In these days of reboots and reconnections, taking inspiration from the ’80s and ’90s has become a common reality for Disney.
But for DuckTales producers Matt Youngberg and Francisco Angones, the idea of bringing Scrooge McDuck back to the small screen came from a particularly heightened place of passion.
“The lyrics from the original DuckTales theme song were in my wedding vows, and I dressed up as Dark Wing Duck as a child through to adulthood,” said Angones who serves as co-producer of the upcoming Disney XD series. “You can say that I have an intense personal love for this property,” he added.
“We didn’t think, ‘We really need DuckTales because it’s going to fill some slot somewhere’,” adds executive producer Youngberg. “The reason that it’s coming back now is because all of the people who grew up loving it so much are saying they want to see it again,” he continued.
The long-awaited, small-screen revival will kick off with a one-hour TV film aptly entitled Woo-oo! which was played on loop for 24 hours on August 12—three decades after the first DuckTales episode aired.
The show’s inaugural two episodes will then make their linear TV, mobile and VOD debuts in the US on September 23, before eventually showing on Disney XD and Disney Channels worldwide.
The series follows Scrooge McDuck (Doctor Who‘s David Tennant), Donald and a fleet of young ducklings as they travel the globe in search of riches.
With the DuckTales universe spanning classic Donald Duck comics by Carl Barks, the original Disney series and 1990 feature film DuckTales the Movie, Youngberg and Angones almost had a lot of material on their hands.
Among the duo’s creative decisions was the move to animate the series in a 2D hand-drawn style. “It made more sense to go traditional with this show rather than do a full CGI reboot,” observed Youngberg. “I wanted to make sure it had this real hand-drawn authenticity to it. We are doing something new for today’s kids, but at the end of the day, all of these characters are older than us and are going to live well beyond us,” he added.
The show will have some contemporary updates, though, particularly in its portrayal of families. The creators say they drew inspiration from hits like Modern Family and The Incredibles which focus on complex atypical family dynamics.