It’s a Small World After All in Disney’s Universe

Disclaimer: The theories presented below are in no way proven to be accurate and are instead only used as interesting points that may or may not connect various Disney movies. Most theories can be found online or on YouTube by ScreenRant.

Disney movies give audience members a magical story, revolving around an individual who must face adversity and rise to the challenge. In the end, every movie results in a “Happily Ever After.” Though these movies are a way to escape the real world for a time, dedicated Disney viewers pick up on the many connections between the films, even if the movies seem unrelated or different.


For instance, there is one common theory connecting four popular Disney movies that involves a ship, a king, and a queen. In the film “Frozen,” Anna and Elsa’s parents leave by ship, but there is no clear reason as to why they do so. However, it would make sense if their parents were heading to Rapunzel (“Tangled”) and Eugene’s wedding, making Rapunzel, Anna, and Elsa cousins. This point is further emphasized in “Frozen” when coronation day arrives. As the attendees enter the castle, a quick glimpse of Rapunzel and Eugene is noticeable as Anna rushes by them.

In “Frozen,” Anna and Elsa’s parent’s ship sinks in the rough waves. If you look closely, this connects to the scene in the beginning of “The Little Mermaid” when Ariel spies the shipwreck and investigates it. Although the ship sank, there is no indication of what happened to the king and queen. Despite “Frozen” showing two tombstones in honor of the king and queen, there are no bodies to bury.

So, what if they survived the wreckage, got on a rowboat, and landed on an island? Many Disney fans who follow this line of thinking believing that the king and queen became the parents shown in the film “Tarzan,” making Tarzan a long-lost brother to Anna and Elsa.


This next theory also connects four different popular Disney movies—“The Lion King,”
“The Princess and the Frog,” “Peter Pan,” and “Pinocchio.” In “The Lion King,” when Simba runs from Pride Rock, a scene follows with Timon, Pumba, and Simba lying on the grass looking at the sky. Pumba asks what the dots are in the sky and Timon answers, “They’re fireflies. Fireflies that got stuck in that big bluish-black thing.”

Although Pumba and Simba have their own ideas of what the stars are, Timon’s comment actually connects easily to “The Princess and the Frog.” Ray, the firefly, is in love with the star he calls Evangeline, who used to be a firefly. When Ray is killed after being stepped on, he too becomes a star and takes his place beside Evangeline. If you look closely at the two stars and compare the two scenes, they are actually identical to the stars in a scene from “Peter Pan” when Peter takes Wendy, John, and Michael to Neverland. In other words, Ray became “the second star to the right and straight on until morning.”

Also referring to the stars, before Ray takes his place in the heavens, Evangeline is alone in the sky. Interestingly, her star is identical to the one seen in “Pinocchio,” which is actually the Blue Fairy. This would explain how Tiana from “The Princess and the Frog” got her wish from wishing on the star. Much like Gepetto from “Pinocchio” going through trials until he got his wish, so too did Tiana.


Continuing with “Frozen,” this theory focuses on Anna and Elsa’s mother. The queen and king do not seem frightened at the thought that their daughter has ice powers. Instead, they know about it, almost accepting it, and know exactly what to do when Elsa accidentally strikes Anna in the beginning of the film.

Now how would these ordinary parents know what to do in this emergency, and how can we explain them being so calm about the situation?

There is, in fact, a simple answer: the queen already knew that her first born would have ice powers. This theory connects “Frozen” and “Rise of the Guardians” (despite not being a Disney move) in that maybe Jack’s sister grows up to be the queen of Arendelle.

In “Rise of the Guardians,” Jack Frost travels the world with no memory of his life, invisible to all except other holiday Guardians, such as Santa, the Tooth Fairy, Sandman, and the Easter bunny.

In a flashback, Jack discovers he had a sister. The two went ice skating, but when the ice began to crack, Jack saves his sister by sacrificing himself. The moon is the first thing Jack wakes up to see as he is reborn as Jack Frost. Since his sister was saved, she continued with her life, grew up and married the king of Arendelle. When they were expecting their first born, Elsa, the moon told the queen that Elsa will be born with ice powers in honor of Jack, who she believes is dead.


In the film “Mulan,” Mulan decides to take her father’s place in the war, steals his armor and sword, and takes off in the middle of the night.

When the ghosts of the ancestors appear, they argue about which guardian should go after Mulan. Finally, they agree to send the Great Stone Dragon. Mushu tries to wake the dragon, but instead he destroys the statue. This seems like a humorous move on Disney’s part and an excuse for Mushu to become a guardian again, but a deeper meaning lies beneath the surface—if only one knows where to look.

Mushu was, in fact, unsuccessful in awakening the guardian because the Great Stone Dragon is already awake—and everywhere Mulan goes. During the scene where Mulan decides to take her father’s place, the statue she sits on outside is a dragon. In the family temple, a dragon is etched on the middle tombstone. A dragon sits as a decoration in Mulan’s parent’s room, the closet handles take the shape of a dragon, and the sword Mulan uses to cut her hair has a dragon at the hilt. The Great Stone Dragon is always with Mulan and, ultimately, it is implied that Mulan actually is the Great Stone Dragon that protects her family.


This final theory connects the films “Lilo and Stitch” and “Moana.” In the film “Moana,” Moana discovers that her ancestors were sailors and, at the end of the film, they leave behind their island and journey to a new home. As the years passed, it is possible that Moana’s people travelled to Hawaii and made a new home there. Maui, the demigod in “Moana,” no doubt followed her people since he followed Moana at the end of the film.

Fast forward to present day. As this theory continues, it is believed that Maui notices the tragedy that Lilo and Nani suffer in “Lilo and Stitch.” Wanting to watch over them, Maui transforms himself into someone younger–someone who is always by Nani’s side and who always keeps their interests in his heart. And who else would this be but David? Though it may seem like a stretch at first glance, take a closer look at David’s necklace. It is the shape of a hook–and it is the same shape and style of Maui’s hook.

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