Disney bewitches young aud

'Halloweentown' scares off competish

Disney Channel has cast a spell on young auds, drawing a boffo 7.53 million viewers to the Friday premiere of “Return to Halloweentown.”

The 8 p.m. two-hour event, the fourth in the “Halloweentown” franchise, bested broadcast timeslot competitors on ABC, Fox and the CW in overall viewership and easily clobbered all competition on cable for the night.

Telepic did especially well among girls 6-11 and female tweens with a 50 and 52 national share, respectively, drawing more than half of the available audience in the demos. “Halloweentown” also did well with kids 6-11 (3.2 million) and tweens 9-14 (2.9 million).

“Halloweentown” reps the fourth original telecast on Disney Channel this year to attract big crowds of more than 7 million. Others are “High School Musical” (7.76 mil), “Cheetah Girls 2” (7.82 mil) and the July 28 episode of frosh series “Hannah Montana” (7.05 mil).

Latest “Halloweentown” pic also outdrew the previous three movies in the series: 2004’s “Halloweentown High” (6.14 mil), 2001’s “Halloweentown 2: Kalabar’s Revenge” (6.09 mil) and 1998’s “Halloweentown” (3.38 mil).

Made-for stars Sarah Paxton (“Aquamarine”) as a college student at Witch U. who discovers sinister forces at work on campus.

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