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Moana 2 - Will It Ever Happen?

In 2016, the world got swept up in the magic of Disney's "Moana." This spellbinding film tells the story of a curious and strong-willed Polynesian girl who journeys to find her true purpose, locate the legendary demigod Maui, return a mystical relic to the goddess Te Fiti, and save her home. Viewers fell in love with the titular heroine, capricious Maui, goofy chicken Heihei, and their luminous world. There's a strong chance one of the movie's many earworm-y songs has already started playing in your head as you read this.

Naturally, talk of a sequel has swirled ever since. Might we return to the ocean, where Moana leads her people as a noble voyager, chief, and heroine? Maybe, but maybe not. Further stories starring Moana might take a completely different form — say, an animated series available on Disney+. Curious about what's in store for this Polynesian princess? Then stick with us. We've got all the details on whether or not "Moana 2" will ever happen, or what might take its place.

Why isn't Moana 2 happening yet?

A theatrically-released feature film sequel to "Moana" might seem like a slam dunk to some, but Disney doesn't agree: No such follow-up has ever been announced. As this radio silence has now lasted for years, it's probably safe to say such a sequel isn't happening. This isn't atypical for Disney; while "Frozen" has snagged a sequel of its own, this is an anomaly for the studio's animated features. In this light, the lack of a "Moana" sequel is entirely expected.

This does not, however, mean that "Moana" won't be getting a different kind of follow-up. In fact, one is confirmed: A "Moana" animated series was announced in 2020, and is slated to hit Disney+ in 2024. It will be a musical, and is reportedly of tip-top quality. 

The series isn't the only project headed our way, either: A live-action remake of "Moana" was announced in April 2023. As Dwayne Johnson revealed in an announcement video posted to YouTube, the hit movie's songs, characters, and plotline will all be present in this remake, as well as many of its stars, including Johnson himself. This take on "Moana" is poised to become Disney's first live-action remake of a movie released after 2000, and is slated to hit theaters on June 27, 2025.

What could be explored in Moana 2

The prospect of a "Moana" sequel is tempting on its own ... but what would such a follow-up actually be about? The movie leaves a number of plot threads dangling, which could conceivably form the basis of a compelling sequel. First and foremost, Moana's people undergo a massive cultural change at the end of the film: They go from being the settled inhabitants of Motunui to being seafaring voyagers, led by their dauntless chief and wayfinder, Moana. This could bring them into contact with all manner of creatures and gods, many of whom Moana encounters in the first movie. Just imagine them tangling with Tamatoa, the glittery, savage coconut crab who memorably sings a song all about his love of shiny things.

A sequel might also take inspiration from other parts of Polynesian mythology. Maui, for example, is a figure with thousands of years of culture to his name; the Hawaiian Maui is responsible for reigning in the sun, lifting the sky, and bringing humanity the gift of fire. Any one of those tales could form the basis of a new film.

What the cast and crew have said about upcoming Moana projects

The cast and crew have had little to say regarding a theatrical "Moana" sequel. They've been downright chatty when it comes to the confirmed series and live-action remake, however. While work on the Disney+ series has been largely kept under wraps, those involved have let slip a few tantalizing details. In April 2023, a fan on X, formerly known as Twitter, asked screenwriter Jared Bush if the "Moana" series was still underway. Bush replied, "Oh yes. And it's phenomenal." Jennifer Lee, chief creative officer of Disney Animation Studios, has also offered praise of the series in progress, telling eCartelera (via The Direct), "I love that Disney+ allows us to introduce experimentation and freshness while also exploring our legacy. Combining celebration and narrative innovation. In that sense we can play more with the Disney+ series. We're doing the 'Moana' series and it's been a lot of fun, I love it."

Spirits are also high regarding the live-action "Moana" remake. In the announcement video, Dwayne Johnson affirms he will play Maui in the project. Currently, he's the only known cast member — though we do know Moana's original voice actress, Auli'i Cravalho, will not be on screen. "In this live-action retelling, I will not be reprising the role," the young performer said in an Instagram post. She'll be involved in the project, however — as an executive producer. "I cannot wait to help find the next actress to portray Moana's courageous spirit, undeniable wit and emotional strength," Cravalho explained. "I'm truly honored to pass this baton to the next young woman of Pacific Island descent."