Disney Channel Goes Hebrew

By Alex Suskind

Published July 01, 2009, issue of July 10, 2009.
  • Print
  • Share Share

Mickey and Minnie Mouse, who have long been roaming the desert, are slated to finally reach the Holy Land this September. The Disney Channel, which originated in 1983 in the United States and became a cornerstone of children’s television programming, will launch an Israeli counterpart this fall, the Jerusalem Post reported on June 29.

Star Power: Miley Cyrus and other Disney Channel stars will be on the tube this fall in Israel.
Star Power: Miley Cyrus and other Disney Channel stars will be on the tube this fall in Israel.

In addition to its usual lineup of programming, which will be dubbed into Hebrew, the Israeli edition of the channel will include new shows with Israeli actors. The channel joins a long list of American children shows that have made the jump to Israeli TV – Big Bird and the “Sesame Street” gang first arrived in the 1980s, Barney and his colorful cast of dinosaurs dropped in during the late 1990s, as did the “Teletubbies” who came via their Tubbytronic Superdome.

While Disney is no stranger to Israel (its animated feature films such as “Aladdin” and “Lion King” have long appeared in Israeli movie theaters) it has not always had the smoothest of relations when it comes to the Middle East. A millennium exhibit at Disney World included a section entitled “Jerusalem: The Capital of Israel,” which led to an Arab boycott of Disney. In 2007, Hamas used a Mickey Mouse look-alike character in an anti-Israel children’s campaign, causing another uproar.

Disney will be counting on international superstar Hannah Montana (played by Miley Cyrus) to bring her brand of peace and stability to the Middle East with her colorful pop songs.


The Jewish Daily Forward welcomes reader comments in order to promote thoughtful discussion on issues of importance to the Jewish community. In the interest of maintaining a civil forum, The Jewish Daily Forwardrequires that all commenters be appropriately respectful toward our writers, other commenters and the subjects of the articles. Vigorous debate and reasoned critique are welcome; name-calling and personal invective are not. While we generally do not seek to edit or actively moderate comments, our spam filter prevents most links and certain key words from being posted and The Jewish Daily Forward reserves the right to remove comments for any reason.





Find us on Facebook!
  • Sigal Samuel's family amulet isn't just rumored to have magical powers. It's also a symbol of how Jewish and Indian rituals became intertwined over the centuries. http://jd.fo/a3BvD Only three days left to submit! Tell us the story of your family's Jewish heirloom.
  • British Jews are having their 'Open Hillel' moment. Do you think Israel advocacy on campus runs the risk of excluding some Jewish students?
  • "What I didn’t realize before my trip was that I would leave Uganda with a powerful mandate on my shoulders — almost as if I had personally left Egypt."
  • Is it better to have a young, fresh rabbi, or a rabbi who stays with the same congregation for a long time? What do you think?
  • Why does the leader of Israel's social protest movement now work in a beauty parlor instead of the Knesset?
  • What's it like to be Chagall's granddaughter?
  • Is pot kosher for Passover. The rabbis say no, especially for Ashkenazi Jews. And it doesn't matter if its the unofficial Pot Day of April 20.
  • A Ukrainian rabbi says he thinks the leaflets ordering Jews in restive Donetsk to 'register' were a hoax. But the disturbing story still won't die.
  • Some snacks to help you get through the second half of Passover.
  • You wouldn't think that a Soviet-Jewish immigrant would find much in common with Gabriel Garcia Marquez. But the famed novelist once helped one man find his first love. http://jd.fo/f3JiS
  • Can you relate?
  • The Forverts' "Bintel Brief" advice column ran for more than 65 years. Now it's getting a second life — as a cartoon.
  • Half of this Hillel's members believe Jesus was the Messiah.
  • Vinyl isn't just for hipsters and hippies. Israeli photographer Eilan Paz documents the most astonishing record collections from around the world:http://jd.fo/g3IyM
  • Could Spider-Man be Jewish? Andrew Garfield thinks so.
  • from-cache

Would you like to receive updates about new stories?




















We will not share your e-mail address or other personal information.

Already subscribed? Manage your subscription.