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Wednesday
Dec162009

Roy E. Disney Dies at 79

We are very sad to announce the passing of Roy E. Disney.  He helped save the Disney Company more than once.  He contributed to Disney film making, he supported Disney animation and parks when other company executives would not.  He led the "Save Disney Campaign" in 2004, ultimately leading to the resignation of Eisner.  He knew Walt (his uncle) well and always tried to stand for what he represented.  As a child he literally sat at the feet of Walt to hear first-hand the ideas of the genius himself.

Official Company Statement


A Message from Bob Iger, CEO, The Walt Disney Company: Roy E. Disney Passes
 
Dear Cast Members,

It is with great sadness that I inform you of the passing of our friend and colleague Roy E. Disney. After a courageous year-long fight with stomach cancer, he passed away peacefully this morning at Hoag Hospital in Newport Beach, surrounded by his loving family.

Roy played an important role in our lives here at Disney, and in the success of our Company over many years. Along the way, he touched many of us in a personal way. During his 56-year association with the Company, his true passion and focus was preserving and building upon the amazing legacy of Disney animation that was started by his father and uncle. His commitment to the art of animation was unparalleled and will always remain his personal legacy and one of the greatest contributions to Disney's past, present and future.

Roy not only helped to keep the legacy alive, but he also embraced new technologies, and gave the filmmakers the tools they needed to tell their stories in new and exciting ways. He encouraged talent, and loved working with the creative community. And they loved working with him.

Roy was a Disney Legend in every sense of the word, and his contributions to this great Company have been profound and will always be remembered. For the next week we will be flying the Disney flag at half mast here at the Studio and at our parks, and I know you join me in sending thoughts and prayers to Roy's wife, Leslie, his four children, and his 16 grandchildren. For those who wish to pay their respects, the family has requested that donations be made in Roy's name to the California International Sailing Association (CISA) to benefit youth sailing.
 

Bob

Wednesday
Dec162009

HORIZONS MURAL, "The Prologue and the Promise" [ High Res ]

click to enlarge

Remember leaving Horizons and seeing this Robert McCall highly detailed masterpiece?  Boy, the future sure looks great.  I can't wait to wear tight-fitting jump suits with my wife and kids and our dog, standing on a grass hill overlooking our cool-looking city.

Click on the image below for a high resolution version of this image.  It may take a couple of minutes to fully load, for it is pretty large.  I have yet to see another image of this mural on the web at such high quality.  It's a scan from a print I once borrowed from a friend at WDI who has an amazing collection of EPCOT Center printed materials.


Here you see Robert McCall in action.  It appears he has some help.  I just noticed in the above high res image there are two signatures.  One from Robert T. McCall and one from Louise McCall (his wife).  Check out the smaller canvas of "The Prologue and the Promise" behind Louise- used for reference, no doubt.  Anyone know where that smaller one is today??

Related links:
http://www.mccallstudios.com/index.html  
http://mesaverdetimes.blogspot.com/ 
http://futureprobe.blogspot.com/2009/04/art-of-bob-mccall.html

Monday
Dec142009

"A Jolly Holiday" Attraction Concept

Concept by Lilly

Imagine. You are walking down the lane on the streets of England in EPCOTʼs World Showcase. As you pass where the British Invasion plays on your left, straight ahead is the beginning of a queue for A Jolly Holiday.

England continues as you walk inside a building where the queue continues, you turn a corner and realize you are on Cherry Tree Lane. You walk by Admiral Boomʼs house where an animatronic Admiral Boom and Mr. Binnacle are washing windows or getting ready for cannons on the hour. He shouts things like “Time Gun ready?” or shouts to guests in the queue things like “Good afternoon to you, young man. Where are you bound?” and “A word of advice, young man. Storm signals are up at number 17. Bit of heavy weather brewing there.”

And sure enough when as you walk by number 17 on Cherry Tree Lane, you can hear Ellen and Mrs. Brill shouting at each other at the top of their lungs.

Then on your right you notice some chalk drawings. They are Burtʼs drawings from the film. As you turn the corner into a new room you see the exact same chalk drawings now talking up an entire wall, except you can walk through the center one–the one of the English countryside.

As you walk into the next room you find yourself inside the chalk drawing. It is colorful and the walls have projections of flowers turning into butterflies. You walk over a white bridge that goes over a little stream. Then you come to a door. The door opens and a gentlemen or lady costumed as an attendant at the country fair, usher just the right amount of people into a loading room.

In the loading room is a carrousel of horses and benches (for wheelchair/people who donʼt want to ride a horse). Everyone loads and the carrousel begins to turn. All the horses go up and down.

A wall opens and there are animatronics of Burt and Mary Poppins on their carrousel horses. Bert says, “Very nice. Very nice, indeed, if you don't wanna go nowhere.” Mary replies “Who says we're not going anywhere? Oh, guard!”

At that moment a window on either side of the guard opens up and the guard says “Righto, Mary Poppins.”

Then another wall opens and reveals a passage way and the horses and benches leave the carrousel and travel through the scenes from the chalk drawing sequence in the film starting with a fox hunt, then the horserace, then Supercalifragilisticexpialidocious. Mary, Bert, Jane and Michael of course make appearances throughout the adventure. At the end of Supercalifragilisticexpialidocious, it begins to rain and the chalk begins to run and wash away. You turn a corner and find yourself back in England where you dismount your horses and exit the attraction. The exit would dump you right into the character meet and greet that already exists for Mary Poppins and you would be able to meet with Mary–who off course denies everything and doesnʼt know what youʼre talking about. (We would kick Pooh and friends out of the Mary Poppins room along with Alice, how did they get into Mary Poppinsʼ story anyway?)

The best part of the attraction will be that the carrousel horses continue to move up and down throughout the adventure. As a concept of how to make that happen, I shot this footage of a baggage claim.

[Footage coming soon]

You would create large floor pieces that look like this and each piece would have a horse or a bench. It would be similar to Ellen's Energy Adventure. Then a bar at the top that goes throughout the attraction would turn the top of the pole and help the horse go up and down just like a real carrousel.

The show building would be as shown in the above illustration. Where the World Show Place now sits. This building was originally built for the millennium as the Millennium Village. but now has turned into a building used for the Food and Wine Festival and other special events. I think A Jolly Holiday will be a much better use of space.