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  1. #1

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    C33 Goes to a Disney Channel Taping

    So last night I went to a taping of the Disney Channel Original Series, "The Wizards of Waverly Place".

    What's that? You haven't heard of The Wizards of Wavery Place? Not suprising. You see, the show doesn't premiere until October.

    The taping I went to was of the third episode. The show centers around three siblings. Their family owns a deli, and they attend high school like normal kids. However, they secretly have magic powers (which they use by saying spells) and are being trained by their dad in how to use them. Only one of the kids will get to keep their powers after they turn 18.

    We (myself, and my Aunt, Uncle and their two daughters who were in from out of town) arrived at the studio at around 3:30pm, having been told to arrive around 3:45pm. We were the only ones there. The taping, you see, didn't actually start until 5:00pm.

    Well okay then.

    So we waited, chatted with the people who arrived, etcetera etcetera. The set was actually a string of sets, all in a row right next to each other. From left to right, there was the deli (outside of which was a street set), the basement/secret magic room, their apartment, and the high school. The sets were very detailed and looked cool. They of course looked even more amazing (and real) through the eye of the camera.

    The taping did eventually start. It was a start stop process; they would shoot a scene, often several times, and would often change certain lines based on our reactions. Our reactions, of course, were miked for the laugh track. There were breaks in between scenes while they restet and the director gave notes to the actors, and they would often do the same scene many times over. A host in the audience entertained us while they did their work.

    Some of the scenes had already been shot the day before, so they played them back to us on the monitors so that we could do the laugh track. With the exeption of those scenes they actually shot the whole episode chronologically, which was easier for us to follow and I'm sure easier for the actors as well. The host reminded us of key plot points that we may have forgotten in the stretches between scenes. A 30-minute episode is only 22 and a half minutes, and with commercials it takes about 30 minutes to watch. For us, however, the episode took several hours, with shooting finally wrapping around 8:30.

    The show, it must be said, is funny. The style and humor is similar to Hannah Montana: kind of cheesy but fun and not too complicated or heavy handed. I can't (and wont) predict how successful the show will be, but if its marketed correctly (hopefully they'll change the name to something shorter) I see no reason why it shouldn't work well for Disney.

    Since my mom through a connection knew one of the producers, we were given scripts of the episode and allowed onto the set to meet the actors. Now I'm kind of shy and I especially don't like bothering actors or celebrities, but I couldn't resist getting the cast (as well as the director and one of the writers) to sign it:




    All in all, it was fun. I'd definately do it again, and I'd really love to go see Hannah Montana be taped some time. That would be tricky, however, since its such a popular show. Speaking of Hannah Montana, I actually met a woman at the taping who has worked with Miley Cyrus, as a talent escort. They do exactly what it sounds like: escort the person in question around at say an award show or a concert.

    So that's all. And if I may beat even Disney in marketing their own show, be sure to check out The Wizards of Waverly Place, when it premiere's this October (or thereabouts) on the Disney Channel.













  2. #2

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    Re: C33 Goes to a Disney Channel Taping

    have they tested that name yet? seems to long...

    sounds interesting, could work... certainly catches on the tail end of the magic crazy.... though hopefully premiering in October gives it a better edge...

    was this shot in HD or standard, cause many studios get away with so much using standard depth, even WEDU... (some of our sets are simple cloth with gelled lights hung from the rafters giving a better look with the black curtain behind it...)

  3. #3

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    Re: C33 Goes to a Disney Channel Taping

    Quote Originally Posted by figment1986 View Post
    have they tested that name yet? seems to long...

    sounds interesting, could work... certainly catches on the tail end of the magic crazy.... though hopefully premiering in October gives it a better edge...

    was this shot in HD or standard, cause many studios get away with so much using standard depth, even WEDU... (some of our sets are simple cloth with gelled lights hung from the rafters giving a better look with the black curtain behind it...)
    Haven't a clue about the resolution. It was 4:3, so I can only assume it was SD.

    As for the title...

    Quote Originally Posted by Wikipedia

    The show was originally named The Amazing Hannigans, then The Amazing O'Malleys, then The Amazing Hannigans again, then went to Wizards of Waverly Place, then went to Disney Wizards and finally changed back to the confirmed name Wizards of Waverly Place
    Yeah.

    Actually the focus on the show (at least in this episode) isn't really on the magic. It's just like Hannah Montana isn't really about her singing, it's just the hook of the show that sets up the situations of the characters. The characters get into some situation, either because of magic or they use magic to try and fix that situation. Otherwise its just your usual Junior High tweener show, which is fine really. I enjoyed it, and I'm not a tweener. Fortunately, its not as cheesy as Hannah Montana.













  4. #4

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    Re: C33 Goes to a Disney Channel Taping

    That actually sounds like a cute show.
    Thanks for the report!
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  5. #5

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    Re: C33 Goes to a Disney Channel Taping

    My kids will be so excited! Where did they tape the show?

    Will trade husband for Disneyland and DCA Pins!

  6. #6

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    Re: C33 Goes to a Disney Channel Taping

    Very cool!

    Whos the main characters in the show? Any big Disney Channel characters? Where was the taping at?

    Quote Originally Posted by Club 33
    All in all, it was fun. I'd definately do it again, and I'd really love to go see Hannah Montana be taped some time. That would be tricky, however, since its such a popular show. Speaking of Hannah Montana, I actually met a woman at the taping who has worked with Miley Cyrus, as a talent escort. They do exactly what it sounds like: escort the person in question around at say an award show or a concert.
    I'd love to go to a Hannah Montana taping too! But it is very complicated. They made taping to invite only now. You have to know somebody to get in. Wat was the talent escorts name?

  7. #7

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    Re: C33 Goes to a Disney Channel Taping

    I was in Hollywood all day on Thursday. You should of got me in!

  8. #8

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    Re: C33 Goes to a Disney Channel Taping

    Quote Originally Posted by figment1986 View Post
    have they tested that name yet? seems to long...
    No longer than, 'The Suite Life of Zack and Cody'...

    Joe Regalbuto directed the episode, he's a good actor (a former regular from 'Murphy Brown' and a million other credits) and has been concentrating on directing mostlt sitcoms now. Great report, thanks!
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    Re: C33 Goes to a Disney Channel Taping

    I actually had seen this name somewhere before this. I like the title very much. It serves a purpose of telling us there is magic and the Street Name of Waverly Place has some meaning because it just sounds so familiar.

    But I couldn't help thinking, "Disney Does Harry Potter". Of course with the Harry Potter franchise coming to a close this July having a new show on kids and magic is a good move for Disney, as long as they keep it good and don't get to silly or cheap with it. I will certainly check it out when it comes on. If I like it I will keep watching, if not - then it's history for me.
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  10. #10

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    Re: C33 Goes to a Disney Channel Taping

    Quote Originally Posted by Lost Boy View Post
    But I couldn't help thinking, "Disney Does Harry Potter". Of course with the Harry Potter franchise coming to a close this July having a new show on kids and magic is a good move for Disney, as long as they keep it good and don't get to silly or cheap with it. I will certainly check it out when it comes on. If I like it I will keep watching, if not - then it's history for me.
    You know, as a magician myself, I felt the same thing. But as I mentioned, this show is no more about magic than Hannah Montana is about singing. The magic is merely a hook for the same types of situations we've seen before. Which again is fine.

    And the address of the studio is on the cover of the script I posted. You can't just walk in, though (obviously); if you're not on the list you wont even make it into the parking lot.

    As for the stars, nobody you'd know, though Selena Gomez has had some small parts in episodes of some of the other Disney Channel sitcoms. She is the real standout of the cast and I would expect to be hearing her name a lot when the show starts airing.

    Didn't get the talent escort's name. The invite only thing doesn't surprise me for Hannah Montana; even if tickets were publicly available they'd be just as impossible to get. Hopefully I can find an in somewhere. If so, I'll be sure to post a similar (and probably more detailed) report.













  11. #11

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    Re: C33 Goes to a Disney Channel Taping

    But I couldn't help thinking, "Disney Does Harry Potter".
    Actually I was thinking it sounded more like "Disney Does Charmed!" But in either case it sound interesting.

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