They say that things are no longer the same with the Disney Channel anymore, especially with the rise of online streaming platforms along with the fundamental concepts of these shows which are dramatically different compared to the Disney we all knew and loved in our childhood.
The early 2000s was said to be the greatest era of Disney Channel shows; it produced tons of shows that became a stepping stone for some of the biggest stars today including Hannah Montana, Wizards of Waverly Place, The Suite Life of Zack and Cody, That’s So Raven, Lizzie McGuire, Jonas, and countless more.
Throughout the years, these shows eventually had to end, which also ended an era for Disney’s amazing line-up of iconic television shows. Whether you are a die-hard Disney fan or a casual viewer, here are some of the shocking controversies that followed some of Disney’s biggest shows.
Hannah Montana Lawsuit
The Hannah Montana series is undoubtedly one of Disney’s most famous teen sitcom. Originally released in 2006, it starred teenager Miley Cyrus, who went on to become one of the biggest music icons but it was this very show that catapulted her into international stardom. The show depicted a teenage girl living a double life on one hand as a pop star named Hannah Montana, as well as an ordinary girl in California named Miley Stewart.
Well turns out that this story wasn’t actually a Disney original; In 2007, a comedy writer for Nickelodeon, Morris Taylor Sheffield, claimed that it was in fact he who originally pitched the entire idea of a show based on this storyline back in 2001 to Disney executives. The writer went on to claim that the original idea that he pitched to Disney featured a teenage boy named Roland Dillar, living a double life as a teenage star named Rock Ryder. Looks like this particular dispute eventually got settled behind closed doors since Hanna Montana managed to last for four seasons before ending in 2011.
Lizzie McGuire Controversy
Way before Hannah Montana, the Disney star crown belonged to Lizzie McGuire; the 90s kids were totally floored by the teenager Lizzie McGuire when the show originally aired back in 2001. However, unlike Hannah Montana, the show managed to last for only two seasons before ending prematurely due to controversy between Hilary Duff (Lizzie McGuire), her mom and Disney.
It was reported that at that time, shows under Disney Channel were only limited to 65 episodes per show which is why Lizzie McGuire had to end. However, because of its monumental success, spinoffs and movies were said to be in the talks which were eventually scrapped due to disagreements between the main star and the management. Duff’s mom said in a statement to the press that Disney promised her daughter a sequel and adequate pay, but those promises were not kept, which is why they decided to walk away from Lizzie McGuire forever.
Raven Made Disney Broke Their Own Rules
Another amazing teenage sitcom produced by Disney back in 2003, titled That’s So Raven was a supernatural sitcom starring Raven-Symoné, Orlando Brown, Anneliese van der Pol and more. The show was actually so great that it was nominated not just once but twice for an Emmy Award.
Because of the success the show had gotten during it’s tenure, Disney actually had to break their own rules when it came to their episode limit per show; technically, there were supposed to be only 65 episodes per show but the ratings proved to be so high, they would have been crazy to end it at 65 episodes and so it became the first show on Disney Channel to have four seasons.
Zack and Cody’s Not-So-Sweet-Life on Suite
Disney seemed to have an infamous reputation of producing child stars that ended up going down the wrong path during their adulthood, stars such as Lindsay Lohan, Amanda Bynes, Demi Lovato and more. Turns out, being child stars isn’t exactly as perfect and wonderful as we all imagined.
Just like the life of real life twins Dylan and Cole Sprouse, who revealed that their actual lives were actually very much dissimilar to the lifestyle portrayed on their shows The Suite Life of Zack and Cody and Suite Life on Deck, both of which lasted five years.
Their departure from Disney Channel was reported to be their own personal choice, after they tried to pitch their own ideas for a possible spin-off to the executives of the show, ideas that they claimed were later stolen by Disney, resulting in a messy internal dispute.