Split image of Beauty and the Beast, Sofia the First, Pandora, and Raven

Raven Returns and Sofia’s Fourth Season Begins—Plus More in News Briefs

By Courtney Potter

A That’s So Raven spin-off gets the go-ahead from Disney Channel, and Sofia the First sets a fourth season premiere date… Read more, along with other news from around Disney, in this week’s news briefs!


That’s So Raven Spin-Off Gets a “Green Light”!

Raven Baxter is returning, y’all! As you may recall, Raven-Symoné announced late last year—just as she was vacating her seat on ABC’s The View—that she hoped to bring the beloved character from her hit ‘90s sitcom That’s So Raven back to TV… and it looks like, thanks to Disney Channel, her wish has been granted! Check out the exciting news here.


Save the Date!
Be sure to mark these upcoming Disney events on your calendar:

D23 and Walt Disney Archives
April 7, 2017
Lunch with a Disney Legend: Burny Mattinson
April 8, 2017
The Official Walt Disney Studios Tour—Presented by D23
April 10, 2017
D23 Members Invited to “Eat Like Walt” at the Disney California Adventure Food & Wine Festival
April 26, 2017
D23’s Behind-the-Scenes Experience: Magic in Manhattan & More
May 12, 2017
Lunch with a Disney Legend: Marty Sklar in Florida
May 13, 2017
D23’s Magical Screening Series: Pirates of the Caribbean: The Curse of the Black Pearl On the Lot
May 13, 2017
D23’s Magical Screening Series: Pirates of the Caribbean: The Curse of the Black Pearl in Florida
May 19, 2017
D23’s Behind-the-Scenes Experience: An Afternoon Adventure to Pandora with Joe Rohde in Florida
July 14-16, 2017
D23 Expo 2017
April 21, 2017
Born in China opens in theaters
May 5, 2017
Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 opens in theaters
May 26, 2017
Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Men Tell No Tales
opens in theaters

June 16, 2017
Cars 3 opens in theaters
November 3, 2017
Thor: Ragnarok opens in theaters
November 22, 2017
Coco opens in theaters
December 15, 2017
Star Wars: The Last Jedi opens in theaters
March 1–May 29, 2017
Epcot International Flower & Garden Festival
March 10–April 16, 2017
Disney California Adventure Food & Wine Festival
May 27, 2017
Pandora—The World of Avatar opening at Disney’s Animal Kingdom
May 27, 2017
Guardians of the Galaxy–Mission: BREAKOUT! opening at Disney California Adventure
August 31-November 13, 2017
Epcot Food & Wine Festival
Star Wars-Themed Lands Opening at Disneyland and Walt Disney World
April 28, 2017
Sofia the First Returns for Season Four


Sofia the First’s Fourth Season Debuts April 28 on Disney Channel

Fun news for fans of Disney Junior’s Sofia the First: The show’s big fourth season premiere will debut on Friday, April 28, at 11:30 a.m. EDT on Disney Channel! The new season will find Sofia taking on a bigger role as a protector of her kingdom—and will also have her visiting a new enchanted world called “The Mystic Isles.”

Recently honored with a Humanitas Prize (which recognizes film and television programs that inspire compassion, hope and understanding), Sofia the First will feature an incredible line-up of guest stars for season four—including Andrew Rannells (Broadway’s The Book of Mormon) as an enthusiastic unicorn named Skye; Megan Hilty (Smash) as a Crystalmaster named Prisma; Billy Boyd and Dominic Monaghan (both from The Lord of the Rings franchise) as two gnomes named Malachite and Fig; and Ming-Na Wen (Marvel’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.) as a magical human/hawk character named Vega. The series stars Ariel Winter as Sofia, Sara Ramirez as Queen Miranda, Wayne Brady as Clover, and Tim Gunn as Baileywick.

Beauty and the Beast

Sing-Along Beauty and the Beast Debuts in Theaters This Friday

Warm up those vocal chords and get ready to experience Disney’s live-action retelling of the 1991 animated classic in a whole new way. Read more about it here!

Waddle On with Club Penguin Island—Now Available for Mobile

Late last week, Disney launched an all-new Club Penguin experience, Club Penguin Island, for mobile devices… color us excited for more penguin-y fun! The new app features an updated take on Club Penguin, a leading online kids’ entertainment destination for more than a decade; developed especially for mobile, Club Penguin Island combines many of the best elements from the legacy Club Penguin world with awesome new design and features. Take a peek at some of the shenanigans that await you in the preview, above.

Club Penguin Island is a subscription-based app that provides fans with cool, immersive gameplay, as well as opportunities for self-expression—like taking the stage to perform a ditty, or dressing up in crazy clothes! Players can join a new online community; embark on island quests; earn special rewards; and take on daily challenges to level up their penguins. Club Penguin Island is available now for free download—with an option to purchase a $4.99 monthly recurring membership subscription—on the Apple App Store and Google Play. (Wanna give it a test drive first? You’re in luck: there’s a seven-day free trial.) Happy waddling!

Main Street Electrical Parade

Disneyland Park to Stay Electrical Through August 20

Have you made it down to see the Main Street Electrical Parade as it once again rocks and rolls its way down Disneyland Park’s Main Street, U.S.A.? If not, never fear—the parade’s big return has been extended! Get all the details here.

LEGO Star Wars: The Freemaker Adventures Returns to Disney XD

It’s the Star Wars universe… and it’s LEGO. Seriously, how can you go wrong? Disney XD’s comedy adventure series LEGO Star Wars: The Freemaker Adventures is now set to return this summer; recently nominated for four Daytime Emmy® Awards, the fun, Force-filled series will continue the story of the Freemakers as they join the Rebellion in their fight against the Empire.

Prior to season two’s debut, five new shorts—that fill in the storytelling between the show’s inaugural season and where it picks up this summer—will debut on Wednesday, May 4, on Disney XD, in celebration of the big Star Wars fan-generated “May the 4th Be With You” holiday. (One of our favorite days of the year!) Plus, a sneak peek at season two will also be revealed at Star Wars Celebration in Orlando later this month.

For a look at what the second season has in store, check out the brand-new trailer, above… and stay tuned for more info (including exact premiere date) as it becomes available.

Pandora – The World of Avatar: Brought to Life by Imagineers & Filmmakers

We’re counting down the days ‘til Pandora – The World of Avatar officially opens at Disney’s Animal Kingdom… thankfully, the good folks over at Walt Disney Imagineering have been providing us all with amazing sneak-peeks at the Na’vi fun to come. Example: A brand-new video detailing the Imagineers’ ongoing collaboration with the original AVATAR filmmakers, including director James Cameron and producer Jon Landau.

Take a gander at the fantastical work that’s been going on behind-the-scenes, above.