Wednesday, April 23, 2014

In Disney News...

It's time for the April Disney News roundup!

...Earlier this week D23 released the cover of its upcoming Summer 2014 issue, featuring Angelina Jolie as MALEFICENT (2014). More details on the issue will be released soon.

...The Walt Disney Family Museum in San Francisco hosts the exhibit Magic, Color, Flair: The Art of Mary Blair through September 7, 2014. Photos can be seen at MiceChat, and the San Francisco Chronicle ran an article on Blair and the exhibit. A related book by exhibit curator and animation historian John Canemaker will be released on May 7th, and an updated edition of Canemaker's excellent 2003 book THE ART AND FLAIR OF MARY BLAIR is due out on May 20th.

...As mentioned in February, I was given more than passing thought to attending D23's Destination D: Attraction Rewind in Orlando this summer. The two-day event will feature multiple panel presentations on Disney at the 1964 World's Fair as well as focus on favorite rides of the past such as America Sings and Monsanto's Adventure Through Inner Space. Unfortunately, Disney unexpectedly shifted the date from July to the weekend before Thanksgiving, which makes my attendance much more unlikely. I'm disappointed that Destination D isn't in Anaheim this year and wish Disney would consider hosting a duplicate weekend in California, particularly as so much of the weekend focuses on Disneyland attractions. Destination D weekends are always packed, and I suspect they could fill weekends on both coasts.

...A new book on the '64 World's Fair: TOMORROW-LAND: THE 1964-65 WORLD'S FAIR AND THE TRANSFORMATION OF AMERICA by Joseph Tirella.

...I also recommend a deluxe CD set, Walt Disney and the World's Fair, which came out for the fair's 45th anniversary in 2009.

...The D23 Expo returns to Anaheim for three days, August 14-16, 2015. I again plan to attend the entire Expo!

...In late February Disney launched a streaming service, Disney Movies Anywhere.

...I'm excited about the book DISNEY DURING WORLD WAR II by John Baxter, due out October 28th. It's a fascinating topic. One of the interesting older books on this subject is DISNEY DONS DOGTAGS: THE BEST OF DISNEY MILITARY INSIGNIA FROM WORLD WAR II.

...The New York Times had a long but fascinating story by Ron Suskind, "Reaching My Autistic Son Through Disney," excerpted from Suskind's new book, LIFE, ANIMATED: A STORY OF SIDEKICKS, HEROES, AND AUTISM.

...Pixar plans to reissue THE INCREDIBLES (2004) and RATATOUILLE (2007) in 3D.

...Coming June 17th, a book by Disney historian Charles Solomon, timed to tie in with the release of MALEFICENT: ONCE UPON A DREAM: FROM PERRAULT'S SLEEPING BEAUTY TO DISNEY'S MALEFICENT. The cover also features scenes from Disney's animated SLEEPING BEAUTY (1959). Given how much I love the Disney cartoon it's safe to say that the book will be a "must buy" for me.

...Chris Pine is set to star in a '50s Coast Guard drama for Disney, THE FINEST HOURS. It's based on the book THE FINEST HOURS: THE TRUE STORY OF THE U.S. COAST GUARD'S MOST DARING SEA RESCUE by Michael J. Tougias and Casey Sherman.

...A Disney remake of SOMETHING WICKED THIS WAY COMES (1983), based on the book by Walt Disney's friend Ray Bradbury, is in the works.

...Brand-new book: THE IMAGINEERING FIELD GUIDE TO DISNEY CALIFORNIA ADVENTURE. I have five other books in this series, on Disneyland and the four Florida parks, and am delighted that now that California Adventure has been successfully remodeled it will have its own book.

...Oswald the Lucky Rabbit recently debuted at Tokyo DisneySea. Oswald belongs at Oswald's Gas Station on Buena Vista Street in Disney California Adventure, so I'm hoping he shows up there soon.

...Gizmodo has interesting designs for a ski resort Disney discussed building in the Sequoia area in the '60s...and BuzzFeed has some very nice color photos of Disneyland in 1955.

...Disneyland is hosting a series of after-hours parties at California Adventure aimed at renewing annual passholders; the next event, titled "Here Comes Summer!" is aimed at passholders renewing between June 18 and September 6. We attended an after-hours St. Patrick's Day party last month, and I have to say it was one of the rare times Disney has let us down. They weren't prepared for the deluge of annual passholders who arrived to check in shortly before the party started, resulting in an endless line that circled around the Esplanade and entrance to the park well after the party started, plus the holiday offerings seemed to consist mostly of green water fountains in Paradise Bay and entertainment by the Green Army Men. Let's hope the summer party is better organized. By contrast, we had a fantastic time at a Fantasyland party back in 2011.

...Take a look at these fantastic new Mondo Posters created for a number of older Disney films...and there's one for FROZEN (2013) which is absolutely fantastic.

...Disney plans an It's a Small World movie?!

...The Disney Parks Blog takes a look at some of the details in Disneyland's It's a Small World, which debuted at the New York World's Fair half a century ago before moving to Disneyland permanently in 1966.

...Here's MiceChat on rumored plans for Disneyland's 60th anniversary next year.

...Selling online only through Sunday, April 27th: T-shirts celebrating the 50th anniversary of It's a Small World and the Carousel of Progress. Disney has been trying out the t-shirt equivalent of "MOD" DVDs, taking preorders for special t-shirts and then filling them a few weeks later. My husband was very happy with his Disneyland Railroad shirt, as seen in the February roundup.

...Earlier this month the New York Times ran an article on Disney World's Magic Bands. The feedback I'm getting from friends and internet sources is not very good, with issues including standby lines for rides which didn't previously have Fast Passes now being much longer.

...I just purchased Charles Solomon's THE ART OF THE DISNEY GOLDEN BOOKS, first mentioned here last September, and am very impressed. It's filled with beautiful, nostalgic book covers and illustrations; the pages inside the front and back covers, featuring cover art for numerous Disney Little Golden Books, is gorgeous. This is going to be a wonderful read.

...A great idea at Disneyland: the "Almost Tall Enough" card, given to children who aren't yet quite tall enough to safely ride the newly reopened Big Thunder Mountain Railroad. The card can be saved and used as a Fastpass once the child is tall enough to ride.

...I finally rode on Big Thunder last Saturday and can report I was extremely impressed, it was an amazingly smooth ride and the new "explosion" effects are spectacular.

...Attention Southern Californians: Disney's next "Throwback Thursday" screening at the El Capitan Theatre will be THE LITTLE MERMAID (1989) on June 26th at 7:00 p.m. Throwback Thursdays have lower General Admission prices, with the $10 ticket including free popcorn and soda. It's a great deal, and the screenings are usually filled with enthusiastic Disney fans.

...The El Capitan Theatre is currently showing BEARS (2014), with MILLION DOLLAR ARM (2014) coming May 16th through 26th and MALEFICENT (2014) on May 30th through July 17th.

...I have tickets to a free D23 screening of MILLION DOLLAR ARM at Downtown Disney next week, a couple of weeks ahead of its May 16th release date. Look for my review in a few days! The advance buzz on this film starring John Hamm (MAD MEN) is positive.

...Our family team, Skippers in De Nile, will once again be playing in the twice-yearly MouseAdventure game at Disneyland this Sunday, April 27th. This time around the game is titled "Card Games - Deuces Wild."

For more recent Disney links, please visit the Disney News posts for January and February.


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