Friday, December 24, 2010

A Merry Xmas and a Happy New Year to all of you.

I will be on holiday next week. See you all again in 2011. On January 3rd.

Disneyland Mickey Mouse Club Circus / 1955 - 1956

This just in from Todd James Pierce:

[I've seen home movies of the 1955/6 Disneyland Circus before. (I have some, but they aren't particularly great.) But I've never seen the Disney characters in the circus in a home movie.

This looks like a combination of a few things:

The Mickey/Minnie look like the ice show costumes again. Or at least they have the same zigzag cutouts on the mouth.Some--maybe all--of the other characters may have been from the ice show as well.It doesn't look like these dwarfs are from the Carthay Circle premiere in 1938.

Now the interesting part: About five years ago, I was talking to someone who swore she remembered character costumes being made at the studio for Disneyland during the summer of 1955. I filed that away in the "probably mis-remembered" category. But maybe she was right. Maybe there were some costumes made up at the studio that year???]

The same person who posted that clip on YouTube, also posted a rare video of C.V. Wood. See below:

Rare Clip of C.V. Wood / Disneyland General Manager

Here is one of the best and cheapest Disney-history-related gift that one can get this year. Don't miss this Walt in the Park with Rolly Crump.
This just in drom Dylan Otto:

[Saw your blog, and thought you might want to know I have David Hand's son doing a screening of his father's Animaland cartoons in Broomfield, CO Jan. 15. Some of your readers might be interested. Hand, Jr. has a studio in Broomfield.]

Do not miss today:

- Jerry Rees website by Jerry Beck
- A Walk In The Park With Rolly by Michael Crawford

Thursday, December 23, 2010

What would I love to receive as a Christmas gift this year? If Santa Claus were all-powerful, here are some of the Disney-history-related items that would make it to my wish list.

What would YOU add to this list?

- Bob Thomas' lost interviews (especially those conducted in the mid-'50s for The Art of Animation and in the '60s for Walt Disney - Magician of the Movies)

- The lost interviews conducted by Frank Thomas and Ollie Johnston for The Illusion of Life

- Eric Larson’s autobiography manuscript (40 Years at the Mouse House)

- Manuscript of Jack Speirs' autobiography

- The rumored (but unconfirmed) autobiography of Roy Williams

- All of Dave Smith's not-yet-transcribed interviews

- All the letters to Dave Smith by people who knew Walt or worked for Walt

- All of Michael Barrier's and JB Kaufman's not-yet-released interviews

- A full-run of the DeMolay Disney comics

- A complete list of the Disney TV ads produced in the ‘50s

- Production information about the Disney TV ads produced in the ‘50s

- Production information / correspondence / other documents related to the Disney section created for Douglas Fairbanks’ Around the World in 80 Minutes

- Visual elements linked to Mary Pickford's Alice in Wonderland project

- The 1933 Technicolor test for Disney's / Pickford's Alice in Wonderland project

- All the lost Alice Comedies and Disney Oswald cartoons
Do not miss today:

- Exclusive Geek Out: 'Tron: Legacy' Screenwriters Discuss the Mythology; Address Key Story Decisions by Todd Gilchrist

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Two interesting photos of Clarence Nash (Donald's voice) found on ebay today. I wonder who the gentlemen in the photo are.

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

This weekend I learned about the recent launch of Having had a look around I discovered at least two books about Disney that I found interesting: the graphic novel La Vera Storia Di Novecento by Baricco, Faraci and Cavazzano and the upcoming book Il destino di un incontro. Salvador Dalì e Walt Disney (February 2011) by Francesca Adamo and Caterina Pennestri.

Monday, December 20, 2010

I stumbled upon this Music Sheet from Spain last week and I thought you might enjoy it.

Friday, December 17, 2010

Considering the large number of years Steve Alcorn worked for WDI, this book could be a good read. What worries me by reading the first few pages is that it looks too surfacy. I will let you know after reading it.

Do not miss today:

- Tangled : An Interview with Disney Designer Laurent Ben-Mimoun by Jérémie Noyer
- In memoriam - Walt Disney - December 15, 1966 by David Lesjak
- David Hand Book of Keys – look inside by Mitch Manuel
- David Hand Book of Keys – reference pages by Mitch Manuel

Thursday, December 16, 2010

Looking for Ardis Sturdy

This just in:

[I’m researching a Colorado artist in the museum collection named Ardis Sturdy. I have found a couple of references to her being an artist for Disney in either “the 1940s” or “the early years.” I think her dates are 1918-2003.

Does that name ring a bell? Or, could you recommend a resource to try to track her down from the Disney angle?

The artist may have been in the ink and paint department as one of the jobs her nephew remembers his aunt telling him is that she painted the tail on pluto drawings.

She moved to Colorado in the 1950s and was an active artist until her death. Her later style is abstract.]

I have never heard of Ardis. Would anyone have any information about her?

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

D23's Armchair Archivists

Each day I like more and more what D23 is doing. I already mentioned a while back the first episode of the YouTube series Armchair Archivists. Since then D23 has launched 4 more episodes and the first of those at least is a must see for all of us.

Episode 2

Episode 3

Episode 4

Episode 5

Do not miss today:

- Former Disney CEO Ron Miller recalls his own "TRON" legacy by Leo Holzer
- Walt Talks Art by Jim Korkis
- Snow's in the forecast - shovel, or snowball fight? by David Lesjak

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Disney artists and former Disney artists Frank Thomas, X. Atencio, Jules Engel, Willis Pyle, Berny Wolf, Rudy Ising, ... all worked during the war in the 1st Motion Picture Unit at "Fort Roach".

While this part of animation history is not as such "Disney history" the links with Disney history are so strong that I would love to see an animation historian write an in-depth article about the subject.

Charles Solomon, maybe, since his book The History of Animation, Enchanted Drawings contains a few great pages on the subject... or maybe one of the readers of this blog?

It looks as if a whole book is being written about the 1st Motion Picture Unit itself (but not its animation division as such). I really hope that an animation historian will decide to tackle the subject in the near future.

Do not miss today:

- The Art Of Disney’s Tangled: an interview with author Jeff Kurtti by Jérémie Noyer
- 1930s Donald Duck gift tags by David Lesjak
- "Meet Me At Merkel's Toyland" - Mickey Mouse pin by David Lesjak
- Disney corporate Christmas card - unused art by David Lesjak

Sunday, December 12, 2010

I usually enjoy Kevin Yee's books, but his latest one, Walt Disney World Hidden History: Remnants of Former Attractions and Other Tributes, seems to be a "must have" (from its description on Amazon) in the category of reference books about the parks.

Do not miss today:

- Remembering a Dream(finder) by Jim Korkis
- The Casablanca Plane Myth:Not a Myth After All? by Werner Weiss and Jim Korkis
- "A SECOND RATE LAS VEGAS" ~Walt Disney by Paul F. Anderson

Friday, December 10, 2010

Jérémie Noyer's two new books are now available on Here are the tables of content:

[Volume 1 : de Blanche Neige à Tarzan

Ashman, Howard (La Petite Sirène)
Baker, Norman « Buddy » (Les Aventures de Winnie l’Ourson)
Bancroft, Tony (Mulan)
Beaumont, Kathryn (Alice au Pays des Merveilles ; Peter Pan)
Benson, Jodi (La Petite Sirène)
Broughton, Bruce (Bernard et Bianca au Pays des Kangourous)
Carel, Roger (Pinocchio)
Champion, Marge (Blanche-Neige et les Sept Nains)
Costa, Mary (La Belle au Bois Dormant)
Darbois, Richard (Aladdin)
Davis, Alice (Les 101 Dalmatiens)
Davis, Lisa (Les 101 Dalmatiens)
Deja, Andreas (Les 101 Dalmatiens)
Foster-Wells, Holly (La Belle et le Clochard)
Gillespie, Sarah (La Petite Sirène)
Hale, Joe (Taram et le Chaudron Magique)
Hulett, Steve (Rox et Rouky)
Keane, Glen (La Belle et la Bête)
Lauch, William (La Petite Sirène)
Lee, Peggy (La Belle et le Clochard)
Leven, Mel (Les 101 Dalmatiens)
Leven, William (Les 101 Dalmatiens)
Lima, Kevin (Tarzan)
Mancina, Mark (Tarzan)
Mattinson, Burny (La Belle au Bois Dormant)
Menken, Alan (La Petite Sirène ; La Belle et la Bête ; Aladdin ; Pocahontas)
Norman, Floyd (Le Livre de la Jungle)
Redford, JAC (Cendrillon) 27
Scribner, George (Oliver & Compagnie) 131
Sherman, Richard M. (Merlin l’Enchanteur ; Mary Poppins ; Le Livre de la Jungle ; Les Aristochats) 69 ; 75 ; 95 ; 111
Smith, Lella (Blanche-Neige et les Sept Nains) 18
Starobin, Michael (Le Bossu de Notre-Dame) 211
Troob, Danny (La Belle et la Bête ; Aladdin, Pocahontas) 164 ; 183 ; 201
Zimmer, Hans (Le Roi Lion) 199

Volume 2 : De Dinosaure à Toy Story 3

Anderson, Stephen J. (Bienvenue chez les Robinson)
Casarosa, Enrico (Ratatouille ; Là-Haut)
Clements, Ron (La Princesse et la Grenouille)
DeBlois, Dean (Lilo & Stitch)
Debney, John (Kuzco, l’Empereur Mégalo ; Chicken Little)
Deja, Andreas (Lilo & Stitch)
Docter, Pete (Là-Haut)
Giacchino, Michael (Les Indestructibles ; Ratatouille)
Hahn, Don (Atlantide, l’Empire Perdu)
Henn, Mark (La Princesse et la Grenouille)
Howard, James Newton (Dinosaure ; Atlantide)
Keali‟I Ho‟omalu, Mark (Lilo & Stitch)
Keane, Glen (La Planète au Trésor)
Mancina,Mark (Frère des Ours)
Menken, Alan La Ferme se Rebelle)
Moshier, Joe (Volt, Star Malgré Lui)
Musker, John (La Princesse et la Grenouille)
Navone, Victor (Wall-E ; Toy Story 3)
Newman, Randy (Monstres & Cie ; Cars)
Newman, Thomas (Le Monde de Némo)
Pinkava, Jan (Ratatouille)
Ruppel, Robh (Bienvenue chez les Robinson)
Sanders, Chris (Lilo & Stitch)
Slater, Glenn (La Ferme se Rebelle)
Spencer, Clark (Lilo & Stitch)
Williams, Steve “Spaz” (The Wild) ]

Thursday, December 09, 2010

Astonishing photo being sold on ebay at the moment. I have the feeling that those were the masks used during the Snow White premiere but I am not totally sure.
This just in from Joakim Gunnarson:

[Thought you'd might like to know (if you don't already) that a set of photos from Disney model builder Bob Jones are for sale on eBay at the moment.]

Too expensive for me but great to see.

Monday, December 06, 2010

I will be travelling to London on Tuesday and Wednesday. The site will be updated again on Thursday.
Is this really Disney "history"? Not sure. This being said as I mentioned a few weeks ago I feel a certain sense of nostalgy when it come to Tron. Not a great movie but definitely a fascinating one.

Which I why I have really been looking forward to Tron:Legacy and why I hope that movie will have a great script. In the meantime I like the way Disney is promoting it at the moment and really appreciate the books they have released to do so. The idea of writting a "middle-quel" in comic book form is a good one and while I find the art of that comic-book way too childish the concept is appealling enough to mention on this blog (I also like the idea of the Digicomics created around Epic Mickey - those are all ideas that sound very Disney to me instead of re-hash of things we have seen done a million times in the past).

When it comes to the "making of" book, since I am first and foremost a "reader" I was disapointed by the amount of text it contains (way too little), but I liked the artwork and the way it was presented overall.

Those two books are not must-have for any of us I believe but I feel they deserved to be mentioned here.

Friday, December 03, 2010

Speaking of Jim Korkis here is some more news:

[This Saturday he will be a guest speaker at Pixelmania which is a group of amateur Disney theme park photographers:

Last night (Wed.Dec. 1) he also was on Shokus Internet Radio along with Jerry Beck and they reviewed the three recently released Disney documentaries and Jerry talked about upcoming Looney Tunes projects. The show was live but reruns three times a day 4:00 pm, 8:00 pm and 10:00 am Pacific Standard Time (three hours later on the East Coast) if anyone wants to listen. ]
This just in:

[Disney Historian Jim Korkis is an avid reader with many interests outside of Disney and as a result he sometimes stumbles on Disney information in magazines and books that other Disney fans might miss.

Jim writes: "I recently found two gems of Disney information in the latest issue of the cult film magazine, FILMFAX #125 relating to two former Disney employees who worked at the Disney Studio while Walt was alive. On one page, Ron Lizorty writes: "Chris Mueller came from a long line of sculptors. He and his dad sculpted a magnificent building in Balboa Park (when Chris was 17). Chris sculpted the temple in Korda's Thief of Bagdad and the snake in Korda's Jungle Book. Chris sculpted a lot for Disney--just about everything at Disneyland including the Jungle Cruise wild animals with Marcel (King Kong) Delgado, including the Peter Pan pirate ship. He even sculpted the ornate doors and air vents in the New Orleans Square sector."

Later in the same issue Ross Plesset has an article about Joe Alves who helped art direct H.R. Pufnstuf and directed Jaws 3-D. However he got his start at Disney as Plesset writes: "Alves found himself assisting Josh Meador animated the Id Monster for MGM's Forbidden Planet. During his time at Disney, Alves also had a personal encounter with Walt Disney, himself. While drawing an object for Sleeping Beauty (which Alves vaguely recalls as being a cookie), a hand came down over his desk and a voice said, "It should be drawn this way." The young artist looked up to see Walt Disney and replied, "Okay, Walt." He also saw firsthand Disney's well known tendency tobe very hands on, and his concerns about budget."

NOTE TO DIDIER: Mueller passed away but Alves is apparently still very much alive and still working as an artist/designer in the business. Maybe someone can track him down for an interview of his time at Disney and working with Meador. Forbidden Planet was 1956 and obviously Alves who was at MGM at the time went to Disney from there to work on Sleeping Beauty in 1959 and may have been one of the victims of the lay off after that film's release and then went into live action.

ANOTHER NOTE TO DIDIER: A new site came on the internet on December 1st and will be there through December and then disappear in January. is an Advent Calendar for Disney fans with each day a 5-7 minute story from a different Disney fan. On December 1st, Jim Hill talks about how character breakfasts started at Walt Disney World from a "Breakfast With Santa" in the Seventies. Jim Korkis tells a Disney Christmas story on December 15.]
This just in from Danny Handke:

[Just wanted to let you know that your listing for Chris Merritt: Disney Park Posters is incorrect. It will be written by myself (Danny Handke) and Vanessa Hunt, and tentatively titled "The Art of Disney Attraction Posters." Disney Editions is the publisher and the release date is still TBD 2011.

It's going to be an amazing book...full of great stories and poster art - most rare or never before seen! ]

Walt's People - Volume 10 update

As some of you have noticed Walt's People - Volume 10 is late (I was hoping to release it in November). The good news is that I have now received all the corrections I needed to get from all the contributors. I should be able to integrate them in the manuscript by the end of the year, so Volume 10 should be ready by February next year.

I am of course already hard at work on volumes 11 and 12.

Do not miss today:

- Kim Irvine honors WED's pioneers with her work at the Disneyland Design Studio by Jim Hill (I have conducted an in-depth interview with Kim that will be released in Walt's People - Volume 11).
- The gang's all here - Hank Porter Christmas art by David Lesjak
- Vintage Headlines: Ardent Youth Barred by Jeff Pepper

Thursday, December 02, 2010

Jérémie Noyer has decided to release in the near future all his interviews with Disney artists in a series of two books in French. This is excellent news. I will let you know when this happens.

Wednesday, December 01, 2010

A few interesting items in this upcoming auction that will take place in Paris on December 4.
Very interesting post titled Disney animator David Hand’s influence on New Zealand animation by Mitchell Manuel.

Do not miss today:

- The Wonderful World of Disney Books by Jim Korkis
- Once You've Grown Up You Can Never Come Back by Jeff Pepper
- Revisiting the Fantasias, Experiencing Destino by Jeff Pepper
- Disney History at Its Documented Best by Jeff Pepper