Disney fans, get ready for an adventure as vast as the ocean! Walt Disney Studios has made an exciting announcement about the highly anticipated live-action “Moana” movie. Set to bring new waves to the beloved tale, Catherine Laga’aia has been cast in the leading role of Moana. She’ll be starring alongside Dwayne Johnson, who is reprising his iconic role as the hilarious and mighty Polynesian demigod, Maui.

In an interview, Laga’aia expressed her heartfelt excitement about embodying such a powerful character. “I’m really excited to embrace this character because Moana is one of my favorites,” she shared. Drawing from her own roots, she continued, “My grandfather comes from Fa’aala, Palauli, in Savai’i, and my grandmother is from Leulumoega Tuai on the main island of ‘Upolu in Samoa. I’m honored to have an opportunity to celebrate Samoa and all Pacific Island peoples, and to represent young girls who look like me.”

Joining this oceanic escapade are New Zealander John Tui as Moana’s pragmatic father, Chief Tui; Samoan-New Zealand actress Frankie Adams as Moana’s spirited mother, Sina; and Rena Owen from Bay of Islands, NZ, as the wise Gramma Tala. The stage is set for a vibrant reimagining that celebrates the rich cultures, communities, and traditions of Pacific Islanders, and promises a spectacular adventure.

Director Thomas Kail is thrilled to start production this summer, and he couldn’t be more excited about the cast, including Auli’i Cravalho, who voiced Moana in the animated film, serving as an executive producer. “I cannot wait to all be on set together. And there’s no better pair to be in a canoe with than Catherine and Dwayne – actually, trio: Heihei is ready, too,” Kail remarked.

Adding to this stellar production, Lin-Manuel Miranda, known for the original soundtrack, is stepping aboard as a producer. But that’s not all for Moana enthusiasts; this Thanksgiving, the original animated cast returns to theaters with “Moana 2,” ensuring fans have plenty to look forward to before the live-action release.

Catch Disney’s live-action “Moana” in theaters on July 10, 2026. Share your excitement and thoughts with us in the comments below. Are you eager to see this new rendition of Moana? Don’t forget to share this story with your fellow Disney fans and keep the conversation going!

**Source**: [ABC13 Houston](https://abc13.com/)