Moana and Maui Coming Back For 'Moana 2', Release Date Announced
Disney announced a sequel to 'Moana,' which will be released in theatres on November 27. Variety reported that Bob Iger, the company's CEO, announced the news on CNBC ahead of Disney's first quarter fiscal 2024 earnings report. The second 'Moana' was originally planned as a television series but was turned into a feature film after Iger was impressed with the footage.
" 'Moana' remains an incredibly popular franchise," Iger said in a statement.
"We can't wait to give you more of Moana and Maui when 'Moana 2' comes to theatres this November."
According to Disney, 'Moana 2' will take audiences on an "expansive new voyage with Moana, Maui and a brand-new crew of unlikely seafarers. After receiving an unexpected call from her wayfinding ancestors, Moana must journey to the far seas of Oceania and into dangerous, long-lost waters for an adventure unlike anything she's ever faced."
Dave Derrick Jr. is directing the sequel, which will have music from Abigail Barlow and Emily Bear, as well as Opetaia Foa'i and Mark Mancina, who collaborated on the original film. Lin-Manuel Miranda, who created the songs "How Far I'll Go" and "You're Welcome," is not likely to return with fresh material for the sequel.
"Moana" was a hit for Disney, grossing more than $680 million at the box office. The animated musical was given fresh life on Disney+ last year, with 1 billion hours of streaming.
Iger's decision to release 'Moana 2' in theatres comes after Disney's disappointing box office performance in 2023. Disney Animation's "Wish" joined a lengthy list of flops, including 'The Marvels,' 'Haunted Mansion,' and 'Indiana Jones and the Dial of Destiny.'
Pixar's 'Elemental' struggled at first but eventually grossed $496 million globally.
Auli'i Cravalho, who voiced Moana in the 2016 film, is slated to return for the animated sequel.
However, she will not reprise her role as the title character in the live-action adaptation, though she will serve as an executive producer.
"I believe it is absolutely vital that casting accurately represents the characters and stories we want to tell," she said last May on Instagram.
"I can't wait to find the next actress to portray Moana's courageous spirit, undeniable wit and emotional strength."