Disney Channel Original Movies That Had Terrifying Premises

Disney Channel Original Films have been happening for years, and over that time they have churned out some pretty fun, albeit harmless premises. However, there have been several of these films that are purportedly for children, but exist in terrifying universes. Take a look at some of these unsettling premises that the good people over at the Disney Channel have had to offer over the years:


disney scary halloween


Premise of the movie: Marnie, a seemingly normal 12-year-old, finds out her grandmother and mother, and even Marnie herself, are witches. Along with her two siblings, Marnie follow her grandmother back to the town on a bus — a town whose citizens are all Halloween-based characters such as ghouls, goblins, and skeletons.

Why it's terrifying: Monsters are real. You might suggest that isn't terrifying because some of those monsters are good, but SOME MONSTERS ARE EVIL AND WANT TO DESTROY YOU. Also, there's the terrifying implication of segregation between Halloweentown and the rest of the world. Being forced to hide who you are because the world will cast you out is a very real fear for these MONSTERS. Because did I mention they are MONSTERS?


Smart House

disney scary house


Premise of the movie: Ben Cooper wins a sentient house in a competition, which uses the projection of a mother-like figure, "PAT", to personify its artificial intelligence.

Why it's terrifying: Thanks to Ben messing around with it to make it more motherly, PAT goes all HAL 9000 on the kids and dad, locking them inside the house for their own "safety". The real terrifying thing, though, is that while it is reprogrammed PAT starts learning new things, like feelings. At the end of the movie, when the computer was supposed to be have been reprogrammed to normalcy, it is suggested that it's still functioning beyond its programming capacity. This means that nothing is keeping the all-seeing-all-power abode from taking over again and then starting a Skynet-type revolution where humans become subservient to their hyper-intelligent houses.


Don't Look Under The Bed

disney scary bed


Premise of the movie: Francis is starting high school a year early when a boogeyman starts causing mayhem, and only her imaginary friend can stop it.

Why it's terrifying: The reveal at the end of the film is that the boogeyman responsible for all of the pranks was Francis's old imaginary friend whom she had forgotten about. It turns out, when a child stops believing in an imaginary friend, that imaginary friend can become real and terrorize them years later. That is pretty horrific when you consider how many children stop believing in imaginary friends. The converse of the situation is that you have a bunch of adults who look like crazy people because they're still talking to imaginary friends out of fear.


H-E Double Hockey Sticks

disney scary hockey


Premise of the movie: A young devil-in-training is sent from Hell to Earth to trick a young hockey player named Dave in to sealing his soul away.

Why it's terrifying: Hell is real. Satan is real. Devils are real. They want your soul.


Luck of The Irish

disney scary irish


Premise of the movie: Kyle Johnson finds out that he is part leprechaun, only to have his family's luck stolen by an evil leprechaun group. He must now best them in a series of competitions to win back his luck.

Why it's terrifying: You know how you think you're good at things? How you've worked hard and practiced to achieve success in one field or another? Well, this movie posits that all of that could just as easily have been pure luck rather than skill. Kyle starts the movie as a star basketball player. And while he does score a very lucky basket in the first game, he's also leading the team in points, so he is pretty good all around.

Here's the thing — when his lucky coin is stolen, he loses the ability to score even one basket. Like, not a single one of his unguarded free throw goes in the hoop. That means that every shot he ever took wasn't based on skill, but serendipity. That suggests you might not actually have any talent at all. And then you're useless. The 10,000 hours you spent learning how to be the best pogo stick rider in the world will all be for naught because at the end of the day, if you take away your luck, you suck.

And you can't do anything to get better. All you can do is chase after and hunt down whatever it was that gave you that luck in the first place. You are an instrument of fate and free will is an illusion. Which is a TOTALLY normal moral for a Disney Channel Original Movie to have.


Are there more frightening Disney Channel Original Movies you remember? Let me know which ones on Twitter or in the comments below!


Look at all these other Old School Disney Channel Original films!