Early in 1903, the success
of the New York production of the musical adaptation of L. Frank Baum's The Wizard of Oz
got composer Victor Herbert and librettist Glen MacDonough thinking. They thought that it might be possible to duplicate that success by applying a Christmas theme to Baum's story and then sprinkling in a few Mother Goose characters. Later that year the resulting show, Babes in Toyland
, was a rousing success
. Thirty years later it was made into a movie
starring two of the greatest motion picture actors of the era, Stan Laurel and Oliver Hardy, produced by Hal Roach
. But this post isn't about either of those productions; it's about the worst
production. [more inside]
posted by Toekneesan
on Dec 17, 2010 -
Unlike many cinematic exports, the Disney canon of films
distinguishes itself with an impressive dedication to dubbing
Through an in-house service called Disney Character Voices International
, not just dialogue but songs, too, are skillfully
re-recorded, echoing the voice acting, rhythm, and rhyme scheme of the original work to an uncanny degree
(while still leaving plenty of room for lyrical reinvention
The breadth of the effort is surprising, as well -- everything from Arabic
gets its own dub, and their latest project, The Princess and the Frog
, debuted in more than forty tongues
Luckily for polyglots everywhere, the exhaustiveness of Disney's translations is thoroughly documented online in multilanguage mixes
and one-line comparisons
, linguistic kaleidoscopes that cast new light on old standards. Highlights:
"One Jump Ahead," "Prince Ali,"
and "A Whole New World"
) - "Circle of Life," "Hakuna Matata,"
(The Lion King
) - "Under the Sea"
and "Poor Unfortunate Souls"
(The Little Mermaid
) - "Belle"
and "Be Our Guest"
(Beauty and the Beast
) - "Just Around the Riverbend"
) - "One Song"
) - "Bibbidi-Bobbidi-Boo"
) - Medley
) - "When She Loved Me"
(Toy Story 2
) - Intro
posted by Rhaomi
on Nov 12, 2010 -
Right Wing Radio Duck "Donald's life is turned upside-down by the current economic crisis and he finds himself unemployed and falling behind on his house payments. As his frustration turns into despair Donald discovers a seemingly sympathetic voice coming from his radio named Glenn Beck. "
posted by Arthur Phillips Jones Jr
on Oct 2, 2010 -
Toy Story 3
hits theaters today, and it's already winning universal acclaim
as an enchanting and heartbreaking wonderwork, employing understated 3D
and a "real-time"
perspective that deftly capitalizes on the nostalgia and can't-go-home-again angst
of a generation that grew up with the series.
It has a strong pedigree, with 11-year-old predecessor Toy Story 2
the rare sequel to equal its forebear, 1995's Toy Story
(itself the first CGI feature in history).
And it joins a lofty stable of films: over the last 15 years, Pixar has put out an unbroken chain of ten commercial and critical successes
that have grossed over $5 billion worldwide and collected 24 Academy Awards
(including the second-ever Best Picture nom for animation
), a legacy that rivals some of the greatest franchises in film history
But there's rumbling on the horizon. Although the studio has been hailed for its originality
(of the 50 top-grossing movies in history, only nine were original stories -- and five of them were by Pixar
), two of their upcoming projects are sequels
, both of them based some of their least-acclaimed films (Cars 2
in 2011 and Monsters, Inc. 2
in 2012). And while 2012 will also bring
The Bear and the Bow Brave
, the first Pixar flick to feature a female protagonist [previously]
, fellow newcomer Newt
has been canceled
. With WALL-E/Up/Toy Story 3
guru Andrew Stanton focusing on his 2012 adaptation
of John Carter of Mars
and with forays into live-action
already in development, does this mark the end of the golden age of Pixar?
Or is this latest entry lasting proof that even the toughest case of sequelitis can be raised to the level of masterpiece? [more inside]
posted by Rhaomi
on Jun 18, 2010 -
Joshua Glenn and anti-middlebrow blog Hilobrow
present their generational periodization scheme: from the Prometheans
born in 1844-53 and the technologically transformative Plutonians
born in 1854-63, to the hiply earnest Revivalists
(those who were teenagers in the 90s) and the Throwbacks
(my generation, and an article that horrifyingly includes pictures of tweens and the Mickey Mouse Club). [more inside]
posted by The Devil Tesla
on May 27, 2010 -
Coloring the Kingdom
: the story of the all-female “finishing school” of hand-drawn animation that worked behind the scenes to create the first animated full-length Disney feature, Snow White. (via.
posted by 1f2frfbf
on Feb 5, 2010 -
Roy E. Disney
, son of Disney Company co-founder Roy O. Disney
and nephew of Walt Disney
, and the last Disney family member actively involved with the company, passed away today from stomach cancer. While he worked for the Disney Corporation on and off over the course of his life, he produced some of the "True-Life Adventures"
, and heading the Disney Animation through a second golden age (Little Mermaid, Alladin, Beauty and the Beast, etc). He was also integral in replacing the head of the company not once (his cousin's husband and Walt's son-in law, Ron Miller in 1984), but twice (Michael Eisner in 2006, ironically, the person he helped install in 1984). For those of us born after Walt passed away in 1966, Roy's uncanny resemblance to his uncle helped created a public face to keep the Disney ideals alive for later generations.
posted by Badgermann
on Dec 16, 2009 -
River County, Disney's first water park
has been shut down since 2001 and permanently closed since 2005. It has not been dismantled. It was smaller than the two other (currently operating) water parks, and frequently much less crowded. In only a few years, relatively, weather, growth
and neglect have damaged the slides
, many of which are still full of water
The entire thread with many more pictures is here [more inside]
posted by FritoKAL
on Dec 16, 2009 -
Mickey Mouse's early road to fame
(yt playlist with ~160 videos) has some odd twists and turns. One of Walt Disney's early cartoon creations was Oswald the Lucky Rabbit
, the star of Trolley Troubles
(5:45, 1927) and other early shorts. Disney had big plans for the popular little rabbit, and wanted to increase his budget from Universal Pictures. Unfortunately, Charles B. Mintz
wanted to scale back the budget, and in the end Universal kept control of Oswald Rabbit
. Without Oswald, Disney needed something new. Jack Dunham, one of Disney's Nine Old Men
recalled animating Oswald and "the one without the ears
." Initially, this one was called Mortimer, but Lillian Disney, Walt Disney's wife, believed the name "Mortimer" sounded too pompous and suggested the name Mickey
, though Mickey Rooney claims he was the inspiration
. Either way, the mouse was renamed Mickey in short order
, and he starred in Plane Crazy
, 6:00, 1928, previously
). By 1929, he was wearing his iconic gloves (and talking), in The Karnival Kid
, 7:41). But Mortimer returned, as Mickey's Rival
(8:16, 1936), eventually getting his own themesong
(1:56, modern recording off of TV; better quality song
with a still image, 1:35) and again in a modern short
(1:30, 2000), amongst other appearances
. Then there's Uncle Mortimer
, who first traveled with Mickey Mouse in Death Valley
, though it's not always clear whose uncle he is. And in the alternate universe that is Bloom County
, Mickey's fraternal twin is Mortimer
(technically, he resides in Outland
posted by filthy light thief
on Aug 27, 2009 -
: a dystopian, steampunk version of the Disney world and characters we all know and love (we love them, right?) from Junction Point Studios. [more inside]
posted by pixlboi
on Jul 30, 2009 -
Early this morning, Two monorail trains collided at Walt Disney World
, causing the death of one of the drivers. The Walt Disney World Monorail System
first opened in 1971 with two routes servicing The Magic Kingdom, and then expanded to a third line servicing Epcot in 1982. This is the first incident resulting in a fatality in 38 years of operation. The most serious incident previously was a fire in 1985 caused by tire failure in which two cars were burned badly, but there were no injuries. The monorail trains have numerous safety features
, including a "Moving-blocklight anti-collision system"
, referred to as MAPO (the term was coined by Walt Disney himself, who formed a new company to deal with Disneyland's transportation system directly from the profits made by Mary Poppins). As of this morning, the monorail system at Walt Disney World is out of service pending investigation.
posted by Lokheed
on Jul 5, 2009 -
If you've ever heard the song Aquarela do Brasil (often called simply "Brazil" -- here's my favourite cover
), then you'll probably enjoy this classic 1942 animation
which first made it famous. The clip is the finale from the feature Saludos Amigos
(hello friends), created during a US government-funded goodwill tour of South America aimed at strengthening Pan-American relations, which some argue
may have helped bring South America onto the side of the Allies in World War II. [more inside]
posted by PercussivePaul
on May 14, 2009 -
People have been trying to make the appearance of three-dimensional movement almost as far back
as the first movie cameras
. The very first efforts used stereoscopy
), which wasn't functional for theater-settings. In 1915, the first public test of 3D film was deemed unsuccessful
, as images presented with green/red lenses
detracted from the plot, but that didn't stop people from trying to make 3D films. Polarized glasses
are another inexpensive method of simulated 3D, while shutterglasses
are a more costly method. Up to 1998 or so, there were approximately 187 3D movies made
, not counting porn, cartoons and shorts (which bring the 1998 total to 263). 2009 is supposedly the year that 3D movies really take off
, as it has been reported that 3D films are expected to gross over $1bn (£700m) at the box office next year, a five-fold increase on their $200m haul in 2008. There are some really big titles coming
, including the "3D drug trip" that is Avatar
, and all of the announced future Pixar releases will get the Digital Disney 3-D treatment
. But 3D isn't limited to the big screen and big companies. The next format war could be over 3D TV
. And now the independent production company MeniThings
has released the feature-length movie, Battle for Terra
. [via mefi projects
, and a bit more on the movie after the jump] [more inside]
posted by filthy light thief
on May 8, 2009 -