Production Begins on Playhouse Disney’s ‘Jake and the Never Land Pirates'; Series Features Captain Hook

Disney Television Animation has begun production on “Jake and the Never Land Pirates,” an interactive 2-D and CG animated series for preschoolers and parents featuring the music and fun-filled adventures of classic characters Captain Hook and Smee, plus a new crew of kid pirates led by the enthusiastic and courageous Jake. The series, which will premiere on Playhouse Disney-branded blocks and channels around the world, is designed to emphasize teamwork. The announcement was made today by Nancy Kanter, senior vice president, Playhouse Disney Worldwide.

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Disney Channel Stars Respond to Haiti Disaster in New ‘Express Yourself’ Interstitial

A new segment of Disney Channel’s “Express Yourself” short form series, one coinciding with kids, families and educators’ discussions surrounding the Haiti earthquake, will premiere TUESDAY, FEBRUARY 2 on Disney Channel and Disney XD channels around the world, on Disney.com (including Disney Channel.com and DisneyXD.com) and on You Tube.

The 60-second interstitial, featuring the message, “Join the world as we shine a light on Haiti,” has themes of connection, empowerment, compassion, outreach and being a part of a global community. It features popular Disney Channel stars Selena Gomez (“Wizards of Waverly Place”), Emily Osment, Jason Earles (both of “Hannah Montana”), Dylan and Cole Sprouse, Brenda Song and Doc Shaw (all of “The Suite Life on Deck”) encouraging kids to explore and communicate their feelings and to get inspired to make a difference.

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ABC to Announce New Cast of ‘Dancing With the Stars’ During ‘The Bachelor’ Season Finale

In a special Monday night event, the new cast of “Dancing with the Stars” will be announced by “Dancing with the Stars” host Tom Bergeron in interstitials airing throughout the highly anticipated dramatic two-hour finale of the popular romance reality series, “The Bachelor: On the Wings of Love,” on MONDAY, MARCH 1 (8:00-10:00 p.m., ET), on the ABC Television Network.

Immediately following each cast member’s unveiling during primetime, ABC.com will post the updated list online.

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Robert Pattinson, Emilie De Raven to Sparkle on ‘The View’ March 2

Robert Pattinson, undeniably one of today’s most recognizable, popular and most sought-after stars, takes his first “bite” out of ABC’s Emmy(r) award-winning talk show, “The View, live, TUESDAY, MARCH 2 (11:00 a.m.-12:00 noon, ET) on the ABC Television Network, in his first-ever appearance on the show. Pattinson will appear along with Emilie De Raven, his co-star in the upcoming film “Remember Me.”

Set for release in March 2010, “Remember Me” stars Pattinson as unruly New York college student Tyler who is dealing with a personal tragedy and falls in love with Ally (Emilie De Raven).

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Whoa! Melissa Joan Hart and Joey Lawrence Return to Sitcoms in ABC Family’s ‘Melissa & Joey’

Lee, president, ABC Family, yesterday announced the pick-up of “Melissa & Joey.” The series has been given a 10-episode order and is scheduled to premiere in 2010.

“We love Melissa and Joey,” said Lee. “Melissa has a long history on the network, and she and Joey recently starred in the network’s original movie, ‘My Fake Fiancé,” which broke records for the network last year. They have fantastic chemistry and are just so relatable to our viewers. We knew we wanted to get them together again, and developed this comedy specifically with them in mind.”

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ABC Invites Viewers to ‘The Bachelor: Jason and Molly’s Wedding’ Special on March 8

Jason Mesnick and Molly Malaney, the first “Bachelor” couple to ever walk down the aisle, will share a dramatic new chapter of their love story with millions of viewers when ABC televises their much anticipated wedding on “The Bachelor: Jason and Molly’s Wedding,” MONDAY, MARCH 8 (8:00-10:00 p.m., ET), on the ABC Television Network.

The couple, who announced their engagement in October, will let viewers in on all the exciting festivities – from Molly’s dress fitting for her dazzling custom-made gown to Jason and Molly planning the big day with their wedding planner and event designer. Then it’s on to their bachelor and bachelorette parties, and the next stage of their romantic journey with a beautiful wedding ceremony in the perfect location.

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ABC Family Adds Two New Dramas to Line-up: ‘Huge’ and ‘Pretty Little Liars’

Paul Lee, president, ABC Family, today announced the pick-up of two one-hour dramas, “Huge” and “Pretty Little Liars.” Each series has been given a 10-episode order and is scheduled to premiere in 2010.

“ABC Family is coming off another record year of growth,” said Lee. “We’re excited about the addition of these two new original series to the network’s already strong slate of programming. Both have their own unique voice that will speak to our Millennial viewers.”

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Disney’s Phineas and Ferb and Common Sense Media Launch Internet Safety PSA

Disney has teamed with Common Sense Media to help kids and tweens safely navigate the internet and other digital platforms and to get parents thinking about how media and technology fit into their family’s life. The initiative includes a PSA and website which feature the characters from Disney’s hit animated series “Phineas and Ferb” and supports Common Sense Media’s “Rules of the Road” for smart and safe use of digital media. The tips include guarding privacy and protecting one’s identity while online, balancing time spent in cyberspace and thinking before texting or posting material online.

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Disney to Kick Off ‘Alice in Wonderland’ Promotion Across Three Networks, Super Bowl Ad

Not quite mad as a hatter with anticipation for Tim Burton’s Alice in Wonderland yet? You will be.

Beginning January 31, Walt Disney Studios will begin offering 60-second first looks across three networks, each providing its own exclusive sneak peek at the film, all culminating to a spectacular ad during the Super Bowl titled Tick-Tock.

You can catch ABC’s version during Desperate Housewives on January 31 and The Bachelor on February 1; ESPN’s version during the 2010 NFL Pro Bowl on January 31 and during the NBA Nuggets-Lakers game on February 5; and ABC Family’s during Greek on Febuary 1 and The Parent Trap on February 6.

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Nikki Reed Named Vice President of Original Series Development for Disney Channel

Nikki Reed has been named Vice President, Original Series, overseeing live-action development for Disney Channel and Disney XD, it was announced today by Adam Bonnett, Senior Vice President, Original Programming, Disney Channel, to whom she will report.

Reed, who has more than 13 years’ experience overseeing feature films and television series development, will be responsible for developing new live-action series geared towards kids, tweens and families on Disney Channel, Disney XD, as well as numerous platforms around the world.

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