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June 17

June 17, 2008 – The Soundtrack to Camp Rock is Released Through Walt Disney Records

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“Raise your hands up in the air and scream, we’re finding our voice, following our dream.”

On June 17, 2008, the soundtrack to the Disney Channel Original Movie Camp Rock was released through Walt Disney Records. The soundtrack had been streamed a week earlier on the Camp Rock official site, and officially premiered on Radio Disney on the 14th. On its official release, the album peaked at 3 on the Billboard 200, as well as reaching 2 on the U.S. iTunes store. The soundtrack featured performances by the Jonas Brothers and Demi Lovato, the stars of the film.

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June 8

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June 8, 2004 – The Soundtrack for the Disney Channel Original Movie Zenon: Z3 is Released

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“You’re out of this world, can’t get any better, we’re gonna last forever, keep your head up, don’t look down.”

On June 8, 2004 the soundtrack for the Disney Channel Original Movie Zenon: Z3 was released through Walt Disney Records. The album featured songs from the fictional artists in the film, including Proto Zoa and Cosmic Blush; it also includes a remix of the hit song from the first movie in the series “Supernova Girl.” The album peaked at number 24 on the top soundtracks Billboard chart.

March 15

March 15, 2006 – High School Musical is the First Film Released on iTunes

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“First came the songs, then music videos and TV shows, and now Apple may be bringing movies to your home computer or video iPod.”

On March 15, 2006, Apple announced that Disney Channel’s hit film High School Musical would be iTunes’ first available feature-length movie. The movie, available for $9.99, was the first step in a grand-scale iTunes Movie service, though some critics saw the move as a vehicle for Apple and Disney to test joint projects. Disney, at the time, admitted that the TV movie would be the only release from the studio on the digital format.

September 8

September 8, 2000 – The Disney Channel Original Movie The Other Me Premieres

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“That’s so amazing. You look like me, you talk like me, but you have a computer brain!”

On September 8, 2000, the Disney Channel Original Movie The Other Me premiered. It was based on the book Me Two by Mary C. Ryan. It was written by Jeff Schechter, and directed by Manny Coto. The film starred Andrew Lawrence as Will and Twoie, Scott McCord as Victor, Joe Grifasi as Conrad, Brenden Jefferson as Chuckie, and Tyler Hynes as Scottie DeSota.

Will Browning heads to school where he is constantly mocked for his yoyo, his hair, and more. His friend Chuckie reminds him that it’s report card day, and Will is positive that his method of skating by will see him through. Fellow classmate Heather has a crush on him, but he is less than receptive. Will gets his report card, and realizes that he may not be doing as well as he thought. He gets home to find more bad news: if he doesn’t pull up his grades, he will spend his summer at Camp Spartacus, a boot camp for boys. Will realizes that he needs to do well on his science project, though he has no confidence in his abilities. He finds an ad for Ocean Pups in the back of his comic, and decides to make this his project. Meanwhile, at the Ocean Pups lab, two scientists named Victor and Conrad have been working on a hypercloning project, and succeed in cloning a mouse. Unfortunately, one of the mice accidentally escapes and, while being chased by a cat, knocks over the cloning formula, which drips through a crack in the floor onto one of the Ocean Pups kits – the very one sent to Will.

Will unloads his Ocean Pups kit, ready to begin his science project

Will unloads his Ocean Pups kit, ready to begin his science project

Will gets home from school to find his new Ocean Pups kit waiting for him, and he quickly opens it. Missing the stirrer, he decides to use his comb instead, and the kit starts to bubble. Will watches in horror as the kit overflows, and calls customer service for help. When he looks again, he finds that he has created a clone of himself. Will recalls a lesson about cloning from science class, and realizes that he’s made himself a clone. Back at the Ocean Pups factory, the customer service rep has talked to Victor and Conrad, who are now panicked that their secret is out. Will has trouble of his own in training his clone to act normal. Will realizes that his clone is a genius, but has a hard time keeping the clone’s curiosity in check. Will names the clone Twoie, and decides to have him attend school in his place. Meanwhile, Victor and Conrad have found Will’s house, and stake out the place to find what Will may have cloned. When Will heads out with his family the next day to visit Grandpa Mordecai, he asks Twoie to stay inside, but Twoie longs to be outside to explore the world around him. Will is shocked when he gets home and finds Twoie missing.

Will is able to find Twoie thanks to their special telepathic link, but accidentally insults Twoie by telling him he’s “just a clone,” though all Twoie wants is a family. Will teaches Twoie how to act like him, and sends him to school. Chuckie is confused at the change of attitude in “Will,” while the real Will stays home and lounges. Things get even weirder at school when Twoie starts dancing in the middle of the cafeteria, starting a huge dance party for the entire school. In the span of a day, Twoie raises Will’s reputation at school, fixes the relationship and becomes close friends with bully Scotty, and gets a date with Heather to the social. Victor and Conrad show up at Will’s door to “respond to his inquiry,” but Will quickly brushes them off. As Victor and Conrad talk, they reveal that the clone would only have a three week lifespan. Will and Twoie spy on the pair from Will’s window, and knowing that they’re being spied on, the two are extra cautious about not being seen together. However, Will soon becomes bored with the arrangement, and misses his life. Twoie is confused as to why Will is upset about this, as he thought staying home all day was Will’s dream. However, as Twoie leaves the house and Will watches from the window, Conrad and Victor see the pair, and realize that Will has hypercloned himself.

Twoie manages to connect with Grandpa Mordecai, something the family has been unable to do

Twoie manages to connect with Grandpa Mordecai, something the family has been unable to do

Will sends Twoie to visit Grandpa Mordecai, and gets Mordecai to finally come out of his stupor and interact with the family. When Twoie arrives home, Will is dismayed to find how much Twoie has changed his life, and is worried his family won’t love him once Twoie disappears and Will acts as himself again. The next day, Will decides to go to school, while Twoie stays home. Twoie tries to warn him about what’s going on at school, but Will rebuffs him. Will is shocked to find how popular he has become with the students and the teachers. When he gets home, Twoie is waiting for him, and Will is furious that everything good happens to Twoie, while Twoie is upset that no one knows about him. Twoie insists that not caring about what people think is why is he’s good at everything he does, but Will says that Twoie messed up his life. Twoie decides that he will leave for New York City, as he has no family. Will has Twoie attend the junior social in his place to act as a last farewell. Twoie heads off to his dance, but Will observes from the window that Victor and Conrad are close on his tail. Will spies on the pair and finds that they possess a potion to keep Twoie as a clone for longer than his intended lifespan. Will steals the potion and flees into the woods. Victor and Conrad then change plans: they will head to the school dance and kidnap “Will,” then torture him for information.

Twoie starts the dance party, unaware that Will has come to the school to rescue him. Will finds Chuckie and tries to explain that Chuckie’s been hanging with his clone the entire time, though Chuckie is less than convinced. Twoie has headed to the bathroom and realizes that he is sick, while Will covers for him on the dance floor, using the kids as a cover. Chuckie continues to look for Twoie, though he’s still unconvinced. Unfortunately, Will gets captured by Victor and Conrad, and Twoie is already boarding a bus to New York. However, Twoie realizes that Will is in trouble, and arrives to rescue Will. Will and Twoie team up to stop Victor and Conrad, with help from Chuckie and Scotty. Will gives Twoie the potion to give him a normal lifespan, much to the surprise of Chuckie and Scotty. The police arrive and arrest the scientists, and Will’s family shows up as well. Will explains that Twoie is his clone, and the family covers for him calling him Will’s identical cousin Gil. Back at home, Will explains the entire story, much to the confusion of his family. When Gil explains that he only wants a family, and everyone agrees to continue the ruse of Gil being an identical cousin.

August 23

August 23, 1997 – The Disney Channel Original Movie Northern Lights Premieres

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“It is never a happy time when we are asked to say goodbye, yet that’s what today is for.”

On August 23, 1997, the Disney Channel Original Movie Northern Lights premiered. This was the first film to be billed as a Disney Channel Original Movie, as others preceding it had been known as Disney Channel Premiere Films. It was based on the 1988 stage play of the same name by John Hoffman. The film was written by Hoffman and Kevin Kane, and directed by Linda Yellen. It starred Diane Keaton as Roberta Blumstein, Maury Chaykin as Ben Rubadue, Joseph Cross as Jack, Kathleen York as Daphne, and John Robert Hoffman as Joe Scarlotti.

The film begins with a little boy being told about the Northern Lights by his father, how they are a phenomenon that shows up in their own time. Meanwhile in New York, Roberta Blumstein is in trouble once again. She sells tickets for Broadway shows, and continually argues with her customers, as well as takes too many breaks. She then gets a phone call about her brother, as he died rescuing a cat from the top of an electrical pole. Roberta has been estranged from her brother for ten years, and she recalls their last moment together. She heads out on the next train, and meets a strange man at the Bright River Junction station, also waiting for a ride into town. She and the man head to the King Edward Hotel, which is surprisingly decorated with hundreds of lights. The hotel is filled with interesting characters, and the two quickly make their way to settle down for the night.

Two boys spy on Roberta around the corner of the hotel lobby

Two boys spy on Roberta around the corner of the hotel lobby

The next morning, two kids are spying on Roberta, who is brought room service by a scary individual, which causes her to drop the tray on the floor. The other man, Ben Rubadue, has left several messages for his wife, who doesn’t seem to be responding. Later, she is accompanied by Joe Scarlotti to the memorial service for her brother, while Ben is being stalked by a strange woman. Roberta is confused and stunned by the attention given to her brother, which includes several interesting changes to how the church is being run. She then is shocked to find that Frank had a son named Jack she knew nothing about. Scarlotti then reads the will to Roberta and Ben, which gives them joint custody of Frank, which greatly annoys Roberta. She decides to call her lawyer to remove her from the responsibility, and gets incredibly lost on her way back to the hotel. She runs into the reverend’s wife, and tries to get her to take responsibility for Frank.

Roberta finally makes her way back only to get stuck in the hotel’s elevator. Jack helps her get out, and Roberta finds out that he and Frank live in the hotel. He thinks that Roberta didn’t like her father, and that his dad told him that she was a lot of fun. Roberta is impressed by Jack’s piano skills, particularly when he plays Debussy, and is painfully reminded of Frank. Later, she starts throwing a tantrum when the cigarette machine won’t dispense her cigarettes, and runs into Ben. The two head out to dinner to talk, and she admits that she is a childless widow. The two try to pawn Jack off onto the other, and are surprised by the band beginning to play. The singer of the band, Daphne, introduces Roberta, and tries to get her on stage to sing. Although reluctant, she gets up and sings, but has to leave when she starts to cry. Daphne attempt to comfort her, though Roberta rebuffs her. Ben tries to comfort her too, but Roberta angrily admits that no one understands what she’s feeling, and opening up doesn’t help. Roberta is unaware that Jack has heard the entire exchange. Ben leaves another message for his wife, who still won’t return his calls.

Ben is startled to find Daphne waiting for him outside his room

Ben is startled to find Daphne waiting for him outside his room

The next morning, Ben gets a visit from Daphne, who asks him to help her to a picnic. Roberta is ready to go home to New York, refusing to go to Frank’s memorial party. She finally is persuaded to go, after being given a pair of sneakers to wear. She starts to bond with Jack at the party, and they talk about Frank. However, when she admits that she doesn’t know why Frank chose her to take care of Jack, it prompts Jack to run away. Roberta frantically searches for Jack, and finds him with his mother, Margaret. Roberta is surprised that she is still alive, and they sit together when Jack plays the piano at the party. Roberta questions Margaret at the party, and the woman starts jumping about and dancing. Everyone chases after Margaret, who runs into the river. His mother has mental issues and is unable to take care of Jack, and Jack runs away again. Ben chases after him, and finds him on a nearby swing set. Jack says he can’t leave his mom behind, and Ben agrees. When Roberta finds Jack later throwing rocks at his cat, as he is mad that his cat caused his dad’s death. She admits that she was mad at Frank because she didn’t want him to leave. Jack thinks Roberta will stay, but is hurt when he finds that she still want to go back to New York City.

Ben and Daphne have tea together, and there seems to be a mutual attraction between them, culminating in a kiss. Later, he finally gets a call from his wife, who turns out to be his ex-wife. He admits to Roberta that he wants to stay and take care of Jack. Roberta decides to take the train back to New York, and when she gets ready to leave, the town has gathered to wish her well. She still falters on leaving, but Jack says he understands, as he likes where he lives as well. As she waits for the train with Ben, Jack heads out to the roof to once again search for the Northern Lights. Jack slips on the roof and is dangling from the gutter, with Ben and Roberta rushing to help. The group at the hotel manages to catch him in a sheet, and Roberta holds him close, though she misses her train. The film ends with everyone wishing Jack a happy birthday, and Roberta has remained in town. On their way home, Jack, Roberta, and Ben look up to see the Northern Lights.

August 21

August 21, 1999 – The Disney Chanel Original Movie Genius Premieres

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“Science and hockey: my two favorite things in the world are in the same building!”

On August 21, 1999, the Disney Channel Original Movie Genius premiered. It was written by John Rieck, Jim Lincoln, and Dan Studney, and directed by Rod Daniel. It starred Trevor Morgan as Charlie Boyle, Emmy Rossum as Claire Addison, Charles Fleischer as Dr. Krickstein, and Yannick Bisson as Mike MacGregor

The movie begins with 14-year-old Charlie Boyle playing hockey by himself in an empty rink. His dad appears and asks him to use the Zamboni, but Charlie, a genius, gives his father an invention that should clean the ice instantaneously. Charlie then heads off to a street hockey game, hoping that this day is the day the other kids will let him play. Unfortunately, Charlie once again finds himself on the sidelines, unable to fit in. Dejected, he sits on the curb until nightfall. When he gets home, however, he gets good news in the form of college scholarships from the top schools. He decides to go to Northern University of Wisconsin, where his idol Dr. Krickstein works. Charlie arrives for orientation, and heads straight for the hockey rink to see the school’s team, the Northern Lights, hard at practice, but there also seems to be some conflict between Krickstein and the hockey team. Charlie heads down to meet his idol, but is soon disappointed by what he’s found; however, he tries to make the best of his situation. Things get worse for Charlie when he meets his roommate: star of the Northern Lights, Mike MacGregor.

Charlie is reluctant to teach the students at the University

Charlie is reluctant to teach the students at the University

Charlie has to teach a few classes in order to maintain his scholarship, and heads to his first class. The students don’t respect him, and finds out later than Mike has moved out, as he doesn’t want to be anywhere near Charlie. Krickstein advises Charlie to find a new approach to making friends, and when Charlie heads to the rink, he sees a beautiful girl practicing her figure skating. She introduces herself as Claire, and Charlie decides to take Krickstein’s advice to heart, and pretends to be bad boy Chaz Anthony from Chicago. After meeting her, he creates a whole other identity and decides to transfer to her school while maintaining his real identity at the University. Charlie takes what he learned from his students to become a disruptive bad boy. Although he thinks Claire would like a bad boy, it seems that she has her reservations. He then tries to get her to be her tutor so he can spend more time with her. Unfortunately, he finds that her father is the hockey coach at Northern.

Krickstein and Charlie’s experiment hits a critical point when they find a graviton as a wave rather than a particle. Things with his other life get worse, however, when Chaz and his 8th grade class are invited to Northern to meet Charlie. Krickstein helps Charlie disguise himself under the guise of being disfigured after a horrible lab accident. When he gets back to his room, he finds Mike there again, who asks Charlie for help with his classwork. He offers to help Charlie win Claire in exchange for tutoring, and Charlie agrees. Charlie then takes Claire to the nearby pond to skate in a hockey game, and allows another kid to take his place in the game, recalling his time on the bench. Claire offers to take him to the Northern hockey game, but Charlie turns her down. The two continue to hang out at the pond, where Claire reveals that her mother was a figure skater, which inspired her to be one as well. The next day, Mike thanks Charlie before the big game, giving him an honorary Northern Lights jersey, and Charlie reveals that he knows a way to stop the opposing team. He then goes to watch the game, leaving the particle accelerator running.

Charlie awkwardly sits with his friends, trying not to get found out

Charlie awkwardly sits with his friends, trying not to get found out

When he arrives at the game, his 8th grade friends find him and have him sit with them. Claire spots Charlie and points him out to her father, but her dad tells her that the boy she’d pointed out is actually Charlie Boyle, which upsets her. The particle accelerator overloads, which cracks the ice in the rink. The game is postponed, and Charlie is to blame. Charlie tries to make amends all around, but is unable to do so. When Krickstein comes back, the two set to work on splitting the graviton so they can defy gravity. This also gives Charlie an idea to fix everything by using the experiment to help the Northern Lights win the game. He asks his friends for their forgiveness and help, and they finally agree when Charlie admits that he is Charlie. The group sets their plan in motion, beginning with Charlie sabotaging the enemy team’s skates. Charlie’s plan prevents the opposing team from cheating, as the sabotaged skates will do everything that the kids’ skates do. The plan works, with Krickstein helping with the plan until he accidentally activates the switch that allows the kids, and the affected players to defy gravity. The Northern Lights win the game, Claire’s dad’s job is safe, and Claire and Charlie finally share a kiss.

August 19

August 19, 2008 – The Soundtrack for The Cheetah Girls: One World is Released Through Walt Disney Records

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“There is nothing in the world that we can’t overcome, strength in numbers, got each other, got that cheetah love.”

On August 19, 2008, the soundtrack album for the Disney Channel Original Movie The Cheetah Girls: One World was released through Walt Disney Records. This is the sixth album by the group, and the third soundtrack. Three promotional singles were released from this album: “One World” on June 13, “Dance Me If You Can” on July 11, and “Cheetah Love” on August 1. The album managed to chart on several Billboard charts, including the peak positions of 3 on Billboard’s Top Soundtracks, 2 on Top Kids Albums, and 13 on the Billboard 200. This would be the last album released before the band’s breakup.