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.
“Through a variety of storytelling genres, including original movies, our goal is to become the top destination for boys on television, online and everywhere they interact with media,” said Marsh. “Girls are certainly welcome at Disney XD, but what we’re trying to do is super-serve the 6-to 14-year-old boy audience in a way that nobody else has with stories that are decidedly Disney, with themes of adventure, accomplishment, gaming, music and sports.”
“Skyrunners” begins as teenage brothers Tyler (newcomer Joey Pollari) and Nick Burns (Blatz) commandeer a small UFO that crashes near their town. They soon realize that the spacecraft is “alive” and Tyler begins to develop superhuman abilities. When the brothers uncover an ominous alien plot to take over Earth, Tyler is captured by the extraterrestrials, so now it’s up to Nick to rescue his brother.
In addition to Pollari and Blatz, Disney XD’s “Skyrunners” stars Linda Kash (“Cinderella Man” and Disney Channel’s “Full-Court Miracle”) as Robin Burns, Conrad Coates (“Kyle XY”) as Agent Armstrong, Jacqueline MacInnes Wood (“The Bold and the Beautiful”) as Julie Gunn and Nathan Stephenson (“Degrassi: The Next Generation”) as Darryl Butler.
“Skyrunners” was directed by Ralph Hemecker (“Numb3rs”) and written by Richard C. Okie (“Quantum Leap” and “Earth: Final Conflict”) along with Adam Wilson & Melanie Wilson. Okie also executive-produced the movie. “Skyrunners” is a production of Ranger Productions and Shaftesbury Services II, Inc.