The first major Disney panel at D23 did not disappoint. Things kickstarted with a brand new ident, giving the famous Disney introduction a makeover to celebrate the company’s 100th anniversary. From there, the announcements just kept coming – we had trailers for Disenchanted and Hocus Pocus 2; exclusive (not online) looks at Peter Pan & Wendy and Haunted Mansion; and multiple new movies announced.
There was, to put it simply, a lot going on, and chances are you missed one of the big announcements. That’s where we come in – our team was on the ground in LA for the conference and has all the news you need right here, including footage descriptions and first looks at major releases. Here’s everything that happened at Disney’s D23 panel.
Disney gets a new ident
In honor of its 100th anniversary, Disney has unveiled an all-new ident that will open its movies from now on – so expect a new version of that iconic castle and "When You Wish Upon a Star" opening next time you watch a Disney movie. We see the second star to the right, followed by Tinkerbell flying over a railway bridge, up a waterfall, and onto the Disneyland castle, with Mickey Mouse-shaped fireworks in the background. "Disney 100: 100 Years of Wonder" then appears before the scene.
The first Disenchanted trailer arrives
Enchanted star Amy Adams hit the D23 stage in character as Giselle. She was joined by her co-stars Idina Menzel, Patrick Dempsey, Maya Rudolph, and James Marsden. “Giselle still has all the love and joy that we know about [her], but she has a new life as the mother of a baby and a teenager and tries to move forward not always in the best way but with the best intentions," explained Adams. As for Menzel and Marsden's characters, they've been “living a non-stop fairytale montage in Andalasia.” Aww.
The new Disenchanted trailer shows Giselle making a wish for a fairytale life after moving with her husband and stepdaughter to the suburbs… but the wish has some serious unintended consequences. Enter Rudolph's Malvina as a fully-fledged villain, tons of magic, and, of course, lots of singing.
Another look at Hocus Pocus 2 is revealed
Ahead of its Halloween release, Hocus Pocus 2 got a fresh trailer, which sees the witchy Sanderson Sisters brought back to life once again. The clip opens, however, on younger versions of Winifred, Sarah, and Mary being banished from Salem, before Ted Lasso’s Hannah Waddingham – a first look! – appears and gives the trio The Spellbook.
Cut to 370 years later, and three young women living in Salem opt to celebrate one of their 16th birthdays by buying a candle from a magic shop and performing an incantation in the woods. Always a bright idea, eh? The conjuration accidentally resurrects Winnie (Bette Midler), Sarah (Sarah Jessica Parker), and Mary (Kathy Najimy) and, as you may have guessed, chaos ensues. Right at the end of the promo, Doug Jones can be seen reprising his role as Winnie’s deceased ex-boyfriend Billy Butcher, too.
A new Peter Pan & Wendy poster is unveiled
Just revealed at #D23Expo ✨ Check out the new poster for #PeterPanandWendy. Streaming in 2023 only on @DisneyPlus. pic.twitter.com/sYk42QIfyiSeptember 9, 2022
The live-action Peter Pan & Wendy movie hailing from The Green Knight director David Lowery has its first poster. A pirate ship pokes from the clouds, while a certain boy who wouldn't grow up can be seen flying above, seemingly engaged in a sword fight. You can also spot figures that appear to be Michael and John Darling. And… is that Wendy flying and wielding a sword? It also looks like Captain Hook might be the enemy they're fighting.
Onstage, Ever Anderson, who plays Wendy, says her character and Peter are “equals in this version," while Captain Hook actor Jude Law hints at a surprising twist to the tale: "We got to mine their backstory a little more, and learn a bit about their past, where they might have been friends."
They went on to show a trailer, which our reporter on the ground described as mixing in some of the traditional iconic imagery (flying across the London sky, Lost Boys, pirates) with an otherwise quite different-looking take on the material.
Haunted Mansion has some wild cast members
“The queen of scary movies” Jamie Lee Curtis is also in Haunted Mansion! #D23Expo pic.twitter.com/1qQs8OYGunSeptember 9, 2022
Director Justin Simien shared his love for the Haunted Mansion ride – he used to work at Disneyland himself. Expect the movie to be filled with Easter eggs from the ride. A clip featuring Owen Wilson, LaKeith Stanfield, Danny DeVito, and a surprise Winona Ryder cameo was screened for attendees. Dan Levy and Hassan Minaj also have cameos in the films… and Jamie Lee Curtis, the "queen of scary movies" herself, has her role in the film as Madame Leota confirmed. She even rolled up on a Doom Buggy for extra cool points.
Barry Jenkins' Mufasa: The Lion King announced
As has been long-reported, Barry Jenkins is directing a prequel to The Lion King – but at D23, it was shared that the film will be about Mufasa, father to Simba. “It’s a story told in two different timeframes," Jenkins explained. Timon, Pumbaa, and Rafiki will tell the story of how Mufasa went from orphan cub to King of the Pride Lands, according to the director.
Rachel Zegler and Gal Gadot in Snow White
Disney’s Snow White, starring Rachel Zegler and Gal Gadot, releasing 2024. #D23Expo pic.twitter.com/UkAVXQq5KbSeptember 9, 2022
The live-action Snow White, due for release in 2024, got a first look and logo at D23. Rachel Zegler and Gal Gadot were onstage to talk about the trailer, which looked very traditional, but Zegler says the film will have a "modern" take. As for her villainous turn, Gadot said, "The fact I could go cuckoo was delightful."
The Little Mermaid
Director Rob Marshall was in attendance. “I have a very special connection to this film, because when it opened in 1989… we could hear people singing again in a movie," he said. "It felt like fate.” Four new songs will feature in the film, penned by Disney legend Alan Menken and Hamilton's Lin-Manuel Miranda. "Part of Your World" was shown to the lucky audience, and our reporter on the ground described the scene as featuring "slick slick underwater VFX and a blow-the-roof-off vocal performance from Halle Bailey."
The first trailer for the film has also been released to the public. We see Ariel swimming through a shipwreck and hear just a snippet of 'Part of Your World.'
Director Peter Sohn and producer Denise Ream took to the stage to talk upcoming Pixar movie Elemental. It's inspired by Sohn's parents, who moved to New York in the '70s. A work-in-progress sizzle reel was screened, which our reporter in attendance said looks "visually somewhere between Inside Out and Zootopia." A look at the protagonists – one fire and one water – was also revealed, along with a poster showing the duo almost touching hands. A clip that shows the pair exploring Element City screened for attendees.
Win or Lose
Fantastic first clip from Pixar’s original streaming series Win or Lose, which follows a middle-school softball team - each episode shows the same week from the perspective of a different character #D23Expo pic.twitter.com/CrdeWHF9sRSeptember 9, 2022
A first clip of Pixar's upcoming TV show Win or Lose, set to be released on Disney Plus, was shown. Every episode of the series will depict the same week, but from the point of view of a different character each time, all leading to the championship game. Will Forte stars as Coach Dan. Our reporter called the clip "fantastic."
A brand new Pixar film titled Elio was announced at the convention. The film sees the titular young boy transported to space after making contact with aliens, where he becomes an ambassador for Earth in a major planetary gathering that's an intergalactic version of the United Nations. America Ferrera voices Elio's mother, Olga, a decoder at a top secret military organization.
Inside Out 2
Amy Poehler made a surprise appearance at D23 to confirm that an Inside Out sequel is officially happening. In the follow-up, new emotions will join the line-up, and young Riley is now a teenager. The film, which is set to be written by Meg LeFauve, produced by Mark Nielsen, and directed by Kelsey Mann, will arrive sometime in 2024.
Zootopia+ is coming to Disney+ this November, with six episodes including The Godfather of the Bride and a Real Housewives riff set in Rodentia #D23Expo pic.twitter.com/FQ4f8i0sQqSeptember 10, 2022
Disney+ is set to play host to Zootopia+ this November, as six standalone episodes expand on the characters we met in the 2016 movie Zootopia. Going by the D23 presentation, one episode is geared up to be a bit of a Real Housewives spoof that takes place in the rat-filled Rodentia, while other animals in focus include the sloths, Judy Hopps’ family, buffalo Chief Bogo, and cheetah Benjamin Clawhauser.
Newly announced animated series Iwájú is set to be a coming-of-age story about Tola and Kole, two best friends who live in the titular futuristic city. Created by Ziki Nelson, in a collaboration between Disney and African entertainment company Kugali, it was described during the presentation as “a love letter to Lagos, Nigeria”.
Building on the fact that Iwájú is a Yoruba word that loosely translates to “future”, the show will explore class, growing up, and what it means to challenge the status quo.
A new trailer for Strange World debuted at the convention, showcasing a story focused on a father-son relationship in a fantastical setting. “I’ve always wanted to be in a Disney animation so this is a dream come true," said star Jake Gyllenhaal. Dennis Quaid, who plays adventurer Jaegar Clade, was onstage – along with Lucy Liu, who plays president Callisto Mal, described as "fearless, tough, a leader." A new still from the film was also unveiled. Check it out below.
New Disney film Wish was announced at the panel. It's set to focus on the origins of the iconic star that so many Disney characters have wished upon over the years (yes, the one from "When You Wish Upon a Star"). Ariana DeBose will voice the main character, while Alan Tudyk voices a goat. It will also be a musical.
And that's everything that was announced during Disney's massive D23 panel. For more, check out the full D23 schedule to know what else to expect this weekend.