Featured Attractions

Thursday, December 14, 2017

Theme Park Thursdays: Unbelievable Sights!

The Walt Disney Company Offers to Buy 20th Century Fox

The Walt Disney Company has officially announced that it has offered to buy certain parts of 20th Century Fox. The deal will include:

20th Century Fox Films
20th Century Fox Television Group & Studio
Fox Sports Regional Networks

It will NOT include:

Fox Television Network
Fox News
Fox Sports One

Upon the deal’s completion, Disney will own:

The Simpsons
The X-Men/Fantastic Four film rights
Full rights to Star Wars: A New Hope

and more. 

Upon the completion of the deal, RetlawYensid.com will officially begin including stories about Disney’s Fox holdings on this site.

Tuesday, December 12, 2017

Toontown Tuesdays: Pluto, Junior

Pluto has a son! Pluto, Junior introduced the scrappy pup in the 1942. Pluto’s son’s tenure would be shortlived- this was the only cartoon in which he appeared.

Monday, December 11, 2017

Music Mondays: “A Kiss Goodnight”

When the DISNEYLAND accountants questioned why the park spent so much money on nightly fireworks that most guests would likely never miss, Walt Disney would mention that he saw the fireworks as a ‘kiss goodnight’ to his guests that would make them want to return in the future. 

When DISNEYLAND celebrated its 60th anniversary in 2015, it commissioned a new song from Richard Sherman who, as part of the famed Sherman Brothers, wrote many of Disney’s most beloved songs. To honor the occasion, he wrote A Kiss Goodnight-

To the land of imagination,
There’s a wondrous magical door.
No one knows where the door is hidden,
Yet we’ve all been there before.

For within every heart lies a secret
That reveals a mystery.
And the secret is this, 
Just a gentle kiss is the key.

A kiss goodnight
Is the doorway to Dreamland.
A kiss goodnight
Is where memories begin.

Just close your eyes,
And you’ll see where your fantasies dwell.
To your surprise, 
What a fabulous tale they tell.

A kiss goodnight
Is the start of a journey
To deep in your heart,
Where your memories shine.

Oh, the joy and the wonder you feel on a magical flight
Begins with a kiss goodnight.

A kiss goodnight
Is the doorway to Dreamland.
A kiss goodnight
Is where memories begin.

Just close your eyes,
And you’ll see where your fantasies dwell.
To your surprise, 
What a fabulous tale they tell.

A kiss goodnight
Is the start of a journey
To deep in your heart,
Where your memories shine.

Oh, the joy and the wonder you feel on a magical flight
Begins with a kiss goodnight.
It begins with a kiss goodnight!

Friday, December 8, 2017

Walt Disney Birthday Week: Freaky Fridays- Guardians of the Galaxy: Mission Merch

While Walt Disney never meant for DISNEYLAND to become a stagnant, non-profit enterprise, he carefully made sure that any change or new enterprise was something that added to the park’s ambience and storyline. Profit was never the sole motivating factor. When DISNEYLAND, Inc. executives pressured Mr. Disney to add a roller coaster, he resisted until he could do it his way. 

Those who took over as caretakers of his Magic Kingdom, however, have not been as careful about carefully balancing Walt’s eye for artistry with the bottom line. That’s why nowadays, shortsighted decisions are made without regard for story or theming. When that happens, we get cynical tie-ins like Guardians of the Galaxy: Mission Breakout!

Instead of waiting until they could “do it right”, like the park had done so many times in the past, Disney management chose to destroy an existing attraction that had been carefully themed and situated in the park. The Twilight Zone: Tower of Terror was one of the most popular attractions in Disney California Adventure. It fit the theme of the area around it and was carefully located where it was built because that was officially 1313 Harbor Blvd.-  an appropriate address for a haunted hotel.

However, Wall Street had noticed that Disney hadn’t yet taken advantage of its valuable Marvel properties in the parks. Even worse, corporate accountants noticed that Disney Theme parks weren’t moving as much Marvel merchandise as they felt should have been sold. Rather than come up with a creative way to put more Marvel characters in the park, the company took a popular and unbroken attraction and ruined it just to show Wall Street that it was using Marvel characters and selling Marvel merchandise in the parks. 

There were better locations where Marvel characters could have fit in; in fact, Tomorrowland in DISNEYLAND is due for another makeover, but that would have taken time and more money. Instead, the company chose to do what lesser theme parks like Six Flags would have done, just to shoehorn another company property into the parks. With the rumored acquisition of 20th Century Fox by Disney, we can only hope that they use their new properties in a thoughtful manner instead of shoving them into places where they do not belong.

The World is A Carousel of Color...

Tuesday, December 5, 2017

Walt Disney Birthday Week: Happy Birthday, Walt Disney!

“One of the things that I’ve learned from Walt that I use in my everyday work and life is that nothing is impossible. The quote of his that I love the best is, ‘Actually, it’s kind of fun to do the impossible.’ I try to remind myself and others of this every day.”

-Ralph Castaneda

One of the things that I’m often asked is why I admire Walt Disney so much. Is it because I was also born on December 5th? Could it be because I enjoyed his films as a child? Maybe I associate DISNEYLAND with a lot of great memories? While many of these things are true, I didn’t find out about his birthdate until I was already interested enough in his life to read an extensive biography about him. Though I do associate his many creations with happy times, my affinity for Mr. Disney is based on much more than just these elements; Mr. Disney is a hero of mine because of how he dreamed big and made many of his dreams come true. 

When his first business venture failed, he could have easily given up and taken a job at one of his father’s businesses. But he took a fateful trip out to California to follow his dreams and rebuild his life. 

When Universal Studios took Oswald the Lucky Rabbit from him, he didn’t despair for long- he dreamed up a new character who became more popular than Oswald ever was- Mickey Mouse!

When he dreamed of making an animated feature film unlike any ever seen, they called it “Disney’s Folly”. But that film- Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs was a huge success and still beloved by children around the world.

When he wanted to build a theme park that would look like nothing else in the world, everyone in Hollywood thought it would ruin him, mocking it as another “Disney’s Folly”. His Magic Kingdom- DISNEYLAND- was an instant success, still welcoming guests from around the world over 60 years later.

Walt Disney’s ability to do what was considered to be impossible is just part of what made him a great person. His boundless optimism is something to be admired. He truly felt that earth’s problems could be resolved by research and innovation. Pollution, waste, hunger, disease and other societal ills could be eliminated with advancements in technology. A great, big beautiful tomorrow awaited us; if we chose to continue the March of progress. Thus Walt Disney was always ahead of his time- and he sought to do his best to make the world of Tomorrow happen today.

Mere words cannot convey Mr. Disney’s continuing influence on the world. On his birthday, millions of people will visit the theme park he built and the parks he inspired. They’ll watch a Disney film or television program. They will enjoy Disney music or experience something he created or inspired. His dreams live on. His stories continue. His influence will never end. Happy Birthday, Mr. Disney! 

Monday, December 4, 2017

Walt Disney Birthday Week: Music Mondays - Walt’s Favorite Song

Walt Disney’s favorite song was Feed the Birds from Mary Poppins. He would often ask the Sherman Brothers to perform it for him at the end of a busy week.

Richard Sherman, on the other hand, always considered There’s A Great Big Beautiful Tomorrow to be the song he felt was Mr. Disney’s Unofficial theme song. The song’s upbeat view of the future mirrored Walt Disney’s positive attitude. Mr. Disney saw and understood the problems that the world faced, but he felt that research and technology would eventually find solutions to them.

Friday, December 1, 2017

Freaky Fridays: Central Soya!?!

When DISNEYLAND first opened the Big Thunder Ranch in 1986, it struggled to find a sponsor for this out of the way spot inside the park. It did eventually find one, however- Central Soya.

What the heck is Central Soya? It was the largest processor of soy beans in the United States at the time, crushing soybeans for industrial and agricultural customers. Its soybeans were used as ingredients in packaged foods and livestock feed. Why it would sponsor something at DISNEYLAND is still an open question. It didn’t sell anything that the average DISNEYLAND guest would be able buy directly from the company.

Thursday, November 30, 2017

Theme Park Thursdays: The Largest Hidden Mickey

The largest Hidden Mickey is extremely hard to see, though millions have probably been through it without even knowing. DISNEYLAND Drive in Anaheim is an access road that runs through the DISNEYLAND Resort’s Hotel District and under Downtown Disney. The lush landscaping and sidewalks were designed to appear like the world famous mouse when viewed from above.

Guests walking along this road to and from the parks and the convention center might wonder why the sidewalk has an odd path, not realizing how it all looks like from above.

Wednesday, November 29, 2017

Walt Wednesdays: The Happiest Millionaire

The Happiest Millionaire was a musical that Walt Disney had hoped would repeat his past success with Mary Poppins. Based on a book and featuring a musical score written by the Sherman Brothers, the studio had high hopes for the film.

The film, with none of the fantasy elements that charmed Mary Poppins audiences, underperformed at the box office and isn’t as well known as other Disney films. In fact, it was one of the movies that Disney licensed to an outside video company for a home release. Eventually the company would re-embrace the film. The film should hold a special place in the hearts of  Disney fans; it was the last film produced by Walt Disney himself.

Walt Disney, pictured above with the film’s cast, would not live to see the picture released. While not a major success, the film would launch the career of Lesley Ann Warren, who holds a special fondness for Mr. Disney even today. Look closely at the picture above; the phone booth pictured on the right side of the picture was relocated to DISNEYLAND, though it is not visible to the majority of park guests; it is located inside the exclusive Club 33.

Tuesday, November 28, 2017

Toontown Tuesdays: Oliver and Company

Whenever a new Disney Film is released, the company often puts all of its promotional Might behind it, which often means a presence (temporary or not) inside DISNEYLAND. If the movie takes off, the presence might be more permanent. If it doesn’t, the presence might be fleeting. When Oliver and Company was released, it received a presence in the form of a parade float and several walk around characters.

Full costumes were created for Oliver and his friends- Georgette, Tito, Rodger and Rita. Right before Mickey’s Birthday parade, the characters would step out on their own float and dance along to the film’s main song- Why Should I Worry? which ran twice daily. The characters would later slip out into the park to meet and greet their fans. While the movie was modestly successful, it would be outshined by the Disney film released the very next year- The Little Mermaid. While Ariel would get a full-fledged ride of her own in Disney California Adventure, Oliver and friends would be rarely seen in the parks afterwards. In Tokyo, however, Oliver would get resurrected as a very popular meet and greet character.

Monday, November 27, 2017

Music Mondays: Cut From The Film

1992’s Beauty and the Beast was considered an instant classic upon its release. The film was a throwback to Disney’s golden age of animated musicals and delighted audiences around the world. The film did everything right, becoming the first animated film nominated for Best Picture.

The movie seemed to have began life fully formed, but a lot of hard work went into making it. Not only did its creators have to carefully decide what to include in the film, they also had to decide what to cut. One song cut from the film was Human Again. The song focused on the enchanted household objects and their desire to, of course, become human again. Originally the sequence would have run for 11 Minutes in the film. Disney management, however, felt that the song would be too long and distract from Belle and the Beast. The song was cut and replaced by Something There, which was shorter and concentrated more on the movie’s leads versus the enchanted objects.

A demo version of the song was released in the mid-90’s on a CD box set. Interest in the song resulted in its inclusion in the broadway musical version of Beauty and the Beast. Eventually, the song made its way into a special edition version of the film released on IMAX screens and a DVD re-release.

Human Again

I'll be cooking again, be good-looking again
With a mademoiselle on each arm

When I'm human again, only human again
Poised and polished and gleaming with charm

I'll be courting again, chic and sporting again
Which should cause several husbands alarm

I'll hop down off this shelf, and tout de suite be myself
I can't wait to be human again

When we're human again, only human again
When we're knickknacks and whatnots no more

When we're human again, good and human again
Oh, cherie, won't it all be top drawer?

I'll wear lipstick and rouge, and I won't be so huge
Why, I'll easily fit through that door

I'll exude savoir-faire; I'll wear gowns; I'll have hair
It's my prayer to be human again

When we're human again, only human again
When the world once more starts making sense

I'll unwind, for a change (Really? That'd be strange)
Can I help it if I'm t-t-tense?

In a shack by the sea, I'll sit back sipping tea
Let my early retirement commence

Far from fools made of wax, I'll get down to brass tacks and relax
When I'm human again

So sweep the dust from the floor
Let's let some light in the room
I can feel, I can tell someone might break the spell any day now

Shine up the brass on the door
Alert the dust pail and broom
If it all goes as planned our time may be at hand any day now

Open the shutters and let in some air
Put these here and put those over there
Sweep up the years, the sadness and tears, and throw them away

We'll be human again, only human again
When the girl finally sets us all free

Cheeks a-blooming again, we're assuming again
We'll resume our long-lost joie de vivre

We'll be playing again, holidaying again
And we're praying it's ASAP

We will push, we will shove; they will both fall in love
And we'll finally be human again

We'll be dancing again, we'll be twirling again
We'll be whirling around with such ease

When we're human again, only human again
We'll go waltzing those old one-two-threes

We'll be floating again, we'll be gliding again
Stepping, striding, as fine as you please

Like a real human does, I'll be all that I was
On that glorious morn when we're finally reborn
And we're all human again!

Saturday, November 25, 2017