An upcoming episode of Disney Channel‘s “Andi Mack” will discuss issues surrounding gun safety in America. The story lines will stretch across two new episodes that are set to air on November 16th and November 30th. Disney Channel programmers developed the episodes under the consultancy of the child development experts at The Brady Center and Hollywood, Health & Society (HH&S), a program of the USC Annenberg Norman Lear Center. The network also stated that the episodes include a public service announcement about gun safety.
According to the network’s announcement, the story-line illustrates peer pressure and a true test of character for Cyrus (Joshua Rush) when T.J. (Luke Mullen) and his group of friends unexpectedly invite Cyrus to join their unsupervised target practice. The series was created and is executive produced by Terri Minsky. The first episode was written by Phil Baker and directed by Paul Hoen, and the second episode in the story arc was written by Elena Song and Suzanne Weber and directed by the series executive producer Michelle Manning.
Kory Lunsford, vice president, Current Series, Disney Channels Worldwide, said, “We’re committed to connecting with kids via relevant storytelling that can simultaneously aid parents in talking to their kids about important topics. This storyline was inspired by a tragedy that occurred in the family of one of the series writers and, with thoughtful care and expertise, the entire ‘Andi Mack’ team delivered a story that can provide a means for kids, their families and teachers to open the lines of communication about peer pressure and the dangers of unsupervised guns.”
Consultant Arthur Pober, Ed.D., said, “This type of program is very important in modeling for kids a ‘real life’ example of speaking up and doing the right thing. It can help give them the tools to openly communicate which is especially crucial in our anxiety-producing society.”
Terri Minsky added, “Our show is meant to entertain kids, yet we also want to help them make sense of a very complicated world, to make them feel safe and confident to talk to parents and trusted adults about gun safety.”
The network is a surefire way to get a message across to young children. “Andi Mack” is cable television’s top rated series among Girls 6-14 in its third season and Disney Channel’s top rated series. The show was recently nominated for a 2018 BAFTA in Children’s Programming. It is also the recipient of a Television Academy Honor, an award that celebrates and recognizes programming that creates awareness, enlightens, educates and/or positively motivates audiences. This year, it also received a GLAAD Media award, a U.S. Asia Institute honor, the Common Sense Media Seal for Quality Family Programming and a Peabody Award nomination.
“Andi Mack” stars Peyton Elizabeth Lee as the title character, Lilan Bowden as Rebecca “Bex” Mack, Lauren Tom as Celia Mack, Joshua Rush as Cyrus Goodman, Sofia Wylie as Buffy Driscoll, Asher Angel as Jonah Beck and Trent Garrett as Bowie.