10:23am PT by Philiana Ng
Disney Channel Greenlights 'Teen Beach Movie' Sequel
The wait is over. After nearly a year of speculation, Disney Channel is officially moving forward with the Teen Beach Movie sequel.
Production will begin on Teen Beach Movie 2 this July for a 2015 premiere. Original stars Ross Lynch, Maia Mitchell, Grace Phipps, Garrett Clayton and John DeLuca will return to reprise their roles. Additional castmembers are expected to be announced shortly.
Teen Beach Movie 2 takes place months after McKenzie (Mitchell) and Brady (Lynch) return from a summer adventure that transported them into Brady's favorite 1960s beach party movie, Wet Side Story, only to receive a surprise visit from Lela (Phipps), Tanner (Clayton), Butchy (DeLuca) and their other surfer and biker friends.
Robert Horn, Dan Berendsen and Matt & Billy Eddy are writers on the sequel, which is executive produced by Michelle Manning (The Breakfast Club) and David Buelow. Jeffrey Hornaday (A Chorus Line, Flashdance) returns in the director's chair.
The news doesn't come as much of a surprise as Teen Beach Movie, which debuted July 19, 2013 on the kids/tween cabler, ranks as cable television's No. 2 movie in total viewers with a giant 13.53 million. The original soundtrack also peaked at No. 3 on the Billboard 200 chart and was No. 1 on the soundtrack chart.
Hornaday last June was already fielding questions about a possible sequel ahead of the film's premiere broadcast, telling THR at the time that "there is a lot of buzz about that." And a month after Teen Beach Movie proved to be a success, Lynch said at D23 that he and his co-stars were bullish on returning: "Absolutely, we're all down for a sequel."
"The audience response to the first Teen Beach Movie was overwhelming. We are thrilled to have the cast back for a new music-driven saga that continues this fantastical story," said Gary Marsh, president and chief creative officer at Disney Channels Worldwide, in the announcement Sunday.
The Teen Beach Movie cast reunited at the Radio Disney Music Awards, which will be broadcast at 8 p.m. PT/ET Sunday on Disney Channel.