- “Becoming a leader will be her greatest adventure.”
Elena of Avalor is an animated television series that premiered on July 22, 2016 on Disney Channel before eventually moving to Disney Junior in January 2017. The series is about a Latina princess and her family. Elena of Avalor takes place in the same universe as Disney Junior's TV series, Sofia the First, which is a first.
Teenage Princess Elena has saved her magical kingdom, Avalor, from an evil sorceress and must now learn to rule as its crown princess. Elena's adventures will lead her to understand that her new role requires thoughtfulness, resilience, and compassion, the traits of all truly great leaders. Since she is still only 16 years old, she has a Grand Council composed of her grandparents, her older cousin Chancellor Esteban, and her new friend, Naomi, to give advice along the way. Elena also looks to her younger sister Isabel, her friends Mateo and Gabe, and a trio of magical flying creatures called Jaquins for guidance and support.
- Princess Elena (Aimee Carrero) - a 16-year-old (later 17, then 18, and lastly 20) ascendant to the throne of the fairy tale kingdom of Avalor.
- Princess Isabel (Jenna Ortega) - the younger sister of Elena.
- Migs, Luna, and Skylar (Chris Parnell, Yvette Nicole Brown, and Carlos Alazraqui) - three magical flying creatures of a mix of jaguar and macaw called Jaquins, who support Elena as she learns how to rule her kingdom.
- Francisco (Emiliano Díez) - Elena's maternal grandfather.
- Luisa (Julia Vera) - Elena's maternal grandmother.
- Chancellor Esteban (Christian Lanz) - Elena's cousin and the Chancellor of Avalor.
- Naomi Turner (Jillian Rose Reed) - one of Elena's best friends.
- Mateo (Joseph Haro) - a wizard-in-training and another of Elena's close friends.
- Gabe (Jorge Diaz) - one of Elena's close friends and rising star of the Royal Guard.
- Zuzo (Keith Ferguson) - a mysterious and wily spirit animal who acts as a link between the human and spirit worlds.
- Armando (Joe Nunez) - a frazzled palace servant who helps Elena on her journey to the throne.
- Prince Alonso (Tyler Posey) - a charming, handsome prince of the kingdom of Córdoba.
- Shuriki (Jane Fonda) - a villainous sorceress who wants nothing more than control over Avalor.
Princess Elena of Avalor, a confident and compassionate teenager in an enchanted fairy tale kingdom inspired by diverse Latin cultures and folklore, will be introduced in a special episode of Disney Junior's hit TV series Sofia the First beginning production now for a 2016 premiere. That exciting story arc will usher in the 2016 launch of the animated series, Elena of Avalor, a production of Disney Television Animation. The announcement was made today by Nancy Kanter, Executive Vice President and General Manager, Disney Junior Worldwide.
Kanter said, "Our creative team has delivered a universal story with themes that authentically reflect the hopes and dreams of our diverse audience." She continued, "What excites us most is the chance to use distinctive animation and visual design to tell wonderful stories influenced by culture and traditions that are familiar to the worldwide population of Hispanic and Latino families and reflect the interests and aspirations of all children as told through a classic fairy tale."
As with all Disney Junior TV programming, Elena of Avalor stories will be guided by an established curriculum that nurtures multiple areas of child development: physical, emotional, social, and cognitive; thinking and creative skills, as well as moral and ethical development. Created for kids age 2-7 and their families, the stories are designed to communicate positive messages and life lessons that apply to young children about leadership, resilience, diversity, compassion, and the importance of family and family traditions.
The series will be presented in 25 languages on Disney Junior channels and daily programming blocks for kids aged 2-7 on Disney Channels, among other platforms, in 154 countries worldwide. On television alone, its estimated daily reach will be over 207 million households.
Princess Elena's journey began long ago when her parents and kingdom were taken from her by the evil sorceress, Shuriki. Elena bravely faced the sorceress to protect her little sister, Princess Isabel, and grandparents, but in the process, her magical amulet pulled her inside its enchanted jewel, saving her life, but imprisoning her at the same time. Decades later, Princess Sofia of Enchancia discovers the truth about the amulet she has worn since joining her royal family and sets out to restore Elena to her human form and help her return to the Kingdom of Avalor.
While Elena is the rightful heir to the throne, she is only 16, so she will rule Avalor with the help of a Grand Council comprised of her grandparents, Francisco and Luisa, Duke Esteban, and Naomi Turner.
With some magical friends by her side — Mateo, a wizard-in-training, and Skylar, a magical flying creature — Princess Elena's further adventures will lead her to understand that her new role requires thoughtfulness, resilience, and compassion; the traits all truly great leaders have.
Elena of Avalor is executive-produced by Craig Gerber (of the Emmy Award-nominated Sofia the First). Silvia Cardenas Olivas (Moesha, The Brothers Garcia), an alumna of the National Hispanic Media Coalition's Television Writers Program, is the story editor, and Elliot M. Bour (The Little Engine That Could) is the supervising director. The TV series' cultural advisors are Doris Sommer, Harvard University professor and Director of Graduate Studies in Spanish; and Marcela Davison Aviles, Managing Director and Executive Producer, El Camino Project, an international Latino arts initiative.
The series is a spin-off of Sofia the First, which has delivered the two highest-rated telecasts in cable TV history among Kids 2-5 and Girls 2-5, and the #2 preschooler cable TV telecast ever in Total Viewers, Adults 18-40, and Women 18-49.
Disney Junior reflects the emotional connection generations of consumers have to Disney storytelling and Disney characters, both classic and contemporary. It invites mom and dad to join their child in the Disney experience of magical, musical, and heartfelt stories and characters while incorporating specific learning and development themes designed for kids age 2-7. Disney Junior's series blend Disney's unparalleled storytelling and characters kids love deeply with learning, including early math, language skills, healthy eating and lifestyles, and social skills. In the U.S., Disney Junior is a daily programming block on Disney Channel and a 24-hour channel. There are 34 Disney Junior channels in 25 languages around the world.
- Elena's grandparents' names were originally going to be Tito and Cici, but had their names changed to Francisco and Luisa when the supporting cast was announced.
- Princess Elena is Disney's first Latina princess.
- Although, Sofia the First had previously been rumored to be Latina before the show premiered.
- Starting in January 2017, the show was officially recognized as a Disney Junior TV series, as shown with it only airing in the Disney Junior block and channel, on demand services, and the watch Disney Junior app, as well as having the same TV-Y rating of other Disney Junior shows.