SEARCH SITE

 

FEATURED

OUR SPONSORS
TWITTER
MORE FEATURED

 

 

LINKS

TAGS
Abandoned Disney (8) Adventure Thru Inner Space (2) Adventureland (12) America Sings (1) Animal Kingdom (2) Animation (19) Animatronics (20) Area Music (7) Backyard Imagineering (5) Behind-the-Scenes (39) Big Thunder Mountain (3) California Adventure (5) Captain E.O. (1) Carousel of Progress (12) Castle (7) Characters (6) Club 33 (1) Concept (13) Construction (15) Country Bear Jamboree (2) Death (2) Disney Channel (1) Disneyland (47) Disney-MGM Studios (1) Donald Duck (3) Entertainment (5) Epcot (28) Fantasyland (15) Fess Parker (1) Film (25) Frito Kid (4) Frontierland (13) Germany (1) Hall of Presidents (4) Haunted Mansion (10) Hidden Mickeys (2) Holidays (1) Hollywood Studios (1) Horizons (3) House of the Future (1) Illustration (3) Imagineering (1) John Lasseter (4) Journey Into Imagination (2) Jungle Cruise (15) Lake Buena Vista (1) Liberty Square (3) Lillian Disney (2) Ludwig Von Drake (1) Magic Kingdom (23) Main Street U.S.A (11) Maintenance (1) Management (5) Maps (13) Marc Davis (8) Marty Sklar (3) Matterhorn (3) Monorail (2) Mr. Lincoln (3) Muppets (2) Music (3) Mystery (9) Nature's Wonderland (7) New Orleans Square (6) Orange Bird (2) Paul Frees (1) PeopleMover (6) Peter Pan (2) Photos (1) Pirates of the Caribbean (9) Pixar (5) Pleasure Island (1) Podcast (1) Progress City (1) Props (2) Railroad (2) Resorts (2) River Country (4) Rivers of America (2) Roy Disney (1) Scale Models (18) Skyway (3) Song of the South (2) Sound Effects (2) Souvenirs (1) Space (3) Space Mountain (4) Splash Mountain (1) Tangled (2) The Living Seas (1) Then and Now (17) Tiki Birds (2) Tilt Shift (2) Tomorrowland (35) Tomorrowland 67 (4) Treehouse (1) Walt Disney (15) Walt Disney Family (7) Walt Disney Family Museum (1) Walt Disney World (6) Ward Kimball (1) Wonders of Life (1) World of Motion (2) World's Fair (2) Yeti (1)
MORE MORE FEATURED


Orange Bird Photo Hunt

EVEN MORE FEATURED

ADMINISTRATORS
« I Miss Paul Frees | Main | I Love it When They Get Things Right »
Saturday
Apr242010

ABANDONED DISNEY: Country Bear- Max


Don't ask me why but I love looking at the inside of animatronics as much as I enjoy looking at the outside.  I'm a fan of Country Bear Jamboree and it's Marc Davis style.  More than anything I like watching a room full of entertaining animatronics do their thing.

The photo?  This photo of the broken down "Max" head was taken a few years back in none other than Magic Kingdom's Haunted Mansion itself.  It was collecting dust under the elevated Doom Buggy track in the Séance (Madame Leota) Room.  Before declaring it completely "abandoned", I must make an educated guess that it is/was used for parts.  Duplicate animatronics exist for many, but not all, figures in the parks so one can be fixed while the other stays in the attraction.  Could this have come from Disneyland? Don't know.  I'd love to know how much was sent to Florida in the weeks that followed that sad day in 2001 when the Playhouse closed to make way for Pooh.

Marc Davis Concept Art

Did you know?...

· Disneyland had two identical theaters to handle high capacity. One long lobby with two theater entrances.  Ever notice?  I was in there one night back in the 90's and went in the wrong door, noticing a mirrored image of the theater I had just seen.  Remember the cool coin-operated machines in that lobby?  Foot massagers and stuff.

· Magic Kingdom was the first to get Country Bear Jamboree, not Disneyland.    

· The show was originally intended for Disney's Mineral King Resort

· California Adventure's Grizzly Peak area will never get a rebuilt version of Country Bear Jamboree (like rumors have said) because cool things like that never get built anymore, especially in DCA.

· Marc Davis hated the idea of Christmas and summer versions of Country Bear. (Confirmed by his wife, Alice Davis when I asked her about things that ticked off the late genius.  She said, "he never understood why they didn't just leave these things alone.  They just make them worse when they mess with them".  Well said, Alice.

References (4)

References allow you to track sources for this article, as well as articles that were written in response to this article.
  • Response
    Response: e health cigarette
    [...]ABANDONED DISNEY: Country Bear- Max - Imagineering Disney -[...]
  • Response
    ABANDONED DISNEY: Country Bear- Max - Imagineering Disney -
  • Response
    Response: Source
    Good Web site, Continue the wonderful job. Thanks for your time.
  • Response
    855 You will want nine dark strips and 8 white strips with the weave. The sole regular that is still within our kid's life, yr in, 12 months out, louis vuitton multiple wallet appears to be their just about phobic distaste for strolling.

Reader Comments (27)

I can only imagine what he'd say if he survived to see the messes POTC & IASW @ Disneyland have become!

April 25, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterKevin

For reals! Poor Marc Davis. He's gone.. no wonder Disney sucks at making entertaining attractions nowadays.

April 25, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterAnonymous

It breaks the heart to see a beloved character, from an even MORE beloved show, being tossed aside as scrap! Here's a thought - SCRAP the Winnie the Pooh ride! That thing needs to be put out of it's misery!

April 25, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterEric Ross

Now that's scary in an Epic Mickey fashion. Couldn't agree with the Davis family more. Found on the Haunted Mansion floor? Are things as disorganized as they seem, or only to an outsider? Spill your guts!

April 25, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterFiFiPhoggs

Oh yea and one more thought, any chance this could be from the Mile Long Bar? Likely not.

April 25, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterFiFiPhoggs

AAAAHHHH! That thing's scary!

April 25, 2010 | Unregistered Commenterfigment34786

Haha, it IS quite Epic Mickey like! Lol :P

April 25, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterKevin

Hey, that can't be possible, they still have the old heads inside the winnie the pooh ride!

http://www.davelandweb.com/crittercountry/popup.htm?images/cbj/DSC_5704.jpg

April 25, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterEmma Leavitt

i guess it is a duplicate

April 25, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterEmma Leavitt

Yeah and Marc liked Pirates in Florida better than the one in California. Go figure.

April 26, 2010 | Unregistered Commentermiddlebrow

Didn't Marc like Paris' Pirates best because it wasn't "backwards"? The skeletons come AFTER the living pirates, right?

April 26, 2010 | Unregistered Commentermolly_tompson_88

K did he really like Florida's Pirates better than California's? Maybe he liked the location in Florida better seeing how it was in Caribbean Plaza and the queue is more pirate like? But the ride itself has fewer of his show scenes.

April 27, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterTL98H8R

Someone above mentioned the Mile Long Bar....it's highly possible that "Max" is from the interior wall from the Mile Long Bar, before the wall was removed for the Pecos Bill expansion. The three heads used to sing "Come Again" from that location (opposite the attraction exit doors) as the crowds exited the Country Bear Theatre. It was always funny to see the heads come to life and the surprise of the guests that were not coming from the Theatre. For those that hadn't yet seen the Country Bears, these three singing heads must have been perplexing.

April 30, 2010 | Unregistered Commentersteve2wdw

You know, in all my years of going to disneyland, I don't think I have ever been in country bears. Maybe once back when I was 4, but I have no memory of it. Every time I was there it was shut down for one reason or another. My husband and I are taking our young sons to disneyland on wednesday and we were actually recommended to go on the Pooh ride by my parents. They informed us that the ride was "darling" and that it was a great new addition to the park. But now I'm hearing that the ride needs to be put out of it's misery? Why?

May 1, 2010 | Unregistered Commenterdisney obsessor

Moving, talking duplicates of the three heads used to be on the wall of the restaurant next door to CBJ. A longstanding family memory, mid 70s, is of my dad lifting up my sister so she could touch the bison's beard--and they all happened to start talking at that exact moment. Their banter was not a rerun from the show, it was separate material.

They were removed at least ten years ago. I'd bet that's where this Max head came from.

May 19, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterJay Pennington

This article only serves as further proof that you folks are way too negative, pessimistic and wrong to be taken seriously.

May 27, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterWDWLocal

That image of dismantled Max on the sub-floor of my former home is nightmarish to me.

I can't imagine why.

May 29, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterH. B. Ghost

That broken Max makes me so sad. I loved the talking heads at the Mile Long Bar. As a kid I once stood for nearly an hour, watching them activate and move and talk. And now they're gone. Who the HELL makes such boneheaded decisions at Disney these days? Dumping a cool bit of technology to add a few more tables to a restaurant. Whatever happened to "plussing" the Disney guest experience?

Nowadays Universal is totally eating Disney's lunch when it comes to building great attractions. Walt would have a fit if he knew.

September 10, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterPoor Cecco

Am I the only one that actually never gave a rats ass about The Country Bears? I avoid it like the plague every trip

September 17, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterThe Ninja Pirate

Hey. If you look back in The Many Adventures of Winnie the Pooh ride at Disneyland as you're entering the Heffalumps part (I think), you can see Max and the other two heads still attached to the wall. So he's not completely gone. =)

September 25, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterRiv

I disagree with Marc. I admire him and love his great legacy of course, but I think he was being a tad ridiculous. So when an attraction first goes in it's 100% perfect and never needs any improvements or changes ever? That's a bit extreme. Personally, I enjoy the Christmas and Vacation themed shows as much if not more than the original show. And it's not like they replaced the original show, those are just seasonal changes.

As for the Max head, lighten up people. Like the article said, there are several versions of most animatronics for backup purposes. It's not as if there is just one Max figure that ever existed and that beloved figure was thrown callously on the floor. Chill, relax folks.

October 9, 2010 | Unregistered Commenterzf

Watch out kiddies... Max will... GET YOU!

Well the good news is that the original show had never been completely dumped. Now someone said they don't give a Stas Sas about the CBJ, and that’s fine, even if they might be of the Space Ranger persuasion. ;) CBJ is there however to fit another niche, doing it well. That’s when the original show counts. I’d say variations are fine for sure as long as the original never gets lost indefinitely.

October 31, 2010 | Unregistered Commenterphilphoggs

steve2wdw, oh yes very much so!

In fact, the Mile Long Bar is one of the very few memories I have from my trip when I was 4 years old. I walked in and....saw three disembodied animal heads hanging on the right wall. I....had no idea why either. Bear in mind this was before I fully grasped the concept of taxidermy. Did I mention that my trip was in 1986, and the animatronics apparently weren't working for whatever reason, probably due to the Country Bear show being converted to the Vacation Hoedown for a time?

And believe me, these three guys stuck in my head for a very long time; I didn't even know they were animatronic until I saw 'em again when I was 9 years old. And I insisted on eating dinner at the then-newly christened Pecos Bill's Tall Tale Inn and Cafe just to watch them do their thing for a while.

In my mid teens, I decided to look up the Pecos Bill Cafe online, and see if I could find anything on them. By then, they'd been taken out. I half-put them out of my mind at the time due to this.

One night in the very early part of last decade, coming home with a now ex-friend from seeing a movie, she told me she'd really been to WDW with her friend, and saw the Country Bear Jamboree. At this point, I'd *still* never heard of it. But then....she mentioned some \\\"singing heads\\\", and I asked her what they were in passing. She said \\\"a bison, a deer, and a moose\\\". Bells went off in my head, and upon getting home, I spent hours looking up the CBJ. Sure enough, there they were, and...what's this? THEY HAD NAMES!!!!!!!! \\\"Bear\\\" in mind this was before Youtube, or Google. So all I had to go on were a few pictures and some sound clips from a website; also a CBJ Mailing List on Yahoo.

A few years passed, and we tragically lost my mother at a very young age. That year, we decided to go see her family down in Florida, but for a few days they wouldn't be available so we'd have to occupy our time elsewhere. I said to my Dad \\\"why don't we go to Disney World? I...want to check something out there\\\".

So we went, and I saw the Jamboree...and I loved every minute of it. It's now my favorite attraction, and they are the reason why....though Henry's up there too in my book.

And today, I think back to those moments in the Mile Long Bar, and it's like my \\\"happy place\\\" mentally; how d'ya like that? ':B-)

February 28, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterRuss

Incorrect. If you ride Winnie the Pooh, the location of the original CBJ theatre, you can clearly see the three heads INTACT. It is in the HUNNY SPILL room. When your bee hive enters, look up and BEHIND you. You will see all three heads. Sorry to spoil your post.

May 2, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterDavid

David-

Remember... Disneyland had TWO Country Bear theaters. There were two sets of mounted heads and most likely a third set used as spares. Correct, one set remains in Pooh today.

May 2, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterMitch

It is nice to see that we have a quote from Marc Davis saying that changing original ideas was ruining them...I believe that very thing. I miss CBJ and wish they would have kept it so my children could have the memories I have. They are too old for Winnie The Pooh, as most of us are. It seems lame to me that they have such a "kiddie" ride all the way in that land instead of putting it in between Fantasyland and Toontown or something. Also, they should have never changed anything about the Haunted Mansion (example; never bringing their "Nightmare Before Christmas" theme to it), and POTC (as much as I love Johnny Depp and the movie franchise) they should have left well enough alone...this was a nostalgic ride, a trip back into many of our childhood's. As the saying goes.."if it ain't broke, why fix it?"

September 6, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterJ'aime

How did you get under there?

February 8, 2014 | Unregistered CommenterAndrew

PostPost a New Comment

Enter your information below to add a new comment.
Author Email (optional):
Author URL (optional):
Post:
 
Some HTML allowed: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <code> <em> <i> <strike> <strong>