×
You will be redirected back to your article in seconds

‘High School Musical’ Director Kenny Ortega Signs Multi-Year Deal With Netflix

Kenny Ortega of the Disney Channel’s “High School Musical” franchise has just signed a multi-year overall deal with Netflix. The pact with the producer, director, and choreographer continues Netflix’s aggressive push to lock down major talent as media giants such as the Walt Disney Company and Comcast prepare their own streaming services. In recent months, Netflix has signed deals with the likes of Ryan Murphy (“Glee”), Shonda Rhimes (“Scandal”), and Pixar vet Darla K. Anderson.

“As a fan of Netflix and their dynamic range of high quality content, I am thrilled to begin a creative relationship with the company,” Ortega said in a statement. “I’m super excited about the projects we already have in development and the shared enthusiasm I feel from the company. l look forward to this new Netflix collaboration with the highest hopes.”

Netflix unveiled two projects that Ortega will make for the company. He will direct and produce a film tentatively entitled “Auntie Claus,” as well as executive produce an original series dubbed “Julie and the Phantoms.” “Auntie Claus” follows a young girl in her quest to find a Christmas-loving aunt who has gone missing. It will be a musical and is based on the popular book series of the same name by Elise Primavera. The film will be adapted by Tiffany Paulsen (“Nancy Drew”).

“Julie and the Phantoms” is a musical comedy series and an adaptation of a Brazilian television series. It centers on teen girl whose band consists of three teen boys who have been dead for 25 years. Dan Cross and David Hoge (“The Thundermans”) will serve as showrunners and executive producers on the series, with George Salinas and Jaime Aymerich of Crossover Entertainment, as well as Hugo Janeba and Joao Tikhmiroff of Mixer Entertainment.

In addition to “High School Musical,” Ortega directed and choreographed the “Descendants” trilogy, “Newsies,” and “Hocus Pocus.” Truman Alfaro will serve as Ortega’s development executive.

“Throughout the course of his career, Kenny Ortega has inspired generations of artists and audiences alike,” Netflix Chief Content Officer Ted Sarandos said in a statement. “That he has chosen to make Netflix his creative home to work on both feature films and series is thrilling. We can’t wait to see what he brings to Netflix to delight musical-loving families and audiences around the globe.”

Cross, Hoge and Crossover are represented by Paradigm and Darren Trattner at Jackaway , Tyerman, Wertheimer, Austen, Mandelbaum Morris and Klein. Ortega is represented by Paradigm and Barry Littman at Hanson, Jacobson, Teller, Hoberman, Newman, Warren, Richman, Rush, Kaller and Gellman.

Popular on Variety

More Film

  • Cuba Gooding Jr

    Cuba Gooding Jr. Sued for Allegedly Pinching Nightclub Server

    A Tao nightclub server who alleges that Cuba Gooding Jr., pinched her rear-end last year has sued the Oscar-winning actor for sexual battery. Natasha Ashworth had previously come forward to New York law enforcement, though her name had not been released publicly. Gooding was indicted last week on four misdemeanor counts, including two counts stemming [...]

  • Taika Waititi Natalie Portman SDCC 2019

    Natalie Portman Weighs in on 'Thor: Love and Thunder's' Possible Breast Cancer Storyline

    Natalie Portman doesn’t know if “Thor: Love and Thunder” will include a breast cancer storyline for her character Jane Foster, but she’s definitely intrigued by the possibility. “It’s just very rare that these kinds of big entertainment films look at more serious, real-life issues,” she told Variety at L.A. Dance Project’s 8th annual fundraising gala [...]

  • Luxbox Closes Sales on Venice Film

    Luxbox Closes Sales on Venice Film 'Sole' to U.S., France (EXCLUSIVE)

    Fiorella Moretti and Hedi Zardi’s Paris-based sales agency Luxbox has closed several territory deals on Carlos Sironi’s “Sole,” which screened in Venice Film Festival’s Orizzonti section and Toronto Film Festival’s Discovery sidebar. The film just won the audience award at Pingyao Intl. Film Festival in China and a Special Jury Mention for the lead actors [...]

  • Puerto Rican singer Ozuna poses during

    Ozuna Joins Vin Diesel in 'Fast & Furious 9'

    Ozuna, one of Latin music’s fastest-rising stars, has signed with UTA for representation. And to kick off the relationship, the agency has landed him a role in “Fast & Furious 9.” He is also in talks to join the film’s soundtrack. Justin Lin, who directed “Fast & Furious 6,” returns to direct the ninth installment [...]

  • Writers vs Agents Packaging War WGA

    Writers Guild Boosting Efforts in Project Development Amid Agency Standoff

    The Writers Guild of America, locked in a six-month standoff with major talent agencies, has announced that it’s boosting efforts at gathering TV, streaming and film project development data to help members find new employment opportunities. The WGA made the disclosure in a message to members on Monday. The guild directed its 15,000 members to fire [...]

  • Fernando Meirelles The Two Popes

    AFI Fest Adds 'The Two Popes,' 'Aeronauts,' Alan Pakula Tribute

    The American Film Institute has added “The Two Popes” and “The Aeronauts” as galas during the upcoming AFI Fest along with a tribute to the late director Alan Pakula. AFI had previously announced that the romantic drama “Queen & Slim” would launch the 33rd annual festival on Nov. 14 and close with the world premiere [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content