Disney+ News and Streaming Lists For April 2022
Better Nate Than Ever
Herbie: Fully Loaded
Bow-Toons: Party Palace Pals (S1, 4 episodes)
Four Days In October
Jordan Rides The Bus
Silly Little Game
Scrat Tales: Season One
Explorer: The Last Tepui
The Biggest Little Farm: The Return
Sketchbook: Season One
Back To The Future’s Christopher Lloyd joins The Mandalorian
Disney+’s Star Wars spin-off hit The Mandalorian is retuning for season 3 and with some very special guest stars. Along side the titular The Mandalorian Pedro Pascal and Giancarlo Esposito as the villainous Moff Gideon, Christopher Lloyd is joining the ranks though the details of his character are still relatively unknown. According to Disney insiders, Lloyd’s character is acquainted to nature but no descriptive relationship to the story or even status of a villain or hero has been revealed.
The Mandalorian season 2 left on a nostalgic but somber note that featured a long time Star Wars favorite clashed with a tearful separation between two central characters. Season 3 is predicted to premiere in December 2022 and will most likely follow the same episodic format relating episodes once a week. Other Star Wars shows making noise on Disney+ The Book of Boba Fett and coming out later this year Obi-Wan Kenobi starring Ewan McGregor are a part of the ever expanding Star Wars universe coming to life exclusively on Disney+.
New Magical Hit Encanto is Receiving It’s Own Sing-along Version
Since it landed on Disney+ on Christmas Eve, viewers cannot get enough of Disney’s 60th animated feature Encanto. The film currently sits at over 180 million rewatches on a global scale and earned 3 Oscar nominations for best animated feature, best original score, and best original song. In the wake of all this excitement and praise, Disney has announced that a sing-along version of the film with lyrics to songs appearing onscreen will premiere on Disney+
In addition to Encanto, other Disney films such as both Frozen films and the live action Beauty and the Beast film will also shortly receive a sing-along adaptation. Encanto’s sing-along is already ready to stream on Disney+ for fans of the film just just can’t get enough of the songs and for parents who’s kid can’t get “We Don’t Talk About Bruno” out of their heads.
Disney Reveals First Look at the Live-Action Pinocchio Film
Since 2015’s Cinderella Disney’s been on a bit of a remake rampage with the goal in mind to spread their classic films to a new generation of audiences. From Beauty and the Beast to The Jungle Book and many more rumored to be in production, despite fans’ pleas to bring back more original content it looks like these remakes aren’t stopping anytime soon. The next film up for the live-action treatment is 1940’s Pinocchio following the story of Gepetto a lonely craftsman and his wooden puppet Pinocchio who through a little wishing on a star turns into a puppet/human hybrid.
The live-action film is set to arrive on Disney+ this September with Pinocchio being voiced by Benjamin Evan Ainsworth and Gepetto being played by academy award-winning actor Tom Hanks. The image revealed Hanks and his puppet counterpart, resembling the original iconic Disney character with his yellow hat with a blue stripe and red feather. This is Disney’s third live-action film to go straight to Disney plus following 2020’s Mulan and 2019’s Lady and The Tramp.
The Muppet’s Electric Mayhem Band Teams Up With Lilly Singh
A new Muppets series is coming to Disney+ centering around the Electric Mayhem Band. Featuring popular and musical characters Dr. Teeth, Floyd Pepper, Janice, Zoot, Lips, and of course Animal. The show will feature the band trying to produce their first-ever album and helping them is Youtube and late-night star Lilly Singh. Bill Barretta returns with this series after the Halloween Disney+ special Muppets Haunted Mansion which starred Will Arnett.
ABC Signature and The Muppets Studio are producing this project along with Goldberg and Barretta as creators and Jeff Yorkes, Michael Bostick, and Kris Eber executive producing. The Goldbergs creator Adam F. Goldberg is also joining this dedicated and wildly creative team helping develop fresh stories for these iconic characters. The Muppets Mayhem which is set to be the series title has no release date or filming schedule yet it is merely still in the production stage. With a team and a cast like this behind the scenes, this new series is sure to bring out the best in the characters we know and love.
Elizabeth Olsen Signs a 7-Year Contract With Marvel
Scarlet Witch fans were graced with some pretty exciting news last week after the actress that plays the iconic MCU character signed a new 7-year contract with Marvel owned by Disney. Olsen first appeared as Scarlet Witch in 2015’s Avengers: Age Of Ultron. Since then, Olsen has appeared in 4 Marvel films, the first Disney+ phase four show Wandavision, and is set to reprise her role as Scarlet Witch in the upcoming Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness.
This announcement comes with much speculation that Scarlet Witch will receive her own MCU movie. If this theory proves to be correct, Scarlet Witch’s film will be only the third female-centered film in the MCU the first being Captain Marvel and the second the more recent Black Widow. Fans are exhilarated that Scarlet Witch will finally be playing a bigger role in the MCU and hopefully paving the way for more female heroes to receive the silver screen treatment they deserve.
An Ad-Supported Tier is in the Works For Disney+
In a Disney+ press release, the company publically notified that a cheaper ad-tier would be implemented into the streaming service. This is set to take place globally in 2023 after first expanding in the U.S. The company has expressed the desire to reach between 230 and 260 million Disney+ subscribers worldwide. They believe offering this new service will allow for more accessibility for those who maybe can’t afford or don’t want to pay the $8/month or $80/year price.
Other platforms that offer ad-supported streaming Hulu which is mostly owned by Disney and NBC’s Peacock have stated that ads allow not only for the broadening of their services but also exposes viewers to potential products- creating revenue. Peacock’s Chief Executive Officer shared that an additional $10 a month was made from users due to advertising. Some have expressed displeasure at yet another attempt from Disney a company that largely capitalized on the tragedies of the pandemic, to secure financial advancement in an ever-growing market. Streaming is the future and has already become the future of entertainment on the television front. It’s likely we’ll see more companies take after Disney and its predecessors in regards to ad-tier streaming.
Kal Penn To Star Opposite To Tim Allen in The Santa Clause Series
2000s comedy icon Kal Penn has just joined the cast for The Santa Clause mini-series coming to Disney plus. Penn stars alongside Allen as a devoted family man. Unlike Allen’s classic character Scott Calvin, Penn’s Simon Choski fixates on more day-to-day issues rather than having to worry about being the next Santa Clause. As a game developer and single father, Choski is trusted into the magical world of the North Pole searching for some Christmas magic and the keys to a successful business. Star Elizabeth Mitchell also reprises her role as Mrs. Clause from the 1994 holiday hit. The plot will follow Scott Calvin’s journey to find a replacement Santa on the cusp of his 65th birthday and help his family adapt to life outside of the North Pole.
The original The Santa Clause franchise premiered in 1994 and ended in 2006 with the third and final film installment The Santa Clause 3: The Escape Clause. This movie introduced Martin Short’s Jack Frost as the franchise’s most recognizable villain. It is unsure whether or not these characters will make an appearance in the sequel as only Allen, Mitchell, and Penn have been officially acknowledged as a part of the cast. Filming is underway for the mini-series and can be expected later this year, hopefully just in time for the holiday season.
Disney Inspires Other Studios to Stand with Ukraine
Disney recently released a company statement that the new Pixar film Turning Red will not feature a theatrical release in Russia. Due to the invasion of Ukraine initiated by Russia’s President Vladimir Putin, Disney has actively, and firmly brandished its decision to stand with Ukraine in its time of need. Agatha Christie’s mystery novel turned thriller film Death On The Nile, also owned by 20th Century Studios and therefore Disney, is being stricken from Russian theaters. Other studios have followed in the footsteps of Disney including WarnerBros. who recently announced that The Batman set to open on March 3rd will now be removed from Russian theaters. Universal Studios has also paused the screenings of all major releases in Russia.
This news is especially surprising from Disney who’s been known for appeasing universal expectations. Disney’s focus on a global reach and appeal to many different countries often forces them to air on the side of caution when discussing more “controversial” topics that other countries might find “taboo”. This reportedly is why Disney hasn’t broadened their catalog of characters to feature an openly gay protagonist due the fear of backlash from China and Russia. Disney has stated that the progression of the war in Ukraine and how Russia responds will determine whether or not they will allow their films to be screened there in the future. This is likely the same for WarnerBros, Universal, and other studios who are choosing to push back against Russia’s invasion in this small but admirable step.
Fantasy Favorite Receives Official Filming Start Date for Anticipated Series
Rick Riordan’s best-selling Greek mythology fantasy series Percy Jackson will be getting its own TV series exclusively streaming on Disney+. While the series was first announced back in 2020 fans we’re skeptical if the show would actually come to fruition. Much to fans’ surprise and delight, Riordan has recently announced on his blog that filming will commence on June 1st, 2022 in Vancouver. In addition to the fans’ excitement, Riordan is relieved to be directly involved with the making of this project, unlike the 2010 and 2013 films which to this day he has not seen.
The pilot episode will be directed by James Bobin who’s worked closely with Disney before. He directed the 2011 Muppets movie and its sequel and also directed Alice Through The Looking Glass, the sequel to the 2010 live-action film. His most recent project was a Nickelodeon title, Dora and The Lost City of Gold, which received mostly decent praise for the direction he took the classic kids’ series. Riordan has been adamant about his praise for Bobin and his previous work. He has already assured fans that this series will certainly stay truer to the original story portrayed in the books. It is still unclear how much content from 5 books will be covered over the course of the first season but based on Riordan’s active presence online it’s most likely he’ll let his loyal fans know as soon as more information is revealed.