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Disney confirms 'Frozen' stage musical in development

With Aladdin set for a Broadway premiere this February and The Hunchback of Notre Dame long in the works, Disney is looking further ahead to another candidate to bring from the screen to the stage: Frozen.

Disney Theatrical Productions has confirmed to EW that Frozen is in early development for the stage. Disney CEO and chairman Bob Iger dropped the hint to Fortune that discussions have begun to develop the wintry 2013 musical—which is breaking box office records and inspiring all kinds of ebullient fan reactionsinto a full-fledged theater production, though he did not specify whether the show would be built for Broadway or as one of the many theatrical attractions at Disney’s parks (where things like Aladdin: A Musical Spectaular and Finding Nemo – The Musical have wound up). READ FULL STORY

Shia LaBeouf's TV sister weighs in on his shenanigans: 'This is not just some breakdown'

Need further proof that life imitates art? Try this: While troublemaker Shia LaBeouf was releasing a series of plagiarized mea culpas in order to “apologize” for copying the work of artist Daniel Clowes, his former Even Stevens costar Christy Carlson Romano was busy doing something mature and responsible — that is, getting married to her longtime boyfriend at a Canadian castle. Classic Louis and Ren, am I right? (In case you’re not up on your ’00s Disney Channel sitcoms: LeBeouf’s Louis Stevens was “immature, rude, and selfish.” His older sister Ren, played by Romano, was “an intelligent, well-behaved perfectionist.” It’s uncanny!)

Just don’t expect Romano to join the chorus of famous voices who have piled on LaBeouf in the wake of the scandal. “He has always kind of regarded me as his big sister,” the actress told EW. And even though the two of them don’t keep in touch, Romano said she’s still “a huge supporter” of LaBeouf.

Romano, who can be seen next in the TV movie thriller Where Fates Meet and the indie flick Prism, noted that other former child actors often have trouble rebranding themselves as adult artists. In her mind, LaBeouf hasn’t had that problem: “He’s always just honored his artistic instincts, even when he was 12 years old to about 15 or 16 as we worked together,” she said. “So this is him experimenting with his artistic instincts. This is not just some breakdown, like some other child actors. This isn’t some emotional neediness. This is something that he’s actively doing.”


Retroactively Relevant: Shia LaBeouf singing about lying on 'Even Stevens' -- VIDEO


“No one can produce an excellent excuse like you.”

Disney fans likely remember that line from the iconic-to-millenials musical episode of Even Stevens. And now the song “I Always Find a Way,” sung by a preteen Shia LaBeouf about talking/lying his way out of anything, takes on new relevance in the wake of LaBeouf’s long-running plagiarism scandal.

It’s exhausting to keep up with: First, LaBeouf admitted he plagiarized Daniel Clowes’ comic Justin M. Damiano in a short film, then he unleashed a series of also-plagiarized apologies culminating most recently in a sky written one that also randomly drew the attention of Lena Dunham. And as over it as you, a person who was done with LaBeouf right around the time of Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull, might be, he’s clearly not anywhere close to done with infuriating the Internet.

So instead of us saying anything more, we’ll just let LaBeouf give his very own statement, straight from the lyrics of his 2002 Even Stevens tune: He’ll always find a way to get out of something, whether it’s gym class or consequences for lying. Check out this old musical clip below: READ FULL STORY

Eight unexpected trends inspired by Disney's 'Frozen'

Friends, reindeer, ice harvesters, lend me your antlers: I have been tumbling through the wormhole that is the Internet fandom of Disney’s marvelous blockbuster Frozen. I have trudged through the snowy hills of fan-fiction, braved the icy winds of Deviantart, and prowled hashtag upon hashtag devoted to the greatest thing to happen to Disney musicals since July 22, 1949 (Alan Menken’s birthday, whaaat).

Beyond my Tumblr-inspired downward spiral, my social media feeds have abounded with proclamations of Frozen love following the film’s release in the now-ancient November 2013. The sprightly little musical has topped the box office charts, rivaling Avatar and Titanic, and gifted the world with a top-notch soundtrack that I haven’t been able to “let” “go” (get it? GET IT?) for weeks. But most interestingly, Frozen has given birth to some pretty bizarre trends—let’s examine. READ FULL STORY

Lucasfilm, Marvel partner for new 'Star Wars' comics

After more than 20 years, the force is with Marvel once again.

Disney announced Friday that two of its subsidiaries — Lucasfilm and Marvel Entertainment — are working together on a series of new Star Wars comic books.

The brand’s first comics were originally published by Marvel in the ’70s, back before both companies had been acquired by Disney. In 1991, the license for the comics was purchased by Dark Horse, which has published the titles ever since. Now the rights have returned to Marvel, which plans to release its first new-new Star Wars comics and graphic novels in 2015.

Perhaps uncoincidentally, 2015 is also the year that J.J. Abrams’ yet-untitled Star Wars film is scheduled to hit theaters.

Kids give their parents a puppy for Christmas -- 'Lion King'-style: VIDEO

These five siblings took a page out of Disney’s The Lion King to give their parents something special in a very memorable way. The present: An adorable new puppy.

The presentation: A full-scale “Circle of Life” reenactment, complete with interpretive dancing, elephant impersonations, and a recreation of the moment when Rafiki holds Simba up for all of Pride Rock to see. (Though we’re pretty sure the vocalists in the film aren’t actually singing “edamame, penguins and pajamas.”) Check out the home movie below.


Entertainment Geekly: My Top 100 Disney Things, off the top of my head


Entertainment Geekly is a weekly column that examines contemporary pop culture through a geek lens and simultaneously examines contemporary geek culture through a pop lens. So many lenses! Click here for past columns.

Last week I wrote a long and rant-y column about the Disney Myth, as constructed in Saving Mr. Banks and deconstructed in Escape From Tomorrow. In an effort to prove I’m not the world’s biggest grouch — and because I spent the past week in the metaphorical Disneyland known as “being back home with my family for the holidays” — I decided to try an experiment that would prove just how completely Disney has colonized our minds. But, like, in a fun way.

Without resorting to the internet, I tried to make a list of my Top 100 Disney Things: Official Disney-branded movies, TV shows, interactive experiences, whatever, all ranked in the chronological order that they popped into my mind. It was sort of a pop culture version of a Proust memory experience, with one vividly recalled childhood memory leading into another. I recommend making your own Disney Top 100, especially if you’re A) bored or B) in the mood to get a couple dozen songs stuck in your head.

Entertainment Geekly: The Disney Myth in 'Saving Mr. Banks' and 'Escape from Tomorrow'

Entertainment Geekly is a weekly column that examines contemporary pop culture through a geek lens and simultaneously examines contemporary geek culture through a pop lens. So many lenses! Click here for past columns.

“Disney” used to be a name, but for several generations of human beings spread out across our terrestrial sphere, it is more like a primal state of mind. However old you are, if you’re reading this, “Disney” probably conjures up memories for you, either because everyone was young once or because most people have kids eventually. I was born a couple decades after Walt Disney died, which meant that my parents could feed me an impossible amount of Disney-branded content: Animated features, Saturday morning cartoons, action figures, and videogames based on all of the above.

Family myth has it that the first movie I ever went to see/was taken to in the theaters was The Black Cauldron. That could be a trick of memory. But sometime in grade school, I pulled a page off my Disney Page-A-Day calendar, saw an image from The Black Cauldron, and experienced a deep and resonant feeling of buried memory. Maybe because I had happened upon The Black Cauldron on TV one day, or maybe it was playing in the background of somebody’s fourth birthday party. Maybe I just absorbed The Black Cauldron through osmosis when my parents took me to Disneyland. (I can’t ever remember watching Dumbo, but I bet a hypnotist could uncover some corner of my subconscious and make me draw it from memory.) READ FULL STORY

Disney's 'Frozen' soundtrack: Ranking all nine original songs

Guess what, Disney fans? Frozen is good. And as you may have heard, the soundtrack is even better.

Like the now-classics in Disney’s Renaissance period, Frozen’s array of original tunes feels as fresh and infectious as the Menken-Ashman-Rice songs that defined a generation’s Disney musicals. I caught an early screening of the film last week and was dismayed to find that I’d have to wait an excruciating six days for the album to be released online (I even begged EW’s music staff for an early listen, but no dice).

Now the movie is out (and cleaning up at the box office) and the soundtrack is ready for streaming, and I just can’t stop listening. If you’re binge-listening this Thanksgiving weekend, here’s my ranking of the original songs by Bobby Lopez and Kristen Anderson-Lopez. (Although, let’s be frank: They’re all pretty fantastic.)

I'm Still Not Over...Tod and Copper's friendship in 'The Fox and the Hound'

Growing up on Disney movies, I was constantly learning valuable life lessons while simultaneously crying my eyes out. For example: Simba defeats Scar in The Lion King and the good guys win! I learn all about fighting for what’s right and good overcoming evil. Mufasa appears in the clouds and tells Simba how proud he is of his son! I burst into tears for the hundredth time during that hour and a half. That was simply my relationship with Disney movies. However, there was always one film that filled me with irregular amounts of joy … and ripped my heart from my chest more than the rest. So let’s talk about The Fox and the Hound.

The Fox and the Hound told the story of Tod, an adopted baby Fox, and Copper, a young hound dog in training. Tod and Copper were neighbors, and when they were still young (a.k.a. before their societal roles were forced upon them), they were the best of friends. They hung out every day, even when Copper was told he wasn’t allowed to because he was a hound dog, and Tod would one day be his prey. But Copper didn’t care. He spent his days splashing around with Tod and attempting to howl in what might be the cutest two seconds in cinema history.

There are many things that I’m still not over when it comes to this movie. I’m still not over how freakin’ adorable these two were as young babies running around (See: Tod playing with Copper’s ears). I’m still not over how unfair it was that society pulled them apart when Copper had to become a hunting dog. And I’m really still not over the moment when Copper’s owner threatened Tod’s life, forcing Tod’s mother to drive out to the middle of nowhere and leave Tod on the side of the road in what might be the saddest four minutes in cinema history:

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