Disney Branded Television has greenlit and announced details about several new series coming soon to Disney Junior, including a new “Ariel” series.
Disney Junior Ariel
In the new series, Ariel’s design is inspired by Halle Bailey as Ariel in the live-action “The Little Mermaid,” although with brighter red hair. The Flounder accompanying young Ariel in the image also looks more like the animated version of Flounder instead of the live-action version.
President of Disney Branded Television Ayo Davis officially announced the series at Annecy Animation Festival today, Variety reports.
“For more than 30 years,” Davis said, “the story of ‘The Little Mermaid’ has been beloved by audiences all over the world. It brings me so much joy to be able to introduce our new Disney Junior version of Ariel to preschoolers everywhere.”
Alyssa Sapire, senior vice president of development, series and strategy for Disney Junior, added, “As we were developing ‘Disney Junior’s Ariel,’ we knew that we wanted to create an atmosphere that was vibrant and magical and showcased our young Ariel’s imagination, which, like our preschool audience watching at home, is as big as the sea.”
According to Variety, “The new series follows a young Ariel and features fan-favorite characters, including King Triton, Ursula, Sebastian and Flounder, as well as exciting new additions.” Ariel’s mermaid tail will change colors depending on her emotions.
“Set in the fantastical Caribbean-inspired underwater kingdom of Atlantica, the series turns on Ariel and her fun-filled, action-packed mermaid adventures with her friends. Driven by a deep and unending curiosity about the world around her, Ariel discovers land treasures, like a big floppy hat, squeaky rubber ducky and whisk, that she collects and keeps safe in her crystal cavern, the synopsis runs. The treasures may also help Ariel solve problems. In a play that looks set to charm pre-schoolers, when she makes a discovery, Ariel is filled with joy, and her mermaid tail […] lights up and shimmers.”
“Full of charm, big ideas and a powerful voice, ‘Disney Junior’s Ariel’ is coming into her own, learning how to discover and appreciate the world around her and use her voice to inspire others.”
“Disney Junior’s Ariel” is executive produced by Lynne Southerland (“Mulan II,” “Happily Ever After”). Norma P. Sepulveda (“Elena of Avalor”) and Keith Wagner (“TrollsTopia”) serve as story editors. Ezra Edmond (“Disney+ Draw Me a Story”) is the series producer, Kuni Tomita Bowen (“Dora the Explorer”) is supervising director, and Chrystin Garland (“Solar Opposites”) is art director.
The series is produced by Wild Canary (“Miles from Tomorrowland”) in association with Disney Junior.
Dr. Patricia Saunders, professor of English and hemispheric Caribbean studies and director of graduate studies at the University of Miami and author of two books, serves as a cultural consultant. Sean Skeete, chair of Berklee College of Music’s ensemble department, serves as the Caribbean music consultant.
“Disney Junior’s Ariel” is scheduled to debut on Disney platforms worldwide in 2024.
Disney Branded Television also announced “Magicampers,” a new series for preschoolers.
“Set at a day camp for magical creatures – its protagonists, Darly and Loomis, are half-pig and half-Pegasus, and half-donkey and half-unicorn – and created by Obie Scott Wade, it’s set to premiere globally on Disney+ and Disney Junior next year.”
Orion Ross, Vice President of Animation for The Walt Disney Company Europe, Middle East and Africa (EMEA) said, “We instantly fell in love with this ensemble of unique hybrid characters, who each combine something magical and something ordinary within themselves. Their adventures in this lush fantastical world are wildly fun and also explore what it means to grow up and discover yourself.”
Playdate With Winnie the Pooh
“Playdate with Winnie the Pooh” will debut in the U.S. this summer before a global roll out. This Disney Junior series “follows a young Pooh Bear as he enjoys playdates with his friends. Set in the exciting outdoors of the Hundred Acre Wood, these musical shorts emphasize collaborative play and the joy of spending time with others.”
It’s executive produced by Chris Hamilton, co-executive produced by Elise Fachon, produced by Greg Chalekian, and directed by Jojo Ramos Patrick. It’s produced by OddBot Inc. in association with Disney Junior.
Disney Junior Wonderful World of Songs
Also produced by OddBott Inc. in association with Disney Junior is “Wonderful World of Songs,” a series of musical shorts of preschoolers that “celebrate the heritage of Disney with classic characters and songs from beloved movies, series and attractions that highlight the wonder and magic of the brand.”
The shorts will feature reimagined versions of classic songs performed by Rob Cantor and Genevieve Goings. Songs will include “Circle of Life” from “The Lion King” and “How Far I’ll go” from “Moana.” The series will begin airing on Disney Junior and Disney+ in the U.S. this summer.
“Disney Junior Wonderful World of Songs” is executive produced by Chris Hamilton, co-executive produced by Elise Fachon, produced by Greg Chalekian, and directed by Henry Dalton.
More Disney Junior Shows
Disney Branded Television also greenlit “Marvel’s Spidey and His Amazing Friends” season 4 and “Firebuds” season 3.