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Monster High - What We Know So Far

Mattel is best known for creating the iconic Barbie doll and her subsequent hot pink empire, but they're also the minds behind the glamorous, gothic Monster High dolls. Inspired by cryptids like werewolves, ghosts, and vampires, the characters blend the classic features of monsters with fashion-forward looks reminiscent of today's e-girl aesthetic.

Like Barbie, the Monster High characters have crossed over into animated TV specials, films, and video games since their launch in 2010. From 2010 to 2016, the franchise released 13 films along with a show and a variety of shorts, most of which aired on Nickelodeon. In 2016, the series was rebooted to introduce a new animation style and add different backstories culminating in the most recent films "Welcome to Monster High" and "Monster High: Electrified," with the latter also airing on Nickelodeon (via IMDb).

In February 2021, Mattel Television announced that the Monster High characters would be returning to the big screen in two collaborations with Nickelodeon: another animated series and a highly anticipated live-action made-for-TV musical (via Deadline).

"These classic monsters have always captured kids' imaginations and we are so excited and proud to welcome 'Monster High' to our brand for a new generation of kids," President of Nickelodeon Animation Ramsey Naito told Deadline.

What do we know so far about the upcoming Monster High movie?

When will the Monster High musical be released?

To coincide with the announcement of the two projects, the brand fully revived its social media presence. "Monster High '22. Stay tuned for the skull-timate reveal!" they teased on Instagram. Since then, they have actively reposted fan art and cosplayers, while also promoting new products — including popular "Beetlejuice" dolls — and offering hints about the upcoming animated series.

Unfortunately, Monster High hasn't posted any information about the movie musical, but the renewed engagement with fans around the brand is building hype for the upcoming release. "Whatever's happening, I'm sure that it will be freaky-fabulous as always!" commented one fan back in March. 

After their brief hiatus, the brand's return to social media has been celebrated by fans who have been anxiously waiting for news. This live-action movie musical has been in talks for years, with a 2010 report from the Wall Street Journal mentioning the concept, which was then set to be directed by Ari Sandel. Of course, that iteration never materialized, but it's been a long-time coming.

As Monster High advised on Twitter, though, "Ghoul things come to those who wait," and patient fans will finally get that musical movie in 2022 (via Deadline).

Who is starring in the Monster High musical?

The ghoulish girls at the heart of the Monster High franchise are Cleo de Nile, Draculaura, Frankie Stein, Lagoona Blue, Clawdeen Wolf, Abbey Bominable, and Ghoulia Yelps. With literal monsters for parents, the teenagers have more on their plates than your average high school students.

Their on-screen portrayals thus far have always been animated, so fans will be seeing an entirely new side of the characters in the live-action movie. For now, though, the only names attached to the upcoming Monster High release are behind-the-scenes: writer Jenny Jaffe ("Big Hero 6," "Rugrats"), Greg Erb and Jason Oremland ("Princess and the Frog"), Nickelodeon's Zack Olin and Shauna Phelan, and Mattel's Adam Bonnett (via Deadline).

Because the casting hasn't been announced yet, Monster High fans don't know which characters will be coming to life in the musical. It's fair to assume that the seven main Monster High ghoul-friends will appear, but the rest is a waiting game. Who knows, maybe the musical will even feature the spooky singers Madison Fear and Zomby Gaga.

What will the Monster High musical be about?

The possibilities are endless when it comes to a squad of teenage monsters taking on high school. The plot of the upcoming Monster High musical is unknown, but Deadline reported some of the themes it and the animated series will explore.

"This property has always resonated deeply with fans and our reimagination of the franchise will focus on addressing important themes of identity and empowerment for kids today," Bonnett told the outlet.

Naito added that both teams "can't wait to showcase the comedy and adventure of these characters as they defy expectations and take on the world" (via Deadline).

The previous plans for the live-action musical were described as "'Beetlejuice' meets 'Grease' meets 'The Addams Family' meets 'Edward Scissorhands'" (via WSJ), so those iconic properties may continue to inspire the upcoming movie.

For now, Monster High fans will have to wait until 2022 to find out.