Muniz meets Mouse

'Malcolm' star set for Disney Channel pic

NEW YORK — “Malcolm in the Middle’s” Frankie Muniz will star in the Disney Channel’s new original movie “Miracle in Lane 2.” Pic will begin filming this month and premiere on the kids cabler in May, the net announced Thursday at the Television Critics Assn. Tour.

Muniz will play a 13-year-old boy who overcomes his physical disability by competing in a soapbox derby race.

Disney Channel has greenlit three additional original movies to premiere this summer: “Stepsister From the Planet Weird,” “Ready to Run” and “Quints” (working title). All three will begin production in the next two months.

Stepping up

Based on the book of the same name, “Stepsister” concerns a 14-year-old girl and her future stepsibling. Written by Chris Matheson, the telefilm will be exec produced by Ricka Fisher; Steve Boyum (“Johnny Tsunami”) will direct.

Written by John Wierick (“Bopha!”) and directed by Duwayne Dunham, “Ready to Run” concerns a 14-year-old girl who dreams of becoming a jockey. Bill Borden (“End of Days”) will exec produce.

“Quints” involves a 13-year-old only child who suddenly has to deal with having quintuplet siblings. Stan Brooks will exec produce.

The net also announced it has greenlit “The Book of Pooh,” an original series featuring the characters first created by A.A. Milne. The web has ordered 26 episodes of the skein produced by Mitchell Kriegman’s Shadow Projects (“Bear in the Big Blue House”). Set to air as part of Playhouse Disney, the net’s preschool programming block, “Pooh” will premiere in early 2001.

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