From toys to TV to theaters! The My Little Pony franchise has been a rainbow-themed phenomenon since the early 1980s, and the iconic team of brightly hued horses has been everywhere. The hot Hasbro toy line spawned a series of animated specials and TV shows in the 1980s and '90s and, most recently, in 2010, taking fans to mystical lands with a colorful gang of popular ponies.
Now, the characters will gallop over to the big screen with the upcoming Equestria Girls — Rainbow Rocks, a sequel to the 2013 movie My Little Pony: Equestria Girls, which was a spinoff of the Hub Network's My Little Pony: Friendship Is Magic TV series. Yes, that's a lot of spinning, but true fans of this sparkly franchise are always along for another pony ride. (The fandom is not limited to girls; just ask the male fans — er, bronies.)
In the new movie, human versions of pretty ponies Rainbow Dash, Applejack, Pinkie Pie, Rarity, and Fluttershy (yes, in case you missed the first flick, they're real girls now!) are set to perform with their new band, the Rainbooms, at the Canterlot High "Mane Event" musical showcase.
But — shades of Jem! — there's a new mean girl group in town, headed by the not-so-sweet Adagio Dazzle, who wants to turn the friendly showcase into a bona fide Battle of the Bands. But hey, what's wrong with a little competition, right? Especially against a group called the Dazzlings?
In this first look at the movie, the colorful clique is chillin' in the school cafeteria, when a reformed Sunset Shimmer (Rebecca Shoichet) says she thinks something is "off" with the rival girl group. Yeah, her instincts tell her the new girls in town are after more than just band bragging rights. Could this signal Princess Twilight and a musical counter-spell to the rescue?
By the way, we're loving the new and improved Shimmer, who admits to her evil actions in the first film: "The old me really was just awful, wasn't she? A demon — I turned into a raging she-demon," she says.
Sounds like this former bitter unicorn plays nice in this movie. Just keep her away from any crowns and portals.
My Little Pony: Equestria Girls — Rainbow Rocks will hit select theaters nationwide on Sept. 27.