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Wish: Everything You Need to Know About Disney's Wishing Star Movie

2/22/2023 • 4 min read

(Updated 11/16/2023)Wish | Cinemark

"When you wish upon a star, your dreams come true." The lyrics from PINOCCHIO have become representative of Disney's fantasy storytelling. Now, a new animated movie will answer any question you may have ever had about that star.

WISH explores the story of Disney's wishing star. The fall release is an origin story of sorts, and it is also tied to the entire span of Disney's animation history. Here's everything we know about WISH so far, including the first teaser trailer.

When Does Wish Come Out?

Disney will release WISH exclusively in movie theaters on November 22. The movie is part of Disney's 100th anniversary, which will almost certainly be reflected in the movie's story.

Watch the New Wish Trailer

The first trailer for WISH focused, broadly, on the main characters and story outline. This new trailer goes into a lot more detail, getting into some specifics of the plot — and also previewing a dance number with chickens?

Indeed, WISH is a musical, with new songs by Julia Michaels and Benjamin Rice. We don't know a lot about the songs in WISH so far, but this trailer does give us a taste of "This Wish," performed by Ariana DeBose.

The Story in Wish

So far, the studio has been pretty tight-lipped about the story in WISH. Here's the official synopsis, which introduces the main character and setting:

As Walt Disney Animation Studios celebrates its 100th year, the all-new original feature film “Wish” asks the question: “How did the wishing star, upon which so many Disney characters wished, come to be?” Set in the magical kingdom of Rosas, the story introduces Asha, an optimist with a sharp wit who deeply cares about her community. When Asha turns to the sky in a moment of need and makes a wish, her plea is answered by a cosmic force—a little ball of boundless energy called Star. Together, they face the most formidable of foes to save her community and prove that when the will of one courageous human connects with the magic of the stars, wondrous things can happen.

The new trailer fully reveals that the king of Rosas is collecting wishes for his own not-so-benevolent purposes. King Magnifico sounds a bit like the Wizard of Oz, as director Chris Buck explains: “People come from everywhere to give their wishes to a magical king who promises to grant their deepest desires—someday. Only he can decide which wishes will come true and when."

The Cast of Wish

Ariana DeBose and Alan Tudyk are the main lead voice actors in WISH. DeBose plays Asha, the main character of the movie mentioned just above, and Tudyk is Valentino. He's a goat. But a goat who wears overalls. And Chris Pine voices King Magnifico.

DeBose is a rapidly rising star — a perfect choice for this movie — who won an Oscar in 2022 for Best Supporting Actress for her work in Steven Spielberg's WEST SIDE STORY. DuBose recently said that the role involves a lot of singing. She also described Asha, saying,

She's got many parts to her. She's so smart, she's got a great sense of humor and she's trying to take care of people she loves most in the world. She's a leader and doesn't realize it. She's just living and doing, and learning along the way, she doesn't always get it right, which is the definition of being human.

Additionally, Angelique Cabral voices Queen Amaya, the wife and sounding board of King Magnifico; Victor Garber plays Asha’s grandfather, Sabino, who—at 100 years old—is patiently waiting for his wish to be granted; and Natasha Rothwell is Asha’s loving and supportive mom, Sakina. Asha's friends are voiced by Jennifer Kumiyama, Evan Peters, Harvey Guillén, Ramy Youseff, Niko Vargas, Della Saba, and Jon Rudnitsky.

The Filmmakers Behind Wish


WISH comes from two talented Disney veterans: FROZEN co-creator Chris Buck, and Fawn Veerasunthorn, who was Head of Story on RAYA AND THE LAST DRAGON. They're co-directing the movie.

And Julia Michaels is writing the songs for the movie. One, called "More for Us," debuted at at D23 last year. Since we know that music will ber a significant part of WISH, knowing that Michaels is involved is a great sign of things to come.

And now, close to the film's release, you can hear several songs from the movie thanks to Disney's promo efforts. Songs like "Knowing What I Know Now" and the Chris Pine-sung "This Is the Thanks I Get?" are available to be previewed in full, and you can see the lyric video for "This Wish" above.

Wish Features a New Look for Disney Animation

No single development has changed animation like the switch from hand-drawn to computer-generated images. But the success of INTO THE SPIDER-VERSE did prove that audiences will respond to more daring approaches to feature film animation.

While WISH probably won't be daring, it will be different. Disney says that WISH will "blend a timeless watercolor style with contemporary 3D CG animation." Indeed, the first trailer looks much different from anything Disney Animation has done. But as with other aspects of this movie, there are ties to the past here. Some of the inspiration for the movie's look came from old watercolor fairy tale illustrations that Walt Disney loved back in Disney's early days.


Read about more Disney movies coming soon.


All images courtesy of Walt Disney Animation.

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