Hope is a 2017 3D hand-drawn/computer animated musical fantasy film produced by Walt Disney Animation Studios and distributed by Walt Disney Pictures. It is loosely based on Hans Christian Andersen's short story The Princess and the Pea, with multiple elements taken from Slavic Mythology. The film's themes are "friendship," "living life to the fullest," and, as the title would suggest, "the power of hope."
Nadya, a princess from a small kingdom, has her sheltered world turned upside down when the legendary Storm Bird arises to ravage the land. When the beast attacks her home, Nadya escapes to a refuge in Stolitsa, a neighbouring kingdom, but is separated from her parents. With hopes to find them, the princess joins forces with Stolitsa's sardonic Prince Pyotr, his friend Ivan, a jester-in-training, and a grumpy cat named Azov, to track down a mighty witch. The four adventure-goers will have their friendships tested by hostile terrain, vicious spirits, and the very witch they seek. However, there is worse threatening Pyotr. A curse has left him heartless, and he fears that, without the hand of the true princess, his humanity cannot be saved.
Nadya, voiced by Jennifer Veal
"Nadya may not be the fairest, smartest or bravest princess in the land, but she is a princess, in her bloodline and in her heart. Sadly, it is also in her heart that she doubts that a shy and gentle girl like herself will ever have the poise and confidence that befits an aristocrat. On the eve of her royal debut, her kingdom is attacked by the fearsome Storm Bird. Nadya is separated from her family and forced to flee to the neighbouring kingdom of Stolitsa to find help. Lost and alone in an unfamiliar city, Nadya stumbles upon the ills of Stolitsa's royal family, and a chance to save the land from an evil that endangers it."
Prince Pyotr, voiced by Josh Strickland
"Despite his royal ancestry, Pyotr has never truly felt that he belonged in the world of aristocrats. Nonetheless, he will someday become the next Tsar of Stolitsa. However, the prince is hiding a terrible secret: When he was a little boy, a witch's curse made his heart uncaring and forever isolated from his fellow man. Now the only cure for Pyotr's hard heart is the hand of the princess of true nobility, but after seven years with a heart of stone, Pyotr has become a hard-nosed cynic, and sure the spell will never be broken."
Ivan, voiced by Elijah Kelley
"Ivan is a young Roma man always with a trick up his sleeve, and a song in his bountiful heart. He is someone who lives by the belief that there is nothing in the world that compares to a good laugh. Now that this trickster has turned eighteen, he is almost ready to continue the proud — in his opinion — family tradition of spreading merriment as the Royal jester. However, there's just one thing left for Ivan to do to prove the castle needs a master of tomfoolery: on the name of his family, he must make Pyotr laugh."
"Azov would like nothing more than to send his days as any other house cat would choose; eating and sleeping in an endless loop. Unfortunately for him, with Ivan making the reluctant cat into a sidekick in his quest for comedy, this doesn’t seem to be in the cards for Azov. It was Ivan who gave Azov to Pyotr six years ago, but he is currently taken care of by both the prince and jester. At least, he would be, were it not for the cat’s intense rivalry with Pyotr."
"The monster that threatens the land, the Storm Bird has always been known as nothing more than a legend, but now proves itself to be very real as it destroys everything in its path. It is an enormous, ferocious, feathered fiend with six wings that create devastating whirlwinds, a cry which shakes the earth like thunder, and the power to call down a flurry of lightning bolts with a flick of it's immense tail feathers."
Granny Bones, voiced by Shirley MacLaine
"Whether he is called the Wildman or Grandfather Forest, tales of the Leshiy are constant in the elements of his mission: He guards and nurtures the flora and fauna of his realm as Lord of the Woodlands. The stories describe him as a spirit of incredible power, able change his shape, disappear into the green, and command beasts of the wilds. Unfortunately, the stories also say he’s not one to give a splinter about humans. However, should one prove themselves worthy, the Leshiy will be an ally that sticks like sap."
Six songs have been confirmed to be featured in Hope:
- Bylina o Troyka, sung by Chorus: A ballad inspired by traditional Russian folk music which opens the film. This song details the history of the world Hope is set in, heroes and villains found in it's legends, and gives short introductions to the three main characters.
- A Royal Me, sung by Jennifer Veal as Nadya: This is Princess Nadya’s unique solo, describing her romanticized conception of what nobility is like, and her dreams of living like a stock fairy tale princess.
- One-derful, sung by Elijah Kelley as Ivan: An upbeat and fast-paced song praising individuality. This is Ivan's unique solo, which he sings to cheer up a homesick Nadya.
- The Contest, sung by Jennifer Veal as Nadya and Chorus: A humorous song taking place while Nadya competes with the princesses and noblewoman gathered in Stolitsa in a test of their worth as royalty.
- Mirror, Mirror, sung by Josh Strickland as Prince Pyotr: Pyotr's unique solo. This song will cover an abstract sequence depicting Pyotr having a nightmare, where his doubts about himself and his own humanity are revealed.
- On our Way, sung by Jennifer Veal, Josh Strickland and Elijah Kelley as Nadya, Pyotr and Ivan. and Hope’s major theme song. Following the themes and morals of the film, this song speaks of facing tribulations with friends, and achieving one's dreams.