Friday, July 30, 2010

This just in from Clem in Perth (Western Australia):

[We purchased a very run-down, old house in 2006. It was owned by a little old lady, approx 80 years old in 2006 (so, she would've been born about 1925/26). She had to move to a nursing residence.
'Poppy's' story was quite tragic, and she'd become somewhat of a 'hermit'; 20 cats, no power, sewerage or water, etc, to her broken-down house. She wouldn't talk to anyone except the Real Estate Agent. She'd hoarded decades worth of rubbish, knee deep, everywhere, inside and out. We purchased the home, 'as is', including all its contents, which was mostly, literally, trash. We decided to take a bit of care in emptying the house before we demolished it, and found a few little, curious 'treasures', including these Mickey letters, inside an old dresser, which had been buried under trash over the decades.
It seems that 'Poppy' was a Mickey fan in the 1930s, and she and her mother had sent Mickey some gifts, to England. Mickey kindly responded !
We've held these letters since then.]

It is the first time I discover the letterhead of the '30s English Mickey Mouse Weekly magazine and thought you might enjoy this little treasure too.

Thursday, July 29, 2010

Two Guys Named Joe

If my review of Two Guys Named Joe: Master Animation Storytellers Joe Grant and Joe Ranft has not yet convinced you to buy the book, I believe this video will do the trick. Enjoy!

A French friend just spotted this astounding table in the shopwindow of an antique dealer in Paris. It is definitely from the '30s, huge and unusual enough that I thought quite a few of you would enjoy seeing it. I believe it is still available at the moment.

Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Todd James Pierce and I had the tremendous pleasure last week of rescuing a two-hour long interview on tape with Joe Fowler conducted the year of his death in 1993 by Harry Wessel. This interview will appear in an upcoming volume of Walt's People, but I thought you would enjoy this short excerpt:

["Walt didn't live long enough to see us break ground in Disney World, but he used to travel all over the property with me in a jeep,” remembered Fowler. “He loved it. I remember he wanted to see how Disney World would look from the top of the Contemporary Hotel. So we got the biggest damned utility crane in Florida, and the two of us got into the bucket and they hoisted us straight up to where the lounge at the top of the Contemporary would be. I was so damn busy hanging on, hoping to get down, and he was so enthusiastic: ‘Oh, Joe, look at this! This is going to be great!’ He could visualize it all. I could see enough to realize that everything [in the plans] was properly located. Oh my, he was a wonderful man."]
Do not miss today:

- The Ryman Centennial: A Whole New Disney World by Michael Crawford
- Dateline: Walt Disney World – Mickey’s 60th Birthday Parade by Michael Crawford
- The Ryman Centennial: Jack Of All Trades by Michael Crawford
- That Mighty Microscope… by Michael Crawford
- The Walt Disney World 30th Anniversary Trading Cards Story by Wade Sampson

Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Indexing Walt's People - We need help.

Michael Barrier wrote to me recently:

[An index to the first ten volumes of Walt's People would be very valuable. There is a great deal of important information in the books, but it often is very difficult to locate. As I know from having prepared the indexes for my own books, indexing is no fun, but surely some way can be found to prepare an index for the WP books.]

To be honest, while I totally agree with Michael, I am already so swamped with my regular job, Walt's People, the blog and my other Disney-related and non-Disney-related projects that I can not see myself undertaking such a project.

Would anyone be willing to tackle this tremendous task?

Sunday, July 25, 2010

It would take a true miracle for John Canemaker's new book, Two Guys Named Joe: Master Animation Storytellers Joe Grant and Joe Ranft, not to become number one this year in my selection of best Disney history books of 2010. I have just received my review copy and none of you should miss this spectacular volume.

John Canemaker is a great storyteller and every single one of his books is a pleasure to read. John is also one of the very best Disney historians, whose level of research is equaled by very few. Finally, John knows every single Disney-related document that has already been released and is therefore able to select extremely unusual material to illustrate each of his books. Two Guys Named Joe ranks among John's three best books about Disney, along with Before the Animation Begins and Paper Dreams - The Art and Artists of Disney Storyboards. The text is gripping, the illustrations are fascinating.

There is so much to say about this book that this short review will have to be somewhat superficial. In addition to John's talent, the complex personnalities of the two artists he writes about turn their life stories into tales with real depth. There is nothing boring in the careers of those guys named Joe. The huge ego of Grant, the unexpected dark-streaks of Ranft, their passion for life, the infinite imagination of both make them three-dimensional beings which only the most gifted storytellers could have created. They are, in other words, beautiful individuals that John knew, understood and rendered with talent.

And then there are the documents that John selected to illustrate the book: from Ranft's irreverent gag drawings to drawings he did as a kid, from weird sketches that remind you of the dark imagination of Tim Burton, to storyboards from a few abandoned projects; and from Grant's early caricatures to his most recent doodles or the drawings he created with Dick Huemer for the Square World project (there are two full pages of those in the book).

To top things of, John included several caricatures and gag drawings created by John Musker. As far as caricatures go, John is probably today's equivalent of T. Hee and those gag drawings will without a doubt be as memorable for generations to come as T. Hee's were when we bought Frank and Ollie's book The Illusion of Life.

In summary: I love this book and you will too.

Reading it and looking at it made me think how much I would love to see John tackle a book about Norm Ferguson, Hams Luske, Freddy Moore and Art Babbitt and how much I would like to see a great book about the Model Shop Department released some day. For now, though, I will spend the next few weeks getting better acquainted with two guys named Joe.

Saturday, July 24, 2010

Friday, July 23, 2010

I had the pleasure of sending the manuscript of Walt's People - Volume 10 to the "editorial board" yesterday for review. This means that I am expecting this new volume to be released by November this year.

As a teaser, here are my introduction as well as the table of content + a draft of the cover drawing, with caricatures created by no other than Bill Peet himself.

[Having reached Volume 10, I was bound to reflect on what has been achieved to date through this slightly crazy project. A key sense of pride comes from the community that is being built around Walt’s People: a community of Disney historians and enthusiasts all working together to make this series a reality.
Needless to say, the Disney historians who contribute their interviews are the keystones of the edifice, but the whole structure would fall apart or take shape much more slowly if it weren’t for a handful of enthusiasts who also play a critical part in this endeavor: digitizing and transcribing interviews, copying tapes, sending me links to new leads, spreading the word about the project,… In other words, helping us uncover more lost treasures and making them available to a wider audience each day.
A few days ago I received the transcription by Germund Von Wowern and Jim Korkis of a long-lost interview with Paul Murry by Donald Ault. Earlier in the year, Jim Korkis had sent me a rare letter by English artist Basil Reynolds, another Disney comics legend. This week, thanks to Todd Pierce’s help, we managed to recover a two-hour-long interview with Admiral Joe Fowler, whose very existence had been forgotten. Then comes the harrowing but highly rewarding task of transcribing the hundreds of interviews with Disney artists conducted by John Culhane from the ‘60s to the ‘90s. Not an easy task, when one takes into account the age of the tapes and the resulting amount of background noise, but a task that enthusiasts like James D. Marks, Edward Mazzilli, Daniel Caylor, Neil Sudgen, Robert Kolakowski, Scott Huitt, Michael Crawford, Dave de Caro, Andy Wakeley, Michael Earls, Mike Grygo, and Oswald Iten have tackled without fear.
Of course, getting access to so much material also has the healthy effect of underlying the obvious gaps. Which is how Julie Svendsen suggested to interview Walt Peregoy, how Pete Docter came to interview Art Stevens, or how I decided to contact Marge Champion, Ray Aragon, Vic Haboush, Joe Hale, Ruthie Tompson, and Carl Bongirno, who each filled a different gap in Disney history.
My other great joy comes when Walt’s People helps “feed” or inspire other Disney-related projects: From the bonuses on the Snow White Blu-Ray, to the upcoming books about Art Babbitt or “Walt before Mickey” to name just a few.
And then sometimes there is sadness. Sadness when some of the artists I interviewed die unexpectedly. Sadness when Disney historians or enthusiasts pass away. Or a different kind of sadness when I realize that some documents seem to have permanently disappeared: some of Christopher Finch and Linda Rosenkrantz’s interviews, some of Frank and Ollie’s, and most of Bob Thomas’ notes and transcripts. The loss of many interviews that Bob Thomas conducted for The Art of Animation (1958) and for Walt Disney – An American Original is particularly tragic as it includes discussions with many artists that only Thomas interviewed.
The good news, however, is that thanks to the Disney Archives half of those interviews still survive and that, thanks to Bob Thomas’ special authorization, they are being released in this volume for the first time.
An even happier news is the fact that more than half of the interviews Thomas conducted for his biography of Roy O. Disney also survived and will probably appear within Walt’s People in the years to come.

Bob Thomas’ Art of Animation and An American Original have been a key source of inspiration for thousands of artists and Disney enthusiasts, from director Brad Bird to yours truly or to new Disney historians like my good friend Tim Susanin. It is therefore with the utmost pleasure that I dedicate this entire special volume of Walt’s People to Bob Thomas’ interviews.]

Foreword: Paul F. Anderson
Didier Ghez: Bob Thomas
Paul F. Anderson: Bob Thomas
Bob Thomas: Walt Disney
Bob Thomas: Walt Pfeiffer
Bob Thomas: Lillian Disney
Bob Thomas: Edna Disney
Bob Thomas: Ub Iwerks
Bob Thomas: Wilfred Jackson
Bob Thomas: Bill Cottrell
Bob Thomas: Herb Ryman
Jim Korkis: Walt’s secretaries
Bob Thomas: Dolores Voght Scott
Bob Thomas: Ham Luske
Bob Thomas: Woolie Reitherman
Bob Thomas: John Lounsbery
Bob Thomas: Ward Kimball
Bob Thomas: Frank Thomas
Bob Thomas: Milt Kahl
Bob Thomas: Hazel George
Bob Thomas: Marc Davis
Bob Thomas: Dick Huemer
Bob Thomas: Ollie Johnston
Bob Thomas: Ken Anderson
Bob Thomas: George Bruns
Bob Thomas: Larry Clemmons
Bob Thomas: Bill Anderson
Bob Thomas: Robert Stevenson
Bob Thomas: Bill Walsh
Bob Thomas: Roy E. Disney
Bob Thomas: Winston Hibler
Bob Thomas: James Algar
Bob Thomas: John Hench
Bob Thomas: Harper Goff
Bob Thomas: Dick Irvine
Bob Thomas: Card Walker
Bob Thomas: Donn Tatum
Bob Thomas: Wathel Rogers
Bob Thomas: Roger Broggie
Bob Thomas: Marvin Davis
Bob Thomas: Joe Potter
Bob Thomas: Robert Foster
Bob Thomas: Joe Fowler
I like this little gag drawing currently being sold on ebay, but is it genuine? Was there really an A. Metcalfe working at the Studio in 1936? is now offering one more book by Jeff Kurtti in pre-order. Jeff seems to be amazingly busy at the moment, which is great news.

Disney Cruise Line: Welcome Aboard! The Creation of the Disney Dream

Thursday, July 22, 2010

I can't wait to get the next issue of the Twenty-Three magazine (Fall 2010) that will be released on August 3, and am especially eager to read the articles about Epcot and WDI.

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

I am unlikely yo buy the biographies of Fred MacMurray or of Verna Felton but I have a feeling that some of you might be interested to know that they exist due to the very strong links between MacMurray and Felton and Disney history.

Do not miss today:

- Walt's Disneyland 1955-1966 by Wade Sampson
- "Disneyland Through the Decades" offers a different take on this theme park's fabled history by Jim Hill

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

David Peake spotted in the "upcoming" section of Amazon an updated version of Christopher Finch's book about Winnie the Pooh. Here is what Christopher had to say about it:

[The Pooh book is being expanded to incorporate a chapter on the new Pooh movie to be released next year--I think in July. Officially it will be with an extra 24 pages, but I suspect there will be more. I handed my text in a few weeks ago, but the pictures went to the designer just last week and I can't imagine how he'll squeeze everything into so few pages.

I'm now working on a major update of The Art of Walt Disney due for next September.]

Do not miss today:

- Old inbetweeners refuse to fade away by Jeff (Thanks to Matt for this link)
- The Disneyland News - July 1985 on Vintage Disneyland Tickets
- The Ryman Centennial: The Phone Call by Michael Crawford

Monday, July 19, 2010

Book about Hyperion

A good friend who prefers to remain anonymous for the moment is doing some serious research into the Hyperion location of the Disney Studio. He is writing a book, which will cover the years 1925 through 1939, and is looking to hear from anyone who may have photos or other interesting bits of material they would like to contribute.

I have seen some of the material and can attest to the rarity of images, and some of the research material, which have never been published previously.

If you have some documents for him, could you email me and I will relay the message. Thanks in advance.

Don Bluth and Fred Moore

This just in from Celbi Pegoraro:

[Writing to share two videos with Don Bluth talking about Fred Moore and Disney effects animation. I was thinking about that other day...there´s so little discussion on books about Disney effects animation.]

Friday, July 16, 2010

Once again I need your help. I am working at the moment on a large essay about the building of Walt Disney World, focusing on the roles of Joe Fowler and Carl Bongirno, for Chad Emerson's upcoming book about the park.

Michael Crawford was kind enough to send me two articles from the magazine Orlando-Land (that later became Orlando Magazine) written by Edward L. Prizer: Inside Epcot and The Disney Era in Florida. Those two articles are simply put spectacular (full of interviews, in-depth information, etc) and I am now extremely eager to locate all the other articles written by Prizer:, especially the articles that appeared in issues from May 1983 and October 1996.

Could anyone help?
This just in from Jim Korkis:

[Shortly before her death, Betty Kimball got rid of a lot of Ward's stuff. Often she would just box up everything related to a particular project in a single box and sell that off. One friend of mine purchased the box with all the information and artwork on Epcot's WORLD OF MOTION and there is so much of it that he is considering creating a website to showcase it all.

On eBay this week, it looks like some other fellow got a box filled with Ward's work on "Mickey's Madhouse/Mickey's Movieland" that was going to be an element of a movie pavilion at Epcot to be located between The Land and The Imagination pavilion. That project later expanded into the Disney MGM Studios theme park but unfortunately without Ward's attraction. Here is the link to some of that paperwork. I hope whoever buys it shares some of it with the rest of us.]

Ape Pen Publishing alerts us about an upcoming event called "Celebrating 55 Years of Walt Disney's Marvelous Mechanized Magic Kingdom" that will take place on September 18th at the Disneyland Hotel and will feature as guests: Disney Legends Bob Gurr, Alice Davis, X Atencio, Katheryn Beaumont, Animatronics Creator Garner Holt, Disney Animator Floyd Norman, AA figure programer Darin Hughes, Senior Conceptual Designer at Walt Disney Imagineering Larry Nikolai, Senior Show Animator Ethan Reed, Disney Legend Milt Albright, Disney Performers Kirk Wall & John Eden, R2 D2, The Can Can Girls, Joseph windows to sky, and many others...

More info can be found at this link.

Do not miss today:

- Sneaking a peek at theme parks that might have been by Jim Hill
- The Ryman Centennial: An Intermission With Herb by Michael Crawford
- First Launch – May 27th, 1977 by Michael Crawford
- And The Relaunch – 2005 by Michael Crawford

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

A new book by Jeff Kurtti has been released and is now available through the Laughing Place Store. I have not yet seen it.

George Colon also says regarding Jeff's previous book about Disneyland (Disneyland Through the Decades):

[ I found out that there is a $99 "Special Edition", signed by Marty Sklar and limited to 1000. It comes in a hard sleeve, and has 8 attraction poster reproduction postcards (including Casa de Fritos!), and a reprint of the first Disneyland Newspaper.]

I had the pleasure of conducting this short interview with John Canemaker by email recently about his upcoming book, Two Guys Named Joe: Master Animation Storytellers Joe Grant and Joe Ranft, and thought you would enjoy it.

Didier Ghez Why did you decide to work on that book? Can you run us through the genesis of that project?

John Canemaker: Three years ago I had lunch with Wendy Lefkon, my editor at Disney Editions. We had worked together on my books Walt Disney’s Nine Old Men, The Art and Flair of Mary Blair, and Paper Dreams. I commented that two friends of mine Joe Grant and Joe Ranft, who were great, indeed legendary, story artists of different eras and ages, died in the same year, in 2005. I noted that their combined careers and profound contributions to important films, such as SNOW WHITE and DUMBO, TOY STORY, NIGHTMARE BEFORE CHRISTMAS, among many others, and their influence on their colleagues can be seen as an overview of the history of storytelling at both the Disney and Pixar studios. I suggested to Wendy a book about “these two guys, both named Joe” and she sparked to the idea immediately and that was that. Or, as Mrs. Oskar Fischinger used to say, “It was it!”

DG: What is the most exciting material you have unearthed for this new book?

JC: Joe Grant’s pre-Disney artwork was exciting to discover. The book’s researcher, Joseph Kennedy (another Joe) found a treasure trove for me in the LA Public Library of the wonderfully clever cartoons Grant drew, starting with his first true caricature in 1929, for the LA Record newspaper. Joe Kennedy also unearthed (on microfilm) earlier drawings from 1928, which Joe Grant drew in an ultra-realistic style that emulated the drawings of his father, who was a superb illustrator and Hearst art director named George A. Grant.
Like a magician with numerous tricks up his sleeve, Joe Grant had several drawing styles throughout his career. I love the simple, exceedingly charming line drawings he used in the original 1939 sketches for his family’s springer spaniel, artwork that led sixteen years later to the famous canine Lady. There were also his brilliant, witty idea sketches for BEAUTY AND THE BEAST and THE LION KING when he returned to the Disney studio after a 40-year absence.
For Joe Ranft, we catch a good look at his quirky dark side in hilariously funny, often macabre and sometimes bawdy sketches made during intense production periods to release tension in himself and his colleagues. My book is profusely illustrated (as usual) with many drawings and photos. I try to find imagery that is unusual and rare. I create books that I would like to buy!

DG: To write this book, did you conduct a whole new set of interviews with Disney artists?

JC: Yes, I met with and spoke to family members of both Joes. I also interviewed animators, story artists, producers, animation historians, among many others. At Pixar, for example, I conducted new interviews with a slew of Joe Ranft’s colleagues, such as John Lasseter, Pete Doctor, Darla Anderson, Bob Peterson, Brenda Chapman, Lee Unkrich, Andrew Stanton, Jonas Rivera, Ed Catmull, and Brad Bird. At the Disney studio, I interviewed Burny Mattinson, Don Hahn, Howard E. Green (to whom I dedicated the book), Eric and Susan Goldberg, Andreas Deja, Pam Coats, Tom Schumacher. Outside the studio, I spoke with Tom Wilhite, Richard Williams, Darrell Van Sitters, Lane Smith, Jerry and Rebecca Rees, Jorgen Klubien, Tony Ansalmo, Kelly Asbury, Wendy Wick Reaves of the National Portrait Gallery at the Smithsonian, among others.

DG: As Disney historians and enthusiasts, can we expect any "revelations" or surprises in this book?

JC: I think readers will find revelatory the information I discovered about the personal lives of both of these creative men. Joe Grant’s family history and his little known early life before joining Disney is fascinating.
Joe Ranft’s personal story is very moving. Particularly, his struggle toward bettering himself as a person, and his positive, charitable approach to life and his fellow human beings.

DG: What are the main chapters of the book?

JC: There are thirteen chapters for each Joe. I don’t want to give away too much, but four of Joe Ranft’s chapter titles include:
“Joe! Put in the Teeth!”
“Spitting at Nuns”
“Disney Daze and That Big Crazy Kid”
“Trust the Process”

Joe Grant’s chapters include:
“Kewpies, Caskets and Shoes”
“Art Director of Myself”
“Of Wren and Witches”
“Master of the Big Idea”

DG: Any other details you can give us about it?

JC: There are two large page foldouts for each section.
The Joe Ranft foldout is his great storyboard for the Green Army Men sequence in TOY STORY. The Joe Grant foldout is beautiful storyboards for couple of sequences from DUMBO, which I don’t believe have been published before. Grant didn’t draw these boards, but he and Richard Huemer wrote a detailed first screen treatment for the film and Grant’s Character Model Department was intimately involved in the development of the story and characters, along with artists from outside his department.

DG: What other Disney-related projects are you currently working on?

No Disney writing projects at this time.
I appear on the upcoming Disney Home Entertainment DVDs for DUMBO, FANTASIA, DESTINO (which may be part of the FANTASIA dvd), and WALT AND EL GRUPO.
I will be lecturing on the two Joes and autographing my book at the Walt Disney Family Museum in San Francisco’s Presidio on August 13 and 14. Seating is limited, so interested animation fans in the area should book now at this link.
On October 1, I will lecture on the two Joes at the Museum of Modern Art in New York and also sign books.

Do not miss today:

- The Ryman Centennial: A Foxy Interlude by Michael Crawford
- The Ryman Centennial: Herb Ryman And The Myth Of Walt Disney by Michael Crawford
- Making Magic: How Computers Influenced Roller Coaster Design by Michael Crawford
- The Ryman Centennial: Herbie Ryman, Or Two Years With A Circus by Michael Crawford
- You Are Not The First To Pass This Way… by Michael Crawford
- The First Disneyland Party by Wade Sampson

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

I mentioned last week when I posted the photo of Pablo the Cold-Blooded Penguin that I had picked up two great Disney items. One of them was Pablo. The other one was the third volume in the Spanish book series "Biblioteca de Aventuras Mickey," from 1935.

The three books in this series were released by Editorial Alas from Barcelona just before the start of the Spanish civil war and are therefore among the rarest Disney books in Spain.

Editorial Alas also released a Mickey Mouse Annual (Almanaque Mickey 1935), which I posted on the blog 2 years ago.

The non-Disney Almanaque Bimbo was also released in 1935.
The publication from Editorial Alas that exists but that I still have never seen is the Almanaque "Three Little Pigs".
Finally, in Volume 3 of "Biblioteca de Aventuras Mickey" a volume 4 is announced, but I have the feeling that it was never released, due to the civil war.
This just in from Joe Jubilado:

[This month I provide two (2) personal live audio from 1985 to celebrate two major birthdays in July. The first (in honor of this past Fourth of July) is the 360-degree film, "American Journeys," from the World Premiere Circle Vision Theater in Tomorrowland, and the second (for Disneyland's 55th birthday this coming July 17th) is Disneyland's 30th Anniversary Parade.

Just when you think the show has ended - as an added bonus, Paul also adds his personal live audio from 1997 of the return of the 360-degree film "America The Beautiful" before the Circle Vision Theater closed for good. Enjoy...]

Do not miss today:

- Interview with John Canemaker about Two Guys Named Joe by Amid Amidi
- The Good Duck Artist unmasked
- Le pubblicazioni sconosciute (o quasi) Disney fino al 1959 by Massimo Bonura

Sunday, July 11, 2010

Floyd Norman just released a new book featuring some of his famous gag drawings. As before Disk Drive - Animated Humor in the Digital Age is available through

Floyd says:

[The gag book is basically a funny look at the traumatic transition animation is currently going through regarding hand drawn and digital animation. And yes, it tends to focus on what I have observed at both Disney and Pixar Animation Studios.]
Here is a question from Jorge Fonte in Spain:

[Is Bill Layne, the Disney background artist who worked at the Studio from 1942 to 1975 (standing in the above photo) the same artist as the Bill Layne who became famous for Pin Up Art?]

I believe the answer is yes, but I wondered if some of you could confirm it.

Friday, July 09, 2010

The three news of the day are all coming from Joseph Cowles.

I had the pleasure of exchanging a few emails with this Carl Barks expert" last week and this lead me to three discoveries that I wanted to share:

1. Joseph has a great web site called The Good Artist, which features fascinating articles he wrote about Barks.

2. Joseph sent me the Donald Duck figurine below with the following note:

[Your image of the ceramic piece reminded me of this item an old friend gave me several months ago. It appears to have been carved in the 1930s; the wood may be monkey pod, and I have been wondering whether it was originated at the Disney studio as a mock-up for some project, carved by a talented and bored sailor aboard a ship in the Pacific, or what its source may have been. Perhaps you or your readers can shed some light on this lovely sculpture. It's about a foot high.] Any ideas?

3. Joseph is also working on a very exciting project which I will mention again soon on the blog. In the latest issue of the Carl Barks Fan Club newsletter John explains the full background that led to the project. Here is a summary:

Joseph managed to get in touch with Barks thanks to Roy Williams and here is what followed "Eventually I typed up and sent him (Barks) a popcorn wagon tale—which included
gags he had inspired. What fun! Carl turned it into “The Candy Kid,” incorporating his gags and discarding the rest of my yarn. He did, however, use my character, “Mr. Stumble”—a gentle
Frank Stabile, manager of most of the eateries in The Magic Kingdom.

Recently, while sorting through boxes of family documents and photographs held in storage since the Sixties, David came across a mint copy of DELL’s Walt Disney’s Comics and Stories in which
“The Candy Kid” was first published: Issue 263, August 1962. Along with the comic book was a typewritten copy of the story idea I’d sent to Carl. And along with that, handwritten in pencil, were Carl’s original notes for “The Candy Kid!”]

And now for the great news from Joseph himself:

[We hope to be able to offer an archival portfolio of reproductions of Carl's twelve handwritten manuscript pages, reproductions of the three-page carbon copy of my original story idea that led to Carl's manuscript, a reproduction of the typed letter in which he first suggested doing a popcorn story, and a full-size reproduction of Carl's "Popcorn Boy Joe Cowles " gag panel. That would amount to 18 loose folio sheets printed on one side of heavy acid-free stock, within a portfolio cover. I will number and signed each set, and include a reproduction of Carl's signature.

We plan to do short press runs, somewhat "on demand," with numbering and fulfillment in the sequence in which the orders are received. Our publishing firm is set up to accept VISA and MasterCard (and Discover, too, I think). We hope to be able to keep the price under $125 plus shipping, at least for the first batch of 50 or so portfolios. I have an idea for a couple of neat things to include as surprise bonuses, too. ]

Thursday, July 08, 2010

This just in from George Colon:

[Knowing you, you're likely right on top of this, but I thought I'd send you an email anyway. The 25th Anniversary Art of Pixar Exhibit opens at the Oakland Museum on July 31st. The Exhibit Catalog is already available online, and at the museum store as well. I took a look through it, and there is a whole lot of additional content not found in the NY MOMA Catalog.]

Well I was not on top of this and I am really grateful for that bit of information.

Wednesday, July 07, 2010

Do not miss today:

- The Mysterious Mouse, Cont'd by Michael Barrier
- The Ryman Centennial: Walt’s Elephants by Michael Crawford
- The Ryman Centennial: The Occidental Tourist by Michael Crawford
- The Ryman Centennial: Working With Herb by Michael Crawford
- The Ryman Centennial: Herb And El Grupo by Michael Crawford
- The Ryman Centennial: In The Beginning… by Michael Crawford
Here is a book I discovered yesterday on Amazon and that I can't wait to read. The Lion and the Giraffe is the autobiography of Jack Couffer.

Among other things, "with his mixed abilities as a naturalist and film maker, Jack joined Walt Disney Studios as a cameraman on the early True Life Adventures. He worked at Disney for more than ten years in a variety of functions--writer, director, producer, cameraman--and participated there in the making of more than two dozen movies."
Not sure yet how much in the book is about that part of Couffer's career but I have a feeling that whatever the answer is this should be a great read.

Do not miss today:

- Disney Imagineer Tony Baxter: The Importance of Being Twelve by Dave Parfitt
- The Disneyland 1953 Sales Pitch by Wade Sampson

Tuesday, July 06, 2010

This just in from Gunnar Andreassen:

[Have you seen this ”first interview” with Mickey Mouse from 1930 ? Maybe something for “Walt’s People/Mice" :-)]

Sunday, July 04, 2010

I picked up two great Spanish Disney items last week, one of which is this figurine of Pablo, the Cold Blooded Penguin made in the '70s in Spain. I had no idea that this type of Disney figurines had ever been produced in Spain and I immediatly tried to find a way to write an article about them. I was lucky enough to soon identify a collector who could help (in Germany, of all places) and thanks to him was able to find a bit more about the company that created this version of Pablo.

"The company Palés S.L. was established in the early '30s in a small city close to Valencia called Manises by a man called Eduardo Palés. The factory was built at Calle Valencia, 29. It originally produced sanitary materials but in the late '60s the market for those types of products collapsed and the company started focusing on producing cermaic figurines. Around 1969 it acquired a Disney license and from that year until 1984 produced Disney figurines in ceramics meant to be exported to Venezuela, Puerto Rico, UK, Canada, Japan and the U.S. The company closed in the late '80s."

The article I am currently writting based on this information will be released in a future issue of the magazine Tomart's Disneyana and will contain dozens of illustrations.
Do not miss today:

Friday, July 02, 2010

According to The Carl Barks Fan Club, Kerby Confer's extensive collection of Carl Barks Disney Duck oil paintings will be auctioned by Heritage of Dallas, Texas on August 5-7.

This just released book is unlikely to be very interesting based on J.P. Telotte's past two Disney-related efforts but I still thought it might be worth mentioning its existence on the blog.

Thursday, July 01, 2010

This just in from Jim Korkis:

[TRUMP magazine from January 1957 was published by Hugh "Playboy" Hefner in an attempt to do a slick humor magazine like MAD with Harvey Kurtzman as editor. In the first issue, famed comic artist Wally Wood did a parody of what a Walt Disney animated feature of Hansel and Gretel would look like. To make it even more realistic, Wood painted the artwork on animation cels. Here is a link to that three page story.]

Do not miss today:

- Walt Disney's "Forgotten" TV Classic by Jim Fanning (outstanding article)
- Cinderella's Golden Carrousel by Jim Korkis
- The Disney World - October - November 1965 on Vintage Disneyland Tickets