How long before Disney Channel greenlights a sequel? The cable channel has another potential hit movie franchise on its hands with Descendants, a modern-day coming-of-age tale about the teenage sons and daughters of Disney’s most infamous villains. In its premiere at 8 PM Friday night, the movie drew strong 6.6 million total viewers, including 3.0 million Kids 2-11. Additionally, the movie set a record with 1.4 million views on the WATCH Disney Channel app since Friday July 24. Adding up the two, the total pre- and premiere night viewership for Descendants would eclipse the 7.7 million who tuned in for the TV premiere of the first High School Musical movie in 2006 when online streaming was not yet a signifiant factor.
Descendants — directed, choreographed and executive-produced by High School Musical‘s Kenny Ortega as well as Wendy Japhet — now ranks as the #1 cable TV movie of 2015 in total viewers and the #1 cable TV telecast among Kids 2-11 (3.0 million/7.6 rating) and Tweens 9-14 (2.3 million/9.5 rating) and along with Teen Beach 2, gives Disney Channel the Top 2 rated cable TV telecasts in two years among these youth demographics.
Additionally, Descendants‘ soundtrack, released on premiere date, Friday, July 31 on Walt Disney Records, is currently at #1 on the iTunes soundtrack chart and #2 on the iTunes album chart. On Twitter, Descendants was the #1 most social non-sports program on Friday, July 31, producing over 2 million impressions.