Disney Announces New TV Series

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Disney Studios Television

Dis­ney Stu­dios Television

Dis­ney has announced a vari­ety of new shows for its com­pli­ment of cable chan­nels for the com­ing year.

Dis­ney show­cased an unprece­dented amount of new pro­gram­ming that’s to come — an expanded slate of 13 new orig­i­nal series (part of 435 total orig­i­nal episodes in 2011, a 30% increase from last year, not includ­ing acqui­si­tions) and addi­tional new titles in the block­buster Dis­ney Chan­nel Orig­i­nal Movie fran­chise at its annual pre­sen­ta­tion to adver­tis­ers Wednes­day at New York’s Gotham Hall.

The event, themed “Time to Shine,” show­cased Disney’s new and return­ing pro­gram­ming. High­lights include:

Dis­ney Channel

Grav­ity Falls (new ani­mated series)
This ani­mated com­edy tells the story of twins Dip­per and Mabel — two city kids sent to spend the sum­mer with their crusty old great-uncle Stan (aka Grun­kle Stan) in Grav­ity Falls, Ore­gon. It turns out that Grav­ity Falls is not a run-of-the mill vaca­tion spot, but is a strange and won­drous place — home to every weird crea­ture and phe­nom­e­non imag­in­able, from gnomes to time por­tals to quan­tum waf­fles. Cre­ated and executive-produced by Alex Hirsch (Fish Hooks), the series is a pro­duc­tion of Dis­ney Tele­vi­sion Ani­ma­tion.

Dis­ney XD

Ulti­mate Spider-Man (new ani­mated series)
The cen­ter­piece of an upcom­ing Mar­vel pro­gram­ming block on Dis­ney XD, this ani­mated series from Mar­vel fol­lows Peter Parker who, as the sto­ry­line begins, has been Spider-Man for just one year. He’s fought vil­lains, saved lives, but still has much to learn about being a super-hero. Now, Nick Fury gives Peter the chance to go to the next level — to train to be a real super-hero and become The Ulti­mate Spider-Man. But before he can do that, Peter will have to learn how to work with a team of fel­low teenage super­heroes. The series’ award-winning cre­ative team includes Paul Dini (Bat­man: The Ani­mated Series, Lost); cre­ative pow­er­house Man of Action Stu­dios (cre­ators of Ben 10 and Gen­er­a­tor Rex), com­prised of lauded cre­ators Joe Casey, Joe Kelly, Dun­can Rouleau and Steven T. Sea­gle; and Brian Michael Bendis (vision­ary behind Marvel’s Ulti­mate Spider-Man comic series).

Motorcity (new ani­mated series)
This ani­mated series is set in a futur­is­tic Detroit owned by evil bil­lion­aire Abra­ham Kane. Hav­ing banned per­sonal free­doms includ­ing auto­mo­bile trans­porta­tion, Kane now faces one last obsta­cle, a group of hot-rod wield­ing rebels who call them­selves The Burn­ers. Led by Mike Chilton, The Burn­ers rise to stop Kane from con­quer­ing Detroit’s last oasis of free­dom — an under­ground refuge dubbed Motorcity. The series, cre­ated by Chris Prynoski and pro­duced by Dis­ney Tele­vi­sion Ani­ma­tion and Tit­mouse, Inc., is slated to pre­miere in win­ter 2012 on Dis­ney XD. The voice cast is Reid Scott, Nate Tor­rence, Kate Micucci, Kel Mitchell, Jess Har­nell, Brian Doyle Mur­ray, Jim Breuer and Mark Hamill. It is exec­u­tive pro­duced and directed by Chris Prynoski (Met­alo­ca­lypse, Megas XLR, Down­town). Craig Lewis (Foster’s Home For Imag­i­nary Friends) is the story edi­tor, and John O’Bryan (Avatar: The Last Air­ben­der) and George Krstic (Star Wars: Clone Wars) are staff writers.

Tron: Upris­ing (new ani­mated series)
This visu­ally stun­ning series, sched­uled to pre­miere in fall 2012 on Dis­ney XD, focuses on an era of the TRON sto­ry­line that tran­spires after the 1982 fea­ture film and before the story in TRON: Legacy. Its list of artists, ani­ma­tors, direc­tors, pro­duc­ers and dig­i­tal tech­ni­cians includes exec­u­tive producer/director Char­lie Bean (Robot­boy, Samu­rai Jack and Pow­er­puff Girls), and con­sult­ing pro­duc­ers Edward Kit­sis, Adam Horowitz (both screen­writ­ers of TRON: Legacy/executive pro­duc­ers of Lost) and Justin Springer (co-producer of TRON: Legacy). The series will be pre­ceded by a 10-part TRON micro-series launch­ing in win­ter 2012 on Dis­ney XD. The voice cast includes Eli­jah Wood, Emmanuelle Chriqui, Mandy Moore, Nate Corddry, Lance Hen­rik­sen, Paul Reubens, Regi­nald VelJohn­son and Bruce Boxleit­ner.

Dis­ney Junior

Doc McStuffins (new ani­mated series)
The doc­tor is in — and she will launch the 24-hour Dis­ney Junior chan­nel in 2012. Doc McStuffins is an imag­i­na­tive ani­mated series about six-year-old Dot­tie “Doc” McStuffins, who com­mu­ni­cates with and heals stuffed ani­mals and toys out of her back­yard clinic. The series will high­light the impor­tance of tak­ing care of one­self and oth­ers, while show­cas­ing the hall­marks of great Dis­ney sto­ry­telling — fan­tasy and wish ful­fill­ment. The Hol­ly­wood Health & Soci­ety divi­sion of the USC Annen­berg Nor­man Lear Cen­ter will serve as the health and med­ical con­sul­tant for the series, advis­ing on core health issues that are rel­e­vant to young kids and fam­i­lies. Emmy Award-winning writer Chris Nee (Lit­tle Bill) is the cre­ator, and exec­u­tive pro­ducer and Emmy Award-winning Nor­ton Vir­gien (Rugrats) is the direc­tor. Doc McStuffins is a pro­duc­tion of Dublin, Ireland-based Acad­emy Award-nominated ani­ma­tion stu­dio Brown Bag Films (Granny O’Grimm, Give Up Yer Aul Sins) in asso­ci­a­tion with Dis­ney Channel.

Oki’s Oasis (new ani­mated series)
The first ani­mated West­ern for preschool­ers, Oki’s Oasis stars Mandy Moore (Disney’s Tan­gled) as the voice of Oki, a kitty cat sher­iff in the town of Nice and Friendly Cor­ners, the friend­liest town in the West. With the help of her deputy wood­pecker, Peck, Oki makes sure the town stays “nice and friendly,” and when trou­ble comes a-calling, she makes sure it doesn’t stay long. The series imparts social skills and lessons on the value of being a “good neigh­bor.” Pro­duced by George Eve­lyn and Denis Morella, it is a pro­duc­tion of Wild­brain Entertainment.

Sofia the First (new ani­mated spe­cial and series pilot)
Sofia the First, a full-length ani­mated spe­cial and series pilot, set in the sto­ry­book world of the clas­sic Dis­ney Princesses, intro­duces Sofia, a lit­tle girl with a commoner’s back­ground until her mom mar­ries the King, and sud­denly, she is roy­alty. Sofia is whisked off to the cas­tle, where she learns what it means to be a real princess, dis­cov­er­ing empow­er­ing lessons about kind­ness, for­give­ness, gen­eros­ity, courage and self-respect. With the help of the three famil­iar fairies in charge of the Royal Train­ing Acad­emy — Flora, Fauna and Mer­ry­weather of Disney’s clas­sic “Sleep­ing Beauty” — Sofia learns that look­ing like a princess isn’t all that hard, but behav­ing like one must come from the heart. The writer is Craig Ger­ber (The Pixie Hol­low Games), and the exec­u­tive producer/director is Jamie Mitchell (Spe­cial Agent Oso). It is a pro­duc­tion of Dis­ney Tele­vi­sion Animation.

7D (new ani­mated series pilot)
Cre­ators, includ­ing Walt Dis­ney him­self, have long been inspired to access clas­sic folk and fairy tales — reimag­in­ing, rein­ter­pret­ing and rein­vent­ing them for new gen­er­a­tions. The ani­mated series pilot 7D takes a new cre­ative approach to the beloved Broth­ers Grimm tale of Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs, reimag­in­ing it in a comic and con­tem­po­rary sto­ry­book world. The new music-filled sto­ries intro­duce the whim­si­cal world of Jol­ly­wood, where kind-hearted Queen Delight­ful calls upon the 7D — Happy, Bash­ful, Sleepy, Sneezy, Dopey, Grumpy and Doc — for assis­tance. Emmy Award-winning Tom Rueg­ger (Ani­ma­ni­acs) directs the pilot writ­ten by Craig Shemin (Tasty Time with ZeFronk) with char­ac­ter design by Noah Z. Jones (Fish Hooks). It is a pro­duc­tion of Dis­ney Tele­vi­sion Animation.

Min­nie Bow-Toons (new ani­mated short-form series)
This new short form series was inspired by a pop­u­lar episode of Mickey Mouse Club­house that focuses on Mickey’s #1 gal, Min­nie Mouse, and her friend Daisy Duck, and is set in Minnie’s Bow-Tique (which stocks only bows and bow-ties). Sched­uled for a 2011 pre­miere, it will be fol­lowed soon there­after by a full-length series that takes place at Minnie’s Bow-tique Hotel and fol­lows the comedic hap­pen­ings as some famil­iar guests, includ­ing the Hippo from Fan­ta­sia, check in. On any given day, Min­nie acts as host­ess, party plan­ner, chef, fash­ion con­sul­tant, rid­ing instruc­tor or tour guide, with Daisy tak­ing on the role of a very chatty front desk clerk. Clara­belle is a cow of all trades, tak­ing on a num­ber of jobs — bell­hop, main­te­nance worker, pool atten­dant, juice bar atten­dant and room ser­vice wait­ress — all for which she is com­pletely ill-suited. Minnie’s Bow-Toons is pro­duced by Kate Boutilier and Eryk Casemiro (Olivia), and directed by Robert Ramirez (Can You Teach My Alli­ga­tor Man­ners?). It is a pro­duc­tion of Dis­ney Tele­vi­sion Animation.

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About Paul Anderson

Paul is an old-timer here at BCDB- his contributions go back to before the site! Paul is widely regarded as a Disney historian, and is also on staff at the Disney Museum in San Francisco. Paul is also a contributing historian for D23, the Disney Club. Paul has published several books and magazine articles on Disney history, too. You are welcome to drop Paul a line here.

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