Disney’s ‘Frozen 2’ Thrills Sami People in Northern Europe

By NTD Newsroom

Disney’s “Frozen 2” is generating excitement among Scandinavia’s indigenous Sami people, whose culture the movie features.

The Sami are an indigenous minority living across Norway, Sweden, Finland, and Northern Russia.

Anne Lajla Utsi, Managing Director of the Sami Film Institute said, “We in the Sami group, we worked really close with the film makers of ‘Frozen 2’ and visited them in Burbank in their studio and we felt that they took this very seriously.”

Norway inspired many elements of the first “Frozen” movie.

The sequel takes inspiration from the Sami culture, including characters who live closely with reindeer.

Frozen 2 trailer photo
From left, Sven, Olaf, voiced by Josh Gad, Kristoff, voiced by Jonathan Groff, Elsa, voiced by Idina Menzel, and Anna, voiced by Kristen Bell, in a scene from “Frozen 2,” in theaters on Nov. 22, 2019. (Disney via AP)

Herding reindeer is a traditional Sami activity.

Disney signed a contract with Sami representatives to commit themselves to portray their culture respectfully.

It included supporting the dubbing of the movie in North Sami, the most spoken of the Sami languages, and releasing it at the same time as the Norwegian version.

“‘Frozen 2’ and the film makers behind that really acknowledge the fact that Sami… that we own our own culture and our stories and they want to collaborate and do it in a respectful and sensitive way and I think this is a very important change,” said Utsi.

“Frozen 2” debuted in US cinemas earlier this month and grossed $350 million on its debut weekend.

It was the biggest ever opening for Walt Disney Animation, according to Hollywood trade publication Variety.