via Disney Channel press release:
DISNEY CHANNEL ORDERS A THIRD SEASON OF
HIT SERIES "WIZARDS OF WAVERLY PLACE"
-- "Wizards of Waverly Place The Movie" to Premiere in Summer 2009
on Disney Channel --
Disney Channel has ordered a third season of the hit comedy series "Wizards of Waverly Place," starring Selena Gomez, David Henrie, Jake T. Austin, Jennifer Stone, Maria Canals-Barrera and David DeLuise. The series was created by Todd J. Greenwald and is executive-produced by Peter Murrieta, Greenwald, Vince Cheung and Ben Montanio. In addition, a Disney Channel Original Movie based on the series, "Wizards of Waverly Place The Movie," will premiere on Disney Channel in August 2009, It was announced today by Gary Marsh, President, Entertainment, Disney Channels Worldwide.
"Wizards of Waverly Place" is TV's #1 program in its time period this year, and in April 2009, was the #2 scripted TV series across all cable and broadcast television among Tweens 9-14 and #3 among Kids 6-11.
In the third season, Alex's best friend, Harper, moves in with the Russos. Meanwhile, Alex pursues her dream of becoming an artist and designs her own art studio inside a miniature dollhouse. Justin, in his last year of high school, plans to savor every senior year moment, and Max hones his wizard skills and becomes a serious contender in the Russo kids' quest to become the sole heir of the family's wizard powers.
Set to premiere this summer, "Wizards of Waverly Place The Movie" follows the Russo family as they embark on a vacation to the Caribbean resort where Jerry and Theresa first met. The adventure comedy has Alex upset that she must accompany her family on the trip and she ultimately conjures a spell that reverses her parents' fateful first meeting and puts the Russo family's very existence in question. To cancel the spell, Alex and Justin must set out through the jungle to find the all-powerful 'Stone of Dreams.' Meanwhile, Max scrambles to make his parents fall in love again. The movie was written by Dan Berendsen ("Hannah Montana The Movie") and directed by Lev L. Spiro ("Ugly Betty," "Minutemen").
New episodes of "Wizards of Waverly Place" air SATURDAYS (8:30 p.m., ET/PT) on Disney Channel beginning Saturday, May 2. The series is seen on Disney Channels around the world. Full episodes are available on Disneychannel.com, video on demand, mobile platforms for Sprint, AT&T and Verizon, iTunes, Xbox and onboard airlines.
The series debuted in October 2007 and has been lauded for its portrayal of Latinos with Alma, Imagen and NAACP Image Award nominations. In addition, Selena Gomez won the 2009 Nickelodeon Kids Choice Award for Favorite Television Actress.
"Wizards of Waverly Place" is a production of It's a Laugh Productions for Disney Channel and carries a TV-G parental guideline.
Disney Channel is a 24-hour kid-driven, family inclusive television network that taps into the world of kids and families through original series and movies. Currently available on basic cable in over 97 million U.S. homes and to millions of other viewers on Disney Channels around the world, Disney Channel is part of the Disney-ABC Television Group.
(Source: Nielsen Media Research, April 09: 3/30/09-4/26/09 -- Live+7 blended with Live+SD unless otherwise noted. All plays, regularly scheduled series).