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25 Weeks of DisneyToon Sequels: A Brief History

Original logo as featured in the DuckTales film.

In recent years, Disney has been releasing more sequels as part of their canon. The Disney Animated Canon are the films made by Walt Disney Animation Studios and began with Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs in 1937 with the most recent entry being Frozen II last year. These films, almost 60 in total, are mostly originals with sequels few and far between.

Between 1994 and 2008, Disney was able to capitalize on their brands by releasing numerous sequels to the entries in their canon directly to video. This endeavor began with Return of Jafar, a sequel to their 1992 hit Aladdin. By outsourcing the animation to a different studio in Australia, eventually called DisneyToon Studios, they were able to make substantial amounts of money as the home video market rose and VHS tapes were becoming more affordable. Unsurprisingly, this led to parents buying more videos for their household and what better than to buy their kids the brand new, exclusive sequel to their favorite Disney movie?

DisneyToons eventually died out and was officially closed in 2018, but the final direct-to-video sequel happened in 2008. Since then, Disney has released two sequels to their canon entries, namely, Ralph Breaks the Internet and Frozen II. This begs the question: since DisneyToons is no longer, will Disney continue down the route of Pixar and release theatrical sequels to their most successful films or will they focus on original films? Either way, it will be fun to revisit these low-budget sequels for the next several weeks and see them in all their strange, often cringe-worthy glory.

Follow along with our 25 Weeks of DisneyToon Sequels, starting this week with Return of Jafar!

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