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If you say you never held a glow stick and pretended to act out your own Disney Channel introduction when you were younger, you’re lying. Stars like Hilary Duff, Raven-Symoné, America Ferrera, and Tahj Mowry popped up during commercial breaks in the early 2000s to introduce themselves and the network with a glittery wand that magically made the Disney Channel logo appear in the corner of the screen.
Last month, Atlanta edit boutique Guillotine Post released some exclusive throwback videos on YouTube from some post-production work they did on the iconic Disney Channel wand IDs in 2002. The 10-second videos show stars from Disney’s Even Stevens, Zenon: Girl of the 21st Century, Sister, Sister, Lizzie McGuire, and That’s So Raven goofing through their intro line and struggling to get the perfect Mickey Mouse ear shape.
When Selena Gomez auditioned for Wizards of Waverly Place at age 11, she adorably admitted to the casting directors that she used to give her own pretend “And you’re watching Disney Channel!” intros with a friend and a glowstick. A few years later, her practice paid off and she starred in her own wand ID.
The wand ID is a tradition among Disney Channel actors. Debby Ryan, who held reign as a Disney queen while starring in multiple sitcoms and DCOMs like Jessie and 16 Wishes, was psyched to have her chance at holding the wand.
“For my generation, that’s when you know you’ve really made it as a performer. When you’re on the Disney Channel, waving that wand and making the Mickey shape,” Debby said in a 2012 interview. “Which is why it was so surreal when the publicity department finally called and said ‘We need you to come in and shoot your wand ID.’ Because I’d literally been dreaming about doing that for years. And now this dream was finally being made real.”
Those who’ve outgrown their Disney Channel phase will be pleased to learn that the wand IDs are still used on the channel today, starring current stars Rowan Blanchard and Zendaya. In 2014, the signature bumper even received an upgrade — trading the standard white backdrop for a new outdoor scene. Out with the old and in with the new.
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