ABC Family Secures Network Premiere Rights to G-Force, Christmas Carol and Beverly Hills Chihuahua

Burbank, CA (April 9, 2009) – ABC Family has acquired a slate of theatricals including several network television premieres as part of an agreement with Disney-ABC Domestic Television. The network will air the network television premieres of the Walt Disney Pictures 3-D films “G-Force,” from producer Jerry Bruckheimer, in theaters this summer, and “A Christmas Carol,” starring Jim Carrey, to be released in theaters this November. The package also includes the network television premiere of “Beverly Hills Chihuahua,” and second position windows for the studio’s two recent films, “Race to Witch Mountain” and “Bedtime Stories.”

“Beverly Hills Chihuahua” is tentatively scheduled to make its network television premiere on ABC Family in 2010, “G-Force” in 2011 and “A Christmas Carol” in 2012. “Bedtime Stories” and “Race to Witch Mountain” will both tentatively mark their runs on the network in 2012.
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Production Begins on ‘Skyrunners,’ Disney XD’s First Original Movie, Starring Kelly Blatz

Production has begun on “Skyrunners,” the first original movie for the newly branded television platform Disney XD. The science fiction adventure features rising star Kelly Blatz, who can also be seen playing the title role of the new network’s flagship series “Aaron Stone.” In addition Weta Workshop, the multiple Academy Award-winning world leader in special makeup, creature and visual effects (“The Lord of the Rings” trilogy, “King Kong” and “The Chronicles of Narnia” films), will design and provide the practical alien creature effects in the movie. The announcement was made today by Gary Marsh, president, Entertainment, Disney Channels Worldwide.

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ABC Daytime and SOAPNet Present Stagecoach Country Music Festival in California

ABC Daytime and SOAPnet have signed on as the presenting sponsor of the 2009 Stagecoach Country Music Festival powered by Toyota. The event, held at the Empire Polo Club in Indio, California, will be a part of ABC Daytime and SOAPnet’s Soap Nation Tour, an ongoing initiative to bring the stars to more fans in more cities more often. As part of the sponsorship, actors from all three soaps, “All My Children” (AMC), “One Life To Live” (OLTL) and “General Hospital” (GH), will be integrated into the event, introducing musical acts and interacting with fans on the Mane Stage. Additionally, ABC and SOAPnet will hold autograph sessions and run giveaways from a branded RV and tent onsite. Talent confirmed to attend (subject to change) include Bobbie Eakes and Aiden Turner from “All My Children,” Bree Williamson from “One Life To Live,” and Brandon Barash, Steve Burton, Rebecca Herbst, Kirsten Storms, Jason Thompson and Laura Wright from “General Hospital.” Go to www.soapnet.com for additional details.

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Famous Chicken Consults on Disney Channel Original Movie ‘Hatching Pete’

Mascot Hall of Fame-inductee Ted Giannoulas, the original Famous San Diego Chicken who is widely credited for heralding an era of outrageous sideline mascots, was a consultant and one of three professional chicken stuntmen on the set of “Hatching Pete,” a raucous comedy about a small town’s zeal for its high school basketball team and the emergence of a shy teen’s hidden personality as its hilarious chicken mascot.

The stunt and basketball-filled movie geared towards kids, tweens and families, premieres FRIDAY, APRIL 24 (8:00 p.m., ET/PT) on Disney Channel with a simulcast on Sprint TV and MobiTV. The movie will be available Friday, April 17 on Disney Channel on Demand through select cable and telco providers. The “Hatching Pete” movie website at www.DisneyChannel.com features arcade games “Tailfeathers Bounce” and “Mascot Me,” and an interactive quiz.

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Disney Channel Marks Earth Day with Green-Themed Programming for Preschoolers, Kids and Tweens Starting April 17

Through eco-conscious storytelling, Disney Channel marks Earth Day with episodes conveying the importance of conservation, recycling and using natural resources beginning FRIDAY, APRIL 17.

PlayhouseDisney.com will launch the new “Handy Manny Gets Handy with the Earth” mini site, which includes “Manny’s Mini Garden,” where kids can create their own online garden on FRIDAY, APRIL 3.

Disney.com will offer a preview of “Handy Manny’s” new recycling episode, “Home Sweet Home/ Jackie’s Old Shed,” beginning SATURDAY, APRIL 11.
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Mitchel Musso and Jason Earles Host ‘Yin Yang Yo!’ Event and Star in New Episode April 5

Popular kid and tween stars Mitchel Musso (“Hannah Montana,” “Phineas and Ferb”) and Jason Earles (“Hannah Montana”) host a marathon programming event, a countdown of their Top 5 favorite “Yin Yang Yo!” episodes, culminating with the premiere of their guest starring roles on the animated series, SUNDAY, APRIL 5 (6:00 –9:00 p.m., ET/PT) on Disney XD.

Comedy interstitials featuring the animated characters Yin and Yang with Musso and Earles will also be included.

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Amazon.com Offers Big Sale on 40 Disney, ABC and Miramax Blu-ray Titles

Until April 4, the more titles you purchase at once, the more money you’ll save off the already discounted prices. From saving an additional $20 by purchasing three titles to saving $100 by purchasing ten.

Check out the sale here.

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Disney DVD Roundup for March 31, 2009 – Hannah Montana, Handy Manny, Baby Einstein & More

Here’s a look at some DVDs set to hit the shelves Tuesday, March 31.

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Disney Brings ABC and ESPN Content to YouTube

It is now being reported that Disney and Google have reached an agreement in which Disney will provide short-form videos from its ABC and ESPN libraries via ad-supported branded channels. The ESPN channel is set to launch first in mid-April with the ABC channel (including SOAPnet) to follow in May.

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