Saturday, August 16, 2008

WDW Downtown Disney : Watch out ! Giant T-Rex coming !

If you're in Walt Disney World, and more precisely in Downtown Disney Marketplace, you better look when you cross the street, as a giant T_Rex is on its way to the T-Rex cafe.

Of course, it is an Audio-Animatronic, but don't expect a WDI quality AA. In the video below filmed in the first T-Rex Cafe who opened in Kansas city you will see how peaceful this AA T-Rex can be. As the T-Rex seems to be located at the entrance of the restaurant, i supposed they didn't want it to be too frightening for young kids...Okay, but is a T-Rex who look as cool as a Diplodocus still a T-Rex?

Photo: copyright Disney

Youtube Video by draygona

Thursday, August 14, 2008

DLP Walt's restaurant : the case of the mysterious "River Idol" rendering

For those of you who never had the pleasure to have lunch at Main Street U.S.A Walt's Restaurant, i must tell you first that the 1st floor is divided in five rooms, one for each land of the park.

Each room have a different theming, including renderings and models in relation with the land. For instance, in the "Discoveryland" room you'll find a Nautilus model - created, by the way, by the late Tom Scherman - and paintings or renderings on the Nautilus theme. Generally, each painting in the rooms represents an attraction or decor that guest can enjoy at Disneyland Paris.

Now, in the "Adventureland" room, where you also have paintings and model in relation with the land, any guest can see the rendering below with the title "The River Idol" and the name of the artist - Bryan Jowers.

Where it's becoming interesting is when we realize that this rendering shows a scene which not only can't be find in any DLP attraction, but also nowhere in any Disney theme park in the world! I can be wrong, but as far as i go inside my memory, i don't remember any Disney attraction showing that scene. And, considering that the decor is beautiful, i certainly would have remember it! So, does it show a pre-show decor? Is it a concept-art for another kind of Jungle Cruise temple? Or for a different Indiana Jones Adventure?

Now, two solutions: first, that scene was part of a never done project, and in this case, i will be really interested to know which one (!) - or, two: it is simply a beautiful painting done by a WDI artist, with no relation to an attraction project and the imagineers put it in this room because they thought that the painting fits well with the room theming.

In any case, if any imagineer read this article and can give us the solution of this enigma, he is more than welcome!

UPDATE: In less than two hours, the mystery was resolved! This concept-art of WDI artist Bryan Jowers was done for the Disneyland, Anaheim project "Indiana Jones and the lost expedition". This "River Idol" was supposed to be at the heart of a new Jungle Cruise temple... You can read more about this "lost expedition" concept in an old Jim Hill article HERE.

The reason why this rendering is inside Walt's restaurant is because the imagineers were thinking of doing Indy at some point in DLP, so the rendering made it in as a "tease". At least we know, now, that imagineers envisioned for DLP two major Indy attractions: this "lost expedition" concept and the "Indiana Jones Adventure" for which i'm still praying every night that it'll be the next DLP "E-Ticket"!

Artwork: copyright Disney Enterprises

Wednesday, August 13, 2008

Don't miss the exceptional Richard Avedon Exhibit in Paris !

As you know, most of the time, i talk about Disney topics. But sometime, when there is something really exceptional, i also write about it, even if it's not at all related with Disney theme parks. That's why in "Disney and more" you have the "and more".

So, today, and because it is a stunning exhibit, i will let you know about the Richard Avedon exhibit at the Musée du Jeu de paume in Paris. I have to confess that Richard Avedon is my favorite photographer, but he is also one of the greatest photographer of all time, and certainly the best portraitist ever.

The exhibit cover the whole career of Avedon, from his fashion pictures for Harper's Bazaar magazine to his famous portrait of people of the American West. Avedon is a visionary genius, and you will be stunned by the exhibit, just like you can be when you come out of a good WDI E-Ticket! As a matter of fact, this exhibit is a real E-Ticket of pure art!

Richard Avedon did portraits of almost any celebrity in the world - like this famous portrait above of a "desperate" Marilyn Monroe - or this one below of Charlie Chaplin, and all of them are fantastic!

So, if you come in France to visit DLP and if you still have some days to spent in Paris, don't miss it, the exhibit closes September 27!

And for those of you who won't be able to attend the exhibit, here is a youtube video filmed inside the exhibit before the opening, in June.

All pictures: copyright Richard Avedon Foundation

Tuesday, August 12, 2008

There is a new attraction at EPCOT! : Believe it or not, but a new - although small - attraction is opening at EPCOT Inoventions East! It's called "Storm Struck" , and Kevin Yee on tell us all about this new "Hurricane" addition.

Monday, August 11, 2008

Disney and More Time Machine : Back in 1990 at the Disneyland Paris Preview Center

It's quite a while since the Disney and More Time Machine took you to a "Time" destination, and today we will go back to 1990 at the Disneyland Paris Preview Center.

The Disneyland Paris Preview Center was located near the Paris A4 Highway, and for French and European people it was the first encounter with what will be the future EuroDisney park - now Disneyland Resort Paris.

On these rare photos shoot by Daniel you will see that visitors of the Preview Center, thanks to the Imagineers, were able to discover the different lands of the park with renderings, models, costumes, and more...

Daniel even did this map of the Preview Center, showing the main four "rooms" - the Show room, the Theater, the store, and the restaurant.

A giant model of the park was displayed...

As well as the Sleeping Beauty Castle model...

A carousel horse was shown in the Fantasyland area...

And a model of Phantom Manor in the Frontierland section...

Pirates sculptures were displayed in the Adventureland area...

As well as renderings and cast-member costume...

Guests - like Daniel - could even board inside a Dumbo vehicle...

Or have a picture with C3PO in the Discoveryland area!

Here is the entrance of the theater where a preview movie about the future "EuroDisney" park was shown. As the park was not built yet most of the footage was showing Walt Disney World similar attractions!

Another area was showing renderings of the future hotels and Disney Village.

I want to give a special thanks to Daniel for these pictures, as photos of the Disneyland Paris preview center are really rare!

All photos: copyright Daniel Rous

" Glago's Guest " , the new Disney short animated

Yesterday's article was about "The Princess and the Frog", and today, i will talk about another new Disney animated movie: "Glago's Guest", directed by Chris Williams. This one will be a "short" and each of you who will go in theatre to see "Bolt" will have the pleasure to discover it.

Chris Williams, the director of "Glago's Guest", was part of the Walt Disney Studios for 14 years joining the Florida Animation Studio in 1994. Chris was also part of the "Mulan" story team,and after completing his work on "Mulan", he came to the Californian animation Studios where he wrote the story that became "The Emperor's New Groove". John Lasseter loved Chris williams storytelling and directing and he hand-picked Chris to helm the studio's Thanksgiving 2008 feature, Bolt.

And what's the story of "Glago's Guest, you ask? Well, here is the pitch: "Glago's Guest" follows the intriguing and thought-provoking story of a lonely Russian soldier stationed in a remote deserted Siberian outpost in 1924....

When the soldier's solitude is interrupted one day by the arrival of a strange new "guest"...

Glago is jolted out of his uneventful daily routine but soon comes to realize that things aren't always what they appear to be...."

With its bold art direction, stylish depiction of the frozen Russian landscape, and inspired computer-animation, "Glago's Guest" is an exciting, and original short film that uses the medium to full advantage.

I won't spoil the end of the movie, but one good animation-specialied web site described "Glago's Guest" as " a poker-faced sci-fi thriller that’s completely uninterested in being cute and telegraphing gags and more interested in simply being awesome."

Now, i know you would like to see more of this new Disney short, so, here is a 42 seconds preview of "Glago's Guest"

"Glago's Guest", premiered in June at Annecy International Film Festival in France and will be released in theaters attached to Bolt this Thanksgiving.

Artwork and youtube video: copyright Disney

Sunday, August 10, 2008

More about " The Princess and the Frog "

Thanks to Honor Hunter of the excellent Blueskydisney website who was the first to let us know about it, we've learned that new art development images of the upcoming Disney animated "The Princess and the Frog" were released on the Walt Disney Animation Studios website.

Let's have a look to them, beginning also by the first teaser of the movie. You probably saw it already, but if you didn't, here it is below with some screen shots. Note that the firefly character appears, too, at the end os this teaser.

The new images, now, showing the Princess in her room...

The Frog in the "Bayou"...

But also other scenes like this one - probably in relation with the "villain" and a "voodoo" atmosphere...

The New-Orleans streets looks gorgeous...

I'm ready to bet that this one show the "home" of the villain...

The Mardi Gras parade in the streets of New-Orleans...

And this looks very much like a finale scene - but i can be wrong...

As we know, "The Princess and the Frog" will be the big return of Disney in the traditional 2D animation, and the film teams Ron Clements and John Musker, creators of “The Little Mermaid” and “Aladdin,” with Oscar®-winning composer Randy Newman to tell a love story with frogs, voodoo, and a singing alligator! I have a really good feeling with this one - but we have to wait until Christmas 2009 to enjoy the movie!

Artwork and teaser: copyright Disney

First " UP ! " poster, created by Eric Tan

Eric Tan is the great artist who created these stylized retro posters for Wall-E, The Incredibles, Ratatouille, and now....UP !

Koyla from the Pixar Planet forums bought to Eric this poster at the San Diego Comic Con, and the creases you can see are in fact part of the design, to give it the look of a folded travel map.

Artwork by Eric Tan - Copyright Pixar

Photo: Koyla from the Pixar Planet