TIMES SQUARE, Manhattan (WABC) -- A new musical adaptation of Disney's Winnie the Pooh will premiere Off-Broadway this fall in the 42nd Street theater formerly known as the Acorn Theatre.
On Monday, Piglet and Owl were on hand to unveil a sign with the theater's new name in honor of the Winnie the Pooh stories - The Hundred Acre Theatre.
Winnie the Pooh has been enjoyed by millions of readers and viewers ever since English author A.A. Milne first chronicled the adventures of Christopher Robin's friends in the Hundred Acre Wood in 1926.
The books, featuring illustrations by English illustrator E.H. Shephard, have sold over 50 million copies worldwide.
The theatrical rights to the Pooh stories were acquired by Disney in 1961, with an original intent to produce a feature film. But after production began, Walt Disney decided to make short featurettes instead.
The three featurettes were subsequently incorporated into the feature "The Many Adventures of Winnie the Pooh."
This was the last film in the Disney canon in which Walt Disney had personal involvement.
The first featurette, "Winnie the Pooh and the Honey Tree," was released during his lifetime, while "Winnie the Pooh and the Blustery Day" was still in development.
Disney's Winnie the Pooh has since become one of the best-loved and most successful franchises in history.
Jonathan Rockefeller and Rockefeller Productions embraced the challenge of re-imaging Disney's Winnie the Pooh for a new audience by bringing it to life on stage in puppet form.
The company has garnered global accolades, from critics and audiences alike, for their production of "The Very Hungry Caterpillar Show," with 14 productions playing on four continents.
Performances of "Winnie the Pooh: The New Musical Adaptation" begin on October 21.
Tickets are available at WinnieThePoohShow.com.
The show is produced in association with Disney Theatrical Productions, owned by the same parent company as this ABC station.
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