After its release, ‘Frozen‘ quickly became one of the most popular Disney properties. Audiences worldwide fell in love with the story as quickly as it would take Olaf to melt in the warm weather. As the children were singing along to the movies’ brilliant musical numbers, there was one question many fans weren’t ready to let go of when exactly do the movies take place? Today, we answer that question & many more.
The timeline of the ‘Frozen’ movies is fairly straightforward
In ‘Frozen,’ the shipwreck where Elsa and Anna’s parents die is marked as 1840. Three years later, Frozen is set in July 1843. This is supported by the Roman numerals seen in the movie.
However, there’s a complication. A flashback scene in both ‘Frozen’ and ‘Frozen 2’ shows the shipwreck, suggesting an overlap in their timelines. Considering that Agnarr read ‘The Little Mermaid’ as a child, released in 1837, it hints that the events in ‘Frozen’ may be set several years or even decades after 1840.
The end of ‘Frozen 2’ features a camera, hinting at a late 1860s or early 1870s timeframe. This aligns with the growing use of cameras in public life during that era. The main ‘Frozen’ movies are set three years apart, with ‘Frozen 2’ likely occurring in the late 1860s or early 1870s.
As for the side stories, Olaf’s Frozen Adventure could be in December 1843, or the first year the castle’s gates were open again. ‘Frozen Fever’ happens almost a year later, on Anna’s nineteenth birthday in 1844.
But as we’ve already mentioned before, we have the Roman numerals as a reference. The first movie takes place in 1843 and the second 3 years later.
‘Frozen’ movies take place in Arendelle
Both ‘Frozen’ movies take place in Arendelle, the kingdom was constructed from bits of Norway, and Arendelle draws inspiration from various Norwegian elements.
The kingdom borrows its name from Arendal, a southern Norwegian port, while its architecture mimics that of Bergen, a city nestled in Norway’s western fjords. Arendelle’s buildings mirror the dragestil, or dragon style that easily reminds viewers of Viking-era structures like the wooden Heddal Church.
Norwegian influences are also reflected in the characters’ attire, particularly Anna’s costumes, resembling modern Norwegian bunads, inspired by traditional clothing. The film accurately depicts the Sami people’s attire, notably the gákti.
Further affirming Norway as the real-life Arendelle, Norse runes and symbols appear in both movies. They adorn a book in the first film, and gravestones in the second, with the poster of ‘Frozen 2’ showcasing a Norse vegvsir, a compass aligning with the film’s themes.
Symbols aren’t the only cultural import; trolls, common in Norwegian folklore, play a significant role in Anna and Elsa’s journey. These magical beings, rooted in Norse tales, reside in familial groups in the mountains, sometimes disguised as rocks.
In sum, despite never explicitly stated, the Frozen movies unmistakably unfold in a Norwegian-inspired setting in the fictional kingdom of Arendelle.
What about the third and fourth ‘Frozen’ movie?
A few days ago, Disney released a statement that ‘Frozen 3’ and ‘Frozen 4’ are in active development, surprising fans who really aren’t used to Disney hits getting an entire multiple-installments franchise.
If the second two movies are anything like the first two movies, we can expect the story of the third installment to pick up several years after the events of the second installment and take place i Arendelle as well.
We don’t know specific related to the plot, but we’re going to update this as soon as we have more info.
What is ‘Frozen’ franchise based on?
‘The Snow Queen,’ originally a dark Hans Christian Andersen fairy tale from 1845, loosely inspired the ‘Frozen’ films. Disney’s adaptation retains elements from the original story but with a different take.
The central theme of growing up, taken from Andersen’s work, explores sacrifice and the transition from childhood innocence to adult uncertainty. In the original tale, protagonists Gerda and Kay face a mature allegory as Gerda strives to rescue Kay from the enchantment of the Snow Queen.
‘The Snow Queen,’ symbolic of femininity, mystery, and danger, lures Kay into a spell that erases his memories and emotions. Gerda, in her quest to save him, must give up everything. However, Kay, under the influence of Glass Splinters, remains uninterested in rescue, forever distorting his perception of love and beauty.
While Andersen’s tale is dark, Disney skillfully incorporates select elements, turning the adult-themed allegory into a heartwarming story that captivates both children and adults.
Have something to add? Let us know in the comments below!