Saturday, July 19, 2008

If you don't know yet Kevin Kidney's blog , here is why you should rush to it right now !

I've let you know in a previous post all the good things that i think about Kevin Kidney and Jody Daily fantastic work. You know, Kevin and Jody are these two great sculptors who created the Disneyland 50th anniversary collectibles that were on sale on Disney Shopping two years ago. More recently, they've participated to the Tiki Room anniversary collectibles released last month - yes, the beautiful Tiki Fountain was designed by them.

But Kevin have also his own Miehana blog, where he post regularly extremely rare and old Disneyland artwork like this original Tomorrowland pencil sketches "for a 1955 newspaper section presenting some of the "many delights and wonders that are yours to enjoy at Disneyland."

Or this one showing a Bank of America Main Street building "in an authentic, turn-of-the-century setting".

And this great one of Disneyland Red Wagon Inn - one of the "charming eating places in Disneyland".

Many of them are in full colours like this one showing Main Street old lamplighter - in fact you will even see the two versions - first the pencil sketch then the colour version.

And also this great painting of Fantasyland galleon - Chicken to the sea restaurant.

Most of you will discover these Chemitron exhibit which took place in Tomorrowland Monsanto's Hall of Chemistry attraction a loooong time ago!

You see, there is literally dozens of never-seen-before artwork on Kevin's blog. And i don't mention the fantastic piece of art that Kevin just post on his blog yesterday to celebrate Disneyland's 53rd anniversary...For all these good reasons, you should really rush to Kevin's Miehana blog and put it in your bookmarks as there is many more treasures to come!

Artwork: copyright Disney - Many thanks to Kevin, and keep up the great work!

Friday, July 18, 2008

Ratatouille's Remy Audio-Animatronic at WDS Rendez-vous des Stars restaurant best video

The excellent web site was most successful than i was when they went at Walt Disney Studios Rendez-vous des Stars restaurant, as Remy's Audio-animatronic was there. The result? Simply the best video so far of this WDI small audio animatronic.

It seems that Remy have two or three different"shows" with different kind of movements. it's a cute addition to the WDS and once you've seen the video, just go to their excellent web site to discover the latest news and pictures about Paris Walt Disney Studios!

Video: copyright

Thursday, July 17, 2008

Editor's note: On Miceage Al Lutz did a great tribute to this 53rd anniversary with Cinemascope pictures of Disneyland view from above in 1956, it's great and you can see it HERE once you've read the big news below and the Disney and more Disneyland 53rd anniversary tribute below!

Disneyland prepares to re-open Sleeping Beauty Castle Walkthrough !

A GREAT news today for this Disneyland 53rd anniversary as it was officially announced that the Sleeping Beauty castle walk-through will be back in december! And not only it will be back, but it will be rebuild exactly like the original in 1957!

Here is the full Disney press release:

July 17, 2008 - Anaheim, CA - The interior of Sleeping Beauty Castle at Disneyland will open in time for the December holiday season, offering guests a “reawakened” version of its classic walkthrough presentation kissed with vibrant scenes of Aurora, her charming prince, the evil Maleficent and other characters from the beloved fairy tale film.

“It is fitting that we are announcing the return of a classic on the 53rd anniversary of Disneyland,” said Tony Baxter, Senior Vice President of Creative Development for Walt Disney Imagineering, who unveiled a model of the castle on July 17, the birthday of Disneyland park.

Next year marks the 50th anniversary of Walt Disney’s “Sleeping Beauty,” and the excitement generated by the anniversary of the motion picture spurred interest in the return of the Disneyland attraction.

Also celebrating the milestone 50th Anniversary of “Sleeping Beauty” is Walt Disney Studios Home Entertainment, which will release a two-disc Platinum Blu-ray™ Hi-Def disc, making “Sleeping Beauty” the first Walt Disney animated classic title to be released in high definition, as well as on two-disc Platinum DVD. A bonus feature on the new release will be “The Original Sleeping Beauty Walk-Through Attraction With Walt Disney Imagineering,” an immersive experience recreating the original castle walkthrough.

On April 29, 1957, nearly two years before the premiere of Walt Disney’s animated feature “Sleeping Beauty,” the Sleeping Beauty Castle Walkthrough opened with an in-park ceremony featuring Walt Disney and actress Shirley Temple who, some 20 years earlier, had presented Disney with his special Academy Award – one Oscar and seven little ones – for “Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs.”

The crafting of the 1957 walkthrough show fell to Walt Disney Imagineer Ken Anderson and animation art director and color stylist Eyvind Earle, credited with giving the motion picture “Sleeping Beauty” the distinctive and colorful look of storybook illustrations in medieval style. An entirely new look appeared in 1977 when the attraction’s redesign featured miniature dioramas, including moving figurines similar to the window displays in the shops on Main Street, U.S.A.

When the attraction is unveiled later this year, the “show” will differ from the dioramas of the 1980s and ‘90s, returning to the unique style of the original 1957 show and motion picture. Enhanced with new scenes and special effects magic, the re-Imagineered attraction will employ technology not available in the 1950s to represent scenes from the story of Sleeping Beauty, including the magic of good fairies Flora, Fauna and Merryweather, and the more sinister spells of the evil Maleficent.

For the first time, guests who are unable to climb stairs or navigate the passageways of the Castle will be able to experience the walkthrough “virtually” in a special room on the ground floor of the Castle.

Artwork: copyright Disney

Wednesday, July 16, 2008

Disneyland 53rd Anniversary Special ! The very first renderings and Disneyland souvenir book pictorial high-res pictures

It's Disneyland 53th Anniversary today! And to celebrate it, here is a pictorial and artwork article that you should like - well, i hope!

When the park opened its gates on July,17 1955 guests could already find a souvenir book. But because the park was not finished yet when they printed the book, instead of photos, the reader could find inside renderings - the very first Disneyland renderings ever print inside a book. Some were in colour, others only black and white sketches. Here they are, beginning by the one for Main Street.

These are the one for Adventureland

And those were on the Frontierland pages.

For Fantasyland, the main rendering was showing of course the castle, but also sketches for some Fantasyland attractions.

The main rendering for Tomorrowland was showing the entrance of the land with the "Clock of the Future" and sketches of the Tomorrowland rocket.

Along the years - each year in fact - the popular souvenir books changed, and of course these had pictures of the park.

Here below are pictures of the 1957, 1959, 1963, 1968, 1972, 1978 souvenir books covers. All of them are in high-res, and should look fine on your computer desktop if you wish to use it as "wallpaper". Double-click on each cover to see them in big size.

For all of you who will be in the park today, enjoy the 53th anniversary, and bring us back some video of the celebration!

Artwork and Disneyland Souvenir books Photos: copyright Disney
Editor's note: Want to know what kind of new attractions WDI Imagineers are planning to build at WDW Magic Kingdom's Fantayland in a near future ? Then, do-not-miss the Blue Sky Buzz Orlando article of Honor Hunter on his excellent Blue Sky Disney blog HERE.

And did you ever wish to be invited into Pixar Animation Studios at Emeryville, California and have a tour inside the secret headquarter? Well, the lucky guys of Rotten Tomatoes did it, and they bring back a photo tour that you can see HERE

Tuesday, July 15, 2008

Hong Kong Disneyland Main Street Haunted Hotel - Photos and Videos

I would like to take a minute or two - well, a whole post, actually! - to come back to one of the most interesting elements of Hong Kong Disneyland Halloween season last year. I did a long post about it last september with pictures and videos, but all the videos shown only the new - and great - Halloween parade.

The other new element for Hong Kong Disneyland Halloween was in fact totally unique to the park. I mean, it was something that had never been built before by WDI Imagineers in any Disney theme park: the Main Street Haunted Hotel. Although you can see on the publicity shot above Jack Skellington, no characters of Nightmare before Christmas were involved in the Haunted hotel.

The Main Street Haunted Hotel was the first ever walk-through haunted house in a Disney theme park. You probably know that the first concept of the Haunted mansion was supposed to be a walk-through. Finally, it ended to be the ride we know, but Hong Kong Disneyland guests could really walk-through in a Haunted house - probably because the Haunted mansion didn't exist yet in the park - it will in the future.

Also, and quite surprising for a Magic Kingdom attraction was the "macabre" theming of this Haunted Hotel - look at the pictures below to see what i mean!

The synopsis in the press release was pretty clear about the mood: "As the edgiest walk-through Haunted Hotel experience ever presented by a Disney theme park, living haunts and specters will appear around ever corner of this hotel. A Hollywood class production team created this thrilling attraction filled with eye-opening scene settings, audio and theatrical effects and spooky show direction. With multiple heart pounding scenarios, Guests will creep fearfully through this once graceful and elegant hotel that has not seen the light of day for a century!"

The park did two short promotional videos , here is the first one

And here is the other one, with no young actors and a different editing

But the one which is really interesting is this one below who goes from present to past, tell the "legend" behind this haunted hotel, and show what kind of dreadful events happened there a long time ago. It's exactly the kind of video that we've seen at the opening of the Tower of Terror different versions, but here, it is about the story "behind" the Hong Kong Disneyland Main Street Haunted Hotel. Have a look!

It will be interesting to see if in two months on the next HKD Halloween season, this Main Street Haunted Hotel will "re-open" again...I'll let you know!

Photos and videos: copyright Hong Kong Disneyland

Monday, July 14, 2008

Editor's note: According to Jim Hill, Shanghai Disneyland is a "go" and should be announced this fall, after the Beijing Olympic games. If Jim is right, that's good news, specially considering that it will be the biggest Magic Kingdom ever built. You can read the full Jim Hill article HERE
On Disney and More today,a new Disneyland Paris update with videos of the new Ratatouille character AA, and don't miss the new pictures of the Tokyo Disneyland Hotel Gardens, right after!

Disneyland Paris update - Summer at the Magic Kingdom, Ratatouille Audio-animatronic, and July 14 firework video !

First, for those of you who were not at DLP last night for the July 14 firework, here is a - new - Daily Motion video filmed by dlrp-team, and this one shows the whole firework. Please note that the firework begin after the first 50 seconds.

It's full summer at Disneyland Paris, and flowers are everywhere! On the esplanade between the Magic Kingdom and the Walt Disney Studios...

In Fantasia gardens...

And at the Disneyland Hotel and park's entrance

But something really odd happened on Town Square: One of the building located in front of the Story Book Store and formerly supposed to be a small "hotel" was repaint, and in front of it, instead of real flowers and tree as it was before, there is now....plastic flowers and false tree! Okay, the flowers are not really in plastic, but in cloth, fabric, etc...but at the end the result is the's not real flowers.

Why this? Well, you see, the place is one of the "meet the characters" location, and now, not only the small building is not supposed to be anymore a "hotel", but much more the house of the characters. When they've finished their show, they climb the little stairs, open the blue door you can see on the right and go out through the building like if it was their home. Soooo, because it is now "supposed" to be the house of Mickey, Goofy, etc...who, as we know, are cartoon characters, they've put false flowers.
Do you see what i mean? If it don't make sense to you or if you find the "alibi" really poor, you're right. In fact they've tried to redesign a Main Street house in a kind of Toon Town house, using new colours on the facade and plastic flowers. Frankly it's not only stupid - if they've put real flowers the effect would have "work" exactly the same - but also it is such a poor idea that it's a long time i've seen something so cheap in the park. And, by the way, it's not even well done - i mean, it don't looks like a "characters house"!

If we except this, the rest of the park looks great, lot of people of course, and nothing new specially, but it's normal: summer is the high season for the parks, but the low season for the news, and don't expect new announcement before the fall.

However, at the Walt Disney Studios there is something new! No, it's not the fact that they've take out the big "Cars" billboard from the entrance of the Studio 1 or the fact that they are going to repaint the facade - they are currently putting a new billboard on the scaffoldings, a photo of the original facade which seems to indicate that the re-painting should take a while...

No, what is really new is a small Audio-Animatronic of Remy, the beloved rat character, Ratatouille's hero. He is appearing three times each day at the Rendez-vous des stars restaurant, and last week, it was also possible to see him at the Disneyland Hotel's California Grill restaurant. I've hesitate to call him an "Audio-Animatronic", because this robotic figure don't look as sophisticate as the new Wall-E AA. But there is mechanism inside, and we must not forget that it is always difficult to do small robotic figure - simply because there is not much room inside to put the mechanism...
I think the best is that you judge by yourself, and the two short videos below will give you a better idea of it - note that on the second one you must wait 30 seconds before you'll see Remy AA.

Okay, as you saw, it's not the Audio-Animatronic of the century, and the movements are - it's the least we can say - very limited. He don't move around on the tray, but he looks pretty realistic, which is good.

Let's talk about the future, now. Next year the Walt Disney Studios will have in the old Disney Channel building a "Playhouse Disney Live on Stage" for ( very ) young kids and a new parade. The park bought to the DHS the cars of the "Disney Stars and Motor Cars parade" and the WDS name of this new parade should be "Disney's Stars 'n' Cars Event".

The WDS is of course the park who need the most new attraction and theming, and it seems that the building of Soarin' is still under discussion. But a strong rumour announce the closing of the Armaggedon attraction. To be replace by what, you ask? Well, the same rumour was talking about a Narnia-Prince Caspian walk-through similar to the one at the DHS, and later - translate: when they will have the money - a real new attraction.

More interesting is this info from a Disney Central Plaza member who heard a group of imagineers talking about new theming ideas. They were standing in front of the Studio Tram Tour Station and said: "Guests will walk into that direction and see San Francisco". It's interesting, because one thing is sure: imagineers will definitely build new decors after the Hollywood sign, and it may very well look like this San Francisco decor built at the DHS some years ago...we'll see! More news when available!

As for the Magic Kingdom, no new attraction has been announced yet, and it's difficult to bet on one. I still think that Indiana Jones Adventure will be the best choice for the park's 20th anniversary but the maintenance cost and all the problem with the cars - at Anaheim only four of them are currently working - don't work in its favor...

I also think that the Little Mermaid attraction - similar to the one coming to DCA do have some chances. As you may know, they are going to build it simultaneously at WDW - simply because when you build the same attraction twice at the same time you do economies of scale, so why not build three instead of two? Also, let's not forget that the low dollar is a blessing for Disneyland Paris when they buy new attractions to Walt Disney Imagineering. It's the right time for the park to buy expensive attractions at a bargain price!

See you soon for a new DLP update!

Photos: copyright Disney, Alex Rosa and Alain Littaye

Youtube videos of Remy AA thanks to novastarbuzz and gochaton!

Daily Motion video of July 14 firework thanks to dlrp-team!

Tokyo Disneyland Hotel Gardens - Exclusive High-Res Pictures

This is the part two of the Tokyo Disneyland Hotel article, and this time all the pictures are about the Hotel gardens.

The Tokyo Disneyland Hotel have four gardens :

Mickey & Friends Square: The atmosphere of the World Bazaar is continued in this garden, with Disney character topiaries giving a heart-warming welcome to the hotel.

The Sherwood Garden : This Victorian-style garden of exquisite design has a pond and gazebo for a moment of relaxation.

Fantasia Court is located on the exterior 3rd floor. This fantasy-filled area features Mickey as the Sorcerer’s Apprentice and the water-carrying brooms from the Disney film Fantasia.

Alice’s Garden - also on the 3rd floor - is themed to the Disney class film Alice in Wonderland.

And it's also in one of the gardens that you can find the beautifully themed Misty Mountains Pool. Themed to the Disney classic film Peter Pan, this outdoor pool even have a Skull Rock and a fountain featuring the tick-tocking crocodile from the film.

All photos: copyright Tokyo Disneyland Resort

Please note that i will add these pictures to the previous Tokyo Disneyland Hotel article so you'll be able to find every picture on the same page.

A Special Disneyland Paris high-res wallpaper pictures

It's July 14, and in France it's the big national day - like the 4th of july in the U.S.
So, today, here is a special Disneyland Paper pictures that should look wonderful on your computer desktop.

let's begin by some shots of the Magic Kingdom with, above, the It's a small world facade.

This is Big Thunder Mountain

A Halloween sign in the back of Frontierland

The entrance of Space Mountain

And a scene of the popular Lion King Show

The TOT and the Mickey water tower at the WDS

The Tower of Terror at night

And inside the Studio 1 during a private party

High School Musical show, in front of the TOT

And the entrance of the Disney Village

As always, i remember you as it is written on the "terms of use" page that, in the event you download any material from The Disney and more blog, the download of the material, including any files or images must be for your personal, noncommercial home use only. You may not and cannot sell, print or reproduce in any way any material downloaded from The Disney and more blog, and specifically any material copyright Disney , Walt Disney company or any other companies.

All Photos: copyright Disney