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Archive for the ‘Disney’ Category

Pirates of the Caribbean Online pricing

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Disney has announced the pricing structure for their forthcoming MMORPG based on the Pirates of the Caribbean movies and theme park attractions: Free for the ad-supported version, or $9.95 per month for the “Unlimited Access” level. Quite what “ad supported” actually means — bill boards for Princess dress-up clothing in-game, perhaps — remains to be seen.

The game will be released for Windows in the Spring. No Mac version, though, so it looks like Apple OS fans have to use Bootcamp or something to play. (via The Disney Blog)

Disneyland’s Dumbo used to flap his ears

Did you know that Disneyland’s Dumbo ride used to have flapping ears? … No? Well now you do.

Dreaming: New Disney theme park concept art

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The Walt Disney Company have just released their latest annual report, containing all sorts of numbers and junk that mean absolutely nothing to me. What is interesting, though, is that there’s a section within it entitled “Dreaming” which contains an array of concept art.

Concepts include “Carland”, a covered “urban entertainment center”, a new theme park, a “Pirate-themed adventure” (I wonder if this is linked to the Tom Sawyer island overhaul), a Monsters Inc. attraction and a new “night-time water spectacular” (a suggested replacement for Fantasmic, perhaps). (via The Disney Blog)

Tomorrowland: A History

A 24-minute long tribute to Walt Disney World’s Tomorrowland from 1971 through 1995 and includes many many memorable classics including the Wedway Peoplemover, Flight to the Moon, Mission to Mars, Autopia, Dreamflight, Carousel of Progress, Space Mountain and the Skyway. The film is put together from home video, official Disney film footage and concept art. I remember much of the stuff here and I, like many others, have watched the land struggle to find its footing in this more cynical age. (via BoingBoing)

Michael Barrier on Once Upon a Time… Walt Disney

I read Michael Barrier’s recently posted report on the Walt Disney exhibition in Paris last night, which suggests that many of the “sources that inspired” the Disney artists are tenuous at best. I can’t disagree with Michael on this (I found myself questioning the validity of quite a number of the comparisons) but what I got out of it far exceeded the tenuity of the suggested theme. As for the “negative message, that the artwork, and the films for which it was made, are really rather low” — maybe I was just in awe of all the artwork on display, but I really didn’t notice that at all.

Tick Tock Toys: Archives and galleries

Tick Tock Toys: A cavalcade of images and ideas: Just stumbled upon this old website from Dan Goodsell; he’s the guy that does the great Mr. Toast stuff. It’s a collection of all sorts of photographs of old theme parks, cartoon characters, newspaper ads, food and commercials. I didn’t realise until now that he’s the same guy that produced the Taschen “Krazy Kids’ Food” book that I have at home. (via John K)

Il Etait Une Fois… Walt Disney exhibition report

Eyvind Earle's concept work for Sleeping Beauty

Once upon a time Walt Disney: Remember the Walt Disney art exhibition that I told you about last month which is currently showing at the Grand Palais in Paris? Well, we’ve just got back and I have to say that it exceeded all expectations; the thing was huge — three floors of gorgeous animation history chronologically laid out for my consumption!

After a 20 minute queue outside in the rain (I put the long line down to being a holiday weekend) we finally got inside where I was immediately mis-recognised as a French actor. My poor grasp of the French language eventually gave me away as an imposter and the guy apologised and wished me a good holiday.

Highlights for me were seeing many many pieces of original Mary Blair concept art for Alice in Wonderland and Peter Pan, Eyvind Earle’s numerous, enormous, background pieces for Sleeping Beauty and other films, Salvador Dali’s concept work for Destino (and the film played in its entirety), and many original character sheets and sketches.

When I first saw the Mary Blair work I actually had to practically press my nose against the glass to check that they were the real thing and not just prints. They were, indeed, the real thing and I was delighted to be able to see her pencil outlines just visible beneath the paint! This is the kind of thing you never get to see in coffee table books, now matter how good. Just seeing how the Mad Hatter’s hat, for example, was originally sketched much larger brought her thought process to life.

Eyvind Earle wasn’t a Disney artist that I knew much about before this exhibition but I was blown away by his concept work and, in particular, backgrounds. The first time I saw one of his paintings I stopped and couldn’t move away from it… quite literally! After viewing the pieces from afar I was drawn in to inspect the detail of each one… the combination and use of colour, the painting techniques on his massive paintings. No print, or indeed DVD, could ever do this detail justice! What’s more fantastic is that these are backgrounds; emphasising that numerous art forms must be combined, with equal importance, to produce a truly outstanding animated feature or short.

Low lights? The inability to take any photos of all the fantastic stuff on display… (wishing I’d bought a notebook and pen with me) and the disappointing selection of prints and postcards available in the shop, postcards were mostly poor crops of incredible artwork and really didn’t do the originals justice, especially after just being overwhelmed by them in the flesh. The book and the guidebook were only available in French and printed on some rather cheap paper stock (when the exhibition reaches Montreal later in the year I’ll be interested to see if an English language guidebook becomes available). A shame really, but I couldn’t leave empty handed. I picked up a print of a Marc Davis sketch of Bambi’s Thumper which was a rather reasonable six euros. I also regret not purchasing the accompanying DVD but, as we were on a very tight budget, I just couldn’t afford to.

And talking of not being able to afford not to… if you’re in Paris before the 15th January, or in or around Montreal between March 8 and June 24th, you really can’t afford to miss this.

If you want a complete overview of the show, take a look at this article at Animated Views (thanks Jenny)

Update: Michael Barrier mentions in his post about the exhibition that an English language edition of the book is available to pre-order on Amazon.

Happy New Year!

Pirates of the Caribbean: Model from the 1962 Disneyland TV show

A bit early, but it’s the last chance I’ll get. Thanks for reading! I’ll leave you with another great post from Stuff from the Park. Not only does he have a fantastic poster from Disneyland, New Year 1962 but there’s also a fantastic photo of the Pirates of the Caribbean model used in the 1965 Disneyland 10th anniversary show.

See you next year!

Some fantastic stuff at Stuff from the Parks

Classic Disneyland fans are going to love the Stuff from the Parks blog. Over the past few days they’re put up a huge amount of fantastic stuff, including photos of Walt Disney and storyboards from the Submarine Voyage, Nature’s Wonderland models, Matterhorn models and retro Christmas parade shots.

Tokyo DisneySea’s Tower of Terror

Tokyo DisneySea’s Tower of Terror: The Japanese version of the Disney attraction Twilight Zone “Tower of Terror” opened in September at Tokyo DisneySea in Japan, but I didn’t realise that it had it’s own site. I can’t read Japanese in any form but the site is incredibly atmospheric and portrays the plot visually so you should have no problem following along. Dropping the Twilight Zone references for this version, the attraction is based around an eccentric billionaire who disappears one night taking the elevator back to his quarters after taking a mysterious idol of the trickster African Spirit, Shiriki Utundu.