As Walt Disney Animation Studios prepares to open Ralph Breaks the Internet in theaters around the world, one of the most anticipated moments is one that's been buzzed-about for months - "the Princess scene." Officially the "Oh My Disney" segment, I happened to have seen some of it months before the majority of the public as I was in attendance at the D23 Expo in Anaheim last year. If to "break the internet" really "is a thing," those packed into the famed Hall D23 saw it happen in person as all the living Disney Princesses gathered in one room and took to the stage following the first-ever look at the unfinished Princess scene (at the time a mix of finished animation and hand-drawn animatics filling the gaps). Auli‘i Cravalho (“Moana”), Kristen Bell (Anna in “Frozen”), Kelly MacDonald (Merida in “Brave”), Mandy Moore (Rapunzel in “Tangled”), Anika Noni Rose (Tiana in “The Princess and the Frog”), Irene Bedard (“Pocahontas”), Linda Larkin (Jasmine in “Aladdin”), Paige O’Hara (Belle in “Beauty and the Beast”) and Jodi Benson (Ariel in “The Little Mermaid”) were joined by Sarah Silverman (Vanellope von Schweetz in "Wreck-It Ralph") and directors Rich Moore and Phil Johnston to bask in the glory of what they'd just unleashed - the buzziest of buzz clips, but one the general public wouldn't see for months. And somehow C-3PO and R2-D2 where there, too.
This week, Nickelodeon served-up something new for its preschool audience, whisking kids away on some magical culinary adventures in Butterbean’s Café. The all-new CG-animated series made its debut on Monday during the Nick Jr. preschool block. Following a fairy named Butterbean and her adventures running her own neighborhood café and bakery, the series is something different - a culinary spin on a magical new world, and kids are already eating it up. While my own girls, The Rock Daughters™, are just a bit beyond the target demo, it's resonated with them, and the ratings show that they're not alone. Created by Robert Scull and Jonny Belt (Bubble Guppies), Butterbean’s Café is the biggest debut for Nick Jr. since Spin Master's PAW Patrol hit the scene back in 2013. Butterbean’s Café showcases creative cooking and features a curriculum with social-emotional lessons that highlight kindness and gratitude, and leadership skills. If your little ones haven't seen it yet, check out a preview of the 40-episode first season below...
Dumbo is a bit of a divisive figure in our house. The 1941 animated film falls into that "sad movie" category that my wife generally tends to avoid, so I'm the one that's introduced it to The Rock Daughters™ and got pretty excited when I first heard that the Batman Returns team of Michael Keaton (Batman), Danny DeVito (The Penguin) and filmmaker Tim Burton had come together to reimagine the tale for the big-screen. This coming March, Walt Disney Studios brings DUMBO into theaters, and now comes a new trailer and poster for the live-action adventure that picks-up where the animated version ended. Check it out...
Getting an earlier release than previously-announced, the highly anticipated Netflix original, DreamWorks She-Ra and the Princesses of Power, is now available. The 13 half-hour episodes tells "the epic story of an orphan named Adora, who leaves behind her former life in the evil Horde when she discovers a magic sword that transforms her into the mythical warrior princess She-Ra. Along the way, she finds a new family in the Rebellion as she unites a group of magical princesses in the ultimate fight against evil." I haven't had a chance to dig in and show The Rock Daughters™ just yet, but I've always been a big fan of Hordak. Mattel's Fright Zone Play Set was a favorite for me as a kid, and in a new clip from the series, it seems as if this new-school Hordak as a very Darth Vader-eque vibe. Check it out!
I do not care for "reaction videos." That's something that I've made clear many times in the past, because despite being extraordinarily popular (and I know some folks who do quite well with them), they're just not my bag. They're fake, exaggerated and make the subjects appear to be human cartoons. In fact, I even did one that pretty much sums-up how I view every trailer, and I titled it "The World's Most Boring Reaction Video." Today, however - a slight exception in that Disney•Pixar went totally-meta and released a reaction video for their own Toy Story 4 teaser, but it's not a traditional reaction video. No, it's snarky carnival toys taking shots at Cabbage Patch Kids and Care Bears before riffing on the famous catch-phrases of Woody & Buzz Lightyear. Check it out below, and be on the lookout... I do believe we've just seen our first Easter Egg. Are those Cordoba COCO guitars on the wall?
When Ralph Breaks the Internet hits theaters on November 21, audiences will get their first big-screen look at Disney•Pixar's Toy Story 4. But today that teaser is available early, hitting the web to give fans their long-awaited first-look at what adventures lie ahead as the toys head to a new location... Bonnie’s room. “Like most people, I assumed that ‘Toy Story 3’ was the end of the story,” said director Josh Cooley. “And it was the end of Woody’s story with Andy. But just like in life, every ending is a new beginning. Woody now being in a new room, with new toys, and a new kid, was something we have never seen before. The questions of what that would be like became the beginning of an entertaining story worth exploring.” Check out the teaser below!
This Incredibles 2 Special Feature is presented in collaboration between The Rock Father™ and Disney•Pixar. Incredibles 2 is now available Blu-ray 4K Ultra HD,™ Blu-ray™, DVD and On-Demand - a Holiday Wish Guide Pick as a perfect gift!
A year before Disney•Pixar's Incredibles 2 hit theaters, I noticed a familiar family dynamic at play. I'd been invited to attend the D23 Expo in Anaheim, and it was inside the famed "Hall D23" that members of the audience got their first-look at some footage from the long-awaited sequel. By the time the film hit theaters this summer, it had been 14 years since the original - with enough time having passed that the world had become a very different place. One big change: I'd become an at-home dad, and so did Bob Parr (Mr. Incredible). To put it lightly, there were adjustments to be made, and the experience has been a rollercoaster. For our family, I became the at-home parent for financial reasons - my wife, my own "Mrs. Incredible," makes more money than I do and has the stability of a great job (21 years and counting!) with essential benefits like health insurance that are often unaffordable for hired gun contract guys like myself. For the Incredibles, the reasons were a bit more complicated, yet entirely similar. Helen Parr (Elastigirl) was offered a gig outside of the home that would support her family, yet even she was conflicted in a way very similar to my wife, stating "in order to help my family, I have to leave it." Bob thought that staying home with the kids would be "easy." If you've ever been responsible for a small human being, I think we can agree that it's never easy. Still, in the years that I've had the good fortune to do what I do, part of which includes running this very website, some (a very select few) have deemed me a "parenting expert," and that is a falsehood. Being "The Rock Father™," I do have some tips, but they're more like reminders... for myself. How to be an Incredible dad...
As we approach the 20th Anniversary of LEGO Star Wars in 2019, some new adventures are headed to Disney XD. LEGO Star Wars: All-Stars, a new animated adventure series that spans all Star Wars eras, will debut beginning MONDAY, OCT. 29, on Disney XD, YouTube and the DisneyNOW App. Comprised of eight shorts and four half-hour episodes, the series features LEGO versions of the fresh faces of the Star Wars galaxy alongside iconic heroes including Kylo Ren, R2-D2, Young Han, Chewie, Young Lando, BB-8 and General Leia. Check out the first teaser below!
Not long ago, on the Walt Disney Studios lot in Burbank, I had a chance to take a look at a nice chunk of footage from Walt Disney Animation Studios' 57th feature, Ralph Breaks the Internet. Given the long development and production time required for an animated feature on this scale, the follow-up to 2012's Wreck-It Ralph is an unusually timely story that arrives just as retro gaming is reaching its peak as we enter a holiday season where some of this year's must-have gifts are firmly-rooted in a simpler time with an arcade past. Just as real-life gamers are longing to go back in time, Wreck-It Ralph (John C. Reilly) and Vanellope von Schweetz (Sarah Silverman) are headed for the future... but the future is now. From Litwak's Arcade to the internet, the creative team behind the film had a huge task ahead of them in order to build and populate a digital world that could have believably been expanding for decades.
JUST ROLL WITH IT: Disney Channel's New Comedy Blends Scripted and Improv with Audience Participation...Written by James Zahn
Disney Channel is ready to Just Roll With It. The creative team behind Disney XD's Walk the Prank is back with a new multi-camera sitcom that they're calling "the first-of-its-kind" - "a hybrid of a scripted family comedy and an improvisational comedy, in which the studio audience members select the outcome of certain scenes while the cast just rolls with it." From co-showrunners Adam Small and Trevor Moore, the series just got the greenlight and is in production now.
This December, a familiar nanny will be back on the big screen in an all-new adventure from the folks at Walt Disney Studios. Tonight a new "special look" at the film has arrived, and while it's a short clip, it's a fun one that pulls back the curtains just a tiny little bit for a taste of the music and magic that awaits when MARY POPPINS RETURNS on December 19th. After making its debut on ABC's Dancing With the Stars, the new spot can be viewed below. Check it out!
Disney Junior's Doc McStuffins is one of the most important children's series of all-time, and it's certainly been a very special one here at our house. Now comes news that the long-awaited Season Five will premiere FRIDAY, OCT. 26 (11:00-11:30 a.m. EDT/PDT), on Disney Channel and the DisneyNOW app. Since 2012, the series, which tells the story of a young girl who aspires to be a doctor like her mom and communicates with and heals toys, has been celebrated by parents, educators and health-care professionals around the world for having a lasting impact on how children see themselves and their future. As a part of season five, The Doc McStuffins Christmas Special will debut this December on Disney Junior as part of Disney|ABC Television's annual "25 Days of Christmas" programming event. The special will also air on Disney Channel, ABC and Freeform throughout the holiday season.