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AGMovies

The first three American Girl Movies.

An American Girl Movie is a live-action film based on characters created by American Girl.

General Information[]

The live action movies are generally rated from G to PG and have been dominantly live action. Initially, movies (with the noted exception of Kit Kittredge: An American Girl) were broadcast on TV; with the exception of Chrissa Stands Strong, these were almost always on standard cable or wide broadcast channels.

The first movies focused on a Historical Character each, and adapted major plots of the character's Central Series into about an hour and half long movie. While the general gist of the plots were kept, many things were changed or left out, including other characters and stories. Significantly, the first three movies were all modified to have the last scenes of the movies occur at or near Christmas, so as to push a holiday focus both in the movie and in items released. With Kit's movie, the majority of the plot was original to the movie with selected references to the book series for characterization and plot event details. It has been the first and so far only movie to be released in theaters instead of directly to DVD, Blu-ray, or streaming but as it did not do well in theaters, no other movies were released to theaters.

Each film or live-action released for a Historical Character was originally marked by the release of a Best Friend and a revamp of clothing, furniture, and accessories for the character that tie the movie into their collection. This was most prominent with Felicity, whose collection had been severely reduced before her movie. Several items and outfits from the movie tended to be released, along with at least one significantly large item. With the discontinuation of all Best Friends, new movies and live action media tended to not add significant amounts of items to a collection, if anything at all.

For Girls of the Year, their movies generally reflect details, outfits, and items from the collections, initially because they were developed simultaneously with the collection, so no additional items were released beyond the scope of the original collection.

In 2016, Mattel signed a multi-year pact with Amazon to produce four live action specials based on the BeForever and the Girls of the Year lines.[1] This has also included sales through Amazon of official American Girl products. All four--Maryellen 1955: Extraordinary Christmas, Melody 1963: Love Has to Win, Ivy and Julie 1976: A Happy Balance, and An American Girl Story: Summer Camp, Friends for Life were first made available via Amazon Prime with the last being based on Z Yang, a Contemporary character.

Rumors and early leaks of a movie likely based on the stories of Tenney Grant leaked in late 2016; however, the movie production was later terminated.

In May 2022, American Girl announced a partnership with HBO Max and Cartoon network to release two specials: American Girl: Corinne Tan The Movie and an unspecified second special for 2023. Corinne's movie was made available via Amazon Prime and the second special has yet to be announced; this was likely due to mergers with HBO and Discovery resulting in multiple other projects being unreleased.

Many of the full-length movies are available for streaming on Amazon Prime for various costs. Movies for Melody, Maryellen, Ivy and Julie, and Z were later removed.

American Girl Short Films[]

In Fall 2015, American Girl released American Girl Short Films on their YouTube Channel. These are roughly fifteen-minute long live action films focusing on the selected BeForever characters. Two were released: And the Tiara Goes To...; A Julie Albright Movie and Maryellen and the Brightest Star; A Maryellen Larkin Movie.

Unlike the feature length movies, the short films are based on original stories and not adapted from the Central Series or any Short Stories (as the two characters were not given any) though they can be compared to the short stories that were released for other characters.

Stop Motion and Animated Shorts[]

Meet Courtney: An American Girl Movie was released shortly after Courtney Moore's release. The short film was made with stop motion animation using dolls. This was also the method used for short films for Joss Kendrick, Kira Bailey and Corinne Tan. Each of these promotional shorts are played in short "trailer" form in stores.

Animated episodes, shorts, and character themed videos are also available for various characters including Historicals, WellieWishers, Kavi Sharma (using CGI animation), Truly Me characters (both stop motion and CGI animation) and Nicki and Isabel Hoffman (flash animation).

All of these along with the Ten-Minute Mysteries and the Smart Girls Podcasts, are available online via the American Girl YouTube Channel.

Movie Release Timeline[]

The first American Girl movie, Samantha: An American Girl Holiday aired on the WB channel on November 23rd, 2004, and released on VHS and DVD on November 30th, 2004.

Felicity: An American Girl Adventure aired on the WB Channel on November 29th, 2005, and released on DVD on December 6, 2005.

Molly: An American Girl on the Home Front was aired on November 26, 2006, on the Disney Channel with the DVD released on November 28, 2006.

Kit Kittredge: An American Girl was released into theaters on July 2nd, 2008 (June 20th at limited release). The DVD and Blu-ray disc was released October 28, 2008.

Chrissa Stands Strong debuted on HBO on Jan 6th, 2009 with the DVD released the same day. Focusing on the stories of Chrissa Maxwell, this was the first time a Girl of the Year was given a movie.

In 2011, deluxe DVD versions of the Historical Characters' films were released to celebrate American Girl's 25th anniversary. Samantha's movie was the exception, as the deluxe DVD version was released earlier on November 30, 2010.

McKenna Shoots for the Stars was released on DVD and Blu-ray on July 3, 2012, focusing on the stories for McKenna Brooks, and aired on NBC on July 14, 2012; after this, movies were released on home media first and aired second.

Saige Paints the Sky was released on DVD and Blu-ray on July 2, 2013, focusing on the stories of Saige Copeland. The movie later aired on NBC on July 13, 2013.

Isabelle Dances into the Spotlight was released on DVD and Blu-ray on July 22nd, 2014, focusing on the stories of Isabelle Palmer. The movie later aired on Disney Channel on August 9th, 2014.

Grace Stirs Up Success was released on DVD and Blu-ray on June 23rd, 2015, focusing on the stories of Grace Thomas. The movie was not aired on broadcast or cable in the United States, but later aired on Family Channel in Canada.

In Fall 2015, American Girl's YouTube Channel released two original short films for free: And the Tiara Goes To... focusing on Julie Albright and Maryellen and the Brightest Star based on Maryellen Larkin.

Lea to the Rescue was released on DVD and Blu-ray on June 14th, 2016, focusing on the stories of Lea Clark. The movie later aired on Disney Channel on November 23rd, 2016. This was the last movie to air on television or have any physical home media; all movies after this have been through streaming services.

Melody 1963: Love Has to Win was released through Amazon Prime on October 25th, 2016.

Maryellen 1955: Extraordinary Christmas was released through Amazon Prime on November 25th, 2016.

Ivy and Julie 1976: A Happy Balance was released through Amazon Prime on March 24th, 2017.

An American Girl Story: Summer Camp, Friends for Life was released through Amazon Prime on June 9th, 2017 and focused on Z Yang.

American Girl: Corinne Tan was released through Amazon Prime on July 28, 2023. The movies for Melody, Maryellen, Ivy and Julie, and Z were later removed, making them unavailable on Amazon; however, Z's and Melody's movies were both rereleased on the American Girl YouTube channel for free in February 2024.

List of Movies and Specials[]

Historical Characters[]

Girls of the Year and Contemporary Characters[]

BeForever Character Shorts[]

See Also[]

Links[]

References[]

  1. Amazon Orders 4 ‘American Girl’ Live-Action Specials, Variety.com, accessed October 26, 2016.
  2. 2.0 2.1 2.2 2.3 2.4 Initially made available through Amazon Streaming Services.
  3. 3.0 3.1 Not currently available on streaming.
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