Friday, July 30, 2010

Geek-End Update, Saturday, July 31, 2010

Thursday, July 29, 2010

Hot Off the Presses!

Didier Ghez from The Disney History Blog just sent me a review copy of Volume 9 of his monumental Walt's People series. I have previously reviewed Volume 1, Volume 2 and Disneyland Paris: From Sketch to Reality.

The Walt's People series is truly indispensable for the Disney enthusiast.

Walt's People - Volume 9: Talking Disney with the Artists Who Knew Him, edited by Didier Ghez.

Foreword: John Culhane
Dave Smith: Thurston Harper
Ray Pointer: Berny Wolf
John Canemaker: Fanny Rabin about Art Babbitt
John Culhane: Art Babbitt
Tom Sito: Bill Melendez
Mark Langer: Ken O’Connor
John Canemaker: Thor Putman
John Culhane: Art Scott
Dave Smith: Ken Anderson
Christopher Finch and Linda Rosenkrantz: Ken Anderson
Christopher Finch and Linda Rosenkrantz: Les Clark
Christopher Finch and Linda Rosenkrantz: Jack Cutting
Robin Allan: Jack Cutting
Robin Allan: Bob Jones
Robin Allan: Joe and Jennie Grant
Floyd Norman: Three Disney Story Guys (Pete Young, Fred Lucky and Vance Gerry)
Jim Korkis: Margaret Kerry
Paul F. Anderson: Jack Ferges
Paul F. Anderson: Fred Joerger
Jim Korkis: The Secret Walt Disney Commercials
Michael Mallory: Paul Carlson
Didier Ghez: Paul Carlson
Floyd Norman: Just Finish that Darned Thing!
Didier Ghez: Victor Haboush
Julie Svendsen: Walt Peregoy
Floyd Norman: Disney’s “B” Movie
Alberto Becattini: Frank McSavage
Klaus Strzyz: Jack Bradbury + Mary Jim Carp
Klaus Strzyz: Bob Foster
Alberto Becattini: Bob Foster
Didier Ghez: Julie Svendsen
Göran Broling: Correspondence with Ollie Johnston
Clay Kaytis: Burny Mattinson
Didier Ghez: Tom Sito

As a caveat, Didier only publishes a limited number of each title--due to initial publishing costs. They go out of print fairly quickly.

You can also buy the Kindle version:

Wednesday, July 28, 2010

A Merry Crew of Ragtag Fuzzie-Wuzzies

The music, magic and creative talents of Michael Jackson. George Lucas, Francis Coppola and the Walt Disney Company are combined in Captain EO, the 17-minute 3-D motion picture space adventure that is being shown at only two locations in the entire universe-at the Magic Eye Theater in Disneyland and at the Journey Into Imagination Theater in Epcot Center. 

Involving a three­-dîmensional process that breaks new ground with technology developed by Eastman Kodak and Walt Disney lmagineering, the space fantasy stars Michael Jackson complete with original songs written, produced and sung by him. The film was produced by George Lucas who made film history with Star Wars, The Empire Strikes Back and Return of the Jedi. Academy Award­winner Francis Coppola of Godfather fame directed Captain E.O

During the filmed space journey, Captia EO (Michael Jackson) and his merry crew of ragtag fuzzie-wuzzies and robots with dual personalities crash land on a colorless inhospitable planet where they are confronted by the hideous Black Queen (Anjelica Huston) and her force of ruthless henchmen. 

The colorful new Disney-created characters making up EO’s crew include: Hooter, the dwarf green elephant who sneezes wild musical notes through his flute-like trunk; Fuzzball, the orange-haired space monkey with butterfly wings; the Geex, a golf-encased tow-faced personality with two left feet, one right foot and two shaggy heads; Major Domo whose mirrored silver costume becomes a complete set of drums, traps and string bass played by Fuzzball; Minor Domo with his sparkling purple torso that turns into an electronic synthesizer played by Hooter.

Using the power of music, dance and light to fill the planet with all the shades of the rainbow, the EO crew overcomes the evil witch by turning the white land into a magical world of color and happiness. 

The super-realism of the 3-D, 70mm process makes it seem that Michael Jackson dances right out of the screen and into the theater. Spaceships hover over the audience while lasers shoot past their heads in state­ of-the-art staging.

Captain EO is a world of fantasy, an irresistible musical adventure that is certain to dazzle your senses and have you cheering the film’s every twist and turn.
--Disneyana Collector, page 2 (Fall 1996. Volume 5, Number 2)

George Lucas, Angelica Huston, Francis Coppola, Mouseketeer Annette Funicello, Space Hostess Minnie

Monday, July 26, 2010

The Legend of the Three EPCOT Center books...

A few weeks ago, AmyBethCombs posted the following image on twitter:
I noticed that she had two of the three Walt Disney's EPCOT Center books by Richard Beard. It has long been an integral part of my Disney library and it is a title that every Disney enthusiast should own.

When I mentioned that she had two of the three, she questioned me about how to tell the differences between them.

There are three different version of the book:
The 1982 editions are similar except for some of the photos. The pre-opening version often has photographs of models instead of photographs of the pavilions. There will also be some differences in the interior shots. Scott Otis (fellow librarian and Disney book fiend) provided the following two shots for me from his personal collection, as I have three copies of the pre-opening version.

In this instance, you can see that the pre-opening version is on top. It has a picture of the model of the Living With the Land boat ride and another photograph of castmembers and Imagineers on the not-quite-finished attraction. The post-opening has a shot of the pavilion during a balloon release and shows guests on the finished ride.

There is not a discernible difference if you are hunting the 1982 books online. I would suggest contacting the seller to see if they will verify which edition they are selling.

Either way, the 1982 edition is a must have title for every Disney fan!

An older shot of Scott's Disney library. Thanks for the help, Scott!

Friday, July 23, 2010

Geek End Update, Saturday, July 24, 2010

Thursday, July 22, 2010

Book Update and a Blu-ray

A new shipment of books arrived yesterday. Kurtti's latest masterpiece on Disneyland is truly stunning! I can't wait to finish it.

The Art of Toy Story 3 by Charles Solomon

My review copy of James and the Giant Peach arrived today. I can't wait to watch it on Blu-ray!

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Five Cheesy Pieces

During my last visit to Disneyland, I spent close to an hour wandering around Mickey's House in Toontown. The details were amazing! 

Fans of Imaginerding are used to the many book updates that I do, especially the new Disney-related titles. In this case, the Imagineers have added some special titles to Mickey's home library. We have seen books in many of their attractions and restaurants over the years and sometimes they are real titles and sometimes they are riffs on literary classic --with a dash of cheesy humor.

It is obvious from Mickey's shelves, that he is an avid reader.

Five Cheesy Pieces
Ben Fur
Little Mouse on the Prairie

    Of Men and Mice
    Portrait of the Artist as a Young Mouse

      See You Next Squeak
      Happy Poems
      A Tree Grows in Toontown
      Color My Mouse by Ginni Barr-Ruscio
      Mouse of Cards

        Pluto's Better Bones in Gardens
        A Trip to the Toon by H. Cheese Wells
        Gadgets 'N' Gizmos by J. Shull

          2001: A Mouse Odyssey
          The Great Goofby

            Cheese and Peace
            Mice Station Zebra
            Random Mouse Dictionary Edited by A. Verity
            Moby Duck
            The Toon Almanac 1954
            Toons Along the Mohawk

              The Whole Mouse Catalogue
              Minniean's Rainbow
              Waiting For Pluto
              Mouse of Wax

                Directions in Tooning
                The Information Cheese Almanac

                  Oh No, Chrono! by E. Kicken
                  Great Stories, Amazing Facts
                  The Mouse That Roared, A Novel by C. Bothi
                  The Great Mouse Detective
                  Mousetrap: Friend or Foe: 101 Ways Around a Mousetrap, A Guide by J. Crouch

                    Monday, July 19, 2010

                    One Million Balloons Can't Be Wrong! (Or Can They?)

                    One Million Balloons Rise To The Occasion
                    The Anaheim sky came alive with a flurry of rainbows on Thursday afternoon, December 5, when one million balloons were released on Katella Avenue adjacent to Disneyland. The event was "Skyfest," the city of Anaheim's celebration honoring the 84th anniversary of Walt Disney's birth and commemorating Disneyland's 30th year. The balloon release also placed Anaheim in the Guinness Book of World Records for the largest such event in the world. 
                    To achieve that record, more than 3,000 volunteers filled the million balloons with 550,000 cubic feet of helium. At the same time that the city of Anaheim’s balloons were filling the sky, Disneyland released 90,000 balloons from the Park. Schools and fire stations in the area participated by releasing lesser numbers of balloons. 
                    Collectors and souvenir hunters were not forgotten by the city of Anaheim. The "Skyfest" logo, which features a group of muItì­colored balloons and Mickey Mouse riding in a hot air balloon, has been reproduced on T­shirts, visors, pin-back buttons and flashlights. A special commemorative lithograph has also been produced for the event from an original painting by Disney artist Charles Boyer. Disneyana Collector, Winter 1985-86
                    Somehow, I don't think that Disney's Environmentality Program would approve of this today...

                    Friday, July 16, 2010

                    Thursday, July 15, 2010

                    Walking Around the World...

                    During the Disney Decade, a program was offered that you could purchase a hexagonal brick paver to be placed around the Seven Seas Lagoon, creating a walking path starting at the Magic Kingdom and closely following the monorail route. Obviously, there are some inlets that would need to be crossed as well as the holding area for the Electrical Water Pageant. Not to mention some roads, a waterway and a lot of marshland.

                    The plan never panned out and Disney stopped halfway to the Grand Floridian. There are bricks at the Transportation and Ticket Center, the Contemporary and at the Polynesian.

                    Depending what the letter is on the brick, it could be in one of five places:
                    W: West of the Magic Kingdom towards the Grand Floridian
                    E: East of the Magic Kingdom to the Contemporary
                    C: The Contemporary
                    H: The Transportation and Ticket Center
                    P: The Polynesian

                    I don't have a confirmation if they sold them by the Grand Floridian, yet. Nothing that I've read points to a finished path, though. Anyone have a paver at the Grand Floridian?

                    Two different types of pavers were sold until the year 2000: a traditional brick paver ($85 - $125) and larger gray ones ($250). No one really knows why Disney stopped selling them, but the most prevalent thought is that it was competing with the Leave a Legacy program at Epcot. Occasionally, more bricks have been sold (some in 2006), but they are for special occasion or sold only on a first-come, first-served basis outside of the Magic Kingdom.

                    As a surprise, my wife bought this one for us after our 1994 trip. The date on our certificate is from July 31, 1996. It was even signed by Roy E. Disney...or a reasonable facsimile! We have only visited our paver once--during our 1997 trip.

                    The next time you step off the monorail at the Magic Kingdom or find yourself walking from the TTC to the Polynesian, make sure you take a look down. Occasionally, you can find pavers for celebrities. Whoopi Goldberg has one not too far away from ours!

                    It's all about the details!

                    Tuesday, July 13, 2010

                    More Lost Potties!

                    Michael Crawford at Progress City, USA first brought the Lost Potties of Denmark to our attention back in December 2009. Disney nerds all over the world sighed a collective gasp when Michael pushed publish. As most readers of Imaginerding know, I do have an obsession with Disney restrooms.

                    One of my favorites video-relatede sites is Martin's Videos Online:
                    Non commercial, fan made videos available here and at for free, as always. Keeping the magic of past and present Disney park attractions alive.
                    He puts together some amazing video tributes filled with rare images and historical information. When he debuted the Norway Tribute video, I was thrilled to see footage of the Lost Potties!

                    Norway at Epcot - Ultimate Tribute HD from Martins Videos on Vimeo.

                    Travel back to 1982 to see the origins of the parks 11th pavilion as it almost became the 10th as Denmark. Follow the development of the Scandinavian Showcase and see how it changed to Norway, its design and construction and finally the 1988 dedication. Next, take a full tour in HD of the pavilion, ride Maelstrom with multi angle video and a clean audio mix, then settle down for The Spirit of Norway shot in HD on a tripod with a clean ALD audio mix.

                    Monday, July 12, 2010

                    Geeta v. Dumbo!

                    Dumbo, who presides over "Dumbo's Circus" on the Disney Channel proved he has a heart as big as his ears when he presented a check for $500 to the Los Angeles Zoo's Wildlife Saver program, which helps protect endangered species from extinction. Geeta, a 28-year old resident Asian elephant at the Zoo, was on hand to greet Dumbo.
                    From the Winter 1985-86 Disneyana Collector.

                    Friday, July 9, 2010

                    Geek-End Update, Saturday, July 10, 2010

                    Wednesday, July 7, 2010

                    Victory Through Hair Power!

                    Walt had been given galleys to Victory Through Air Power; a soon to be book, by Major Alexander de Seversky, and became convinced of its strategy, "only air power can carry an offensive war to the enemy, and only the offensive can win the war."
                    On weekend that was seeing, worst August rainfall in fifty-three years, Herbert was paired with Ken Anderson, to prepare storyboards. Given subject, one would have thought, the added outside thunder, would have aided, imagination.
                    But, no flash was to be had, from any clash.
                    They dulled at a movie, that seemed mostly of maps, with animated arrows. To keep themselves amused, they clipped pictures from girlie magazines, and tacked them all along the wall; such new, improved project, now proclaimed, in bold banner:
                    Victory Through Hair Power.
                    Walt did not find the humor. 
                    --Warp and Weft by John Stanley Donaldson
                    A small excerpt from Donaldson's memoir/lyrical biography of Herbert Ryman. It is not the first time that I laughed out loud while reading this distinct work. It is quite the eye-opener! The book can be purchased directly from John's website.

                    Tuesday, July 6, 2010

                    Marketed this Spring as a New Attraction, Not a New Movie

                    From the Winter 1985-86 Disneyana Collector:
                    This billboard at Disneyland publicizes Captain EO, the 3-D musical narrative film that will play exclusively at the new Space Stage Theater at Disneyland and at the Magic Eye Theater at Epcot Center. The 12-minute space fantasy features original songs written, produced and sung by superstar Michael Jackson and alien creatures produced by WED "lmagìneers." Captain EO will be marketed this spring as a new attraction, not a new movie. George Lucas is the executive producer of Captain EO; Francis Ford Coppola is the director.

                    Monday, July 5, 2010

                    Book (and CD) Update

                    • Disneylander July 1960 (A Club 55 reprint from 1977)

                    I love that the book still has the original Disneyland price sticker on the inside front cover!
                     Notice that the tax was already included on the sticker to make checkout quicker and easier.

                    Solid Air Records sent a review copy of Richard Sherman's latest audio project. You can read my review of their earlier Sherman Brothers release.

                    Sunday, July 4, 2010

                    I'm A Yankee Noodle Dandy!

                    Let's celebrate the Fourth of July with some good old-fashioned treats from Walt Disney's Mickey Mouse Cookbook: Favorite Recipes from Mickey and His Friends!

                    First up is Jiminy Cricket's Yankee Noodle Dandy, a mixture of chicken noodle soup and hot dogs. Talk about an all-American fare.

                    Rounding up our meal are two desserts that help carry the Red, White and Blue theme of the day. Jiminy Cricket returns with a Cherry Vanilla Freeze that is sure to cool you off on a hot July day.

                    Scrooge McDuck shares his award-winning recipe (how he really got all of that gold) for Blueberry Crunch. Of course, he is giving a discount to all of his nephews!

                    Friday, July 2, 2010

                    Geek-End Update (Festooned Edition), Saturday, July 3, 2010

                    The Progress City, USA boys have released their THIRD Progcast. Make sure you check it out!