Disney may be focusing its attention on its upcoming subscription service, Disney+, but the House of Mouse hasn’t forgotten its streaming presence elsewhere, with a new original series on the way for Disney Channel on YouTube.
Shook is a new hip-hop short-form series that follows a teenager who dreams of becoming a professional dancer. Sofia Wylie stars as Mia, a 15-year-old whose ambitions are hindered by her obligations to her little sister and their single mother, who works as a nurse. But with the support of her best friend, Fredgy, and a new mentor, she is introduced to the world of street dance and begins to express her true self through dance.
Wylie is no stranger to Disney: she will soon star in the Disney+ post-modern show High School Musical: The Musical: The Series. Perhaps less likely to be behind the series are Mark and Jay Duplass, who are executive producing the programme through their DBP Donut banner.
“It’s not every day that Disney asks you to partner on a diverse, fun, avant-garde dance series,” Duplass said in a statement. “Actually, this may never happen again, so we’re enjoying it while it lasts.”
“Adding Shook as our foray into original scripted content [on YouTube] is a great step in continuing to connect with our viewers on a platform they already use,” Vincent Aricco, VP of multiplatform content development at Disney Channels Worldwide, toldVariety. “Sofia’s extraordinary talents and already huge fan base enables us to reach and engage with our core kid and tween audience through visual storytelling for an increasingly digital audience.”
Indeed, Disney Channel’s YouTube channel has 3 million subscribers and Wylie has 1.6 million follows on Instagram, where she announced in a post this week that she had finished filming.
The series, which was filmed in and around Los Angeles, is written by Jonathan Hurwitz (Andi Mack) and directed by Hannah Peterson (East of the River). It boasts choreography by Alexis Beauregard (Love & Hip Hop Hollywood), with fellow cast members including Somali Rose (Raven’s Home), LeShay Tomlinson (Insecure), Sydney Sepulveda (Hard Knocks), Wayne Mackins (The Prom), Jenna Z. Alvarez (Kidding) and Caroline Harris (Megalodon).
Shook will premiere on YouTube on 28th September.