Tuesday, November 9, 2010

A Disney MGM Studios celebration - Part Three - The Great Movie Ride original artwork and behind the scenes pictures

Hello, here is part three of this Disney MGM Studios series, and, as promised, the article is about the Great Movie ride with original artwork and great behind the scenes photos of imagineers at work.

Above is the artwork for something that was probably a mural painting, and below a rendering of the Chinese Theatre area.

Another one of the Hollywood Boulevard with the Chinese Theatre in the background.

Here is a rare rendering for the Singing in the rain scene.

And of course, this one is for the John Wayne scene.

Below is the artwork for the gangsters scene. Imagineer Pat Burke remember: I was with another Imagineer named Malcolm when we were looking for the Gangster shoot out cars and found them. Malcolm needed some vintage gangster cars for the shootout scene. I took him to our big 12 mile walking Pomona auto meet. There we found a restored Chevy which the owner was so proud of with its new paint and mow hair interior like original. When he found out it would be in a Disney show in Florida he was so excited. He said he would bring his family down to see and visit it in its new home. He didn't know we would have to shoot it with many bullet holes for the scene. We trailered it out to the Highway Patrol to register it and mentioned the needed bullet holes. They said if we moved it out back to their firing range they would shoot it up with an old Tommy gun they had. We did so, and they shot it up as promised. I don't know if the previous owner ever went to WDW to see it?

And this is the rendering for the final Wizard of Oz scene.

Before we have a look to some behind the scenes pictures, here is a great story told to me by a friend imagineer about the "Casablanca" scene of the ride, and more specifically about the real plane one can see in the decor:
"The Casablanca scene has the real Casablanca Lockheed Electra plane used in the movie - and the tail section is in the WDW Jungle Cruise. The plane was located by Malcolm Cobb of WDI/ California, in Texas. Malcolm got the Lockheed registry of all the planes and their history and present owners and set out looking. On this Texas plane, no one had any idea it was the real plane until they ran its serial numbers and found it had been registered to the movie studio that made the film at that time. This was done after the purchase was completed. When Malcolm found it, it had been sitting for some time and not running. Another owner nearby owned three of these planes and wanted much more money for his as they were flyable. Malcolm didnt need one that flew and bought the cheapest one, being the real on. When the man who owned the three planes found out what he had missed, he was pretty upset at himself, as it had been right next to his backyard."

The first behind the scenes picture below shows an imagineer at work on the Busby Berkeley opening scene.

When we think about an Indiana Jones attraction, we generally think about Indiana Jones Adventure, or the Epic stunt spectacular, or the Temple du péril but we often forget that there is a great Indy scene in the Great Movie ride! Here, one imagineer is at work on one of the giant Anubis statues.

Other imagineers at work in the same room.

Final touch to the Ark of the Covenant scene.

Inside WDI workhouse, an imagineer measuring the beautiful Ark of the Covenant replica.

Putting in place the Egyptian mummies...

Final touch on the same mummies...

Almost cheek to cheek between a beautiful imagineer and a quite well done mummy...

No, it's not Tarzan and Jane, but two imagineers at work on the vegetation of the Tarzan scene.

And for those of you living outside the U.S who never had the luck to ride the Great Movie Ride, here is the video of the full ride, in two parts.

All artwork and photos: copyright Disney Enterprises Inc.

Youtube video: copyright coasterimage.com


Marco Antonio Garcia said...

This is a great ride, my favorite at the former Disney-MGM Studios Park. They should build an updated version of it at the Disney Studios Paris. That's an awesome attraction for a Studio Park, and not Andy's stupid backyard!!!

oprylandusa said...

I hate to ruin a great story, but the Casablanca plane story... false.


Alain Littaye said...

Well, opryland, i don't know where is the truth or not but your comment made me check all this with a friend Imagineer who knew well Malcolm, the Imagineer who found the plane for the Casablanca scene.

Here is his answer: "According to Malcolm, he went to Lockheed and got the registry for all the Lockheed Electras made and sold and to which parties. It contained all the serial numbers. One particular plane was sold to Warner brothers for use in the film Casablanca. Malcolm never thought he would find that plane but wanted to find one for the scene at Epcot's Movie Ride. He also obtained a current registry of the new owners to followup on. After tracking down several running planes which he really didn't need or have the budget for, he came across the plane in question. Checking the serial number after its purchase, he found it was the Warner Brothers plane purchased for the scene in the movie."

And talking about real movie items included in the Great Movie ride here is another story from my friend: "Malcolm had $25,000 to purchase one of the 4 pairs of ruby red slippers from use in the Wizard of OZ film, for use in the movie ride. Bidding over the auction phone, he was waiting for the price to stop near his budget. John Hench was standing by waiting. Malcolm asked the auction aid if they were near $25,000.00 yet, and they replied that they passed it and were up to $80,000.00. He and John were in shock. They at that point new they couldn't afford them. As the shoes continued to climb and went up and stopped at $150,000.00, they sold to a Anthony Landini. He said they contacted the new owner Landini, and reached an agreement to rent them from him for the attraction."