Everything’s not what it seems: The Russos are back!
Disney Channel has ordered a pilot for a Wizards of Waverly Place sequel, with both Selena Gomez and David Henrie reprising their roles as Justin and Alex Russo.
“The Russos are excited to become a part of your family, once again, but we’ve grown,” Henrie wrote on Instagram. “2024, the year magic comes back!”
Per Variety, Henrie will executive produce the potential series, which would pick up after a “mysterious incident at WizTech” where Justin Russo decided to leave his wizard powers behind for a “normal human life” with his wife (Mimi Gianopulos) and two sons (one played by Alkaio Thiele).
Justin is then surprised when “a powerful young wizard” (Janice LeAnn Brown) shows up in need of training and “Justin must embrace his past to ensure the future of the Wizard World,” according to Variety.
Jed Elinoff and Scott Thomas — the co-creators of Raven’s Home, which reprised Raven-Symoné’s That’s So Raven — will write and executive-produce the Wizards pilot, with Henrie, Gomez, and Disney Channels Worldwide President Gary Marsh also exec-producing. Andy Fickman (Paul Blart, She’s the Man) will direct and executive-produce the pilot.
“Reboot ?” commented David DeLuise, who played the Russo dad in the original series, on Henrie’s post. (DeLuise hosts the Wizards of Waverly Pod about their time on the series with Jennifer Stone, who played Gomez’s character’s kooky best friend, Harper.)
Gomez — who also stars in Only Murders in the Building and will play Linda Ronstadt in an upcoming biopic — joined the Wizards of Waverly Pod last February, saying she regretted not staying in touch with her co-stars from the program, and that not maintaining their relationship is one of her biggest mistakes.
“I think I slowly became kind of shamed. I felt ashamed of the decisions that I made,” Gomez said at the time. “I didn’t want you guys to see me in the state that I was in, because A, you would have told me the truth, which terrifies me, and B, I didn’t want to let you down.”
It’s unclear which characters from the original show will return and reprise their roles. Jake T. Austin played the youngest brother Max Russo and Maria Canels Barrera played Theresa Russo, the Russo mom.