Lilo & Stitch Inspires Video Sequel, Television Series

Disney has already announced plans to capitalize on the success of its 2D animated summer hit LILO & STITCH with a direct-to-video sequel and a television series. Thomas Schumacher, head of Disney Feature Animation, made the announcement. The video sequel, currently entitled STITCH! -- THE MOVIE, is slated for release in 2003 and will serve as a bridge between the feature film and the television series, currently under development with the working title of STITCH! -- THE TV SERIES, and set to launch on Disney Channel in fall 2003. In STITCH! THE MOVIE, Stitch (formerly known as Experiment 626) is now living on Earth with Lilo and Nani, aided by their friend, David, and the social worker Cobra Bubbles, as well as fellow aliens Jumba and Pleakley. Unfortunately, Jumba's other 625 experiments land on Hawaii and are activated. Following the video premiere, the television series finds Lilo and Stitch searching for these experiments and helping to turn their nature from bad to good. Tony Craig and Roberts Gannaway, the team behind HOUSE OF MOUSE and THE LION KING'S TIMON & PUMBAA, are the directors of STITCH! -- THE MOVIE. Gannaway, Craig and Jess Winfield (TEACHER'S PET, BUZZ LIGHTYEAR OF STAR COMMAND) are executive producers, and the script is written by Winfield and Gannaway. Gannaway, Craig and Winfield are also executive producers of the series. The initial 39 episodes will be directed by Vic Cook (THE LEGEND OF TARZAN, 101 DALMATIANS, THE SERIES) and Don MacKinnon (TEACHER'S PET, BUZZ LIGHTYEAR OF STAR COMMAND). The majority of the films cast will return for the video premiere and the television series, including Daveigh Chase (Lilo), Tia Carrere (Nani), David Ogden Stiers (Jumba), Ving Rhames (Cobra Bubbles) and co-creator Chris Sanders as Stitch.

Animating to music seemed to be a lost art in television animation until two producers at Disney decided to bring it back. Tony Craig explains how he and his animation partner re-created the days of yore.