One of the most frequent questions asked about the Disney Princess franchise is about the two leading ladies from Frozen: are Elsa and Anna official Disney Princesses? The answer is a bit more complicated than you might think!
Elsa & Anna are Disney Princesses
The first point to establish is that both sisters are Disney royalty: Elsa is a real Disney princess turned queen, and Anna is a real Disney princess. They are born royalty, princesses of Arendelle. So there’s no doubt that they are legitimate Disney princesses.
Are Elsa & Anna Official Disney Princesses?
Princess characters from Disney/Pixar productions are not automatically made into official Disney Princesses. The powers that be determine if a character should be included, and then there is an official coronation ceremony. There has been no ceremony, or announcement of an upcoming ceremony, so no, Elsa and Anna are not official Disney Princesses.
Why Aren’t Elsa & Anna Real Disney Princesses?
First, let’s look at what Disney says about their official princess lineup. At one point (no longer), the Disney Princess website said:
The franchise currently comprises eleven [Note – now twelve] female protagonists from ten different Walt Disney Animation Studios films and one Pixar film who are either royal by birth, royal by marriage, or considered a “princess” due to their significant portrayal of heroism in their film.
Most of the unofficial Disney Princesses do not join the line-up either because marketing is not successful, their film’s box office gross did not fare well, or they are too young.
The Princesses to be featured in the line were chosen from classic Disney films. The characters were not chosen specifically for their royal titles, but rather for how well they fit into what Disney executives deemed “the Princess mythology”.
That’s a very interesting summary, but it doesn’t help us much when considering Elsa and Anna. Their marketing was incredibly successful, their film’s box office gross fared extremely well, and they’re of reasonable age. This, plus the fact that they are born royalty, and they commit acts of heroism, means they should of course be included.
I think, though, that Frozen was just too successful. By keeping the characters solely as part of the Frozen franchise, Disney can continue to capitalize on that success. Should the Frozen fever eventually die down, they can induct Elsa and Anna as official Disney Princesses at any time.
Who is an Official Disney Princess?
For a full breakdown of official and unofficial Disney Princesses, see my guide to Disney royalty!