Story Artist David G. Derrick Jr. Named Director of Upcoming “Moana” Disney+ Series

A director has been named for the upcoming musical long-form series based on the 2016 film from Walt Disney Animation Studios, Moana, coming to Disney+, with story artist David Derrick taking the helm.

What’s Happening:

  • Walt Disney Animation Studios’ David G. Derrick Jr. (Moana, Strange World) has been named director of the upcoming musical long-form series Moana, created by Disney Animation for Disney+.
  • Derrick, a respected story artist in the industry first joined Disney Animation in order to work on Moana, and in doing so reconnected with his family’s Samoan roots. He was deeply involved in the storyboarding of some of the film’s most iconic moments.
  • Derrick joins Oscar-nominated Moana producer, Osnat Shurer, on the series.
  • As Derrick and his story team are in development, the recently-announced new Walt Disney Animation Studios Vancouver, which will be the production home for the series, is ramping up their staffing, as the Studio nears its official 2022 opening.
  • To learn more about these career opportunities at the Walt Disney Animation Studios Vancouver, be sure to check out  

What They’re Saying:

  • David G. Derrick Jr.: “Working on Moana was a gift, personally and professionally. The film Moana caught and shared the spirit of Polynesia with the world. I am honored to continue her story and to celebrate the rich and beautiful cultures of the Pacific Islands.
  • Head of Walt Disney Animation Studios, Vancouver, Amir Nasrabadi: “We have been elated by the positive response from the community. In the next many months, we are continuing to post staff positions for our studio, and with the talent we have here, and the fact our teams’ first project together will be the Moana series, I can’t imagine a better way to launch the studio.”  
  • Moana Producer Osnat Shurer: “Dave's great story instincts, his visionary cinematic style, and his deep love and commitment to Moana and the Pacific Island cultures that inspired her world, make him a perfect director for the series. Getting to explore the story of Moana further is really exciting for us, particularly in this extremely cinematic, musical, long-form event series, and we can’t wait to meet all the amazing artists who are joining Disney Animation Vancouver to help us bring Moana’s next gorgeous journey to life!”

Sign up for Disney+ or the Disney Streaming Bundle (Disney+, ESPN+, and ad-supported Hulu) now