The House of Mouse unveiled a lot of new properties at its D23 fan event in Anaheim, California this past weekend. From a collection of new shows heading to Disney+ to a new film hitting theaters in 2020, here are some of the company’s biggest announcements:
As the launch date for Disney+ draws closer, the House of Mouse has unveiled a slate of in-development series for its streamer. Marvel Studios has three new live-action series inspired by comic characters Ms Marvel, Moon Knight and She-Hulk, all premiering on the SVOD.
The Muppets will get their first-ever “unscripted” short-form comedy series Muppets Now.
Disney is rebooting its popular series Lizzie McGuire to focus on the character as a 30-year-old living in New York City. Original creator Terri Minsky is on board as the showrunner, and Hilary Duff is returning as the titular character.
In an effort to ensure the SVOD is family friendly, Disney also outlined some of its plans for a kids mode on the streamer. Designed for children seven and younger, the mode features a more colorful interface, bigger icons, fewer words and more graphics, according to reports from Streamable. However, at launch the streamer won’t have PIN protection to prevent kids from switching from a kids profile back to the standard interface.
Disney Channel has ordered the animated series Marvel’s Moon Girl and Devil Dinosaur from Disney Television Animation. Based on Marvel’s comic books of the same name, the series is executive produced by Laurence Fishburne (The Matrix), Helen Sugland for Cinema Gypsy Productions (Black-ish) and Marvel Animation & Family Entertainment’s Steve Loter (Kim Possible). Jeff Howard (Planes) and Kate Kondell (The Pirate Fairy) serve as co-producers and story editors. Revolving around a 13-year-old super-genius Lunella Lafayette and her T-Rex named Devil Dinosaur, the show follows the duo as they work together to protect New York City from danger.
Marvel Animation is also leaping into a younger market with its first full-length preschool series Marvel’s Spidey and His Amazing Friends (pictured). Debuting on Disney Junior in 2021, the new show sees Peter Parker team up with his friends Miles Morales and Gwen Stacy to defeat villains and learn about the value of teamwork. It builds on the brand established by the blockbuster film Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse, which earned US$375.4 million worldwide, according to Box Office Mojo.
Marvel’s Spidey and His Amazing Friends is executive produced by Alan Fine (Marvel’s The Avengers), Joe Quesada (Marvel’s Avengers Assemble), Dan Buckley (Marvel’s Spider-Man), Cort Lane (Ultimate Spider-Man), and Eric Radomski (Marvel’s Avengers Assemble). It is co-executive produced by Marsha Griffin (Marvel’s Spider-Man) with Harrison Wilcox (Marvel’s Guardians of the Galaxy) serving as supervising producer, Alfred Gimeno (Marvel Rising) as supervising animation producer, and Ashley Mendoza (PJ Masks) as story editor.
While most of the movie news at D23 had been previously announced (including Soul, Black Panther 2 and Phineas and Ferb The Movie: Candace Against the Universe), the film giant did have one new project to reveal: Raya and the Last Dragon will hit US theaters November 25, 2020. On a quest to find the last dragon and bring light into the world, a lone warrior named Raya teams up with a crew of misfits. Directed by Paul Briggs and Dean Wellins (Big Hero 6, Frozen), the new film is produced by Osnat Shurer (Moana) and written by Adele Lim (Crazy Rich Asians).
The House of Mouse is also expanding its CP efforts in the US with the launch of 25 Disney-themed “stores” at Target locations, starting October 4. An additional 30 locations are set to open by October 2020. The in-store departments will take up about 750 square feet in Target near the retailer’s kids clothing and toys section and will feature more than 450 Disney items, including more than 100 that were previously only available in Disney stores.
Under the partnership, guests will be able to browse and shop a variety of Disney Princess, Star Wars, Marvel, Disney Junior characters, classic Disney plush, apparel, home and holiday-specific products. The in-store area will also feature collectible merchandise, clothing and accessories.