Who plays olaf in Frozen? Who Plays Olaf In Frozen – And How Did Portraying Him Deeply Affect The Actor?

Who plays olaf in frozen ? Ever since Disney saw Robin Williams steal the show back in 1992, almost all of the studio’s animated films have featured some variation of a magical, happy-go-lucky supporting character.

For “Frozen” and its sequel, that coveted role is filled by Olaf, a sentient snowman brought to life by Elsa’s (Idina Menzel) frosty powers. Even in the context of “Frozen,” though, Olaf is something of an oddity. Unlike the other creatures made real by the ice queen, Olaf is more fully developed — not just as a character, but as a person.

He begins his existence with a full vocabulary and a mind preloaded with a seemingly basic understanding of how most things in the world operate. Well, most things except for how snow tends to melt in the summer, which leads to a bit of an awkward situation later on. He’s carefree and whimsical and full of love and, while he’s canonically given life by Elsa, he’s literally given life by Josh Gad, who saved Olaf from getting scrapped.

Gad’s professional performing career stretches back to the early 2000s, but it was in 2013, the year that “Frozen” and “Jobs” came out, that he really became well-known to the general public.

Prior to that, his Hollywood credits were mainly a smattering of bit parts, although he had successfully landed himself in more popular projects such as “Love & Other Drugs,” “The Daily Show,” and “Ice Age: Continental Drift.” But “Frozen” wasn’t quite Josh Gad’s first taste of true fame. That honor belongs to “The Book of Mormon,” a Tony Award-winning 2011 Broadway musical.

who plays olaf in frozen

Josh Gad is a comedic and musical force to be reckoned with

Okay, so calling “The Book of Mormon” a “Tony Award-winning” musical is kind of like calling Taylor Swift a “popular artist.” The show swept the 2011 Tonys, earning itself 9 of the 14 awards that it was nominated for.

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In no uncertain terms, that’s a lot of wins. While Josh Gad did not win the “Best Actor in a Musical” Tony (that victory went to Norbert Leo Butz for “Catch Me If You Can”), he did help the show win a Grammy for its Original Broadway Cast Album.

His musical and comedic skills definitely left an impression on the artistic team -– an artistic team that featured Robert Lopez.

If that name isn’t immediately familiar to you, Lopez is one-half of the couple who wrote the songs for “Frozen.” And since Disney often views Broadway as a talent acquisition space, it’s no great stretch to suggest that Lopez’s involvement led to Gad’s eventual casting, at least in part.

During an episode of Entertainment Weekly’s Couch Surfing, Gad described the experience of “The Book of Mormon” as “truly a life-changing event,” so clearly he appreciates how critical the show was to his career.

Between starring in a critically acclaimed Broadway musical and a critically acclaimed Disney animated blockbuster, it would seem as though Gad’s luck couldn’t get any better. And yet it did. His post-“Frozen” career features a series of incredibly popular films such as Disney’s 2017 live-action remake of “Beauty and the Beast” and 20th Century Studios’ “Murder on the Orient Express.” Of course, there was “Frozen II” in 2019.

And in 2021, Gad returned to the role of Olaf for the Disney+ miniseries “Olaf Presents,” which saw the silly snowman reenact all of the studio’s most popular animated films.

Olaf’s emotional arc hits surprisingly close to home for Josh Gad

Josh Gad will most likely return to Olaf whenever asked. Alongside “Frozen II” and “Olaf Presents,” he reprised the character in 2019 for “Kingdom Hearts III,” a videogame made in partnership between Square Enix and Disney. Of course, it would seem almost silly to turn down that sweet, sweet Disney money, but Gad describes the role as being deeply personal to him and his family.

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Inside the Magic chronicles an anecdote that the actor shared during a press conference for “Frozen II” in which he shared how close to his heart Olaf really is.

“One day we’re sitting at the table and [my daughter] was laughing,” said Gad. “And all of a sudden tears started streaming down her face, and she looked at me and my wife and she goes, ‘What if I don’t want to grow up?’ …

It was so unbelievable because I think we’ve all had that experience as kids … But that is the way I feel about Olaf in this movie … In the first movie, [Olaf] was this innocent ball of naivete … And in this movie, he’s almost gone from toddler to fully-grown child, where now he’s starting to ask those questions that don’t always have easy answers … that is such a beautiful thing to play.”

As of this writing, Gad is the only talent officially confirmed to be returning for the eventual “Frozen 3,” which just goes to show Disney’s trust in the value that he provides. But what else can you expect from a recipient of the Disney Legend Award?

Celebs You Didn’t Know Voiced Your Favorite Cartoon Characters

Some celebrities have become well known not just for the original talents that made them famous, but also for their side jobs—lending their voices to popular animated films and television shows.

For example, you probably know that Mike Myers voiced the title character in all of the Shrek films, or that Star Wars leading man Mark Hamill has long provided voices to dozens of cartoon characters over the years—most famously as the Joker.

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However, some celebs have managed to fly under the radar with their voice acting skills—so you might be quite surprised to learn which of them have moonlighted as your favorite cartoon characters.

who plays olaf in frozen

Tom Petty – Lucky (King of the Hill)

Following his sudden death on October 2, 2017 at age 66, fans around the world mourned the passing of rocker Tom Petty by sharing their favorite songs or performances from his time with Mudcrutch, the Heartbreakers, or the Traveling Wilburys.

Presumably, relatively few of those fans realize that Petty also voiced a character on Mike Judge’s long-running animated sitcom King of the Hill.

In a 2009 interview with the Chicago Tribune, Judge revealed that producer John Altschuler had come up with an idea for a character called “Lucky”—which Judge described as “Tom Petty without the success.”

In a stroke of genius, the showrunners decided to see if Petty himself would voice the part, and surprisingly, he agreed. “He was great, just killed at the table read,” Judge explained.

“Then he said, ‘anytime you want me to do it, I’ll do it.’ Turns out he really meant it.” Petty would go on to voice Lucky (who later married Luanne Platter) in 28 episodes over the show’s run.

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