by Diamond Grant
Now a part of mainstream Western culture, the film Frozen is a family favorite. But where did it really come from? Most fans know by now that Frozen originates from the Hans Christian Andersen tale The Snow Queen. What's less well known is that The Snow Queen is a segmented story, with seven unique 'episodes', each illustrating problems and solutions the heroine must face on her journey to save her friend. Differing from the movie, the tales' main characters are Gerda and Kai, who are like brother and sister though not blood-related.
It's also worth mentioning that in the original material, there are no good-natured trolls. The only similarity is the goblin (also described as a troll --in the original tale--, demon, or sorcerer) who created the evil mirror that shatters, a sliver of which pierces Kai's eye and freezes his mind and heart. In an interesting parallel between movie and tale, in the fourth section of The Snow Queen, Gerda is told a story of marriage by a raven, about a princess who was fixated on getting hitched. In the film, Anna is very keen to marry Hans, so it's possible to see similarities in morals and lessons of the two versions.