I used Disney’s latest heroine film, Frozen (2013, dir. Chris Buck & Jennifer Lee) as the main focus for my dissertation. The lingering question was how to defend the repeated body type through two completely opposite characters. Below are some citations and notes that I found helpful for the essay.
‘For Elsa’s cape, they want to have a crisp, almost unrealistic triangle shape to it.’ (Wayne Unten by Charles Solomon, The Art of Frozen, p.42)
Throughout character development concept art, Elsa’s character has a crispness/sharpness to her. Edgy almost.
‘I love Elsa, because we can make her cold and distant, but our hearts will still go out to her. We’ll know she’s living in a prison she can’t share with anybody.’ (Chris Williams by Charles Solomon, Art of Frozen, p. 42)
‘Michael Giaimo used the word panache to describe the design sense of Frozen, and that’s Elsa to a T, stylish, original, and confident. (…). Elsa makes a statement. She embodies many of the challenges for simulation team Frozen. Strong, sleek shapes, that have purpose and clarity and motion, while accenting and supporting the characters physical and emotional performance.’ (Keith Wilson by Charles Solomon, The Art of Frozen, 2013)
A concept drawing of Elsa shows her in front view, holding her arms hanging towards the ground in a triangular shape. Her cape falls from her slender shoulders and spread wide and geometric onto the ground. Her shoes are built up of the triangular pattern of snow flakes, with a pointy tip, matching the patterns of her cape. Her chin has a crisp finish to it. Her hair carries sharp edges, but is conformed within a circular path. Her hair due takes shape of a triangular pointing downwards. (illustration from The Art of Frozen, p. 47).
‘They both shared a high level of performance and appeal, and yet each sister required subtle refinement to ensure their distinctive personalities emerged.’ Joy Johnson, character technical director (The Art of Frozen, p. 48)
‘Elsa has matured into a beauty whose distant mien heightens her loveliness. Since she was a little girl, Elsa has been groomed for the day she would assume the throne.’ (Solomon, The Art of Frozen, p. 109)
‘In contrast to the open, straightforward Anna, Elsa begins as a repressed character, forced to conceal who she really is.’ (Solomon, The Art of Frozen, p. 109)