Disney’s Moana Sequel Will Be Different in This 1 Major Way

Disney has provided more new details about what we can expect from the upcoming Moana sequel.

On Wednesday, the company announced that Moana 2 will hit theaters later this year, with first-look photos and a teaser clip also shared online.

The synopsis for the film released on Thursday reads: “Walt Disney Animation Studios’ epic animated musical, Moana 2, takes audiences on a sprawling new journey with Moana, Maui, and a new crew of unlikely sailors.

“After receiving an unexpected call from her ancestors seeking a way, Moana must journey to the distant seas of Oceania and to dangerous waters long lost for an adventure unlike any she has ever faced.”

However, it has been confirmed that one of the key figures who helped make the original film a success will not be returning.

Although Hamilton creator Lin-Manuel Miranda wrote the first film’s signature hits, including You’re Welcome, Shiny, and the Oscar-nominated How Far I’ll Go, he won’t be returning for the sequel.

Lin-Manuel Miranda at a screening of Moana in 2016Lin-Manuel Miranda at a screening of Moana in 2016

Dave J Hogan via Getty Images

Instead, Abigail Barlow and Emily Bear will helm the film’s music, with Opetaia Foa’i working on songs from the original film such as We Know The Way.

Abigail and Emily are best known for their Grammy-winning album The Unofficial Bridgerton Musical, and previously provided songs for Taco Bell’s Mexican Pizza: The Musical.

Emily also toured with Beyoncé as the pianist on her Renaissance world tour.

Meanwhile, Moana directors John Musker and Ron Clements are also not returning for the sequel, and Disney director Dave Derrick Jr will take over.

Interestingly, there has been no confirmation as to whether Auli’i Cravalho and Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson will return to voice Moana and Maui in the sequel, although Deadline reports that the two are “in talks.”

Dwayne 'The Rock' Johnson and Auli'i Cravalho in 2016Dwayne ‘The Rock’ Johnson and Auli’i Cravalho in 2016

Bob Iger previously revealed the new Moana film started as a TV series, before it was decided to adapt it for the big screen.

Moana 2 joins a list of Disney sequels in development, including Toy Story 5, Zooptopia 2 and two sequels to the hit film Frozen.

The sequel to Pixar’s Inside Out will also hit theaters later this year.

Last year, Bob Iger told Disney employees that the company would “lean more heavily into our unmatched brands and franchises” in the near future.

Disney’s latest animated offering, Wish, debuted towards the end of last year, to middling reviews and box office performance.

Leave a comment