Friday, December 6, 2013
Mickey’s Christmas Carol
If you are looking for a good version Dickens’ Christmas Carol to introduce your children to the classic story in a not too scary way Mickey’s Christmas Carol is one of two I’d highly recommend. (The other being Muppet Christmas Carol. Both are Disney.)
Being a Dickens’ Carol fan I am rather picky about my Carol movies. On a scale of 1-10 I’d say this gets a 5 for keeping the “spirit” of the original. The idea and message of the story are clearly conveyed but it loses something in the translation. The loss has nothing to do with the fact it is animated or that classic Disney characters acting out the parts. I just feel it does not capture the spirit of the story as well as other versions. Muppet’s Christmas Carol is in my top 5 best at capturing the spirit and intent of this classic and important story. I believe Mickey’s Carol goes off track by going for the gags/laughs a little too much. The is humor in Christmas Carol just not this much.
Mickey’s Christmas Carol is loosely based on Dickens’ Christmas Carol. The general plot points are there. Scrooge, Scrooge McDuck is a penny pinching miser who is miserable. Bob Cratchit, Mickey Mouse is his poor clerk. Tiny Tim is Bob’s sickly little boy and Minnie Mouse plays Bob’s Wife. Daisy plays Scrooge’s lost love. Donald Duck is Fred, Scrooge’s nephew.
Scrooge is visited by his old partner, Jacob Marley, Goofy who warns him that he needs to change. The scene is funny and does not put the scare in you that other versions or the original story does. In many versions of Christmas Carol I consider this the 2nd scariest part. Here it is more funny than scary. He calls out to Scrooge to change.
Jiminy is the Ghost of Christmas Past, who shows Scrooge events in his past that caused hurt to himself and others.
Willie the Giant is the Ghost of Christmas Present. Christmas Present shows Scrooge the joy of loving and giving. This is when Scrooge is introduced to Tiny Tim and truly begins to open to seeing that he has missed out on relationships.
Pete (Black Pete/Pegleg Pete) is the ghost of Christmas Future. He is dark and foreboding but this part of the story is quickly gone over. I believe this is because it is so dark and scary.
In the end Scrooge finds redemption. He does not want to die living the way he has. He helps save Tiny Tim, treats Bob Cratchit better and reconnects with his nephew Fred. He goes from living a life of sorrow, pain and emptiness, living only for money to living with joy, happiness and living to reach out and connect with people.
Here is a link to what WikiPedia has to say about the movie:
Thursday, December 5, 2013
Happy Birthday Walt Disney
December 5th, 1901 to December 15th, 1966
Walter Elias Disney was an American Entrepreneur. Many consider him an Entertainment Icon and film maker. Walt Disney was more than just a Motion-Picture, Television producer, Animator and showman.
Walt Disney was a pioneer. One theme kept being repeated in many of the things he said, “Keep Moving Forward!” In other words don’t rest on your laurels and past accomplishments. Instead move forward and do something new and different! Walt did that and made that a company focus.
Besides making the first feature length animated feature, Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs he developed new ways of creating his movie magic over the years. From art classes for his animators to new technology such as the Multi-Plane Camera he pioneered new ideas.
After making his money in movies Walt wanted more. He wanted an entertainment venue unlike any other. He wanted a place where families could come together to “play” and spend time together. He envisioned parents doing things with their children not just watching from a bench as he had when his girls were little. Years after the general idea came to him he build Disneyland. Once Disneyland was set and doing well he started working on ideas for a much larger Walt Disney World. He did not get to see WDW finished but his brother did. Roy O Disney, and the company he left behind made sure his ideas came true as always.
So what is so special about this simple man from the farmland of America? He never graduated High School and had no further “formal” education. He dropped out of school at 16 and lied about his age to join the Red Cross as part of the team in Europe at the end of WWI. He started 3 studios that failed and went broke before finally coming to California and starting the Disney Brothers Studio in 1923 at the age of 22.
Walt Disney gave the world memories. From movies that generations can and do enjoy together to “Theme” Parks where families and friends are immersed in a world of Yesterday, Tomorrow and Fantasy. Disney created an empire that continues decades after his death that looks back to his life and focus to “Keep Moving Forward”.
He gave us many wonderful characters to enjoy. He gave us Mickey Mouse to model our lives after, an everyman with a good heart and positive attitude. Goofy with his constant troubles and laughter in response, always the optimist! Donald with his grumpy attitude ready to explode but truly with a heart of gold. Donald teaches us to control our temper and not act like him all the time. All of these and more have been examples for us as children and for our children to model their lives on and learn from.
Walt shared with the world his love for America. He felt as long as America was strong the world would be strong and all would be right. He was not arrogant or rude about it. He did not believe that the world needed to become like America. He loved the differences in cultures and understood that each is precious and needs to be treasured. He just felt that America, as a mix of cultures was the best.
Walt Disney left a legacy that is still going strong today. There have been threats and his family has stood firm to protect it. There have been lies about him and again his family stood up to show people Walt the Man.
Wednesday, December 4, 2013
Disneyland Guide for Guests with Cognitive Disabilities
Are you thinking about going on a Disneyland vacation but are concerned because one or more of your family/group has a Cognitive Disability (Autism Spectrum, ADHD, TBI, PTSD etc. . .)? Well pack your bags and leave a good portion of the concern behind!!!
On the Disneyland website is a fantastic guide to assist you in preparing. You know with someone with Cognitive Disabilities planning is key to having a safe, happy and enjoyable trip anywhere. It does not matter if it is the market or an amusement park planning and preparing makes it easier. You can print it out and read it at your leisure or download it to a tablet in PDF format to have handy as you go.
Here is a link to the overview of the guide:
The guide walks you through each and every step of a day at the DLR (Disneyland Resort). With descriptions and pictures they tell you about parking, going through security checks (Some people with Cognitive Disabilities don’t like others touching their possessions.), purchasing tickets, entering the park and what services are available once inside the parks.
There is even a breakdown of the attractions at both DL (Disneyland) and DCA (Disney California Adventure) giving check marks on what to expect on each attraction. They let you know if there are things like drops, loud noises and darkness that might be of concern and cause problems for the guest. While this is over all very accurate in my opinion there are a few mistakes.
Mostly the error in the guide is in the noise level of some attractions. For example Great Moments with Mr. Lincoln is only marked for darkness but is not checked for loud noises and flashing lights. There is a part of the show where there is a simulated Civil War battle and you hear the cannon blast and see the flash. I get startled at it almost every time I see the show and I know it is coming! I suggest using the guide as a general overview of what to expect but do not depend on it. Find someone who understands the needs of a guest with Cognitive Disabilities and has been there. Ask questions, find videos of the attractions that you feel there is interest in and check them out. Youtube is full of them!
Some of the other wonderful stuff in the overview and guide is information on where to find quiet spots for breaks, family/companion restroom locations and pictures of important items such as picture of what a Disney Cast Member Name tag looks like. You can show this to your family/group member with disabilities (or even ‘normal’ young kids) and tell them if they get separated, lost or need help of any kind go find someone with a name tag that looks like that and ask for help.
There are many helpful suggestions in the overview and guide such as things to bring and how to prepare your disabled family/group member to have an enjoyable time at the park.
Here is a link to the Guide for Guests with Cognitive Disabilities:
Here is a link to information on the DAS (Disability Access System) information:
Here is a link to my review of the DAS Card usage:
I will also state here I am a Travel Agent with Your Fairytale Vacation and specialize in assisting those with disabilities plan travel to Disney Destinations. I do not charge for my service. You will pay the same through me or booking yourself and I look for all savings I can find for my clients so you may pay less through me.
Your Fairytale Vacation
You can email me at:
My Christmas book, “An Angel Remembers 25 Voices of Christmas” is available!!
This is a collection of 26 short Christmas stories that together bring the amazing events of Christ’s birth alive. It is my hope that this will help encourage families to spend 10-15 minutes a day together during the busy holiday season remembering the true reason for the season.
You can find it for ALL eReader formats and PDF at:
For your Nook the link is:
It is also available at the iTunes book store and many other ebook seller sites.
The only big site not carrying my book is Amazon.
You can download a Kindle version from Smashwords.com
Posted by Pranking Pixie at 12:00 AM
Labels: Disneyland Guide for Guests with Cognitive Disabilities, Disneyland Resort, Disneyland Resort with Disabilities
Tuesday, December 3, 2013
MARY POPPINS TAKES FLIGHT IN THE WINTER ISSUE OF DISNEY TWENTY-THREE
EXCLUSIVE INTERVIEWS WITH SAVING MR. BANKS STARS TOM HANKS AND
EMMA THOMPSON HIGHLIGHT A SPECIAL ISSUE DEDICATED TO THE
WORLD’S MOST FAMOUS NANNY
Plus, D23.com online exclusives include video of the 1964 Mary Poppins premiere,
galleries of the film’s matte paintings, and an interactive map of the Walt Disney Studios
featuring locations used in Saving Mr. Banks.
BURBANK, Calif. – November 4, 2013 – To celebrate the release of Saving Mr. Banks and the
upcoming 50th anniversary of Mary Poppins, D23: The Official Disney Fan Club has dedicated the
entire winter issue of its flagship magazine, Disney twenty-three, to our beloved nanny. The
publication, available exclusively to Gold Members of D23, includes exclusive interviews with Saving
Mr. Banks stars Tom Hanks, Emma Thompson, and Bradley Whitford, as well as director John Lee
Hancock. It takes readers behind the scenes of the making of this spectacular new film, which opens
this Christmas and looks at the creation of Disney’s Mary Poppins and the sometimes combative but
respectful relationship between the character’s creator, P.L. Travers (Thompson), and Walt Disney
Disney twenty-three’s Winter issue also offers a look inside the fascinating life of P.L. Travers, with
a personal reminiscence by her friend, author Brian Sibley, whom she once told, “I don’t feel for a
moment that I invented her. I feel visited by her.” And original film composer Richard M. Sherman,
visual consultant Tony Walton, and choreographers Marc Beaux and Dee Dee Wood offer exclusive
insight into the creation of the 1964 Disney classic, which will officially celebrate its 50th anniversary
Also included in the Winter issue of Disney twenty-three:
A first-person account of the creation of the stage musical Mary Poppins from Disney
Theatrical Productions president Thomas Schumacher
“Elements of Fun,” looking at 50 years of unique “Mary merchandise”
An in-depth look at the film’s groundbreaking special effects
A walk down the red carpet for the Mary Poppins premiere at Grauman’s Chinese Theatre
All D23 Members are invited to visit www.D23.com, where the fan club is kicking off its year-long
celebration of Mary Poppins’ 50th anniversary with a unique video reconstruction of the Mary Poppins
world premiere, containing five minutes of never-before-released material. Although the original
telecast of the event appears to have been lost forever, this 22-minute segment includes audio from
the premiere’s two separate interview locations, combined with all the surviving color film and blackand-
white newsreel footage—re-creating the excitement and glamour of this stellar premiere at
Grauman's Chinese Theatre on August 27, 1964.
Other features planned for D23.com’s online celebration include:
Extensive Mary Poppins galleries, including a look at the film’s breathtaking matte paintings.
An interactive map of the Walt Disney Studios with photo locations from Saving Mr. Banks
Rarely heard audio files from the making of Mary Poppins
An in-depth Mary Poppins production timeline
A look at the sodium screen/traveling matte process, which gave the film its unique visual look
An exclusive interview with Mary Poppins visual consultant Tony Walton
Also in the Winter issue, D23 Gold Members will receive a reproduction of the ticket mailed to invitees
for the Mary Poppins premiere at Grauman's Chinese Theatre.
Disney twenty-three, which is delivered directly to fans’ doorsteps, is offered exclusively to D23 Gold
Members as a benefit of their membership.
The name “D23” pays homage to the exciting journey that began in 1923 when Walt Disney opened
his fledgling studio in Hollywood. D23 is the first official club for fans in Disney’s nearly 90-year
history. D23 gives its members a greater connection to the entire world of Disney by placing them in
the middle of the magic through its quarterly publication Disney twenty-three; a rich website at
D23.com with members-only content; member-exclusive discounts and special events for D23
Members throughout the year.
Fans can join D23 at Gold, Silver, and Free Membership levels at D23.com and at
www.DisneyStore.com/D23. To keep up with all the latest D23 news and events, follow us
@DisneyD23 on Twitter, Facebook, Pinterest, and YouTube.
D23 CELEBRATES “23 DAYS OF DISNEY CHRISTMAS” WITH THE ULTIMATE FESTIVE ONLINE ART EXHIBIT AND SWEEPSTAKES
The Official Disney Fan Club Brings Together Celebrated Artists From Around The Walt Disney Company to Show Their Holiday Spirit—And D23 Members Have a Chance to Win
BURBANK, Calif. – December 3, 2013 – Just in time to celebrate the season, D23: The Official Disney Fan Club has brought back “23 Days of Disney Christmas,” a gorgeous collection of work contributed by artists from nearly every corner of The Walt Disney Company, including Walt Disney Animation Studios, Pixar Animation Studios, Disney Television Animation, Walt Disney Parks and Resorts’ Disney Design Group, Disney Consumer Products, and more. Each day, starting today, December 3, D23.com will unveil a new piece of art that celebrates the holidays. The theme for 2013 is “The Ultimate Gift”—and D23 asked Disney artists what their favorite characters would most want for the holiday. The results are just as creative as the talents behind them, and 23 lucky D23 Members now have the chance win a lithograph of the work.
Disney Television Animation character designer Tara Billinger, who works on the new Mickey Mouse cartoon shorts, crafted a colorful holiday scene with the “fab six” (Mickey, Minnie, Donald, Daisy, Pluto, and Goofy—with a “hidden Oswald” thrown in) carting their sleigh through the snow, ready to unwrap some holiday delights. Disney Consumer Products principal artist Steven Thompson presents a delightful illustration of Beast giving Belle her “ultimate gift”: a library card! Other participating creative talents from around the world of Disney include producer Don Hahn (The Lion King, Beauty and the Beast), Disney Master Artist Dave Pacheco, Wander Over Yonder executive producer/creator Craig McCracken, Monsters University production designer Ricky Nierva, Disney Consumer Products lead artist Anthony Whitfield, Disney Television Animation’s Andy Suriano (Mickey Mouse cartoon shorts), Cris Bernabe-Sanchez of Disney Corporate Creative Resources, Monsters University character design art director Jason Deamer, and Gravity Falls storyboard artist Sabrina Cotugno—along with more than a dozen other Disney talents.
To add to the fun, D23 has launched the “23 Days of Disney Christmas Sweepstakes,” in which members of the Official Disney Fan Club can enter for a chance to win a lithograph of one of the pieces of artwork. D23 Members legally residing in and physically located within the 50 United States or the District of Columbia may enter the sweepstakes beginning today through 10:00 AM (PT), December 26 at D23.com. Winners will be chosen at random and will receive one (1) lithograph. Only one (1) entry allowed per D23 member. There are only twenty-three (23) prizes available to be won. For complete rules, prize details, and eligibility please visit D23.com. No purchase required. Fans can join D23 at Gold, Silver, and Free Membership levels at D23.com and at www.DisneyStore.com/D23. Void where prohibited.
The name “D23” pays homage to the exciting journey that began in 1923 when Walt Disney opened his fledgling studio in Hollywood. D23 is the first official club for fans in Disney’s 90-year history. D23 gives its members a greater connection to the entire world of Disney by placing them in the middle of the magic through its quarterly publication Disney twenty-three; a rich website at D23.com with members-only content; member-exclusive discounts and special events for D23 Members throughout the year.
To keep up with all the latest D23 news and events, follow us @DisneyD23 on Twitter, Facebook, Pinterest, and YouTube.
Haunted Mansion Holiday!
For the holidays Jack Skellington, from Nightmare Before Christmas takes over the Haunted Mansion at Disneyland!! The 999 Grim and Grinning Ghosts have been sent on a holiday vacation.
The fun starts outside as you see the mix of Christmas and Halloween decorations that adorn the mansion. Once inside the stretching room Jack’s touches can be seen. Even in the Art Gallery things are changed with a mixed up holiday theme.
Here is a link to this years Haunted Mansion video. It is not the best as I do not have a camera that works in the dark . . . yet. Hoping for next year.
I have posted in my other faith based Disney blog, Pixie's Faith an article on the movie Meet the Robinsons. Meet the Robinsons - Adopted into God's Family.
Feel free to take a look if you are interested.
Feel free to take a look if you are interested.
Posted by Pranking Pixie at 9:57 AM