When Queen Elsa met ‘Cinderella’: Idina Menzel and Camilla Cabello give classic tale a feminist twist

L: Camila Cabello; Center; Idina Menzel in ‘Cinderella’; Credit: Kerry Brown

In the classic version of Cinderella, a handsome prince rescues Cinderella from her evil stepmother.  But when those parts are played by Camilla Cabello and Idina Menzel — aka Frozen‘s Queen Elsa — there’s going to be a twist to the story.

In the new musical version of Cinderella, now streaming on Amazon Prime Video, Cinderella dreams, not of a prince, but of owning her own successful business.  And while her stepmother is still wicked, we learn that it’s a result of past trauma.

The new, original songs also have a feminist twist. Idina says her big number, “Dream, Girl,” is “sort of the flip side of the ‘Let It Go’s and the ‘Defying Gravity’s” — two of the songs she’s most identified with.

“It harnesses the frustration and the anger a little bit, and gives voice to all of women or anyone in the world who feels oppressed, or as though someone’s not hearing or seeing them or realizing their dreams with them,” Idina, explains, adding that all the women in the film sing the song with her.

Idina is excited for viewers to see Camila in her big acting debut, telling ABC Audio, “She’s a rock star and she’s gorgeous and funny, and I think we have some great scenes together.”  However, she finds it hard to get used to the way young stars like Camila react to her.

“That’s the one thing about getting older,” she laughs. “It’s nice, but you also realize that when they say ‘I’ve been listening to you since I was three’….I think, ‘Ohhhkay!'”

But once she gets over that, the star of Frozen and Wicked says she realizes, “just how lucky I am to have been a part of some really important projects that have been sort of a zeitgeist for their generation, and I don’t take that lightly.”

Idina adds, “I know how cool that is. And so once I get over turning 50,” she laughs, “then I can take in the fact that these girls think I’m cool still, and um, and take that in and be proud of it.

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