One of the biggest disappointments of 2020, aside from the coronavirus pandemic and the other disasters that need not be recollected, was the cancellation of the The Lizzie McGuire Show revival.
The December announcement from Hilary Duff, which feels like it was truly months ago, was a moment that upset thousands. But according to a tell-all interview with Vice, no one was more let down than the cast itself.
In March, Hilary said that it was only right to include this aspect of the character's life, explaining, "I'd be doing a disservice to everyone by limiting the realities of a 30-year-old's journey to live under the ceiling of a PG rating."
Disney apparently disagreed, saying in their own statement, "Lizzie McGuire fans have high expectations for any new stories. Unless and until we are confident we can meet those expectations, we've decided to hold off and today, we informed the cast's representatives that we are not moving forward with the planned series."
Robert Carradine expressed confusion over the decision, recalling how numerous Disney executives were present for script readings and that they had approval for the first two episodes. He said, "Every single step of that trajectory had to be greenlit by somebody who's high up in the organization. So, you go to all that trouble and they decide at the last minute, out of the blue, that it needs to be more kid-friendly? I don't get that."
The fact that they were able to reunite and film two episodes of the revival made the cancellation even more difficult to swallow, with Hallie Todd, the McGuire family matriarch, saying, "I'm sad. We had the best time when we got together for those two episodes. It felt like no time had passed, except that all of a sudden these kids were adults."
Hallie also said that she finds it "ridiculous" for Disney to cancel the series over the mention of sex. But she admitted there could've been other motives, adding, "There's always more to it than you hear, and I certainly am not privy to those conversations in the back room."
Jake Thomas, more commonly recognized as Lizzie's brother Matt, said he's more disappointed that fans won't be able to see what could've been. "Fans always tell me how watching the show was a staple of their childhood, and honestly, I was right there with them running to the TV every week to watch the latest episode," he shared. "When I walked onto the set of the rebuilt McGuire house for the reboot, it felt like such an unreal homecoming, an overwhelming childhood nostalgia. It saddens me greatly that the fans don't get to share in that feeling."
Though the revival is now tainted by the memory of its own cancellation, the cast looks back on their Lizzie McGuire days with immense gratitude and adoration.
Clayton Snyder, who played Lizzie and Miranda's crush Ethan Craft, said that he fondly remembers taking Hilary to his middle school dance. "It ended up being all my fellow classmates just forming a giant circle around her and staring at her the whole night," he recalled. "I can't say she had a great time, but she's a great sport for going."
Though Hilary didn't speak to Vice for their story, her wish to create a show that was genuine and deserving of Lizzie's name was conveyed in her December statement. She said at the time, "We can all take a moment to mourn the amazing woman she would have been and the adventures we would have taken with her."