The D23 Arena was THE place to be Sunday afternoon at the Expo for any Disney Channel fan. From the moment the cast of Wizards of Waverly Place entered the room for their panel, they instantly had the crowd under their spell!
But before the main event began, there was a fashion show of the hot new clothing line inspired by the series (available soon in stores like Sears, Wal-Mart and JC Penny) and a screening of the upcoming Wizards season premiere. Then it was time for the real fun to begin. Fresh off their Emmy win the night before for Outstanding Children’s Program, Selena Gomez, David Henrie, Jake T. Austin, Jennifer Stone and Maria Canals-Barrera, along with executive producers Peter Murrieta and Todd Greenwald came on stage one by one, statues in hand, and were greeted with a long round of enthusiastic screams of excitement that seemed to echo throughout the entire convention center!
The shouts of joy from the kids in the room never stopped throughout the entire Q and A session, as the gang told stories of their lives before the show, favorite memories from the set, meeting each other for the first time and when they realized the effect the show was making on fans. For Selena, that moment came when a young boy approached her and asked if the magic on the show was real. “I asked him, ‘Do you believe it’s real?’ He almost started crying and said, ‘Yes, I do think it’s real’ and I said, ‘Then that’s all that matters,’” Selena recalled. “That’s when I realized what an impact the show was having on people.”
Then the audience got in on the act with their own questions for the cast — including a marriage proposal for David and Selena receiving a flower from a young male admirer! The Wizards gang also revealed that Harper would be moving in with the Russos this season, Justin would be taking up monster hunting, Max would be conjuring up more spells and Alex, well, she will still be single and causing trouble. As soon as the questions were done and the cast bid the audience adieu, the event was capped off by an amazing performance from Honor Society.
An Emmy win plus one of the warmest and most energetic welcomes at the D23 Expo made for an afternoon even the Wizards group won’t soon forget. “When you win an Emmy, you can celebrate with your family and friends, but to have won this last night and to celebrate with the fans, it’s an unbelievable experience,” Todd tells D23. “To have four thousand people screaming in that room was surreal and it was the cherry on the cake of the whole weekend!”