Disney Channel’s ‘Teen Beach Movie’ Delivers Huge Ratings

School’s out, summer’s in and surf’s up for Disney Channel’s latest phenomenon Teen Beach Movie. The surf-rock musical set inside a ‘60s beach party premiered on Friday, July 19 to huge ratings—8.4 million Total Viewers, to be exact.

The retro Disney Channel Original Movie (DCOM) ranked as Friday’s No.1 TV telecast and the No. 1 TV movie of 2013 to date. Teen Beach Movie also attracted a solid adult audience, delivering nearly a 1.5 rating (1.6 million) in Adults 18–49.

The hit film introduces audiences to a whole new cast of hip and cool characters. At the head of the pack are young surfer couple, Mack (Maia Mitchell) and Brady (Ross Lynch), who are on the verge of being torn apart forever when Mack departs for boarding school. Before she can leave, however, the twosome catches a final wave. But when they wash ashore they are mysteriously transported back in time to the 1962 surf movie musical Wet Side Story.

For Maia Mitchell, one of the stars of Teen Beach Movie, diving right into the 1960s felt surprisingly familiar. “I love the 60s,” the budding star shares. “The clothing and the music in the film is right in line with what I like, so watching all of that come to life with a modern twist is definitely exciting to see.”

At the helm of the surfin’ safari was Director Jeff Hornaday, who enjoyed exploring the classic 60s Beach Party movie genre. “It’s not often that you have the opportunity to direct and stage an unabashed, over-the-top, break-into-song-and dance period musical,” he says. “Helping Disney Channel create Teen Beach Movie was a total blast.”

The Teen Beach Movie soundtrack from Hollywood Records also debuted at No. 8 on the Billboard 200 chart after scanning 25,000 units in its first week of release. “Teen Beach Movie features songs influenced by surf rock, Motown, R&B, rockabilly and pop and provides the audience with a wide palette of music from the 1960s, rather than just hitting on one genre,” Steven Vincent, vice president, Music and Soundtracks, Disney Channel, says. Steve also credited legendary recording artists such as The Beach Boys, The Supremes and The Beatles as sources of inspiration for Teen Beach Movies’ toe-tapping tunes.