Who knew that the best holiday gift Disney could give itself was turning its back on its past?
Last November's Frozen flipped the script on the passive-princess protagonists and happily-ever-after-in-marriage storylines that have become synonymous with the Disney brand. And Big Mouse's referendum on itself has paid off handsomely. Subverting a 19th-century tale for 21st-century audiences didn't just garner a record-breaking hit for the animation studio, but revealed that viewers of all ages still want animated films with soaring arias and physical humor -- they just also want different kinds of stories about girls and women. (And stories about girls and women period, because duh.)
Here's how much audiences worldwide can't get enough of Anna and Elsa:
--Frozen has grossed more than $1 billion (marking the first time this has happened with a woman director) and is en route to taking Toy Story 3's place as the highest-grossing Disney movie of all time
--It has become the 13th-highest grossing film ever released
--It sold 3.2 million DVDs on the first day of release
--The Frozen soundtrack has topped the Billboard chart six weeks in a row
--The Frozen soundtrack has been played 100 million times on Spotify