Published in: Archives
Published on Monday, 14 May 2012 13:44
Hello, and welcome to the latest edition of the weekly feature known as "The Disney Look... to the Past!"
Enjoy reading all of the following interesting facts about the Walt Disney Parks, Resorts, Movies, and more:
This Week in Disney History: May 11-17
May 15, 1928 – Walt Disney’s animated short “Plane Crazy” is first screened
“Steamboat Willie” is considered the official debut of Mickey Mouse, but it was actually the third short produced by Walt Disney featuring the mischievous hero. Working in secrecy following the loss of the Oswald the Lucky Rabbit series to his distributor, animator Ub Iwerks produced more than 8,000 drawings in six weeks to quickly complete the first appearance of Walt’s newest creation. A goof on the exploits of aviator Charles Lindbergh, Mickey flies into all sorts of trouble trying to get his plane off the barnyard grounds. The silent film was screened before a Los Angeles test audience in hopes of securing a distributor, but it was not picked up for a theatrical run. Its follow-up, “The Galloping Gaucho,” also failed to attract a following. But when Walt added synchronized sound to “Steamboat Willie,” the Colony Theatre in New York took a chance on the short, and on Nov. 18, 1928, a cultural icon was born. On March 17, 1929, “Plane Crazy” became the fourth Mickey short to be released with a soundtrack added.
May 16, 1991 – “Jim Henson’s Muppet*Vision 3-D” debuts at Disney’s Hollywood Studios
“Muppet*Vision 3-D” was well under development at the time of Jim Henson’s sudden passing. And it was a fitting tribute from the talented puppeteers he worked with, including Frank Oz and his son, John Henson, that the show was completed and opened on the one-year anniversary of his death. Combining film and live in-theatre appearances from Sweetums, the Swedish Chef, and armchair critics Statler and Waldorf, Guests get a a first-hand tour of Muppet Labs led by Kermit the Frog, complete with a smattering of “cheap 3-D tricks,” which Fozzie Bear delights in sharing. Though we’ve long wondered what Sam the Eagle’s glorious three-hour “salute to all nations, but mostly America” finale would have been like, “Muppet*Vision 3-D” has become a beloved Disney Parks classic, expanding to Disney California Adventure Park in 2001. Jim Henson’s legacy was lovingly continued with the critical and box office success of last year’s “The Muppets,” which scored an Oscar win for Best Original Song.
Also this week in Disney history:May 11
1935 – The Silly Symphony short “Water Babies” debuts
2002 – Bill Peet, author and storyboard artist credited with writing Walt Disney’s “One Hundred and One Dalmatians” and “The Sword in the Stone,” dies at age 87May 12
1932 – The animated short “Mickey’s Revue” debuts, featuring the first appearance of a character called Dippy Dawg (whose name later became Goofy)
1956 – The Horseless Carriage opens at Disneyland Park
1967 – The cities of Bay Lake and Lake Buena Vista are chartered by the state of Florida to perform municipal functions within the Reedy Creek Improvement District (clearing the way for construction of the Walt Disney World Resort)May 13
1933 – “The Mail Pilot” (Mickey Mouse cartoon short) debuts
1992 – “Fantasmic!” debuts on the Rivers of America at Disneyland Park
1997 – The Magic Kingdom II ferryboat at the Walt Disney World Resort is renamed the Richard F. Irvine
2009 – Disney-Pixar’s “Up” debuts at the Cannes Film FestivalMay 14
1923 – Walt writes Margaret J. Winkler in hopes of her distributing the Alice Comedies film series (first correspondence with his future distributor)May 15
1972 – The Frontierland Train Station opens at Magic Kingdom Park
1987 – Disneyland Park introduces Disney Dollars currency
1995 – The California Grill opens at Disney’s Contemporary ResortMay 16
1990 – Jim Henson, creator of The Muppets, dies at age 53May 17
1964 – “Disneyland Goes to the World’s Fair” airs on “Disney’s Wonderful World of Color”
1991 – Disney’s Port Orleans Resort opens at the Walt Disney World Resort
1991 – Touchstone Pictures releases “What About Bob?”
2004 – Disney’s Saratoga Springs Resort & Spa opens at the Walt Disney World Resort
Thank you for reading, and have a great rest of your week!
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