Here at Collider, we cover a lot of stuff, be it Star Wars, superheroes, or cinephile fare, and everything from movies and TV, to video games and web series. There’s something for everyone. But there’s so much stuff out there that sometimes our younger audience members get left out. So every once in a while, we’d like to shine a spotlight on some family-friendly content that parents and caregivers can confidently watch with the little ones. For example, as a special treat earlier this week, we brought you an advance look at an upcoming episode of Disney Junior’s Vampirina that you can sing along with!
In today’s Collider Kids segment, we’ve got your casting reveal for the prime time television movie event Elena of Avalor: Song of the Sirenas. Based on the Emmy and Imagen Award-winning series featuring Disney’s first princess inspired by diverse Latin cultures and folklore, the special will debut on Friday, September 21st from 7:00 p.m.-8:00 p.m. EDT/PDT, on Disney Junior and the DisneyNOW app. The all-star guest voice cast for the special includes Gina Rodriguez, Edward James Olmos, Rita Moreno, Prince Royce and Rosario Dawson as sirenas, mysterious underwater creatures. Javier Muñoz (Broadway’s “Hamilton”) also guest stars as Elena’s cousin, Duke Cristóbal.
In the special, Elena travels to Nueva Vista, a place that she used to visit when she was a child, and reconnects with her cousin Duke Cristóbal, who has been keeping watch over the city. While there, she encounters a group of mermaid-like sea creatures called sirenas and learns about their complicated history with humans. In an attempt to make amends, Elena befriends the sirenas and enlists their help to defeat evil sorceress Shuriki.
Rodriguez and Royce guest star as twin sirenas, Princess Marisa and Prince Marzel. Olmos and Moreno voice their parents, King Pescoro and Queen Camila. Dawson voices the role of sirena royal guard, Daria. Jane Fonda recurs as Shuriki.
Following the premiere of the television movie, Disney Junior will debut a series of shorts titled Elena of Avalor: The Secret Life of Sirenas which delves deeper into the everyday lives of the sirenas. Additional extensions themed to the sirenas storyline include a storybook based on the television movie, which Disney Publishing released earlier this summer, as well as toys, dolls and role-play items from key licensees which will hit shelves on August 1st.
Elena of Avalor stars Aimee Carrero as the voice of Princess Elena; Jenna Ortega as Princess Isabel; Chris Parnell, Yvette Nicole Brown and Carlos Alazraqui as jaquins Migs, Luna and Skylar, respectively; Emiliano Díez as Francisco; Julia Vera as Luisa; Christian Lanz as Chancellor Esteban; Jillian Rose Reed as Naomi; Joseph Haro as Mateo; Jorge Diaz as Gabe; Keith Ferguson as Zuzo; and Joe Nunez as Armando. In addition to Fonda, the recurring guest voice cast includes Constance Marie, Lou Diamond Phillips, Hector Elizondo, Justina Machado, Jaime Camil, Anthony Mendez, Mario Lopez and Diane Guerrero. Latin GRAMMY Award-winner Gaby Moreno performs the series’ theme song.
The series was created and is executive produced by Craig Gerber. Silvia Olivas serves as co-executive producer and story editor and Elliot M. Bour is co-producer and supervising director. The series’ cultural advisors are Marcela Davison Avilés, founder of The Chapultepec Group, co-founder of the international Latino arts initiative Camino Arts and director of Humanities Programs at the FDR Foundation at Harvard University; and Diane Rodriguez, associate artistic director of Centre Theatre Group and co-founder of the theatre ensemble Latins Anonymous and member of the National Council on the Arts.
John Kavanaugh is the series’ songwriter/music director, Tony Morales is the composer and Rene Camacho, acclaimed touring musician and Latin music instructor, serves as the Latin music consultant. Elena of Avalor is a production of Disney Television Animation and carries a TV-Y parental guideline.