In an unexpected turn of events, the live-action reboot of the Spiderwick Chronicles has found a new home after being dropped by Disney+. Roku has stepped in, acquiring the exclusive US rights to the series and setting a premiere date for early 2024. This move marks one of Roku’s most significant ventures into the streaming content realm.
Disney+ had previously taken on the project but decided to cancel the Spiderwick Chronicles as a part of their ongoing cost-cutting initiatives. Sources have pointed out that the streaming giant’s shift in strategy plays a role. Disney+ and its associated divisions have been aligning their content more towards Disney-owned properties. This strategic change can be observed with the upcoming live-action Percy Jackson series, based on the books published by Disney Hyperion in the US.
However, this doesn’t mean that Disney+ is completely shutting its doors on external franchises. Some exceptions will still be made. A case in point is the forthcoming Goosebumps adaptation from Sony TV and the much-anticipated new Doctor Who episodes from the BBC.
The Spiderwick Chronicles, based on the popular children’s fantasy series, has a considerable fanbase, many of whom were disappointed by the initial Disney+ cancellation. With Roku picking up the series, fans can now breathe a sigh of relief knowing that the world of faeries, trolls, and magical adventures will return to screens soon.
The revamped Spiderwick Chronicles boasts a stellar voice cast, featuring Jack Dylan Grazer, known for his roles in Shazam! and It, as the voice of Thimbletack. Accompanying him is the seasoned Christian Slater, lending his voice to the antagonist, Mulgarath. The series ensemble is further enriched with Joy Bryant portraying Helen Grace, Noah Cottrell as Simon Grace, Lyon Daniels in the role of Jared Grace, and Mychala Lee taking on the character of Mallory Grace. With such a lineup, audiences are surely in for a treat.
The shift in streaming platforms brings about a valuable lesson: even in the ever-changing landscape of the entertainment industry, when one door closes, another can open. In this instance, while Disney+ may be narrowing its focus, platforms like Roku are broadening their horizons, giving shows like the Spiderwick Chronicles a second chance to shine.