Thursday, June 30, 2016

Collector Robert Sommers informed me recently that he is trying to sell a collection of drawings by artist Bernard Garbutt, who taught for a while at the Disney Studio.

You can find more information at this link.

Tuesday, June 28, 2016

I just received the cover drawings by John Musker for the next volume of Walt's People (Volume 18). The book will be released in July.

Monday, June 27, 2016

This just in from Bob McLain, owner of Theme Park Press about a few newly released books:


A Year in the Life of Disneyland

And what a year! In 1955, Walt Disney's dream of a theme park, the first of its kind in the world, came true. Disney historian Jim Korkis' entertaining tale of an American pop culture icon is power-packed with details, and the most thorough account of Disneyland's early days ever published.

As Walt Disney once said: "it takes people to make the dream a reality". Korkis never loses sight of the many people who built Disneyland, from famous Imagineers to obscure ticket takers. From their stories he crafts the epic adventure of how Walt conjured magic from an orange grove, with all the politics and the pixie dust, and the thrill of doing what no one had ever done before.

Just a few of the highlights from Disneyland 1955:

- The many little-known inspirations for Disneyland

- First-person narratives from Disneyland cast members who were there on opening day

- How politics and corporate wheeling and dealing were instrumental in getting Disneyland off the ground

- The story of the short-lived (and little missed) Mickey Mouse Club Circus

- Comprehensive almanacs of Main Street and the four "lands" in the park, as they existed in 1955


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Disney History at Its Best

No one knows Disney history, or tells it better, than Jim Korkis, and he's back with a new set of 20 stories from his Vault of Walt. Whether it's Disney films, Disney theme parks, or Walt himself, Jim's stories will charm and delight Disney fans of all ages.

The best-selling Vault of Walt series has brought serious, but fun, Disney history to tens of thousands of readers. Now in its fifth volume, the series features former Disney cast member and master storyteller Jim Korkis' home-spun, entertaining tales, from the early years of Walt Disney to the present.

Step inside the vault with Jim to hear about:

- Walt's attempt to blacklist "Communists", including his full, uncensored Congressional testimony

- Disney's often-maligned "package films"

- How Barack Obama entered the Hall of Presidents

- The surprising early trade in Disney 8mm home movies

- Disney's original plans for Epcot's American Adventure, and why the Imagineers axed Will Rogers

Discover these and many other new tales of Disney history, as only Jim Korkis can tell them, in The Vault of Walt: Volume 5.

Then be sure to check out ALL the volumes in THE VAULT OF WALT!


Lions and Tigers and Cast Members

Armed with a freshly minted degree in anthropology, Arielle Tuan found her job prospects less than hoped for. Then she heard of the professional internships at Disney's Animal Kingdom for college graduates interested in conservation. Apply? Why not! And from there her adventure began...

Arielle soon found herself in possession of a "bug box" and told to educate guests about conservation and how they could help save the world — whether they wanted to hear it or not. After the bug boxes, she moved to Wilderness Explorer Stations (then known as Kids Clubs) and "animal positions", including one that featured the seldom cooperative Marley the Crocodile.

For shy, introverted Arielle, her months in the steaming "jungle" of the Animal Kingdom, surrounded by wild animals and sometimes even wilder guests and cast members, brought about a metamorphosis.

From the girl with the bug box that most guests ignored as they raced for the "thrill" rides every morning, Arielle found her groove as one of the park's Conservation Education Presenters. Her stories shed light on a whole other world at Disney's Animal Kingdom.

WALT'S PEOPLE: VOLUME 5 (re-release)

Disney History from the Source

The Walt's People series is an oral history of all things Disney, as told by the artists, animators, designers, engineers, and executives who made it happen, from the 1920s through the present.

Walt's People: Volume 5 features appearances by Hugh Harman, Nadine Missakian, Ward Kimball, Erwin Verity, James Algar, Winston Hibler, Bill Anderson, Bill Walsh, George Bruns, Buddy Baker, Fess Parker, Walt Stanchfield, Marc Davis, Alice Davis, T. Hee, Maurice Noble, Al Dempster, Walt Peregoy, Floyd Norman, Bill Evans, Jack Bradbury, Lynn Karp, Dave Michener, Vance Gerry, John Musker, and Ron Clements.

Among the hundreds of stories in this volume:

- BILL WALSH takes stock of his long career with Disney, starting as a writer for the Mickey Mouse comic strip in 1943 and concluding as a producer for some of Disney's biggest films in the 1960s and early 1970s.

- FESS PARKER draws a bead on his complex relationship with Walt Disney, who was responsible for Parker's fame as Davy Crockett, but also for clipping Parker's career by not letting him take plum roles in non-Disney films.

- ALICE DAVIS recounts her romance with much older Disney artist Marc Davis, her fearless attitude toward Walt, and her work for Disney as a costume designer.

- JOHN MUSKER & RON CLEMENTS engage in a lively dialogue about their start at the Disney studio during a dark time, and how their success with films like The Little Mermaid and Aladdin ushered in a new golden age of Disney animation.

The entertaining, informative stories in every volume of Walt's People will please both Disney scholars and eager fans alike.

Friday, June 24, 2016

More great sheet music being released by Voigt Publications!

Thursday, June 23, 2016

I just received yesterday the catalog of the Disney - Art of Storytelling exhibition which is currenty being displayed at The Nordic Watercolor Museum in Skärhamn, Sweden from March 20 to September 4, 2016.

This huge catalog, written by Tracey Miller-Zarneke and released in a bilingual version (Swedish / English) is a pure beauty and contains quite a lot of artwork that I had never seen before, with my favorite pieces being the concept drawings created for The Pied Piper of Hamelin, Pecos Bill and Robin Hood. Sheer delight, but unfortunately extremely difficult to get a hold of except if you know someone in Skärhamn, Sweden.

Wednesday, June 22, 2016

I just received a copy of The Art of Disney's Dragons and loved that book. While it contains practically no text, there is enough artwork in it that I had never seen before for me to consider it a "must have". It is a small book and about half of it is animation-related and the other half park-related. This is not a history book, but it remains nonetheless a very, very enjoyable "un-pretentious" product.

Tuesday, June 21, 2016

While researching the career of Retta Scott for They Drew As They Pleased - The Hidden Art of Disney's Musical Years, I stumbled upon a little unknown jewel, the story of "B-1st", a never-released book that Retta had created on her own time with the help of Woolie Reitherman. I knew the book had to be published and this is now the case thanks to Theme Parke Press, complete with a foreword by the director of Planes, Klay Hall!