The Disney channel not only made stars Miley Cyrus, Zendaya, Ryan Gosling and co with its TV shows, but it also caused a stir with its original films.
Since 1983, the channel has produced films for television, called Disney Channel Premiere Films, starting with City of the Tiger.
Now known as Disney Channel Original Movies (DCOM), the channel produced 110 of these films, and some were more successful than others.
Here are the highest rated DCOMs of all time, according to the Rotten Tomatoes Critics’ Aggregation.
Kim possible (100%)
The action movie 2019 Kim possible, based on the animated series of the same name, doesn’t yet have a lot of reviews on Rotten Tomatoes – only six at the time of writing – but is 100% certified “Fresh” on the Tomatometer.
Sadie Stanley plays Kim, who, along with her best friend Ron, recruits a new student Athena and takes her on a mission to stop the evil Dr. Drakken’s plot.
Phineas and Ferb the movie: through the 2nd dimension (100%)
This spin-off of the television series Phineas and Ferb is another DCOM with a 100 percent rating.
Released in 2011, the premiere was watched by 7.6 million viewers, making it one of the top-rated animated programs on cable for over three years.
Vincent Martella and Thomas Brodie-Sangster return to voice Phineas and Ferb as they travel to an alternate dimension.
Directed and choreographed by Kenny Ortega, Offspring is the story of the children of legendary Disney villains: Maleficent, Evil Queen, Jafar and Cruella de Vil.
Mal (Dove Cameron), Carlos (Cameron Boyce), Jay (Booboo Stewart) and Evie (Sofia Carson) attempt to steal the Fairy Godmother’s wand to free their parents from prison.
Offspring premiered in 2015 to an audience of 6.6 million people and led to two sequels.
Teen Beach Movie (86%)
The only DCOM to be released in 2013, Teen Beach Movie follows two teens as they get sucked in a beach party movie called Wet side story.
The musical was a hit with viewers and won a sequel, while its soundtrack reached No. 3 on the Billboard charts.
Baby-sitting adventures (86%)
This remake of the 1987 film of the same name was the 100th original Disney Channel film.
With Sabrina Carpenter and Sofia Carsons, two teenage girls try to turn their phones back on after an incident while babysitting, and end up getting into debt and in trouble with the police and wreaking havoc across town.
Disney legend Raven-Symoné was initially attached to the 2016 remake, but dropped out due to other plans.
High School Musical 2 (83%)
Following Musical High School came a year after the original hit, and broke all kinds of records.
High School Musical 2 was watched by a record 17 million viewers when it premiered in 2007, and continues to be the most-watched DCOM in history.
In the sequel to the first film, Troy (Zac Efron), Gabriella (Vanessa Hudgens) and the other Wildcats get summer jobs, but drama ensues as Sharpay (Ashley Tisdale) attempts to sabotage Troy’s romance and Gabriella and Troy’s friendships to get closer to him.
With songs like “What Time Is It?” and “I must follow my own path”, High School Musical 2 is considered better than the original.
Halloween town (80%)
years 1998 Halloween town stars the late Debbie Reynolds as a witch whose grandchildren follow her to Halloweentown after 13-year-old Marnie discovers she, too, has magical blood.
The film has become a staple of the Halloween calendar and premieres each year during Freeform’s 31 Nights Halloween program.
Halloween town was followed by three suites.
Descendants 3 (78%)
This 2019 film is the third installment of the Offspring franchise, and sees the gang attempt to retrieve the embers of Hades to break a spell caused by Maleficent’s scepter that turns Mal into a witch.
This is one of the last films of Cameron Boyce, the actor dying at the age of 20 of epilepsy a few days before its premiere.
The Disney Channel premiere was dedicated to Boyce’s memory.
Cheetah girls (71%)
Based on Deborah Gregory’s series of books of the same name, 2003 Cheetah girls led to two sequels and the formation of an actual girl group.
Teens Galleria (Raven-Symoné), Chanel (Adrienne Bailon), Aqua (Kiely Williams) and Dorinda (Sabrina Bryan) struggle to stay friends and keep their feet on the ground as a marketing manager tries to turn them into exchange of a record deal.
Cheetah girls The premiere was watched by 6.5 million viewers and the album’s soundtrack was double platinum.
Descendants 2 (71%)
After the success of the original, Descendants 2 premiered in 2017 and aired simultaneously on ABC, Disney XD, Freeform, Lifetime, and Lifetime Movies.
Mal struggles with her new status as the girlfriend of Beauty and Beast’s son Ben, and returns to Forgotten Island, which is now ruled by her rival, Ursula’s daughter, Uma.
Ratings jumped for the film from the original, with 8.92 million viewers across six networks on the night of its premiere.
Horrible friday (67%)
The fourth adaptation of the 1972 book Horrible friday by Mary Rodgers might not have been as well commented on as Lindsay Lohan and Jamie Lee Curtis’ version, but it was still fairly well received.
Cozi Zuehlsdorff and Heidi Blickenstaff play a daughter and mother who panic after a magic hourglass causes them to change bodies.
The 2018 film was modernized with musical numbers, which many critics said justified the remake.
Musical High School (65%)
The movie that sparked a worldwide phenomenon, 2006 Musical High School follows a basketball star (Zac Efron) who becomes interested in singing in the school musical after falling in love with a new student.
In 2019, over 225 million viewers watched Musical High School on Disney Channel, making it the most commercially successful DCOM ever produced.
Its soundtrack, containing songs like “Breaking Free” and “We’re All In This Together”, even reached number one on the Billboard charts.
Lycée Musical 3: Senior Year (63%)
The last installment of the HSM trilogy was released in 2008 and became the first DCOM to hit theaters.
The East High students agree to graduate and go their separate ways, while Troy, Sharpay, Ryan and Kelsi all vie for a scholarship to Juilliard.
The film was a huge commercial success, grossing over $ 252 million at the global box office.
Get started! (63%)
With Corbin Bleu from HSM fame, 2007 Get started! follows a young boxer, Izzy (Blue), who finds himself with a new love of the jump rope after being invited by his friend Mary (Keke Palmer) to participate in a Double Dutch tournament.
Raven-Symoné was originally attached to the film, but the film was rewritten for the role of Bleu.
The film’s soundtrack was a hit on the charts, reaching No. 5 on the Billboard charts.
Camp Rock 2: The Final Jam (63%)
The first one Camp rock doesn’t make this list, but its 2010 sequel does.
Demi Lovato returns as Mitchie and the Jonas Brothers reprise their roles as Gray Brothers from Connect 3 as Camp Rock campers find new rivals in the form of Camp Star, which has opened across the lake.
Camp Rock 2 was watched by 7.9 million fans when it premiered on Disney Channel.