Disney’s big premiere of the Disney Channel Original Movie “Freaky Friday” on August 10th was a huge hit for the network, pulling in 7.2M Total Viewers. Those numbers include 3.1M Kids 6-14, in just the first three days. The Friday telecast ranks as the summer’s number-one TV telecast among both Kids 6-11 and Tweens 9-14 and is the top cable telecast in six months among the same demos since 2/16/18 and 2/19/18, respectively.
The special is now available on DisneyNOW and VOD if you missed it and the music from the original movie is doing very well on its own. The nine musical scenes, as music videos on DisneyMusicVevo and/or Disney Channel YouTube, racked up over 747K views on the day of the premiere. The 12 song soundtrack was released by Walt Disney Records that same day. On August 24th “Freaky Friday Live Play,” a special telecast and second screen interactive experience, will connect kids’ interest in the movie with trivia and quizzes.
To produce the comedic body-swap movie musical, told as a new story for a new generation, Disney Channel collaborated with Disney Theatrical Productions, the Broadway arm of Disney. The Disney Theatrical Productions’ regional show played in five theatres (2016-17). As a Disney Channel Original Movie, it will be seen in 400 million homes on Disney Channels worldwide. It is also newly available via Music Theatre International (MTI) to schools and community theatres.
Directed by Steve Carr (“Paul Blart: Mall Cop,” “Daddy Day Care”), the screenplay was written by playwright Bridget Carpenter (“11.22.63,” “Friday Night Lights”) based on her Disney Theatrical Production stage adaptation of the novel by Mary Rodgers. The music is by Tom Kitt and lyrics by Brian Yorkey (the Pulitzer Prize and Tony Award-winning duo behind “Next to Normal”). The choreography is by Tony Award-nominee John Carrafa (“Into the Woods,” “Urinetown”).
The film featured Cozi Zuehlsdorff (“Dolphin Tale”) and Heidi Blickenstaff (“The Little Mermaid” and “Something Rotten!” on Broadway, and the stage production of “Freaky Friday”), Ricky He, Alex Désert (Disney Channel’s “Let it Shine”), Jason Maybaum (Disney Channel’s “Raven’s Home”), Kahyun Kim (Disney Channel’s “Austin & Ally”), Dara Renee’, Jennifer Laporte, Isaiah Lehtinen, Sarah Willey (also known as Marlowe Percival), Rukiya Bernard and Joshua Pak.
Emmy nominee David Lawrence (“Descendants,” “High School Musical”) composed the score. Perry Andelin Blake (“Middle School – the Worst Years of My Life,” “The Wedding Singer”) is the production designer. Academy Award winner Angus Strathie (“Moulin Rouge!,” “Deadpool”) is the costume designer.