Your entertainment recap of the latest happenings in movies, television and pop culture from Disney’s D23 Convention.
As mentioned in this week’s edition of “The Rewind,” Disney’s D23 convention revealed enough information to fill three weeks worth of updates, including some huge Star Wars and Marvel news. So, here’s a recap of everything that went down in the world of Disney this weekend.
“Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker” special look teases Dark Rey?
The biggest reveal from this weekend’s festivities is certainly the special first look at “Star Wars: The Rise is Skywalker.” The teaser was mostly made up of old footage spanning across the Skywalker Saga, but it did include quite a few new nuggets, too. The biggest takeaways from the clip were C-3PO’s red eyes (lol), how freakin’ awesome the Rey-Kylo fight looks on the flooded Death Star ruins, and of course, the instantaneous creation of thousands of Dark Rey conspiracies. The clip concludes with Rey in dark robes wielding a never-before-seen duel-sided foldable red lightsaber. Time to start theorizing…
Kit Harington joins “Eternals” cast
Shortly before D23 kicked off, word broke that “Game of Thrones” star Kit Harington would be joining the MCU, but no one knew which franchise he would team up with. Well, the suspense didn’t last long. Harington will be playing Dane Whitman aka Black Knight in next year’s “Eternals.” While he’s not one of the Eternals, Black Knight is still a superhero, and Kevin Feige has already hinted at future appearances for Harington.
“Black Widow” reveals trailer and poster
Unfortunately, said trailer has yet to be released to the general public, but it’s said to include an abundance of gritty combat scenes that resemble the action we saw in “The Winter Soldier.” What we can see, though, is the film’s poster, which features David Harbour’s bearded Red Guardian and Florence Pugh’s Yelena Belova, with Scarlett Johansson front and center. “Black Widow” hits theaters May 1, 2020.
“Black Panther II” gets a release date
There’s not much to report here other than the fact that Ryan Coogler is back to direct “Black Panther II,” and that it’s hitting theaters May 6, 2022. Pretty much a lock for Phase 5 of the MCU.
“Noelle” will be one of the first films to debut on Disney+, available to stream immediately when the service launches on November 12. As corny as it may seem, “Noelle” looks like a ton of fun and certainly has all the charm we’ve come to expect from a Disney movie – especially a holiday one. To be honest, it’s giving me some major “Elf” vibes. Disney isn’t pulling any punches when it comes to star power for their streaming service either, with Anna Kendrick, Bill Hader and Billy Eichner starring.
“Lady and the Tramp” trailer
Another straight to Disney+ feature, “Lady and the Tramp” will mark Disney’s fifth live-action remake of the year, so far. I was never a big fan of the original, so put me down as significantly less excited for this one, but hey, cute puppies. It’ll be interesting to see how they combine the real life dogs with animation for talking and, of course, the spaghetti smooch.
Teases for more upcoming films
“Soul” (June 19, 2020)
“Onward” (March 6, 2020)
“Cruella” (May 28, 2021)
First full trailer for “The Mandalorian”
Finally, just over two months from its premiere, we got the first full trailer for Jon Favreau’s “The Mandalorian.” Thanks to the cinematography of Barry Baz Idoine, “The Mandalorian” has the same gritty, wartime look as his work in “Rogue One.” Another surprise came when they announced that unlike Netflix series, Disney+ would be leaning closer to HBO and Hulu’s model, and releasing one episode per week. With the first episode releasing on the November 12 launch, the eight episode run will all the way up to the release of “The Rise of Skywalker,” with the final two coming after Episode IX.
Obi-Wan Kenobi series confirmed for Disney+
After last week’s reports about Ewan McGregor’s return to the galaxy far, far away, it was only a matter of time until the news was confirmed. To close out the Star Wars panel at D23, McGregor himself came out on stage to ask Kathleen Kennedy, the president of Lucasfilm, whether or not he’d play the the Jedi master again. The answer? Yes. It was also revealed the series will take place between Episodes III and IV.
First look at “The Falcon and the Winter Soldier,” “WandaVision,” “Loki” director
Marvel’s announcements for the small screen may not have been as significant as those on the big screen, but they were just as exciting. Posters were unveiled for “The Falcon and the Winter Soldier ” and “WandaVision,” and it was revealed Kate Herron (“Sex Education”) will be directing “Loki.”
Three new MCU series headed to Disney+
Marvel Studios also announced three new entries into the MCU on Disney+: “Ms. Marvel,” “Moon Knight” and “She-Hulk.” These heroes will each be introduced in their own series before eventually making their way into the MCU films, too.
“Lizzie McGuire” is BACK!
In possibly the biggest news of the entire weekend… Lizzie McGuire is BACK! Hilary Duff’s shocking announcement that the kids show would be coming back to Disney+ had everyone freaking out. On stage, Duff detailed what the show would be about, saying, “Lizzie has also grown up, she’s older, she’s wiser, she has a much bigger shoe budget. She has her dream job, the perfect life right now working as an apprentice to a fancy New York City decorator, the perfect man who owns a fancy restaurant. She’s getting ready to celebrate her 30th birthday.” And yes, animated Lizzie will be back, too.
First look at “High School Musical: The Musical: The Series”
In another blast from the past, we got our first look at “High School Musical: The Musical: The Series.” When this was first announced, I don’t know if I was more confused or upset. But after seeing the trailer, I can say I’m actually really pumped. Now the title actually makes sense, considering it’s a mockumentary-style show following the “real” East High School as it puts on a production of “High School Musial.”
Zach Goins is a member of the North Carolina Film Critics Association based in Charlotte, N.C. Zach co-founded Inside The Film Room in 2018 and serves as Editor-in-Chief of the website and co-host of the podcast. Zach also serves as a film critic for CLTure.org.