D23 Expo: all the Marvel and Disney parks news you need to know

Disney released a slew of announcements at their D23 Expo in Anaheim, California, detailing most of their projects coming out within the next few years.

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CREDIT: SHUTTERSTOCK

Appearing for the first time in three years, Mickey Mouse stands in the center of Disney’s D23 Expo in Disneyland, California to promote upcoming Disney movies.

For the first time in three years, Disney’s D23 Expo was held at the Anaheim Convention Center near Disneyland, California, where the entertainment company announced new projects and features from all five of their major properties.

The convention was split up over three days, running from Sept. 9 to 11. Disney Studios projects were announced on the first day, with sneak peeks at all of their new live-action movies coming out over the next couple years. Most of these movies were remakes of animated classics, such as “The Little Mermaid”, “Peter Pan and Wendy”, “Snow White” and “Mufasa: The Lion King”, which is a sequel to the 2019 remake of “The Lion King”. Only one other movie, “The Haunted Mansion”, was not a remake of a previous Disney film.

Announcements about Walt Disney Animation and Pixar movies were made on Sept. 9, detailing new projects and series in the works. 

Pixar started off the panel with more details about “Elemental”, a story about two lovers made of fire and water, who must learn to live together without ever touching each other. Also announced were the films “Elio”, an original film about a boy who travels to space and meets aliens; “Inside Out 2”, the sequel to the 2015 movie and the series “Win or Lose”, which takes a look at the same ball game from the perspective of each player. Walt Disney Animation announced three new projects as well, starting with “Iwaju”, a series that follows two different friends in a fictional depiction of Lagos, Nigeria. The movies “Strange World” and “Wish” were also presented, with their filmmakers being brought out on stage to talk about both.

The second day focused on projects from Lucasfilm and Marvel Studios. From Lucasfilm, there were new trailers shown and the cast revealed for the shows “Andor”, a series that goes into the backstory of Cassian Andor from “Rogue One: A Star Wars Story; The Bad Batch”, which will be releasing its second season on Jan. 4, 2023 on Disney+. “Willow”, a different series, will be streaming on Nov. 31. Lucasfilm also revealed a clip from the fifth “Indiana Jones” movie in the works at the same event.

 After Lucasfilm, Marvel Studios took the stage to discuss their projects in development.The biggest and most significant update announced was for “Thunderbolts”, the newest group of antiheroes that will join the MCU on July 26, 2024. Sebastian Stan and Florence Pugh will star as Bucky Barnes and Yelena Belova, respectively. The movies “Black Panther: Wakanda Forever”, “Ant-Man and the Wasp: Quantumania” and “The Marvels”, as well as the series “Daredevil: Born Again”, “Werewolf By Night”, “Secret Invasion”, “Loki, Echo”, “Ironheart” and “Armor Wars” had some, if not all, of their main cast announced as well. 

The third day was about the Disney parks. Disneyland ended up getting the most new updates, which included a new ride for California Adventure park’s Avengers Campus in the works. This new ride will have guests fighting King Thanos alongside every version of every character currently in the MCU. Among the other announcements for Disneyland are for Tiana’s Bayou Adventure, a redesign slated to replace the current theming of Splash Mountain, a complete retheme of an area within Disney’s California Adventure and the reveal of walk-around characters for the Mandalorian and the Hulk. Various projects were announced and teased for Disney parks around the world as well.