No Minecart Chases in New 'DuckTales,' Promise the Producers

The new DuckTales series premieres with a one-hour movie on Disney XD Aug. 12, featuring trillionaire Scrooge McDuck, his nephew Donald, and his mischievous grandnephews, Huey, Dewey and Louie. There are some pretty big names attached to the voice cast: Lin-Manuel Miranda of Hamilton does the voice of superhero Gizmoduck, and Danny Pudi, formerly of Community, and Bobby Moynihan, formerly of Saturday Night Live, voice Huey and Louie.

Co-producer/story editor Francisco Angones says the series is part Donald Duck cartoons, part vintage Carl Banks comics, and of course part original DuckTales series, which aired 1987-1990. “We tried to be true to all of it,” he says. “And come up with something new to give kids that same feeling we had when we were kids.”

Disney XD is airing the new DuckTales movie all day Aug. 12, a 24-hour marathon.

The producers describe DuckTales as a family comedy targeting kids from 6 to 11. “So much of the story comes from conflicts between the characters,” says Matt Youngberg, executive producer. “You build a family and then throw them into these adventures.”

Youngberg says the producers enforced the "Minecart Rule"—a chase scene involving a minecart was a staple in cartoons, and some movies, years ago, but such clichés should be avoided at all costs. “We will not do an action sequence that’s just rote,” he says.

The producers say the slogan “DuckTales Must Be Great” appears in the show’s Los Angeles headquarters, and those are words the writers, animators and voice cast take to heart. “It feels pretty daunting, but it’s an exciting challenge,” says Youngberg. “I think we’re up for it. As we starting building the crew, we had the desire and the passion to make DuckTales as good as they remember.”

Michael Malone, senior content producer at B+C/Multichannel News, covers network programming, including entertainment, news and sports on broadcast, cable and streaming; and local broadcast television. He hosts the podcasts Busted Pilot, about what’s new in television, and Series Business, a chat with the creator of a new program, and writes the column “The Watchman.” He joined B+C in 2005. His journalism has also appeared in The New York Times, The Philadelphia Inquirer, Playboy and New York magazine.