Lilo & Stitch

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Lilo & Stitch
Theatrical release poster
Directed by
Written by
  • Chris Sanders
  • Dean DeBlois
Story byChris Sanders[a]
Produced byClark Spencer
Edited byDarren T. Holmes
Music byAlan Silvestri
Distributed byBuena Vista Pictures Distribution
Release dates
  • June 21, 2002 (2002-06-21)
(United States)
Running time
85 minutes
CountryUnited States
Budget$80 million[1]
Box office$273.1 million[1]

Lilo & Stitch is a 2002 American animated science fiction comedy-drama film produced by Walt Disney Feature Animation and released by Walt Disney Pictures.[2] The 42nd Disney animated feature film, it was written and directed by Chris Sanders and Dean DeBlois (in their directorial debuts) and produced by Clark Spencer. It features Daveigh Chase and Sanders as the voices of the title characters, and also features the voices of Tia Carrere, David Ogden Stiers, Kevin McDonald, Ving Rhames, Jason Scott Lee, and Kevin Michael Richardson. It was the second of three Disney animated feature films (the first being Mulan, and the third Brother Bear) produced primarily at the Florida animation studio in Disney's Hollywood Studios (named "Disney-MGM Studios" during its production) at Walt Disney World near Orlando, Florida.[3]

The film's story revolves around two individuals: a Hawaiian girl named Lilo Pelekai, who is raised by her older sister Nani after their parents' deaths, and the extraterrestrial creature Experiment 626, who is adopted by Lilo as her "dog" and renamed "Stitch". Stitch, who was genetically engineered to cause chaos and destruction, initially uses Lilo to avoid recapture by the intergalactic federation, but they develop a close bond through the Hawaiian concept of ʻohana, or extended family, causing Stitch to reconsider his intended destructive purpose in order to keep his newfound family together.

The film is based on an idea by Sanders, who originally conceived the character Stitch in the 1980s, and the film's design and aesthetics are based on his personal art style. Lilo & Stitch premiered at the El Capitan Theatre in Los Angeles on June 16, 2002, and was released worldwide on June 21. The film received positive reviews from critics, who praised its humor, charm, and originality. Produced on an $80 million budget and promoted with a marketing campaign that played up its oddities, it was a box-office success, grossing over $273 million worldwide. It was nominated for Best Animated Feature at the 75th Academy Awards.[4][5]

The film's success made it one of Disney's few successes during its post-animation renaissance era in the 2000s, spawning a franchise that includes three direct-to-video sequels, starting with Stitch! The Movie, and three television series, including the sequel series Lilo & Stitch: The Series and spin-offs Stitch! and Stitch & Ai. A live-action adaptation is reportedly in development.


The Galactic Federation arrests Dr. Jumba Jookiba for illegal genetic experimentation, having created Experiment 626. Before the experiment's sentencing and punishment, it escapes and crash-lands on Kauaʻi, Hawaii. The Federation assigns Agent Wendy Pleakley, the council's Earth expert, to capture the experiment, with Jumba helping in exchange for his release from prison.

On the island, Nani Pelekai struggles to take care of her rambunctious but lonely younger sister, Lilo, after their parents died in a car crash. Social worker Cobra Bubbles expresses concern about whether Nani can take adequate care of Lilo. Since Lilo's hula classmates have ostracized her, Nani decides to let her adopt a dog. At the animal shelter, Lilo takes interest in 626, who impersonates a dog to avoid Jumba and Pleakley, who have already landed on Earth. Despite Nani's doubts, Lilo adopts 626 and renames him "Stitch". That evening, at the restaurant where Nani works, Jumba and Pleakley attempt to capture Stitch while in disguise. The owner blames the ensuing destructive chaos on Stitch and fires Nani. The next day, Bubbles warns Nani that he will have to place Lilo with a foster family if she doesn't find another job. Stitch's antics while evading his two pursuers persistently ruin Nani's chances of finding work.

Nani's friend David Kawena invites her, Lilo, and Stitch to enjoy a day of surfing and beach fun. While Nani, Lilo, and Stitch ride a huge wave, Jumba and Pleakley try to capture Stitch, causing Stitch to unintentionally pull Lilo underwater. They survive, but Bubbles witnesses this event and tells Nani that, although she means well, it means that Lilo will have to be taken away if Nani doesn't find another job. Feeling guilty over how much trouble he has caused, Stitch runs off into the night. The next morning, the Grand Councilwoman fires Jumba and Pleakley and gives the assignment to Captain Gantu, incidentally freeing them both to pursue Stitch using less covert methods. Meanwhile, David informs Nani of a job opportunity, which she rushes off to pursue. Hiding in the nearby woods, Stitch encounters Jumba and Pleakley, who chase him back to Nani's house. A fight ensues, throwing the house into chaos and causing an explosion that damages it. Nani sees the chaos and rushes back home to see Bubbles arrive to collect Lilo.

As Nani and Bubbles get into a falling out, Lilo runs away into the woods and finds Stitch, who, in shame, reveals his alien identity before Gantu captures them. Stitch escapes from Gantu's ship but fails to rescue Lilo. Nani confronts him, having witnessed Lilo's kidnapping. Before he can explain, Jumba and Pleakley capture Stitch themselves. Nani demands that they help her rescue Lilo, but Jumba and Pleakley insist they only came for Stitch. When Nani breaks down, Stitch reminds her about ʻohana, a term for "family" he learned from her. Stitch convinces Jumba to help rescue Lilo. Jumba, Pleakley, Stitch, and Nani board Jumba's personal spaceship and chase after Gantu, rescuing Lilo.

Back on the shore, the Grand Councilwoman arrives on Earth preparing to take Stitch into custody, along with Bubbles, who catches up to take Lilo away. She fires Gantu for failing to capture Stitch, and for putting Lilo in danger, and blames Jumba for the mess. Before Stitch goes into the spaceship, he asks the Councilwoman to say goodbye to his new family. Lilo then insists that, because she paid for Stitch at the shelter and has a stamped receipt to show for it, Stitch is her pet under local law, and if the Councilwoman took him away, it would be theft. Impressed with Stitch's newfound civility and empathy, the Councilwoman decrees that Stitch will live in exile on Earth, entrusted to Lilo and Nani's care, and that the family will be under the care of the Galactic Federation and Bubbles, a former CIA agent who knew the Councilwoman during the Roswell incident. Lilo, Nani, and their newfound friends rebuild their house, and Jumba and Pleakley become members of Nani, Lilo, and Stitch's family.

Voice cast[edit]

  • Daveigh Chase as Lilo Pelekai, an eccentric young Hawaiian girl on the island of Kaua'i who adopts Stitch as her pet dog. Andreas Deja served as the supervising animator for Lilo Pelekai. Chase earned the role in the fall of 1998 against 150 other candidates.[6]
  • Chris Sanders[b] as Stitch/Experiment 626, a blue koala-like illegal genetic experiment with the ability to create untold chaos. Alex Kupershmidt served as the supervising animator for Stitch. Stitch was initially intended to be a non-verbal character, but Sanders said he realized "he'd have to say a few things, so we made sure that we kept it to a minimum." Instead of hiring a professional actor to voice Stitch, DeBlois suggested Sanders take the role. According to Sanders, Stitch's voice was the one he regularly used "just to bother people at the studio. I'd call people on the phone and do that voice and annoy them."[7]
  • Tia Carrere as Nani Pelekai, Lilo's stressed-out older sister and legal guardian after the death of their parents in a car accident. Stephane Sainte-Foi served as the supervising animator for Nani Pelekai. Carrere was originally considered for the title character in Mulan (1998), but lost the role to Ming-Na Wen. After learning Disney was doing a Hawaii-set film, Carrere sought a voice role and was hired.[8] She spent two years recording her part in Los Angeles, Paris, and Toronto.[9]
  • David Ogden Stiers as Dr. Jumba Jookiba, a Kweltikwan mad scientist employed by Galaxy Defense Industries who created Stitch. Bolhem Bouchiba served as the supervising animator for Dr. Jumba Jookiba.
  • Kevin McDonald as Agent Wendy Pleakley, a Plorgonarian Galactic Federation agent who acts as the expert of Earth. Ruben A. Aquino served as the supervising animator for Pleakley. Chris Williams, then a storyboard artist, suggested McDonald for the part. After McDonald read for the part, he was cast.[10]
  • Ving Rhames as Cobra Bubbles, a former CIA agent once involved in a Roswell UFO incident who is assigned as a social worker for Lilo. Byron Howard served as the supervising animator for Cobra Bubbles. The character was initially envisioned as more of a nebbish, with Jeff Goldblum in mind for the role. But Goldblum declined the role, and Bubbles was reconceived as a more intimidating character. Sanders and DeBlois recalled Rhames's performance in Pulp Fiction (1994) and cast him.[10]
  • Kevin Michael Richardson as Captain Gantu, the respected but arrogant Shaelik second-in-command of the Galactic Federation.
  • Zoe Caldwell as the Grand Councilwoman, the Grey leader of the Galactic Federation.
  • Jason Scott Lee as David Kawena, Nani's hapless surfer friend and love interest. Ruben A. Aquino served as the supervising animator for David. According to Lee, Carrere helped him earn a role in the film, notifying him by phone: "'Hey, brudda! Got you a part! It's for Disney, brudda!'"[8]
  • Miranda Paige Walls as Mertle Edmonds, Lilo's classmate from their hālau hula who despises and derides her.
  • Kunewa Mook as Moses Puloki, Lilo's hula teacher.
  • Amy Hill as Mrs. Hasagawa, an elderly woman who runs a fruit stand.
  • Susan Hegarty as Rescue Lady, who runs the animal shelter where Lilo adopts Stitch.



A 1985 concept sketch of Stitch by the character's creator, Chris Sanders

In 1985, after graduating from California Institute of the Arts, Chris Sanders had created the character of Stitch for an unsuccessful children's book pitch.[11] He said, "I wanted to do a children's book about this little creature that lived in a forest. It was a bit of a monster with no real explanation as to where it came from." But he found it difficult to condense the story and abandoned the project.[10] In 1987, Walt Disney Feature Animation hired him for their newly formed visual development department. His first project was The Rescuers Down Under (1990), but he soon transitioned into storyboarding.[12] After that, Sanders storyboarded sequences for Beauty and the Beast (1991) and The Lion King (1994), and was promoted to Head of Story on Mulan (1998).[13]

In 1997, several executives at Disney Feature Animation were invited to a retreat at Michael Eisner's farm in Vermont to discuss the future animation slate beyond adapting preexisting legends, folklore or classic novels.[14] At the retreat, Thomas Schumacher, then-executive vice president of Disney Feature Animation, suggested they produce a film that would be the "Dumbo for our generation", compared to the large-budget Disney animated features they had already done.[11] Schumacher approached Sanders about producing the film, telling him: "Everybody wants this next film to be you."[10]

During a karaoke dinner at the Walt Disney World Swan Resort, Schumacher asked Sanders, "Is there anything you would like to develop?" Sanders remembered the children's book project he had initially developed.[15] At his next meeting, Sanders pitched a remote, non-urban location, with Stitch crash-landing into a forest and interacting entirely with woodland animals, being ostracized by them, and living on his own at a farm in rural Kansas.[16] But Schumacher suggested that Stitch should interact with people instead: "The animal world is already alien to us. So, if you wanna get the best contrast between this monster and the place where it lives, I would recommend you set it in a human world."[15][17][18]

For three straight days in his Palm Springs, Florida, hotel room, Sanders created a 29-page pitch book drawing conceptual sketches and outlining the film's general story.[15] He initially revised it by adding a boy character.[19] But as the character of Stitch evolved, Sanders decided he needed to be contrasted with a female character: "I think Stitch represented a male character so the balance would be to put him with a little girl. We wanted someone who was going to be in conflict with Stitch, and we realized a little boy might be a comrade."[20] Sanders then glanced at a map of Hawaii on his wall, and recalling he had recently vacationed there, he relocated the story there.[11] Not well versed in Hawaiian culture, Sanders turned to a vacation roadmap and found the names "Lilo Lane" and "Nani" there.[10] After finishing the booklet, he shipped it to Burbank, and Schumacher approved the pitch with one condition: "it has to look like you drew it."[15]


"Animation has been set so much in ancient, medieval Europe — so many fairy tales find their roots there, that to place it in Hawaii was kind of a big leap. But that choice went to color the entire movie, and rewrite the story for us."

—Chris Sanders, reflecting on the location change to Hawaii[17]

Dean DeBlois, who had served as "story co-head" for Mulan, was brought on to co-write and co-direct Lilo & Stitch, while Disney executive Clark Spencer was assigned to produce. Unlike several previous and concurrent Disney Feature Animation productions, the film's pre-production team remained relatively small and isolated from upper management until the film went into full production.[21]

Originally, Stitch was the leader of an intergalactic gang, and Jumba was one of his former cronies summoned by the Intergalactic Council to capture Stitch.[11] Test audience response to early versions of the film led to changing Stitch and Jumba into creation and creator.[11]

While the animation team visited Kauaʻi to research the locale, their tour guide explained the meaning of ʻohana as it applies to extended families. This concept of ʻohana became an important part of the movie. DeBlois recalls:

No matter where we went, our tour guide seemed to know somebody. He was really the one who explained to us the Hawaiian concept of ʻohana, a sense of family that extends far beyond your immediate relatives. That idea so influenced the story that it became the foundation theme, the thing that causes Stitch to evolve despite what he was created to do, which is destroy.

The island of Kauaʻi had also been featured in such films as Raiders of the Lost Ark and the Jurassic Park trilogy. Disney's animators faced the daunting task of meshing the film's plot, which showed the impoverished and dysfunctional life that many Hawaiians lived during the then-recent economic downturn, with the island's serene beauty. The actors voicing the film's young adults, Nani and David, were Tia Carrere, a local of Honolulu, and Jason Scott Lee, who is of Hawaiian descent and grew up in Hawaii. The voice actors assisted with rewriting the Hawaiian characters' dialogue in proper colloquial dialect, and with adding Hawaiian slang terms.[22]

One innovative and unique aspect of the film is its strong focus on the relationship between two sisters. Making the relationship between sisters into a major plot element is very rare in American animated films.[23]

Design and animation[edit]

The original scene (top) and the one used in the release (bottom). The Boeing 747 and the spaceship are both flying in a sideways position.

In a deviation from several decades' worth of Disney features, Sanders and DeBlois chose to use watercolor painted backgrounds for Lilo & Stitch, as opposed to the traditional gouache technique.[11] Watercolors had been used for the early Disney animated shorts, as well as the early Disney features Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs (1937), Pinocchio (1940), and Dumbo (1941), but the technique had been largely abandoned by the mid-1940s in favor of less complicated media such as gouache. Sanders preferred that watercolors be used for Lilo & Stitch to evoke both the bright look of a storybook and the art direction of Dumbo, requiring the background artists to be trained in working with the medium.[11][21]

The animation itself was all based on 2D work, as the budget was too small for computer generated imagery.[24] The character designs were based on Sanders's personal drawing style, rather than the traditional Disney in-house style.[11] To assist the animators with adapting Sanders's style, Sue C. Nichols, the film's visual development supervisor, created a manual, Surfing the Sanders Style.[15] Because of the limited budget, details like pockets or designs on clothing were avoided in the animation process, and as they could not afford to do shadows throughout much of the film, many of the scenes took place in shaded areas, saving shadows for more pivotal scenes.[24]

The film's extraterrestrial elements, such as the spaceships, were designed to resemble marine life, such as whales and crabs.[25] One altered scene in the film involved Nani, Jumba, and Pleakley hijacking a Boeing 747 jet from Lihue Airport that scrapes against buildings through downtown Honolulu. But after the September 11 attacks, with only a few weeks left in production, the climax was reworked to have them use Jumba's spacecraft instead. The location was also shifted to have them fly through the mountains of Kauaʻi.[26][27] Regardless, the final design still has engines that resembled the 747's jet engines, according to Sanders.[24]

Even after this adjustment, the team had enough budget for about two additional minutes of animation, which was used to create the epilogue montage of Lilo, Nani, and Stitch becoming a new family.[24][28]


On June 16, 2002, Lilo & Stitch premiered at the El Capitan Theatre. Alongside the filmmakers and Disney studio executives, Priscilla and Lisa Marie Presley, Wynonna Judd, Phil Collins, Gregory Hines, and Jodie Foster were also in attendance.[29]


Wanting Stitch to be a central part of the film's marketing campaign, Sanders pitched a subversive idea: "what if Stitch invaded other Disney properties?" Dick Cook, then-chairman of Walt Disney Studios, loved the idea and allowed for four parody teaser trailers to be made, in which Stitch crashes memorable moments of four films from the Disney Renaissance (three of which Sanders had worked on): The Little Mermaid (1989), Beauty and the Beast (1991), Aladdin (1992), and The Lion King (1994).[7] Most of the original actors reprised their roles in the trailers, but they were shocked when asked to act negatively toward Stitch.[citation needed] The trailers also include the AC/DC song track "Back in Black."

In the United Kingdom, Lilo & Stitch trailers and television ads featured a cover of Elvis's song "Suspicious Minds", performed by Gareth Gates, who became famous on the UK TV program Pop Idol. In the U.S., "Hound Dog" was used for both theatrical and television trailers. The marketing campaign presented Stitch as the sort of "Disney Family Black Sheep". As a promotional campaign, comics of Lilo & Stitch ran in Disney Adventures before the film's release. The comics detailed events leading up to the film for both title characters, including Stitch's creation and escape. These events were later contradicted by the sequel Lilo & Stitch 2: Stitch Has a Glitch, rendering the comics non-canonical, but the comics are notable for introducing Experiment 625, Reuben, who was a main character in the subsequent movies and TV series. Most of the comic series have been released as a collective volume, Comic Zone Volume 1: Lilo & Stitch.

Home media[edit]

Lilo & Stitch was released on VHS and DVD on December 3, 2002. During the first day of release, more than 3 million DVD copies were sold, earning $45 million in retail sales.[30][31] The THX-certified DVD release features various bonus features, including a "Build An Alien Experiment" game, an audio commentary, music videos, deleted scenes, teaser trailers, and DVD-ROM.[32] In 2003, a 2-disc DVD version was announced to come out along with Alice in Wonderland (1951) and Pocahontas (1995), which were released in 2004 and 2005.

A 2-Disc Special Edition DVD of the film was released in the UK on August 22, 2005, along with the UK release of Lilo & Stitch 2: Stitch Has a Glitch (2005), but a release in the US was affected by many delays. On March 24, 2009, Disney finally released the special edition DVD, called the "Big Wave Edition". This DVD edition retained the original supplemental features, along with an audio commentary, a two-hour documentary, more deleted scenes, a number of behind-the-scenes featurettes, and some games.

On June 11, 2013, Lilo & Stitch was released on Blu-ray and re-released on DVD alongside Lilo & Stitch 2 in a "2-Movie Collection", which included a single Blu-ray with both films but without bonus features, a reprint of disc one of the "Big Wave Edition" DVD, and a reprint of the Lilo & Stitch 2 DVD.[33] The "2-Movie Collection" has since seen two re-releases; one on January 31, 2017, containing only the Blu-ray and a code to redeem a digital download of the two films,[34] and another on August 9, 2022, which places both films on separate Blu-ray discs that also contain most of their original DVD bonus features, the two DVDs from the first Blu-ray collection, and a digital download code as with the second Blu-ray collection.[35]

Altered scene[edit]

A scene was modified for the UK home video release.[36] In the original, Lilo hid in a clothes dryer, which was changed to a commode with a cabinet and pizza box used as a "door" to avoid influencing children to hide in dryers.[37] The UK edit was later used for the film's Disney+ release[37] and the 2022 Blu-ray release.[citation needed]


Box office[edit]

Lilo & Stitch opened in second place earning $35.3 million in its first weekend, ranking narrowly behind Minority Report.[38] During its second weekend, it fell to third place, behind Minority Report and Mr. Deeds.[39] Despite the opening of Men in Black II the week after, Lilo & Stitch remained in third place.[40]

Meanwhile, the film continued to draw in families while other major summer blockbusters like Spider-Man and Star Wars: Episode II – Attack of the Clones were still in wide release. Additionally, it went on to compete against the Warner Bros. live-action/computer-animated hybrid film Scooby-Doo.[41] The film earned $145.8 million in the U.S. and Canada, and $127.3 million internationally, totaling $273.1 million worldwide.[1]

At the end of its theatrical run, Lilo & Stitch became the second-highest-grossing animated film of 2002, behind 20th Century Fox's Ice Age. They were the only two animated films to approach the $100 million mark that year.[42] Box Office Mojo estimates that the film sold over 25 million tickets during its original run.[1]

Critical reaction[edit]

Rotten Tomatoes reported that the film has an approval rating of 87% based on 149 reviews, with an average rating of 7.3/10. The site's critics consensus reads, "Edgier than traditional Disney fare, Lilo and Stitch explores issues of family while providing a fun and charming story."[43] Metacritic assigned the film a weighted average score of 73 out of 100, based on 30 critics, indicating "generally favorable reviews".[44] Audiences polled by CinemaScore gave the film an average grade of "A" on an A+ to F scale.[45]

Roger Ebert of the Chicago Sun-Times gave the film 3+12 stars out of 4, writing: "It's one of the most charming feature-length cartoons of recent years—funny, sassy, startling, original and with six songs by Elvis. It doesn't get sickeningly sweet at the end, it has as much stuff in it for grown-ups as for kids, and it has a bright offbeat look to it."[46] Kenneth Turan of the Los Angeles Times wrote: "Looser and less obviously formulaic in its fresh approach to our hearts, the brash [film] has an unleashed, subversive sense of humor that's less corporate and more uninhibited than any non-Pixar Disney film has been in time out of mind. With its hand-drawn characters and its use of watercolors for backgrounds (the first time the studio's done that since the 1940s), this is a happy throwback to the time when cartoons were cinema's most idiosyncratic form instead of one of its most predictable."[47] Richard Corliss of Time magazine felt the film is "a bright, engaging bauble with half a dozen Elvis Presley songs for Mom and Dad, and just enough sass. Stitch sticks his tongue into his nose and eats his snot to keep the tweeners giggling ...after a lag in the early sister scenes, Lilo reveals its own very American verve and wit, along with a smart story sense that marks the best animated features, traditional or computerized."[48]

Claudia Puig of USA Today noted the colors "are ultra-vibrant and rich, appropriate to the Hawaiian setting. Best of all, the movie has an endearingly cheeky attitude sometimes missing from more earnest Disney tales. Witty, touching and well paced, Lilo & Stitch is ideal family fare, but little more."[49] Desson Howe of The Washington Post also praised the film's use of watercolors, writing it is "appealing. It's easy, rather than flashy, on the eyes. And there's some sort of relief in that, in this world of hyper-powerful computer-generated imagery."[50] Owen Gleiberman, reviewing for Entertainment Weekly, argued the "animation in Lilo & Stitch has an engaging retro-simple vivacity, and it's nice to see a movie for tots make use of Elvis Presley, but the story is witless and oddly defanged. Stitch gets discovered by Lilo, a temperamental Hawaiian girl who's the whiniest of whiny brats. These two become friends in theory only: There’s so little connection between them that just about the only thing sustaining the movie is its vague E.T. outline."[51]

Todd McCarthy of Variety felt Sanders and DeBlois "keep things moving briskly while commendably avoiding any special sentimental 'We Are a Village' point-making, despite the obvious opportunity. Character designs are familiar enough, but backgrounds possess an unusual pastel quality that gives the film an inviting atmosphere all its own."[52] In contrast, Mick LaSalle of the San Francisco Gate felt Lilo & Stitch was more appropriate for a television series, writing the directors "find themselves locked into the structure of a feature film. They're forced to tell the story of Lilo and Stitch's relationship, to give it shape and a sense of arrival. Since this is a kid's movie, the relationship can only head in the direction of schmaltz. So the promising anarchy of the first 10 or 15 minutes is suppressed."[53]

Peter M. Nichols states that through the character of Nani and her struggles, the film appeals to older children better than such attempts by the studio to do so as The Emperor's New Groove, Atlantis: The Lost Empire, and Treasure Planet.[54]


Lilo & Stitch: An Original Walt Disney Records Soundtrack
Soundtrack album by
Various artists
ReleasedJune 11, 2002
LabelWalt Disney
ProducerChris Montan (exec.)
Lilo & Stitch music chronology
Lilo & Stitch: An Original Walt Disney Records Soundtrack
Lilo & Stitch 2: Island Favorites
Walt Disney Animation Studios chronology
Atlantis: The Lost Empire
Lilo & Stitch: An Original Walt Disney Records Soundtrack
Treasure Planet
Alan Silvestri chronology
Lilo & Stitch: An Original Walt Disney Records Soundtrack
Stuart Little 2
Singles from Lilo & Stitch
  1. "Can't Help Falling in Love"
    Released: May 13, 2002
Professional ratings
Review scores

Lilo & Stitch: An Original Walt Disney Records Soundtrack is the soundtrack to Disney's 2002 animated feature Lilo & Stitch. It contains two original songs from the film written by Mark Kealiʻi Hoʻomalu and Alan Silvestri (the film's composer), and performed by Kealiʻi Hoʻomalu and the Kamehameha Schools children's chorus. It also contains five songs by American singer Elvis Presley, and three of his songs re-recorded by American singer Wynonna ("Burning Love"), British singer Gareth Gates ("Suspicious Minds", UK release) and Swedish group A-Teens and Taiwanese group F4 ("Can't Help Falling in Love"). It was released by Walt Disney Records on June 11, 2002, on Audio CD and Compact Cassette. On June 23, 2003, the soundtrack album was certified Platinum by the Recording Industry Association of America for sales of 1 million units.[56]

Track listing[edit]

1."Hawaiian Roller Coaster Ride"Alan Silvestri, Mark Kealiʻi Hoʻomalu, The Kamehameha Schools Children's Chorus3:28
2."Stuck on You"Elvis Presley2:25
3."Burning Love"Wynonna Judd3:10
4."Suspicious Minds"Elvis Presley3:23
5."Heartbreak Hotel"Elvis Presley2:13
6."(You're the) Devil in Disguise"Elvis Presley2:30
7."He Mele No Lilo"Alan Silvestri, Mark Kealiʻi Hoʻomalu, The Kamehameha Schools Children's Chorus2:28
8."Hound Dog"Elvis Presley2:27
9."Can't Help Falling in Love"A-Teens/F43:07
10."Stitch to the Rescue (score)"Alan Silvestri5:57
11."You Can Never Belong (score)"Alan Silvestri3:56
12."I'm Lost (score)"Alan Silvestri4:43


Weekly charts[edit]

Chart (2002) Peak
Australian Albums (ARIA)[57] 9
Austrian Albums (Ö3 Austria)[58] 44
German Albums (Offizielle Top 100)[59] 80
US Billboard 200[60] 11
US Soundtrack Albums (Billboard)[61] 1

Year-end charts[edit]

Chart (2002) Position
US Billboard 200[62] 151
US Soundtrack Albums (Billboard)[63] 10
Chart (2003) Position
US Soundtrack Albums (Billboard)[64] 13


Region Certification Certified units/sales
Australia (ARIA)[65] Gold 35,000^
United States (RIAA)[56] Platinum 1,000,000^

^ Shipments figures based on certification alone.


Spin-off media[edit]

On August 26, 2003, Disney released a direct-to-video sequel, Stitch! The Movie, which served as the pilot to a television series titled Lilo & Stitch: The Series. This series ran for 65 episodes between September 20, 2003, and July 29, 2006. The series carried on where the film left off and charted Lilo and Stitch's efforts to capture and rehabilitate Jumba's remaining experiments. The series, as well as the original parts of the franchise that focused on Lilo Pelekai and were set in Hawaii, ended with the television film Leroy & Stitch, which aired on June 23, 2006.

On August 30, 2005, Lilo & Stitch 2: Stitch Has a Glitch, another direct-to-video sequel to the film, was released. In this film (set between Lilo & Stitch and Stitch! The Movie), Stitch has a glitch because his molecules were never fully charged (this is contrary to an original opening, "Stitch's trial", which was seen on the DVD release of Lilo & Stitch). Lilo wants to win the May Day hula contest like her mother did in the 1970s, but Stitch continues to have outbursts. Lilo gets increasingly mad at Stitch as his glitch causes more problems for her and ruins her chances of winning the competition. She thinks Stitch is not cooperating properly, until she finds out that Stitch is dying. The Lilo & Stitch 2: Stitch Has a Glitch DVD also contained a short film, The Origin of Stitch, that served as a bridge between Stitch Has a Glitch and Stitch! The Movie.

In March 2008, Disney announced an anime based on the Lilo & Stitch franchise aimed at the Japanese market titled Stitch!. The anime, which ran as a series from October 2008 to March 2011, features a Japanese girl named Yuna Kamihara in place of Lilo, and is set on a fictional island in Okinawa Prefecture instead of Hawaii. This series was produced by Madhouse for its first two seasons, and Shin-Ei Animation for its third season and two post-series specials in 2012 and 2015.

From March 27 to April 6, 2017, an English-language Chinese animated television series based on the franchise titled Stitch & Ai aired in China with a Mandarin Chinese dub. It was produced by Anhui Xinhua Media and Panimation Hwakai Media. Like with the Stitch! anime, it features a local girl named Wang Ai Ling instead of Lilo, and is set in the Huangshan mountains. Unlike Stitch!, however, this series was originally produced in English in co-operation with American animators (including those who worked on Lilo & Stitch: The Series) and then dubbed into Mandarin Chinese; the original English production aired in Southeast Asia during February 2018.

Live-action adaptation[edit]

In October 2018, The Hollywood Reporter reported that Walt Disney Pictures was developing a live-action remake of Lilo & Stitch to be produced by Aladdin producers Dan Lin and Jonathan Eirich and written by Mike Van Waes.[66] In November 2020, it was reported that Jon M. Chu entered talks to direct the film and that it was unclear if the film would be released in theaters or on Disney+.[67] In July 2022, Dean Fleischer Camp replaced Chu as the film's director.[68] In February 2023, Zach Galifianakis joined the film as Pleakley.[69][70]

Video games[edit]

There were three official games released in 2002 to coincide with the film: Disney's Lilo & Stitch: Trouble in Paradise for PlayStation and Microsoft Windows, Disney's Lilo & Stitch for Game Boy Advance, and Disney's Stitch: Experiment 626 for PlayStation 2. Stitch is also a summonable character in Kingdom Hearts II and III, and appears along with his homeworld in Kingdom Hearts Birth by Sleep for the PlayStation Portable. Lilo and Stitch both appear in the Nintendo 3DS game Disney Magical World and its sequel. Stitch is also a playable character in the Disney Infinity series in the second game, Disney Infinity: Marvel Super Heroes, and the series' third and final game, Disney Infinity 3.0. He was also a meet and greet character in Kinect: Disneyland Adventures. Some characters of the film are playable characters in the game Disney Magic Kingdoms. Stitch also appears as a playable character in the mobile game Disney Mirrorverse for IOS and Android devices.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Based on an idea by
  2. ^ a b Chris Sanders was credited as "Christopher Michael Sanders" (his full name) for his voice role as Stitch.


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Further reading[edit]

  • Wakabayashi, Hiro Clark (2002). Lilo and Stitch: Collected Stories from the Film's Creators. Disney Editions. ISBN 978-0-7868-5382-3.

External links[edit]