As Disney's Frozen continues to climb the ranks of highest grossing films, its popularity is beginning to pay dividends for the Norwegian tourism industry. The nation's beautiful locales served as inspiration for Frozen's fantasy Kingdom of Arendelle.
While Disney’s Frozen premiered a whole seven months, American audiences don’t seem ready to let it go. The film is more than just a huge success for Disney; its popularity is also paying dividends for Norway, the nation that inspired the movie’s fictional locale of Arendelle. According to CNBC, travel from the United States to Norway jumped an amazing 37% earlier this year. Flight Tracker and Norwegian Air Shuttle also reported spikes in Americans searching for and boarding flights.
What’s the Big Idea?
Norway’s good fortune is not an unfamiliar story as Hollywood has long been thought of as the “world’s best travel agent.” The Lord of the Rings trilogy caused tourism to New Zealand to explode like one of Gandalf’s fireworks. India’s Ministry of Tourism built an entire package marketed around Life of Pi. The Belgian city of Bruges embraced its role in the eponymous In Bruges after tourism shot up following the film’s release.
One big difference between The Lord of the Rings and Frozen is that New Zealand contributed financial support in order to secure the film’s production. Frozen, being an animated film, probably didn’t require an expensive film tax credit.
The American film and television industries take advantage of billions of dollars in tax incentives doled out by local governments. Where producers and politicians see investment, Allysia Finley of The Wall Street Journal sees shameless corporate welfare.