The Full Plan For The “Lizzie McGuire” Reboot Has Been Revealed, And Now I’m Mad At Its Cancelation All Over Again

Hilary Duff previously suggested that the reboot was axed mid-production because Disney wanted to make Lizzie's life as a 30-year-old woman too "PG."

Back in 2019, millennials everywhere rejoiced when it was announced that Lizzie McGuire was being rebooted, with Hilary Duff returning as the titular character alongside many other original cast members.

Hilary Duff onstage at an event for "Lizzie McGuire"

The Disney Channel show aired between 2001 and 2004, with the character of Lizzie being 13 years old in the premiere episode. The reboot intended to focus on Lizzie’s life as an adult, with the original showrunner, Terri Minsky, also returning for the project.

Closeup of Hilary Duff

By 2020, the reboot was all systems go, with two episodes already filmed and production for the rest of the season underway. But just a few months after shooting began, Terri was fired.

Closeup of Hilary Duff

At the time, Disney said that it had decided to “move in a different creative direction,” and it soon became clear that the company felt that the reboot was becoming too adult for their brand.

Closeup of Hilary Duff

But Hilary vehemently defended the original concept for the reboot, imploring Disney to move the show to Hulu as she wrote on Instagram that she would 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."

Screenshot from "Lizzie McGuire"

Ultimately, the entire project ended up being scrapped, with Hilary later telling Sirius XM that Disney’s vision for the reboot didn’t “totally align” with where she thinks Lizzie would be at this point in her life. She added: “I’m very protective of [Lizzie], and they are very protective of her.”

Screenshot from "Lizzie McGuire"

On Instagram, she wrote: "I want any reboot of Lizzie to be honest and authentic to who Lizzie would be today. It’s what the character deserves. We can all take a moment to mourn the amazing woman she would have been and the adventures we would have taken with her. I’m very sad, but I promise everyone tried their best, and the stars just didn’t align."

Discussing the time spent working on the scrapped project, Hilary told Cosmopolitan: “I will forever be grateful for the two episodes that we did shoot. It was a really special two weeks of my life.”

Closeup of Hilary Duff

It was later revealed that the filmed episodes had seen Lizzie move back home with her parents after she caught her fiancé cheating on her on her 30th birthday.

Screenshot from "Lizzie McGuire"

And a writer on the canceled reboot has now shed even more light on what the plan for the season was — including the NSFW detail that he thinks may have been the final straw for Disney.

Closeup of Jonathan Hurwitz

In a series of TikTok videos, Jonathan Hurwitz opens up about his experience on the show, also sharing photos from the creative process — including a picture of himself with Hilary in the writers' room.

Screenshot from Jonathan's TikTok

In his posts, Jonathan confirms the storyline that was already public knowledge but adds some extra details. For example, Lizzie was working as an interior designer in New York, and her fiancé, Emmett, was a “very, very handsome chef.”

Closeup of Hilary Duff

After finding out about Emmett’s affair with her best friend, Bianca, Lizzie flies home. Jonathan says: “At the end of the pilot, she goes home to California, to the home that we all saw in the original show, and she’s in her childhood bedroom where little animated Lizzie has been waiting for her.”

Screenshot from "Lizzie McGuire"

According to Jonathan, Episode 2 saw the return of one of Lizzie’s best friends from the original series, Gordo, as well as her high school boyfriend, Ethan Craft.

Jonathan explains that Lizzie enjoys a reunion with Gordo, who reveals that his fiancée is pregnant with their first child “and they’re really happy.” The episode ends with Lizzie getting a text from Ethan asking her to meet up.

Screenshot from "Lizzie McGuire"

Episode 3 wasn’t filmed but had been written, and it is where the creative differences with Disney appeared to emerge. In his TikTok, Jonathan admits that if he had to guess, he’d say it was the opening scene that ruffled feathers with the network.

Closeup of Hilary Duff

He reveals that the episode was scripted to start with Lizzie waking up in Ethan’s bed, with it being obvious that they’d had sex. Jonathan says: “We weren’t actually going to show them having sex, just Lizzie waking up in Ethan’s shirt and then he comes in with freshly made coffee, and they have this cute little catch up.”

TikTok @jonathanhurwitz / Via tiktok.com

“Animated Lizzie pops up, and she has this little checklist, like a to-do list, and Ethan is on the list, and she checks it off,” he continues. “I think she says something like, ‘I checked that box — dramatic pause — twice.’ So if I had to guess, I saw another comment about storylines Disney wasn’t comfortable with, my guess was… That moment was probably one of them.”

Screenshot from "Lizzie McGuire"

Later in the episode, Lizzie was going to meet “a gay guy called Carson,” who she would become good friends with. The episode would end with Carson offering Lizzie his spare room to move into, forcing her to contemplate whether she was ready to give up her life in New York and return to California for good.

Closeup of Hilary Duff

Lizzie’s parents and little brother, Matt, also had plenty of screen time scripted into Episode 3, with Matt using his tech skills to discover that Emmett had a tracking app on Lizzie’s phone — prompting Jonathan to call the protagonist's ex a “demon.”

Screenshot from "Lizzie McGuire"

Discussing the rest of the season, Jonathan says that Episodes 4 through 8 were “at various stages” of production, and “likely would have changed a lot” after the network saw the scripts.

Closeup of Hilary Duff

He suggests that the plan was for Lizzie to move in with Carson, and that the show would focus on what life is like for a woman in her 30s starting over again.

Closeup of Hilary Duff

In 2022, Hilary said that while she was disappointed that the reboot never happened, there is still a chance that the idea will be picked up again in the future. She told the Cut: "I think there's always a possibility there. And even if she’s 40, I don’t think people care. It’s always going to be somewhat interesting to people to see where she ended up."

Closeup of Hilary Duff

And when asked by Cosmopolitan whether she was tempted to leak the two episodes that had been filmed, the actor admitted: “I would be lying if I didn't say I didn't have those thoughts a few times, but I wouldn't, because in my 34 years I've realized that everything does happen for a reason.”

Closeup of Hilary Duff

“There's a time and a place for everything. It just wasn't her moment,” Hilary added. "I'm constantly asked about it still. All it does is breathe life into the fact that people still want it, and that's really sweet. It's not dead, and it's not alive."

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