her sister.
    • Even more ironic, Kristoff, who openly announced that he will cry when he was stunned in awe upon witnessing the beauty of Elsa's magically constructed ice palace, never really cried during the movie, or maybe he did not cry to the point that his tear would drop, as if one look closely, Kristoff's eyes were already glittering with tears and was halted when Sven attempted to walk across the icy stair bridge that clearly was not meant for hoofed visitors, which to Kristoff's distraction, tried to resolve.
  • Elsa is similar to Periwinkle:
    • Both have very fair hair - Peri's is white and Elsa's is platinum blonde.
    • Both have a small bang down their forehead.
    • Both have power over ice and snow.
    • Both have a sister (Anna and Tinker Bell). Their sisters are the main protagonists of both movies respectively.
  • Elsa, along with Daisy Duck and Megara, is one of few Disney heroines to sport eye shadow.
  • Elsa is also similar to Mirana the White Queen from Alice in Wonderland (2010) as they are both pale-skinned, fair-haired queens who never intend to hurt their subjects.
  • It is also stated in the book A Sister More Like Me that Elsa loves geometry. This is shown when she uses her knowledge of geometry to create her ice palace.
  • The scene where Elsa and Anna were playing in the Great Hall, which was made into a winter wonderland with Elsa's winter magic, may also be a hint towards the ending, when after being accepted by the citizens and visitors for her magical nature, she turns the courtyard into an ice rink, even asking if they are ready, being only slightly different between the two times: "Ready?" as a child, and "Are you ready?" as an adult.
    • The Great Hall is also where Anna learns about Elsa's winter magical nature once again, along with the citizens and the visitors. While as children it would be a happy experience, as adults it would be a terrifying experience for the citizens, visitors, Anna and more importantly for Elsa.
  • The vision Pabbie shows Elsa about her abilities seems to hint what would happen in the future. The image of the adult Elsa in her Snow Queen state, her magic and the people in blue appears to hint the citizens of Arendelle and its visitors accepting her for her beautiful winter magic which is controlled with love (the ending), but when her magic and the people attacking Snow Queen Elsa in red hints that once her powers, controlled by fear, are revealed to the public, they will become afraid of her, see as a monster, and then some will even try to kill her or have her killed (Hans, the Duke of Weselton and his thugs).
  • Ironically, her and Anna's film was released during an unusually cold winter, causing fans to joke about Elsa causing that winter.
  • Because of her abilities, Elsa is considerably one of the most powerful Disney characters; arguably equal in power to Maleficent from Sleeping Beauty.

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Frozen
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Film: Frozen

Video games: Olaf's Quest | Frozen: Free Fall | Disney INFINITY

Books: Frozen: The Essential Guide | The Art of Frozen | Frozen (Big Golden Book) | Frozen (Little Golden Book) | A Sister More Like Me | Big Snowman, Little Snowman | Anna’s Act of Love/Elsa’s Icy Magic

Attractions: World of Color | Disney Dreams! | Celebrate the Magic

Characters: Anna | Elsa the Snow Queen | Kristoff | Hans | Olaf | Sven | The Duke of Weselton | Pabbie | Marshmallow | The Duke of Weselton's Bodyguards | The King and Queen of Arendelle | The Trolls | Bulda | Cliff | Oaken | Sitron | Wolves | Kai and Gerda | The Dignitaries | Castle Guards | Arendelle Citizens

Locations: Arendelle | Elsa's Ice Palace | The Southern Isles | Weselton | Arendelle Castle | Valley of the Living Rock | Arendelle Chapel | Wandering Oaken's Trading Post and Sauna | The North Mountain

Songs: Vuelie | Frozen Heart | Do You Want to Build a Snowman? | For the First Time in Forever (Reprise) | Love is an Open Door | Let it Go | Reindeer(s) Are Better Than People | In Summer | Fixer Upper

Deleted Songs: Love Can't Be Denied | We Know Better | More Than Just The Spare | Life's Too Short (Reprise) | Spring Pageant | You're You | Reindeer(s) Remix

Objects: Hans' Sword | Kristoff's Sled

Other: Frozen (Original Motion Picture Soundtrack) | Ice Hotel


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Start a Discussion Discussions about Elsa the Snow Queen

  • For crying out loude everyone He tried to kill them.

    136 messages
    • I'm gay considering it the same as incest is so WRONG
    • SirLucas wrote:Weirdly, I ship Helsa... You do? Well, I ship Hanna.
  • Ideas for Frozen sequels

    60 messages
    • @Frozenfan15 I agree, whatever the story may be, it has to be relatable and have a good life lesson to be learned at the end of it, just like ...
    • Elsa should get the option to become normal and maybe even take that option, lik ereal gloves that can actually contain her powers but eventua...
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