Wish Disney Nods Celebrate 100 Years of Walt Disney Animation Studios

By Emily Hewitt

Several motifs come to mind when reflecting upon The Walt Disney Company’s 100-year history from characters wishing upon a star to magic dust that make seemingly impossible dreams a reality.

And Walt Disney Animation Studios’ 62nd feature Wish—now showing in theaters around the world—pays homage to many of the studio’s beloved films from throughout the decades. The animated musical-comedy centers on Asha (voiced by Ariana DeBose), a sharp-witted idealist who makes a wish so powerful that it is answered by a ball of boundless energy she calls Star. Together they must confront King Magnifico (voiced by Chris Pine), the ruler of Rosas, to save her community. The film features Disney nods celebrating Disney Animation’s history. D23 has identified many of these nods to classic Disney Animation films and characters below. (Spoiler alert: This story discusses major plot details.)

1. Mickey Mouse
It wouldn’t be a Disney film without at least one hidden Mickey—or three. At one point in the film, Star sprinkles stardust on a pen in King Magnifico’s office, making it start drawing an outline of Mickey Mouse. This is also a nod to the scene in Fantasia in which Sorcerer Mickey brings the brooms to life to do his chores.

Also keep an eye out for that familiar trio of circles in the tower of macarons seen in the kitchen, and within the final fireworks in the film.

2. Mickey Mouse’s Face
Mickey Mouse was also used as inspiration for the shape of Star’s face. Both Mickey Mouse’s and Star’s face feature a heart-shaped mask and similar facial expressions.

3. Wishing Upon a Star from Pinocchio, Tangled, and The Princess and the Frog
Wishing upon a star—seen in classic Disney Animation films including Pinocchio, Tangled,and The Princess and the Frog—is honored in Wish with Asha wishing upon a star, bringing Star down from the sky.

4. Magical Mirror from Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs
There are several references to Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs (1937)—the first full-length animated film ever created. One of many references to the Academy Award®-honored film includes the Magic Mirror. While surrounded by mirrors, King Magnifico says “Mirrors, mirrors on the wall” as a nod to the phrase the Queen in Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs says to the Magic Mirror when asking if she is still “the fairest one of all.”

5. Poisonous Apple from Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs
An homage to the Queen (voiced in the original Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs by Lucille La Verne) is a green-and-red apple with the image of a skull which can be seen on King Magnifico’s desk. The apple is reminiscent of the poisoned apple the Queen persuades Snow White to eat in the film.

6. The Seven Dwarfs from Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs
The Seven Dwarfs are also noted in Wish. Each of Asha’s friends is reminiscent of one of the beloved characters and their names start with the same letter as the character who inspired them. Dahlia (voiced by Jennifer Kumiyama) is Asha’s closest friend and wears glasses, like Doc (voiced by Roy Atwell). Bazeema (voiced by Della Saba) has a shy demeanor like Bashful (voiced by Scotty Mattraw). Gabo (voiced by Harvey Guillén) is easy to anger, like Grumpy (voiced by Pinto Colvig). Hal (voiced by Niko Vargas) is usually happy, a key characteristic of Happy (voiced by Otis Harlan). Simon (voiced by Evan Peters) has a hard time staying awake, like Sleepy (voiced by Pinto Colvig). Dario (voiced by Jon Rudnitsky) is a rosy-cheeked, wiggly-eared guy who wears a green shirt with a purple hat, like Dopey (voiced by Eddie Collins). Safi (voiced by Ramy Youssef) seems to have allergies and sneezes quite a bit like Sneezy (voiced by Billy Gilbert). 

7. Aspect Ratio and Storybook Opening from Sleeping Beauty
A more technical nod that Wish made to a classic film is the 2.55:1 aspect ratio that Sleeping Beauty used. Wish’s storybook opening is also reminiscent of the 1959 Disney Animation feature, as well as other Disney Animation classics.

8. Aurora’s Dress from Sleeping Beauty
When King Magnifico looks at the floating wishes, one of them features a woman sewing a blue dress, like the one Aurora (voiced by Mary Costa) wears in Sleeping Beauty.

9. The Fairy Godmother’s Cape from Cinderella
Another fashionable nod is Asha’s blue-hooded cape with pink bow which is like the Fairy Godmother’s (voiced by Verna Felton) cape from Cinderella.

10. “Love is an Open Door” from Frozen
When forest plants and animals break into song thanks to some of Star’s magic dust, Asha says, “This is crazy” and the Mushrooms reply, “We love crazy,” which is a nod to the “Love is an Open Door” musical sequence in Frozen in which Hans (voiced by Santino Fontana) says, “I love crazy.”

11. Zootopia
The young goat Valentino (voiced by Alan Tudyk) can talk for most of the film due to Star’s magic dust, and Asha’s loyal friend is dressed up in adorable yellow pajamas. Valentino exclaims at the end of the film, “I dream of a metropolis where all mammals are equal. And wear clothes,” which describes the city in Zootopia perfectly.

12. Peter Pan
King Magnifico sadly destroys a wish of a boy who wishes to fly, and looks like Peter Pan (voiced by Bobby Driscoll).

Additionally, the character returns to the screen at the end of the film and Queen Amaya (voiced by Angelique Cabral), King Magnifico’s wife, introduces him to someone else who wants to fly so they can build a flying device.

13. Chip from Beauty and the Beast
In a scene in the kitchen, there are dishes in the sink and one of the mugs is chipped – a nod to the character Chip (voiced by Norma Swank-Haviland) from Beauty and the Beast.

14. Tinker Bell from Peter Pan
Much like Tinker Bell doesn’t speak but sassily spreads pixie dust, Star also spreads magic dust without saying a word.

15. Talking Plants and Animals from Alice in Wonderland
Star uses its magic dust to bring plants and animals to life so they can talk, much like the plants and animals can do in many Disney Animation films such as Alice and Wonderland. When the flowers start talking, the similarity between them and the talking flowers in Alice and Wonderland is magical.

16. Singing and Dancing Animals from Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs, Sleeping Beauty, and Cinderella
Not only do the animals talk due to Star’s magic dust, but they can also sing much like they do in Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs and Cinderella. The blue birds that sing with Cinderella (voiced by Ilene Woods) inspired those seen in Wish. The animals also stack themselves to create a dance partner for Asha, like they did for Aurora in Sleeping Beauty.

17. Wishing Well from Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs
Significant events happen in front of a wishing well in both Wish and Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs. While Asha meets Star in front of a wishing well, Snow White sings about her own true wish in front of one.

18. Ursula from The Little Mermaid
When King Magnifico embraces dark magic, his hands turn green resembling what Ursula’s (voiced by Pat Carroll) hands look like in The Little Mermaid when she takes Ariel’s voice.

19. Tangled and Tarzan
Asha’s friends swing from vines much like Rapunzel (voiced by Mandy Moore) from Tangled or Tarzan (voiced by Tony Goldwyn) from Tarzan. One of them even screams in a familiar fashion similar to Tarzan’s yell.

20. Bambi and Robin Hood
A scene in Wish shows a deer saying to a bear, “Thanks for not eating me, John” and the bear replies, “You’re welcome, Bambi.” This is, of course, a reference to the characters of Bambi (voiced by Donnie Dunagan), the deer from Bambi, and Little John (voiced by Nick Brimble), the bear from Robin Hood.

There is also a rabbit that thumps his foot like Thumper from Bambi.

21. The Disney Logo and “When You Wish Upon a Star”
To end the film, the iconic Disney logo is brought back by having Star set off fireworks over the city of Rosas, much like Tinker Bell does over Sleeping Beauty’s Castle at the beginning of every Disney film. And be sure to stay after the credits for a special moment in tribute to “When You Wish Upon a Star,” the iconic Disney theme song first heard in 1940’s Pinocchio—beautifully sung by Jiminy Cricket (voiced by Cliff Edwards).

5 Fantastic Things to Watch This Weekend Presented by State Farm®

By Courtney Potter

The final month of the year is arriving this weekend, and with it some terrific adventures on Disney+! Fancy a trip ’round space and time? Meet up with the last of the Time Lords and one of his favorite companions (one he never thought he’d see again, in fact)… Looking to stay on “terra firma” instead? Catch up with one of the world’s most iconic archeologists for some truly thrilling exploits. And there’s more where that came from—read on for what to expect:

Indiana Jones and the Dial of Destiny—Friday, December 1, on Disney+
Indiana Jones (Harrison Ford) returned to the big screen this past summer—and this Friday, he arrives on your favorite device thanks to Disney+! As a refresher: It’s 1969, and after teaching at New York’s Hunter College for more than a decade, Indy’s now ready to retire and live a quieter life… alone. But plans change when his estranged goddaughter Helena (Phoebe Waller-Bridge) turns up seeking a rare artifact that her father had entrusted to Indy years earlier: the Archimedes Dial, which is rumored to hold the power to find fissures in time. Globe-trotting, death-defying hijinks, of course, ensue. Additionally, look for a brand-new Indiana Jones documentary, Timeless Heroes—directed by acclaimed filmmaker Laurent Bouzereau—premiering on Disney+ simultaneously.

A promotional image for Disney Channel’s The Villains of Valley View features Isabella Pappas as Havoc/Amy, Lucy Davis as Eva/Surge, James Patrick Stuart as Vic/Kraniac, Malachi Barton as Colby/Flashform, Reed Horstmann as Jake/Chaos, and Kayden Muller-Janssen as Hartley. They are standing on a set that features furniture coming out of the floor at odd angles, as if from another dimension. Everyone except Muller-Janssen is wearing typical “villains”-style outfits—colorful spandex suits, masks, and the like.

The Villains of Valley View—Friday, December 1, at 9 p.m. ET/PT on Disney Channel
’Tis the season with your favorite suburban villain fam! The Maddens are getting ready to celebrate their first Christmas in Valley View, and—as you might imagine—it’s fraught with both hilarity and heart. Case in point: While trying to score their most wanted gift, Amy (Isabella Pappas) and Jake (Reed Horstmann) learn the true meaning of Christmas.

In an image from the 60th anniversary specials for BBC’s Doctor Who on Disney+, the Fourteenth Doctor (David Tennant) is leaning against one of the hallways in the TARDIS, with a serious look on his face. He’s wearing his signature trench coat, tie, and Chuck Taylor sneakers.

Doctor Who: Wild Blue Yonder—Saturday, December 2, on Disney+
BBC and Disney+ continue their mega-huge, ultra-amazing 60th anniversary Doctor Who festivities on Saturday with the second of three brand-new specials. We don’t yet know much about this one, titled Wild Blue Yonder, but we do know it all kicked off because of a certain hilariously awesome companion (Donna Temple-Noble, played by Catherine Tate) spilling a cup of coffee. Sure, that might not make a lot of sense to the uninitiated—but it ought to make you very curious to dive into these latest incredible adventures of the Fourteenth Doctor (David Tennant) as he hurtles his way through the galaxy. Allons-y!

In an image from 1994’s The Santa Clause, a little girl stands on a park bench staring at Scott Calvin (Disney Legend Tim Allen), who has the unmistakable appearance of Santa Clause. Scott—who, for his part, is trying to ignore the little girl—is wearing a red hooded sweatshirt and blue pants.

The Santa Clause—Sunday, December 3, at 8 p.m. ET/PT on ABC (check local listings)
See how it all began… and then make sure to check out both seasons of The Santa Clauses, now streaming on Disney+! In Disney’s 1994 film that started it all, Disney Legend Tim Allen stars as Scott Calvin, a divorced, overworked toy company executive who suddenly finds himself taking over the job of the one and only St. Nick. Scott is hesitant at first, but his young son, Charlie (Eric Lloyd), helps him unlock the Kris Kringle he was truly meant to be.

In an image from ABC’s The Great Christmas Light Fight, host/judge Carter Oosterhouse stands outside one of the houses being judged on Sunday’s episode. He stands to the left of the family, who are all wearing reindeer onesies; Oosterhouse is wearing a blue jacket and gray pants. Plentiful sparking Christmas lights are attached to the house and the garage doors seen behind them.

The Great Christmas Light Fight—Sunday, December 3, at 10 p.m. ET/PT on ABC (check local listings)
It’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas as Season 11 (can’t believe it’s been 11 parcels of merriment!) of the tree-mendously popular series continues… Tonight, the Hazard, Ward, Cirlin, and Greene families compete for the $50,000 grand prize and coveted Light Fight trophy, as host Carter Oosterhouse judges these over-the-top displays.

‘it’s a small world’ fans, Don’t Miss Scentsy’s New and Nostalgic Collectible

Calling all “it’s a small world” fans—you’ll want to add this to your wish list! Just in time for the holidays, Scentsy is giving us a sneak peek at the “soon to be released” collectible Scentsy Warmer inspired by the iconic Disney attraction “it’s a small world”.

Available to fans while supplies last starting December 1, this hand-painted warmer features a whimsical design aesthetic inspired by Disney Legend, Mary Blair. The unique mixed materials including glass, four-color decals, and metal accents mimic the attraction’s iconic collage-inspired style, bringing to life a loving tribute to the classic attraction.

The warmer measures 10 inches tall and includes an interior glass shade lined with multicultural characters reminiscent of those seen in the attraction at Disney Parks around the world. Split into two sections, the graphics on the upper half are printed with translucent color shapes, and the lower half printed with opaque characters and children from “it’s a small world.” When you turn on the motor to rotate the shade, colorful shapes shine on nearby surfaces which mimics the movement of guests floating past all the colorful scenery on the attraction. It’s like having a… well, small world in your own home. An extra special detail fans will love is the warmer’s clock face—it even has an authentic “tick tock” motion! Bring a world of laughter and cheer to your holiday season with this beautiful display of all that “it’s a small world” represents: peace, harmony, and beauty.

Our suggestion? Try pairing it with Scentsy’s exclusive scented wax fragrance designed specifically for their Disney “it’s a small world” products: Happiest Cruise That Ever Sailed. While you’re dreaming of your next Disney Parks trip, take in this scent featuring notes of cheerful Peruvian lime, sunny apple, and sweet fruit sugar in harmony. It’s sure to help you “set sail” on a magical journey of your own!

To create your own “world of laughter” right inside your own home, visit the Scentsy website to purchase yours today.

The Viv Hotel Discount

D23 Gold Member Holiday Offer at The Viv Hotel, Anaheim, a Tribute Portfolio Hotel: Enjoy room and restaurant discounts, along with a special gift!

We are excited to share a D23 Gold Member Holiday Offer at one of the Disneyland® Resort Good Neighbor Hotels: The Viv Hotel, Anaheim, a Tribute Portfolio Hotel: a short distance from Disneyland Resort where the magic is within reach!

D23 Gold Members are eligible for a 10% discount on their reservations from November 30, 2023, to January 31, 2024, an 18% discount on their reservations from December 31, 2023 – January 15, 2024, and will receive a D23 Gold Member Pin.

D23 Gold Members will also receive a 10% discount off food items at Valencia’s at The Viv, and Top of The V restaurants.

“From the spark of social cocktails at The Top of The V to settling in for a day at the Oasis Pool, The Viv Hotel Anaheim is a buzzing atmosphere for people that seek more from spontaneous and scheduled experiences alike.”

To redeem your offer ONLINE, please follow the instructions below:

December 31, 2023 – January 15, 2024, an 18% discount will apply.  
Blackout dates are January 25-28, 2024.
Travel must be completed by January 31, 2024.
Proof of D23 Membership must be presented at check in. Membership card may be a physical card or a digital membership card found in the D23 App.

D23 Fan App

Access Your D23 Benefits Anytime, Anywhere
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Access your benefits from your phone!


Get More Disney with D23 Gold Membership
Enjoy exclusive discounts and access to special events and merch.
Also includes our quarterly publication and annual Collector Set.

Watch an Exclusive Clip from Mickey’s Christmas Tales

By the D23 Team

Picking up where last year’s Mickey Saves Christmas special left off, the five-episode series Mickey’s Christmas Tales jumps back into more stop-motion animation excitement with Mickey Mouse, Minnie Mouse, and the gang—along with Santa, Mrs. Claus, and everyone’s favorite baby reindeer, Jingle and Jolly.

The first episode, “Starstruck,” debuts Monday, November 27, on Disney Channel, Disney XD, and Disney Junior. All five episodes will then be available for streaming on Disney+ beginning on Wednesday, November 29.

Below, watch an exclusive clip from the episode titled “How to Build a Snowman,” featuring Mr. “How To” himself, Goofy!

Additional episodes include “Holiday Hideaway” and two stories set on Christmas Eve: “Up All Eve” and “Slip N’ Sleigh.” All the shorts are directed by John Harvatine IV and produced by Disney Television Animation and Stoopid Buddy Stoodios.


5 Fantastic Things to Watch This Weekend Presented by State Farm®

By Courtney Potter

Pass the mashed potatoes and cranberry sauce! (Those are the top-tier side dishes, in our humble opinion…) Readers in the United States may have more time than usual to take in all manner of quality content from around the worlds of Disney this weekend—so herewith, a rundown of just some of what you can expect. Go behind the scenes with the God of Mischief and his pals; embark on an all-new holiday adventure on Disney+ (having first premiered earlier this week on Disney Channel); revel in musical mirth and merriment on ABC; and so much more.

In a behind-the-scenes image from Marvel Studios’ Loki, Tom Hiddleston is seen on the set of the series, surrounded by several producers and other crew members—a few of whom are wearing masks. They’re gesturing and talking, as if between takes during the shoot.

Assembled: The Making of Loki Season 2—now streaming on Disney+
Through candid interviews with the creative minds behind the series, and exclusive on-set footage, discover how the talented team that powered Loki’s Season 2 raised the stakes for this latest MCU adventure. See imaginative costumes, elaborate environments, and far-out variants come to life; meet new allies and foes; and time-slip across the Multiverse! It features series starts including Tom Hiddleston, Owen Wilson, Ke Huy Quan, Wunmi Mosaku, and more.

A promo image for Disney Branded Television’s The Naughty Nine featuring Winslow Fegley as Andy, Camila Rodriguez as Dulce, Derek Theler as Bruno, Deric Mccabe as Jon Anthony, Clara Stack as Rose, Anthony Joo as Lewis, Ayden Elijah as Albert, Imogen Cohen as Ha-Yoon, and Madilyn Kellam as Laurel. The group is sitting on or standing near giant wrapped gifts, on a floor covered in snow. They’re all wearing jackets; some wear hats, gloves, and scarves.

The Naughty Nine—now streaming on Disney+
This fun new holiday heist movie (think Ocean’s 11 at the North Pole) follows fifth grader Andy (Winslow Fegley)—who, admittedly, has been a bit of a troublemaker this year. When Christmas morning rolls around and Andy gets stiffed by Santa, he realizes he’s on the naughty list. Feeling unfairly maligned, he pulls together a crack team of fellow “naughty listers” to execute an elaborate heist to get the presents he and the others feel they deserve. However, in the process of finding their gifts, the gang discovers that the best way off said naughty list is to redirect their unique talents for good instead of mischief.

In an image from FX’s Fargo: Year 5, Dorothy “Dot” Lyon (Juno Temple) is sitting at a kitchen table talking with another woman (Jennifer Jason Leigh). Dot is wearing a yellow sweater over a blouse; the other woman is wearing a brown fur coat and a beige suit jacket. They each have a coffee cup in front of them, and there is a refrigerator behind them, covered in magnets and children’s art.

FX’s Fargo: Year 5—now streaming on Hulu
The latest installment of Fargo is set in Minnesota and North Dakota in the year 2019. After an unexpected series of events lands Dorothy “Dot” Lyon (Juno Temple) in hot water with the authorities, this seemingly typical Midwestern housewife is suddenly plunged back into a life she thought she’d left behind. North Dakota Sheriff Roy Tillman (Jon Hamm) has been searching for Dot for a long time; at his side is his loyal but feckless son, Gator (Joe Keery), who is desperate to prove himself to his larger-than-life dad. With her deepest secrets beginning to unravel, Dot attempts to shield her family from her past, but she has an uncanny knack for survival—and with her back against the wall, she’s about to show why one should never provoke a mother Lyon. Recommended for mature audiences.

In an image from ABC’s The Wonderful World of Disney: Magical Holiday Celebration, Derek Hough and Julianne Hough are seen performing on stage in front of Cinderella Castle at Magic Kingdom at Walt Disney World Resort. Dancers flank them on either side, while fireworks glow in the skies above them.

The Wonderful World of Disney: Magical Holiday Celebration—Sunday, November 26, at 8 p.m. ET/PT on ABC (check local listings)
This ABC holiday season staple returns for its eighth year with a sparkling spectacle of all-new musical performances from Walt Disney World Resort in Florida and Disney’s Aulani Resort and Spa in Hawaii. This year’s special features an appearance by DJ Khaled along with the musical performances from Dancing with the Stars favorites Derek Hough and Julianne Hough; Michael Bolton and Mickey Guyton; Robin Thicke; Tori Kelly; and more! Nothing says “holiday” like festive Disney fun, so you don’t want to miss it.

In an image from ABC’s The Great Christmas Light Fight, hosts and judges Taniya Nayak and Carter Oosterhouse stand in front of a display from an episode featured this season. Plentiful twinkling holiday lights can be seen behind Nayak and Oosterhouse; she is wearing a maroon suit, while he is wearing a tan suit jacket and maroon and grey scarf.

The Great Christmas Light Fight—season premiere Sunday, November 26, at 10 p.m. ET/PT on ABC (check local listings)
The most wonderful time of the year is here, as ABC’s hit holiday decorating competition series The Great Christmas Light Fight returns. The “All-Stars” premiere episode takes a look back at some of the most iconic light displays from previous seasons. We’ve seen some prior eps of this show—and seriously, y’all? These displays are ridiculously amazing!

Meet the Characters of Disney Animation’s Wish

By Bruce C. Steele

The beauty of Walt Disney Animation Studios’ 62nd feature, Wish, is as much in its creation of rich and memorable characters as it is in the film’s stunning, watercolor-inspired visuals. Set in the late Middle Ages in a fictional Mediterranean island realm called Rosas, Wish contemplates the importance of our deepest held wishes in shaping our lives. In Rosas, each resident gives their greatest wish to the realm’s ruler, a powerful sorcerer named King Magnifico, when they turn 18. The king promises to protect the wishes—and periodically to grant some of them. Is this a blessing, as the king believes? That’s the crux of the story, which brings together a range of fascinating characters. Below, we introduce many of these, with comments from the film’s directors, Chris Buck and Fawn Veerasunthorn.

In this still image from Walt Disney Feature Animation’s Wish, Asha is surrounded by glowing, floating blue globes that represent the wishes of the people of Rosas. The columns inside King Magnifico’s observatory can be seen faintly in the background. Asha glances to her right, looking worried.

The story’s heroine is Asha, a 17-year-old “quick-witted idealist,” as Veerasunthorn describes her. She begins as an admirer of the charismatic King Magnifico and meets him when she interviews to be his apprentice. When the king reveals the dark side of his guardianship of all the wishes of the people of Rosas, “everything changes” for Asha, Veerasunthorn tells D23.com. “I love seeing a character going through such extraordinary circumstances and not quite knowing what to do. Over the course of the movie, she blossoms into this leader she didn’t even know she could be.” Asha is voiced by Oscar® winner Ariana DeBose, who “brings so much of herself to the character,” Buck notes—including her powerful and expressive singing voice.

In this still image from Walt Disney Feature Animation’s Wish, King Magnifico stands behind a bubbling caldron, his arms out to either side, apparently using magic to make three glowing blue orbs hover above the caldron. The green glow from the caldron is the only light source, lighting the king from below. Magnifico has a maniacal look on his face as he leers at the orbs.

King Magnifico
“I am a handsome king,” Magnifico (voiced by Chris Pine) says proudly to his admiring queen early in the movie. It’s true, but his vanity and ego also fuel his desire to mercilessly crush Asha’s challenge to his principles. Magnifico thrives on control—but has convinced himself that his actions in guarding all the wishes are merely protecting his subjects from disappointment. His self-contradictions lead to both scary moments and moments of humor. “We wanted to have fun with the villain,” Buck tells D23.com. “The goal is for viewers to think to themselves, ‘I can’t wait to see what he’s going to do next.’”

Queen Amaya
The queen (voiced by Angelique Cabral) loves her husband and respects his ruling choices—including his reluctant decision to keep a forbidden book of dark magic behind an enchanted lock. But Queen Amaya also sympathizes with Asha, leading her to face some difficult decisions.

In this still image from Walt Disney Feature Animation’s Wish, the golden orb that is the character Star floats in the foreground, surrounded by glowing blue globes that represent the wishes of the people of Rosas. Behind and far below Star, standing on a tiled floor, are Asha and Valentino.

The nonverbal, childlike wishing star who comes down from the sky as a result of Asha’s wish is a joyful, unpredictable ball of kinetic power. “We love that chaotic energy,” Veerasunthorn says of Star. “There’s this burst of courage that pulls you into pursuing your dreams, and Star embodies that spirit.”

In this still image from Walt Disney Feature Animation’s Wish, Valentino the goat, wearing pajamas, stands on his hind legs in a chicken coop, surrounded by hens who are dancing in unison. Valentino conducts the musical number with a stick held in his raised right foreleg.

The young goat, wearing his dashing pajamas, is Asha’s adorable animal companion who gains the power of speech from Star. Voiced by Disney regular Alan Tudyk, Valentino fancies himself a wise adviser despise his age. “Some of our best characters are sidekicks,” says Buck of Disney Animation creations. “Valentino started as an older goat but then got younger as we went on developing [the story].” Still, the kid goat speaks with Tudyk’s “velvety tones,” Buck notes, crediting the actor with adding his own humorous spin to the character. “Alan brings so much improv [to recording sessions],” the director says. “I’ve worked with Alan on several movies, and they’re always great sessions.”

Asha’s mother (voiced by Natasha Rothwell) is supportive of her daughter, whom Sakina knows misses her late father as much as Sakina herself does. As tensions rise in Rosas, she finds herself pulled into Asha’s clash with King Magnifico in unexpected ways.

Asha’s grandfather (voiced by Victor Garber) is celebrating his 100th birthday, and it’s Asha’s desire for him to have his long-delayed wish granted that leads to her conflict with Magnifico. Like his daughter-in-law, Sakina, Sabino is supportive of Asha’s own dreams but concerned that she may be putting her future at risk.

Asha’s Friends
Viewers may draw some parallels between the seven teenagers who work with Asha in the castle at Rosas and another group of seven friends in an earlier Disney Animation feature. In Asha’s circle, Dahlia (voiced by Jennifer Kumiyama) is the most mature and grounded. Gabo (voiced by Harvey Guillén) is the skeptical one; Simon (voiced by Evan Peters) the sleepy, dream-clouded one. Safi (voiced by Ramy Youssef) is a comic character who seems to suffer from allergies, while Bazeema (voiced by Della Saba) tends to stay in the background. Dario (voiced by Jon Rudnitsky) is smarter than his gangly appearance would suggest, while Hal (voiced by Niko Vargas) offers an optimistic take on most situations. Most important, Asha relies on her friends to support her when the going gets tough—and most of them come through in loving solidarity, even if it means putting themselves in danger.

Holiday Gift Guide for Every Fan on Your List

By Lauren O’Donnell

What do you buy the Disney fan that has, well, everything? Never fear! The holidays are almost here, and we’ve gathered some amazing gift ideas for all the fans on your list, with must-haves from the worlds of Disney, Star Wars, Marvel and more!

Disney Gifts

First up are the Star Cuddleez Plush and Asha Singing Doll from the new Walt Disney Animation Studios film Wish. To add even more magic to the Wish film collection, Disney is working with Make-A-Wish® to help grant more life-changing wishes for children living with critical illnesses around the world. Visit shopDisney to explore the product collection from the film and so much more.

The soundtrack to Wish is available exclusively on clear glitter vinyl at Disney Music Emporium. Featuring the voice talents of Oscar® winner Ariana DeBose, Chris Pine, and more, this is all the music you could wish for! With original songs by Julia Michaels and Benjamin Rice.

The Frozen 2 Castle Playset is perfect for recreating favorite scenes from the film and features favorite Frozen characters!

In honor of the Disney100 Celebration, the LEGO Disney Castle lovingly recreates the iconic Fantasyland attraction, from the golden towers and arched doorway to colorful stars that evoke spectacular fireworks. This set would make a spectacular gift for the Disney Parks fan on your list.

From Disney Games is Disney Illusion Island, where you can join Mickey Mouse & Friends on a quest to explore the mysterious island of Month and recover three mystical books to save the world from disaster! Meanwhile, in Disney Dreamlight Valley, you can garden, fish, cook, and befriend Disney and Pixar characters. Live magically and unwind this holiday season with the exclusive items of the Cozy Edition, the retail offering of Disney Dreamlight Valley.

Star Wars Gifts

Direct from a galaxy far, far away comes this new pre-built version of the R2-D2 interactive droid from Droid Depot at Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge. The legendary Star Wars character features authentic lights, sounds, and integrated Bluetooth technology—so it will always be at your command.

Everyone’s favorite little green guy is looking cute and cuddly, as the Grogu Weighted Plush provides endless relaxation for you at home and beyond.

For the ultimate Star Wars collector on your list, the Wicket Ewok Collectors Figure was created with exacting detail with a collector’s eye for authenticity and looks as if he has just stepped out of the forest of Endor. Additionally: An elegant weapon for a more civilized age, The Skywalker Legacy LIGHTSABER Collectible Set features a hilt that illuminates the included blade.

Visit StarWars.com/Gift-The-Galaxy for even more Star Wars gift ideas.

Marvel Gifts


The new iconic LEGO® Marvel Avengers Tower set is the tallest LEGO brick-built skyscraper ever made; includes the most figures within one LEGO set; and is the biggest set within the LEGO Marvel collection to date! The LEGO Marvel Avengers Tower will be available starting November 24, 2023, in LEGO Stores and on LEGO.com.

For the gamer on your list, Marvel’s Spider-Man 2, only on PlayStation 5, is a must-have this holiday season. Spider-Men Peter Parker and Miles Morales return for an exciting new adventure in the critically acclaimed Marvel’s Spider-Man video game franchise.

As we continue celebrating the 60th anniversary of the Avengers, Marvel fans will love these gifts inspired by Earth’s Mightiest Super Heroes! Fans of the First Avenger will love this build-and-display LEGO Captain America’s Shield based on one of Marvel’s most iconic emblems. Plus, the stylish and comfy Avengers Pullover Hoodie by Heroes & Villains includes the Avengers logo on the front, and Avengers stylized screen art on the sleeves.

Pixar Gifts

The Ember Lumen and Wade Ripple plushes from Disney and Pixar’s Elemental are soft and huggable gifts this holiday season. Also: Adventure awaits fans of Disney and Pixar’s Up when they assemble this detailed LEGO reproduction of Carl Fredricksen’s house, complete with its colorful canopy of balloons.

Recreate favorite moments from the Toy Story movies, or even bring new ones to life, with this action figure collection. Buzz Lightyear, Woody, Jessie, and Bullseye are among the eight poseable figures included in this set. Additionally, the Disney and Pixar Cars Glow Racers Launch & Criss-Cross Playset includes Lightning McQueen and Jackson Storm Glow Racers vehicles, so fans can get the rival race started as soon as they’re set up!

Avatar Gifts

Avatar: Frontiers of Pandora™ is a first-person, action-adventure game set in the open world of the never-before-seen Western Frontier of Pandora. Reconnect with your lost heritage and discover what it truly means to be Na’vi as you join other clans to protect Pandora.

Available on PlayStation®5, Xbox Series X|S, PC and Luna* on December 7th.

*Available in the US. Please check online for other territories

For some more amazing Avatar products, check out this Avatar Pandora scenic throw blanket with a beautiful design inspired by life on Pandora—ideal for a bedroom, living room, or to take in the car for road trips. And the Loungefly Avatar Toruk Movable Wings Mini Backpack has three sets of vibrantly colored wings that swing open to reveal the full Toruk Banshee design in vibrant orange and blue hues.

Books and More!

Hey Disney!

Bring the magic home for your family with the ultimate at-home Disney Echo Bundle: the latest Echo Show 5, a Mickey Mouse-inspired Stand, and the Hey Disney! magical voice assistant—built using Alexa technology. With Hey Disney!, you can experience stories, play games, and enjoy everyday features like weather, timers, and more.

Greek Mythology

Gifts fit for the demigods in your life: All five books in the blockbuster Percy Jackson and the Olympians series complete with a bonus poster. Read ‘em before the Disney+ series comes out! Also, from the creators of National Geographic Kids’ wildly successful Greeking Out podcast, this New York Times best-selling tie-in book delivers a clever tongue-in-cheek retelling of 20 classic Greek myths.


These titles are the perfect additions to any Disney library! Delicious Disney: Disneyland, People Behind the Disney Parks, and The Story of Disney: 100 Years of Wonder feature Disney history and will bring back favorite Disney memories.

We hope these products have helped you check off some people on your list... or even your own wish list! Happy Holidays!

You can also make your wish a bit brighter this year with shopDisney, as we celebrate the magic of the holiday season. Enter the shopDisney Magic of the Season Sweepstakes for a chance to win a Walt Disney World® Resort vacation and a LEGO® Disney Castle Set from shopDisney.*

*NO PURCHASE NECESSARY. Enter the Sweepstakes between 11/2/23 at 12 P.M. (noon) ET and 12/14/23 at 11:59 P.M. ET. Open to legal residents of the 50 U.S./D.C.; 18+. Limit one (1) entry per person per day. See www.shopdisney.com/holidaysweepstakes for full details on how to enter, eligibility requirements, odds of winning, prize descriptions and limitations. Void where prohibited. Sponsor: Disney Shopping, Inc., 1101 Flower Street, Glendale, California 91201.

Lug Black Friday Offer

Discover the magic inside one of the Disney’s Parks newest bag & accessories co-brand this holiday season with Lug! Unwrap the festive spirit and elevate your park-bound adventures with our collection of handbags, accessories, and travel bags. Starting today, November 22 and continuing through this Black Friday weekend, discover the perfect companions for your park-bound escapades, seamlessly blending fashion and functionality. From versatile everyday accessories to chic travel essentials, Lug has a wide-array of high-quality and lasting products to help complete your Holiday lists. 'Tis the season to embrace the joy of giving and receiving, so we’re thrilled to offer our fellow D23 Members $23 off on both Luglife.com and our LIVE shopping experience, LugLive! With the power of two, you can gift yourself and your loved ones some perfect gear for staying organized and stylish wherever the adventure takes you!

Shop and save today through Black Friday weekend (offer ends 11:59pm EST on Sunday, November 26, 2023) with this special offer just for you!

D23 Fan App

Access Your D23 Benefits Anytime, Anywhere
With the D23 Fan Club app, your membership card is just a few taps away.
Access your benefits from your phone!


Get More Disney with D23 Gold Membership
Enjoy exclusive discounts and access to special events and merch.
Also includes our quarterly publication and annual Collector Set.

5 Things to Know About Disney Animation’s Wish

By Zach Johnson

In Walt Disney Animation Studios’ original musical comedy Wish, 17-year-old Asha (voiced by Ariana DeBose) lives in the kingdom of Rosas, where wishes really do come true. In fact, people come from all over to give their wishes to the charming and handsome King Magnifico (voiced by Chris Pine), who promises to grant their deepest desires… someday. But what if that day never comes? While interviewing to become the king’s apprentice, Asha grows disenchanted after realizing only he can decide which wishes can come true and when—and that, for Rosas’ supposed safety, he will nevergrant most of them. So, with the help of a cosmic force named Star, Asha sets out to return the wishes to her community.

Before Wish opens in theaters Wednesday, November 22, D23: The Official Disney Fan Club attended an intimate press conference at the Roy O. Disney Animation Building in Burbank, California, where directors Chris Buck and Fawn Veerasunthorn—along with screenwriter Jennifer Lee, producers Peter del Vecho and Juan Pablo Reyes LancasterJones, and songwriter Julia Michaels—made wishes come true by sharing an inside look at the making of the magical feature film. Below are five highlights from the press conference.

In a scene from Walt Disney Animation Studios' Wish, King Magnifico performs "This Is the Thanks I Get?!" His arms are outstretched, and his eyes are closed. He is surrounded by 10 statues of knights; nine of them are kneeling, and one has fallen over.

1. Wish is Fawn Veerasunthorn’s directorial debut.

Veerasunthorn contributed to the films Frozen (2013), Zootopia (2016), Moana (2016), Ralph Breaks the Internet (2018), and Frozen 2 (2019), and most recently served as head of story for the Academy Award®-nominated film Raya and the Last Dragon (2021). Wish marks her first time helming a film—and she did it alongside Buck, who made his directorial debut with Tarzan (1999) after working on The Fox and the Hound (1981), The Little Mermaid (1989), The Rescuers Down Under (1990), Pocahontas (1995), and others. “This film talks about the importance of a person’s wish and the journey to make it come true. It offered us an opportunity to talk deeply about that,” Veerasunthorn said. “Our journeys might’ve been different, but our wish was the same: to work at Disney Animation.”

“I was lucky enough to train under Walt Disney’s Nine Old Men, and I definitely felt like they were handing the baton to the new generation,” Buck added. “We’re from different generations, so I felt like I was doing that for Fawn—maybe even subconsciously. It wasn’t just how we did the classic Disney animation, but it was also how they handed down Walt’s storytelling and his passion for animation and telling stories with joy, and magic, and hope.”

2. Wish pays homage to beloved, classic Disney films.

Inspired by the studio’s magical, musical legacy, Wish honors a century’s worth of characters and stories. “When we were figuring out the look of the film, we thought, ‘Let’s look back to the very beginning. What inspired Walt himself?'” Veerasunthorn recalled. “And that’s where we came upon the look of Snow White and Pinocchio, with their beautiful watercolor storybook illustrations. We thought, ‘How awesome it would be to walk right into that scene and be immersed in that world?’ We then decided to bring in CGI techniques. The combination of the nostalgic and the modern live onscreen together.”

“Our goal was to make an original story, with original characters and songs,” she added. “Once that was in place, we felt very confident. Then the fun really began. Everyone who works here grew up on Disney films; they were inspired by them and have a deep love for the characters. So, when scenarios presented themselves, we just couldn’t help ourselves!”

In a scene from Walt Disney Animation Studios' Wish, the goat Valentino is wearing a yellow outfit. He is in the forest. He has six birds on his back and one on his head.

3. Writing music for Wish was a dream come true for Julia Michaels.

Along with Benjamin Rice, Michaels wrote seven original songs for the film. Although she had contributed backing vocals to the pop version of “Let It Go” (Frozen) and performed “In This Place” (Ralph Breaks the Internet), Wish was a three-year endeavor that was the culmination of a lifetime of wanting to write songs for a Disney film. “I grew up watching Disney films and loving Disney music, so that was ingrained in me throughout this process,” the Grammy®-nominated singer/songwriter said. “It’s obviously a huge weight, the legacy of Disney music; that does not go over my head. But I had a really beautiful support system through the collaborative process of making music with these beautiful people. And I’m grateful that this was my first deep dive into it. I’ve always wanted to make a Disney film.”

4. Wish tells a universal story about the power of wishes.

“Your wish is yours to fulfill, and that journey is important,” Lee said. “It isn’t just, ‘Wish upon star and maybe great things will happen.’ It’s, ‘Wish and make great things happen.'” As illustrated in the song “I’m a Star,” everyone has the power to make their wishes come true—but that doesn’t mean they have to do it alone. “I hope Asha shows them that it’s a journey,” Lee said. “It’ll be hard, and that’s OK. There will be little helpers along the way.”

“We’re all connected,” she added. “We’re all made of stardust. We’re all the same.”

5. Wish boasts more than 100 Easter eggs—and counting!

Lancaster Jones has been keeping a “secret list” of nods and references to Disney characters in Wish, Lee revealed: “We’re finding new ones every time we watch the movie!” Without spoiling when it appears in the film, Buck said the animators even snuck in a reference to Grandmother Willow—a particularly touching addition, given that he and Dave Burgess had animated the character in Pocahontas. “One of the beautiful things is that every time a different department touched the movie, they brought in their own Disney references,” Lancaster Jones said. “It wasn’t just us deciding. So many people added those.”

That’s why Veerasunthorn called Wish “a collective love letter” to Walt and the artists who came before them: “I hope when people see the movie, it’s like a dose of delight for them.”