Disney Junior & Friends Playdate, a three-day event held at Disney California Adventure Park and Downtown Disney District Aug. 18-20, celebrated the stories and characters from Disney Junior’s preschool shows through special announcements, parades, live show and more. Ayo Davis, president of Disney Branded Television, revealed new Disney Junior projects, holiday-themed episodes and casting announcements at the event on Friday, Aug. 18.
Disney Junior programming, available on the Disney Junior YouTube channel and streaming on Disney+, features content geared towards preschoolers aged 2-7. Programming announcements included a new iteration of Disney Junior’s flagship series “Mickey Mouse Clubhouse,” which will debut in 2025. The updated version of the Emmy Award-winning animation will feature an expanded clubhouse area for just for Minnie. Other announcements included the cast for “Disney Junior’s Ariel,” an animated musical series premiering in 2024. Ariel will be played by Mykal-Michelle Harris, who was the cover model for our 2022 Holiday issue of LA Parent. After the cover shoot she chatted with our Editor in Chief Cassandra Lane about her love of the industry and how she got her start in acting.
Peabody Award-winning “Doc McStuffins” will premiere “Doc McStuffins: The Doc & Bella Are In!” on Sept. 6, which will be the first time fans will see new content since 2020. New series “RoboGobo,” which follows Dax and his five adorable, adopted pets, will premiere in 2024 with noteworthy guest stars like Alan Cumming and Ana Gasteyer. The new “Playdate with Winnie the Pooh” and “Me & Winnie the Pooh” shorts debuted on Disney Junior YouTube and Disney Junior on Aug. 18. Hit series “Firebuds” returns to Disney Junior and Disney + with a second season and new episodes of Star Wars: Young Jedi Adventures” will debut Nov. 8.
Special holiday episodes were also announced for Disney Junior programs, including a Halloween-themed episode of “SuperKitties,” premiering Sept. 25, and a Rosh Hashanah-themed episode of “Marvel’s Spidey and his Amazing Friends” premiering Sept. 15. Other holiday content includes a Dia de los Muertos-themed episode of “Mickey Mouse Funhouse,” debuting Oct. 6 and stop-motion special, “Mickey and Friends Trick or Treats,” premiering Oct. 1.
“Disney Junior captures the hearts and imaginations of preschoolers and their families everywhere with stories and characters filled with magic, wonder, adventure and heart,” said Davis. “From providing early entry points into classic Disney franchises to introducing brand-new IP that becomes the latest kid obsessions, Disney Junior is always there with infinite opportunities to engage and play.”