What Guillermo del Toro's new horror label means for Disney

Contributed by
Dec 14, 2012, 3:54 PM EST

One of Disney's big announcements on Friday at the D23 fan expo was the creation of Double Dare You, a new horror label, spearheaded by Guillermo del Toro, to make scarier, thrilling movies for the Disney family audience.

Del Toro recorded a video greeting from New Zealand, where he is working on The Hobbit, saying that the first Disney Double Dare you film will be The Troll Hunters, based on his original idea.

Here are a few of del Toro's dares that will be worth accepting.

1) Dare to scare the kids. It's good for them. Del Toro liked scary things growing up, and he turned out all right. It's good to push kids, challenge them to overcome their fears. Don't worry, he won't traumatize them with torture porn. This is all in good fun. "The label tells you the spirit it was created in," del Toro said in his video. "I hope you take the dares."

2) Dare to experience more del Toro. It takes so long for del Toro to make a movie, and now he's tied up for years making his Hobbit movies. At least this is a way to get more del Toro on screen. Walt Disney Studios chairman Dick Cook said he will be the creative force behind all of Disney's Double Dare You films, starting with Troll Hunters. Even if other directors put del Toro's sketches on screen, that's still more del Toro to go around.

3) Dare to read and buy the thrills. Remember, Cook called Disney's Double Dare You a new label for the studio, not just for movies. Del Toro has the influence over the film side, but he conceived Disney's Double Dare You to include books and merchandise, too. Perhaps a new line of young-adult horror books can give R.L. Stine some healthy competition.

4) Dare to remember history. Guillermo del Toro recalled his childhood trips to Disneyland, where "E-Ticket" rides such as Pirates of the Caribbean and The Haunted Mansion scared the bejesus out of him. "They evoked an aspect of the Disney canon, the capacity to create thrilling, scary and terrifying [experiences]," del Toro said. He cited the great Disney villains such as Maleficent, who challenged young minds without quite giving them inconsolable nightmares. That's where Disney's Double Dare You is going.