« April 2013 | Main | June 2013 »

May 2013 Archives

May 6, 2013

Welcome to WonderCon!

jeaninebanner.jpg

Earlier this year, the Anaheim Convention Center played host to WonderCon--a smaller sibling to the gargantuan San Diego Comic Con.

DSC00975.JPG

While there wasn't a huge Disney presence in either the Exhibitor's Hall or the panel presentations, there was the usual abundance of costumes and cosplayers out and about.

DSC00976.JPG

Guillermo del Toro, still said to be connected to a future Haunted Mansion film for Disney, was there presenting a newly-cut trailer for his newest film, Pacific Rim.

DSC00981-1.JPG

Although it's tough not to get behind giant robots battling alien dinosaurs, I might be the only one wanting to see it just to hear the voice of GLaDOS from the Portal video games.

Even in the Trek Nation panel, it was possible to find hints of Disney, if you knew where to look.

DSC00988.JPG

Of course, Disney's grandest new acquisition was well-represented in costumes and booths and build-your-own construction projects and pretty much anything else you could imagine.

DSC00989-1.JPG

DSC00990-1.JPG

DSC00991-1.JPG

Some familiar Disney creators were also out in force, such as The Avengers' Joss Whedon, promoting his new independent film Much Ado About Nothing.

SAM_0273.JPG

Also in attendance was Once Upon A Time writer Jane Espenson, on panels for both Buffy Season Nine and her internet series Husbands.

SAM_0297.JPG

If finding characters for photo opportunities was too hard at Disneyland, guests had only to walk down the block to find a plethora of costumed folk from properties as recent as Wreck-it Ralph...

DSC01000.JPG

...and its Academy-award winning accompanying short, Paperman.

SAM_0304.JPG

While WonderCon is historically held in San Francisco, recent renovations being done to their convention center have necessitated its move down south for last year and this year. It is unknown as to whether it will stay in Anaheim next year, or return to San Francisco.

May 12, 2013

Disneyland Resort Photo Update - 5/10/13

laura%27s%20masthead%20copy2.jpg

Contributing photographer Jason of disneygeek.com sends us these photos from his trip to the parks on Friday, May 10, 2013.

First stop today, Disneyland. Nice to see the Magical posters up right away this season, it returned last Friday for its summer run.

Disneyland Resort Photo Update - 5/10/13


A new hot dog option at Refreshment Corner: Chicago Style. An all beef hot dog with sweet pickle relish, pepperoncini, tomatoes, red onions, chives, and a dill pickle spear. Served with a bag of chips. $7.19.

Disneyland Resort Photo Update - 5/10/13

The skyline in Frontierland has returned to normal. The large crane is gone meaning the track installation is complete so now they should be moving on to the painting.

Disneyland Resort Photo Update - 5/10/13

Rainbow Ridge continues to take shape.

Disneyland Resort Photo Update - 5/10/13

The stage area at the front of Tom Sawyer Island is closed to guests during the day right now.

Disneyland Resort Photo Update - 5/10/13


Still no signage for the Magical Map show at the Fantasyland Theater. There was a cast member positioned by the wall to answer questions since you could hear snippets of the show as they rehearse/tweak the sound system.

Disneyland Resort Photo Update - 5/10/13


The painting project of the light towers in the Small World Mall appears to be complete.

Disneyland Resort Photo Update - 5/10/13

Thought this was funny.. I was trying to take a picture of the control booth with the snow man in the window and somehow managed to time it perfectly to get a bobsled in the way!

Disneyland Resort Photo Update - 5/10/13

Look who is controlling the Matterhorn. (Laura says: I think this is the Bumble from Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer.)

Disneyland Resort Photo Update - 5/10/13

The subs were sailing again today. (And Space Mountain has reopened too)

Disneyland Resort Photo Update - 5/10/13

The Kodak signage has been removed from the Photo Supply Co. on Main Street.

Disneyland Resort Photo Update - 5/10/13


The Opera House has reopened. No real changes to the lobby area. Thought maybe this display would be updated.

Disneyland Resort Photo Update - 5/10/13

Thought this was poor. The Disneyland ticket collection that was on loan from Tony Baxter has been removed and nothing has taken its place. Seems they could have figured something out or taken the display case out or something.

Disneyland Resort Photo Update - 5/10/13

Over to DCA.

The Kodak signage at Kingswell Camera Shop has been removed.

Disneyland Resort Photo Update - 5/10/13

Plenty of signs telling you attractions will be closed prior to park closing. But no indication of what that means. I am assuming this is for the Grad Nite kickoff.

Disneyland Resort Photo Update - 5/10/13

The Big Top Toys window has been tweaked. The cut outs have been replaced with real stuffed animals. Slightly better but still nowhere near as nice as the original window the Imagineers had.

Disneyland Resort Photo Update - 5/10/13

The last couple of times I stopped by the Performing Arts showcase on the backlot they featured handbell groups. Are they becoming that widespread now?

A very brief clip of the Kyrene Middle School Scorpion Handbells from Tempe Arizona playing a song we all know..

Someone asked what they did with the truck since they put the Monsters University merchandise kiosk where it used to be...well they moved it up on the sidewalk and down a little.

Disneyland Resort Photo Update - 5/10/13

In Radiator Springs the pavement project is complete. I read online the issue was the pavement was sinking a bit on the sides so here you can see the right side was built up.

Disneyland Resort Photo Update - 5/10/13

Another shot, you can see the line on the left for what was changed.

Disneyland Resort Photo Update - 5/10/13

A closer look.

Disneyland Resort Photo Update - 5/10/13

The cactus were not in bloom, but several looked like they would be soon.

Disneyland Resort Photo Update - 5/10/13

Some new bark in the planters between the Wharf and Cars Land.

Disneyland Resort Photo Update - 5/10/13

Out on the Pier Instant Concert had just ended. This time Goofy stuck around for pictures. Thought this was a nice plus and always thought it was odd he would run off so quickly after the show.

Disneyland Resort Photo Update - 5/10/13

The Condor Flats restrooms have reopened. No real interesting changes jumped out to me.

Disneyland Resort Photo Update - 5/10/13

The Storytellers statue area had been behind some walls, guessing some spring cleaning/annual refurbishment.

Disneyland Resort Photo Update - 5/10/13

The Cozy Cone fountain was drained.

Disneyland Resort Photo Update - 5/10/13

GRR was closed this time by (earlier it was running).

Disneyland Resort Photo Update - 5/10/13

Walked on to the Little Mermaid. Here at Disneyland they do not rotate toward Ursula at the end whereas WDW has a slight rotation.

Disneyland Resort Photo Update - 5/10/13

A Glow with the Show Ears cart out on the Pier.

Disneyland Resort Photo Update - 5/10/13


Went for a ride on Mater's. The new coating seems to be holding up so far in most spots. Thought it was funny that they needed a red out of service band on it.. with no trailer seems obvious it is not in use.

Disneyland Resort Photo Update - 5/10/13

It's Tough to be a Bug is closed today.

Disneyland Resort Photo Update - 5/10/13

In Hollywoodland one of the Backlot directional signs has been removed from the planters.

Disneyland Resort Photo Update - 5/10/13


The Mad T Party was going on as I walked by.

Disneyland Resort Photo Update - 5/10/13

A wide picture of the future Monsters University Dorm, which will be a Meet and Greet area.

Disneyland Resort Photo Update - 5/10/13

A current Limited Time Magic offering allows Annual Passholders to view Magical and Fantasmic! from a reserved viewing area if they have Glow with the Show Ears. AP holders obtain a wristband at a check-in booth outside the Opera House.

Disneyland Resort Photo Update - 5/10/13

Walls up for some pavement work near the New Orleans Square station.

Disneyland Resort Photo Update - 5/10/13

Caught a little of Fantasmic. No Pinocchio puppets this evening.

Disneyland Resort Photo Update - 5/10/13

No fire out of the dragon either.

Disneyland Resort Photo Update - 5/10/13

Made it to Main Street with a couple minutes to spare to catch Magical. Unfortunately I bypassed the AP area so not sure how many people were there and was too far back to see their ears perform.

A clip from the show, with a couple of Glow Ears visible.


Disneyland Resort Photo Update - 5/10/13

Disneyland Resort Photo Update - 5/10/13

The new wheelchair accessible van stop was in use this evening as I was leaving.

Disneyland Resort Photo Update - 5/10/13

Hope you enjoyed this highlight tour of the Disneyland Resort. For additional photos and details from this trip you can check out the full Disneyland Update I posted on my site, http://disneygeek.com Also be sure to follow me on twitter @disneygeekcom for pictures from the parks.



May 17, 2013

Be Our Guest - Lunch

laura%27s%20masthead%20copy2.jpg
Contributing photographer Jason of disneygeek.com sends us these photos from his recent trip to Walt Disney World.

This was my first visit to the New Fantasyland portion of the Magic Kingdom in Walt Disney World. For lunch we tried the Be Our Guest restaurant with Deb Wills. Here are some pictures from this experience. For lunch Be Our Guest is a "Fast Casual" location. The menu pricing and choices are close to your regular counter service locations. You order via self serve kiosks, then the food is brought to your table for you.

Approaching the Be Our Guest restaurant. To the left is the check in area for dinner, the rest of the time a cast member is there to answer questions and provide you a preview of the menu if you ask.

Be Our Guest - Lunch

Be Our Guest - Lunch

Be Our Guest - Lunch

Approaching the castle.

Be Our Guest - Lunch

Be Our Guest - Lunch


The front doors.

Be Our Guest - Lunch

Off to the left there is a side door and this is on the wall.

Be Our Guest - Lunch

Inside the entrance lobby.

Be Our Guest - Lunch

To the left are the restrooms.

Be Our Guest - Lunch

A quick peak inside the men's room..

Be Our Guest - Lunch

To the right the hall of armor which leads to the room where you place your orders.

Be Our Guest - Lunch

Be Our Guest - Lunch


The screens in the middle display music in the morning and during dinner, during lunch time they highlight menu items.

Be Our Guest - Lunch

Be Our Guest - Lunch


In front of you is the Ballroom. I stopped by early in the morning and they had the lobby open so you could look into the room.

Be Our Guest - Lunch

Be Our Guest - Lunch

Be Our Guest - Lunch


One of the beverage stations off to the side.

Be Our Guest - Lunch

Turning around you can see the main doors that are closed and off to the right is where I entered from.

Be Our Guest - Lunch

Looking out you can see Cinderella Castle in the distance. Also note no line! This was taken before 9am.

Be Our Guest - Lunch

We returned for lunch around 11am.. the line filled the entire bridge. We waited about twenty minutes from entering the line till we were in the dining room. They had a relatively short lunch window of 10:30am till 2:30pm.

Be Our Guest - Lunch

Be Our Guest - Lunch


If you listen carefully you can hear the suits of armor snoring and making other sounds, here is a brief video clip as we passed by with the line.

A look at one of the menus that were on the center displays.

Be Our Guest - Lunch

You make your way to the library where you order. Here is a picture of one of the kiosks.

Be Our Guest - Lunch

The system is fairly intuitive and easy to use. Once you have ordered and paid you then head out to the dining room to find your seat.

Be Our Guest - Lunch

You have three choices. The first room you encounter is the large Ballroom.

Be Our Guest - Lunch

Be Our Guest - Lunch

Be Our Guest - Lunch

Off to the left is the West Wing, which is a smaller and darker room.

Be Our Guest - Lunch

It features the enchanted rose.

Be Our Guest - Lunch

Be Our Guest - Lunch

Be Our Guest - Lunch

Be Our Guest - Lunch

The third room, which is to the right from the Ballroom is the Rose Gallery. The center piece here is a large music box. This is the room we ate in.

Be Our Guest - Lunch

Ringing the room are several paintings featuring moments from the film.

Be Our Guest - Lunch

Be Our Guest - Lunch

Be Our Guest - Lunch

Be Our Guest - Lunch

Be Our Guest - Lunch

Be Our Guest - Lunch

The detail work around the room is great.

Be Our Guest - Lunch

Be sure to look down too.

Be Our Guest - Lunch

The view from my seat.

Be Our Guest - Lunch

A quick video clip of the music box, unfortunately the camera picked up the background noise more than than the music.

Stopped by the soda fountain to pick up my beverage. Notice how even its details match.

Be Our Guest - Lunch

Your meals are brought out to you by Cast Members on these carts. Now a look at our lunches...

Be Our Guest - Lunch

Potato Leek Soup $4.49

Be Our Guest - Lunch

French Onion Soup $4.99

Be Our Guest - Lunch

Carved Turkey Sandwich - served on a warm baguette with Dijon mayonnaise and Pomme Frites $10.99

Be Our Guest - Lunch

Croque Monsieur - Grilled sandwich of carved ham, Gruyere cheese, and bechamel with Pommes Frites. $10.99

Be Our Guest - Lunch

Quinoa Salad - with green beans, potatoes, olives, roasted bell peppers and tomatoes $9.99

Be Our Guest - Lunch

Grilled Steak Sandwich - with garlic butter spread and pommes frites $11.99 (Note as of mid-May I read this item had been removed from the menu).

Be Our Guest - Lunch

I ordered mine plain.

Be Our Guest - Lunch

The desserts we ordered. Chocolate Cream Puff, Passion Fruit Cream Puff, and Strawberry Cream Cheese Cupcake $2.99 each.

Be Our Guest - Lunch

The overall experience surpassed my expectations. I was not sure if waiting in the long line would be worth it for counter service fare. But the incredible detail of the restaurant, efficient experience - from the ordering process through food delivery - and decent food would put this on my list of places to visit again. Would I wait an hour in the Florida sun to dine there? No, but the 20-30 minute range I could probably handle again. We choose the Rose Gallery to eat in because it seemed to give us the best place to chat. The main ballroom seemed very busy and much louder as we walked through and the darkness of the West Wing was not going to work since we wanted to take pictures of the food. The Rose Gallery was a nice compromise and had plenty of seating when we arrived. It seemed most people were trying for the main Ballroom. We had a very leisurely lunch and at no time felt rushed to leave. I thought maybe to keep the line moving they would try to keep guests from lingering but that did not happen. Also depending on where you sit be prepared for foot traffic and photographs...a large number of guests were roaming around (just like me) looking at the three rooms and taking pictures so there was a fairly steady stream of flashes going off near the entrance areas and some minor traffic jams.

The Food: My meal was decent by quick service standards. I had the steak sandwich and thought I would try that again on a return visit. Unfortunately I am seeing reports now that the sandwich has been replaced and nothing else on the menu really worked for my plain preferences so not sure when my next meal there will be. The rest of our group who all had more open/normal eating habits found the food to be ok. They commented many of the items tasted salty to them but the consensus was they enjoyed them. I was surprised not to find at least one "comfort" item, especially on the kids side. I know they are trying to make the dining experience different but having something more traditional for those of us who enjoy a limited palate would be nice. A basic chicken dish or burger would be a welcome addition especially now that the steak sandwich is gone.

Hope you enjoyed this look at the Be Our Guest Restaurant. For additional photos and details from this trip you can check out the full Walt Disney World Updates I posted on my site from all seven days, http://disneygeek.com Also be sure to follow me on twitter @disneygeekcom for pictures from the parks.



May 21, 2013

Disneyland Resort Photo Update - 5/17/13

laura%27s%20masthead%20copy2.jpg

Contributing photographer Jason of disneygeek.com sends us these photos from his trip to the parks on Friday, May 17, 2013.

D23 Expo banners now line Disneyland Drive

Disneyland Resort Photo Update - 5/17/13


The fountain at the Mickey and Friends Tram stop in Downtown Disney has fences around it.

Disneyland Resort Photo Update - 5/17/13

First stop today, DCA, to pick up a wristband for the Limited Time Magic Annual Passholder event this afternoon. Animator Eric Goldberg will be featured in a "Master Class" of the Animation Academy.

Disneyland Resort Photo Update - 5/17/13

After getting my wristband I then headed over to Disneyland. A look toward the Castle on Main Street USA

Disneyland Resort Photo Update - 5/17/13

Walked through Innoventions, Iron Man Tech is still drawing a fair number of guests. We were held at the entrance for a couple of minutes as they were spacing people out before allowing you to enter the building.

Disneyland Resort Photo Update - 5/17/13

A couple of ducks out for a stroll.

Disneyland Resort Photo Update - 5/17/13

The new Fantasyland Theatre signage is up, only a week until the new show officially opens. Interesting the main sign is generic and not show specific.

Disneyland Resort Photo Update - 5/17/13

Off to the side one for the upcoming show.

Disneyland Resort Photo Update - 5/17/13

Troubadour Tavern has reopened.

Disneyland Resort Photo Update - 5/17/13

The menu, the baked potatoes have not returned. (The updated menu on AllEars is HERE)

Disneyland Resort Photo Update - 5/17/13

From the Mark Twain you can see Rainbow Ridge is moving along and looking great.

Disneyland Resort Photo Update - 5/17/13

Disneyland Resort Photo Update - 5/17/13

The paving/planter project in New Orleans Square continues, so the train station is not available.

Disneyland Resort Photo Update - 5/17/13


On Main Street the porch area is being worked on and behind walls.

Disneyland Resort Photo Update - 5/17/13

The painting project of the Market House/Disneyana facades looks to be wrapping up.

Disneyland Resort Photo Update - 5/17/13

The door across the street still looks the same.

Disneyland Resort Photo Update - 5/17/13

Over to the Hollywood Backlot in DCA. No visible progress on the Monsters University dorm overlay to this facade.

Disneyland Resort Photo Update - 5/17/13


I made my way to the Animation building for the 4pm session with Eric Goldberg.

A brief introduction by a host.

Disneyland Resort Photo Update - 5/17/13

Then Eric took the stage for his presentation and drawing lesson. Right after I took this picture a cast member came by and informed us that no photos were allowed. So I was then able to sit back, relax, and enjoy the presentation. Unfortunately it means no pictures to share. The event was open to all Annual Passholders, you just had to visit the Animation Building during the day to get a wristband then return for the event at the time you received (they ran sessions at 3,4,5 and 6). Eric took the stage and gave a 25-minute or so presentation on some of his work showing some early tests and sharing stories about some of the characters he worked on. He discussed Abu, Iago, the Genie, Phil, and Louis. He also showed some tests he did for Wreck-It Ralph of Sour Ball and King Candy. After his presentation he conducted a very quick set of tutorials on how to draw Pinocchio and Phil for us (a later session did the Genie and Goofy/Pluto). They then selected a handful of guests to join him on stage and showcase their work. The entire session ran about 45 minutes. I would have enjoyed more stories instead of the drawing lesson, especially since I cannot draw and he was going so fast most could not really keep up.

Disneyland Resort Photo Update - 5/17/13

Moving on to Cars Land. I saw/heard that they re-striped Route 66 again last week.

Thought maybe the plan was to better blend in the sides.

Disneyland Resort Photo Update - 5/17/13

But it does not appear so...or if it was it does not look much better.

Disneyland Resort Photo Update - 5/17/13

A couple small blooms and several look ready to pop in the cactus garden.

Disneyland Resort Photo Update - 5/17/13

Disneyland Resort Photo Update - 5/17/13

Disneyland Resort Photo Update - 5/17/13


A fun stroller cruising through the parks.

Disneyland Resort Photo Update - 5/17/13

At the bandstand outside Boardwalk Pizza & Pasta The Ellis Island Boys were performing (oops on the focus... grabbed the tree vs them).

Disneyland Resort Photo Update - 5/17/13

Some of the 2013 Grad Merchandise.

Disneyland Resort Photo Update - 5/17/13

For you Duffy Fans a look at the window/selection on the Pier.

Disneyland Resort Photo Update - 5/17/13

At the Carthay Circle Restaurant both outdoor seating areas are closed. Looks like they are building a structure to cover the patios.

Disneyland Resort Photo Update - 5/17/13

Back to Disneyland, Tomorrowland was a mass of people as usual on Friday night.

Disneyland Resort Photo Update - 5/17/13


1st Anniversary Pins for Buena Vista Street and Cars Land were in the Little Green Men Store.

Disneyland Resort Photo Update - 5/17/13

Out in Toontown the Goofy Water fountains have finally returned and the lights and sound effects were working. I think I first noticed the fountains gone back in October so it has been a long process.

Disneyland Resort Photo Update - 5/17/13

Sleeping Beauty Castle.

Disneyland Resort Photo Update - 5/17/13

Back to DCA. Grad Nite was starting to take over Cars Land with signs and barriers going up.

Disneyland Resort Photo Update - 5/17/13

Tower was up to 90 minutes and a large number of guests in the area.

Disneyland Resort Photo Update - 5/17/13

Random Monsters University merchandise in Elias and Co.

Disneyland Resort Photo Update - 5/17/13

The lobby carpet in the Grand Californian has returned, the temp solid color carpet is gone.

Disneyland Resort Photo Update - 5/17/13

Hope you enjoyed this highlight tour of the Disneyland Resort. For additional photos and details from this trip you can check out the full Disneyland Update I posted on my site, http://disneygeek.com Also be sure to follow me on twitter @disneygeekcom for pictures from the parks.



May 26, 2013

How I Spent My Monstrous Summer Day

How I Spent My Monstrous Summer Day
by Jason, Jeanine, and Laura

We thought we would collect up some of the photos we took and tweets we sent out during Disneyland's Monstrous Summer All-Nighter and share them here.

(We must give credit where credit is due, and tell you that Jeanine is the only one who made it through all 24 hours of the event. She should get something for that...a good night's sleep at the very least!)

Our day began well before 6:00 a.m., as we all made our way to the Esplanade to await park opening.

Early arrivals received these "monstrous" glasses.

How I Spent My Monstrous Summer Day>

We were (pleasantly) surprised that there weren't too many people, and it really wasn't crazy at all. Both Disneyland and DCA were going to be open for 24 hours, so people were lining up at the gates on both sides.

How I Spent My Monstrous Summer Day
How I Spent My Monstrous Summer Day

Mike and Sulley made a couple of announcements and then did a countdown - there were bursts of fireworks over both park entrances.

How I Spent My Monstrous Summer Day

Inside Disneyland there was a gauntlet of characters and cast members waiting to greet guests as they entered the park.

How I Spent My Monstrous Summer Day

Everyone received a button when they went through the turnstiles.

How I Spent My Monstrous Summer Day

@disneygeekcom: A look at the Time Guide for today's Monstrous Summer All-Nighter page 1

How I Spent My Monstrous Summer Day>

There was special event merchandise (of course). We saw lots of people wearing the shirts.

How I Spent My Monstrous Summer Day

Special mouse ears.

How I Spent My Monstrous Summer Day

Hour 1: We went over to DCA. The news boys were handing out Buena Vista Bugles.

How I Spent My Monstrous Summer Day

Each park had a photo-op sign with a clock on it.

How I Spent My Monstrous Summer Day

Radiator Springs Racers wasn't open yet, but they were running cars on the track.

How I Spent My Monstrous Summer Day

Hour 2: There's a Monsters University meet and greet in Hollywood Land - themed like a college dorm.

How I Spent My Monstrous Summer Day>

Hour 3: Cast members at the entrance to Cars Land had bags of the "Cars" buttons they distribute there, and were entertaining guests as they asked trivia questions (though everyone eventually was given a button whether they answered correctly or not).

How I Spent My Monstrous Summer Day

@disneygeekcom:There was a free screening of Monsters University this morning at AMC in Downtown Disney

@Just Jeanine: Just saw Monsters University! Two thumbs way up!

How I Spent My Monstrous Summer Day

While Jeanine and Jason were at the screening Laura wandered around the two parks.

Hour 5: Back at Paradise Gardens they are preparing for the OPA! celebration of Greece this weekend (most of the events will take place over in Disneyland).

How I Spent My Monstrous Summer Day

There are new "monster-sized" 32 oz drink mugs ($7.79).

How I Spent My Monstrous Summer Day

Many dining locations had special food items for the day. Boardwalk Pizza & Pasta featured this Mac & Cheese flatbread pizza.

How I Spent My Monstrous Summer Day

There were also various treats at locations like Trolley Treats, the Candy Palace, and Pooh Corner.

How I Spent My Monstrous Summer Day
How I Spent My Monstrous Summer Day

The Monsters sign in Disneyland's Town Square at 11:40.

How I Spent My Monstrous Summer Day

Hour 6: Disneyland was still not crowded - very short line for a meet and greet with Jessie.

How I Spent My Monstrous Summer Day>

Hour 7: Disneyland wait times. Kind of quiet for a Friday afternoon.

How I Spent My Monstrous Summer Day

Hour 8: We all met up again to go to the Annual Passholder Preview of Mickey and the Magical Map - there were three that afternoon.

@disneygeekcom: Waiting for Mickey and the Magical Map annual passholder preview

How I Spent My Monstrous Summer Day

Hour 9: At Plaza Inn the special food offering was Fried Chicken and Waffles - Mickey waffles!

How I Spent My Monstrous Summer Day

Back over at DCA we used our Radiator Springs Racers fastpasses.

How I Spent My Monstrous Summer Day

@disneygeekcom: Sulley out for pictures by his dorm

How I Spent My Monstrous Summer Day>

Hour 10: Lucky Fortune Cookery's Monstrous All-Nighter special was chicken and vegetable potstickers.

How I Spent My Monstrous Summer Day

Hour 11: Time for the Pixar Play Parade. It now leads off with a Monsters University pep rally.

How I Spent My Monstrous Summer Day

Sulley with the Fear Tech mascot - Archie the Scare Pig.

How I Spent My Monstrous Summer Day
How I Spent My Monstrous Summer Day

@JustJeanine: Hour 13 of #disney24 Genie: "Take your time Al--the park's open 24hrs."

How I Spent My Monstrous Summer Day

Hour 14: @disneygeekcom: Main Street is nice and crowded now

How I Spent My Monstrous Summer Day

@disneygeekcom: One last look at the #Disneyland wait board before heading out.

How I Spent My Monstrous Summer Day

@JustJeanine: Hour 15 of #disney24 Crowded, but nothing a mint julep and Fantasmic! can't ameliorate.

How I Spent My Monstrous Summer Day

@JustJeanine: Hour 17 of #disney24 Swing is back in style at the Carnation Garden Plaza.

How I Spent My Monstrous Summer Day

@JustJeanine: Hour 19 of #disney24 Cartoons in Toontown! #justgothappier @ Mickey's Toontown

How I Spent My Monstrous Summer Day

@JustJeanine: Hour #21 of #disney24 I'm not dead yet.

How I Spent My Monstrous Summer Day

@JustJeanine: Hour 22 of #Disney24 Have the whole boat to myself.

How I Spent My Monstrous Summer Day

@JustJeanine: Hour 23 of #disney24 Almost there... #justgothappier @ Peter Pan's Flight

How I Spent My Monstrous Summer Day>

@JustJeanine: Hour 24 of #disney24 All Good Things Must End... @ Sleeping Beauty Castle

How I Spent My Monstrous Summer Day

@JustJeanine: Now's the time to say goodbye... #disney24 #justgothappier @ Disneyland Railroad, Main St. Station

How I Spent My Monstrous Summer Day>

And that's how we spent our Monstrous Summer Day.

The End.

May 28, 2013

Mickey and the Magical Map

jeaninebanner.jpg

On May 25th, Fantasyland Theatre (née Videopolis) debuted a new live show, "Mickey and the Magical Map." At a preview for the media, Disneyland President Michael Colglazier made an appearance to introduce it.

P1080087-002.JPG

Mickey, apparently in the middle of his preparations to go onstage as the show's star, joined him in welcoming everyone.

P1080090.JPG

The background for all the numbers is made up of an innovative LED screen which features nearly 1 million pixels and 35,000 square inches. It moves in sections, on wagons that weigh more than 9,000 lbs each.

P1080098.JPG

Without giving too much away...The story begins with the Sorcerer Yen Sid (perhaps familiar from the Epic Mickey games) directing his Mapmakers to paint a map able to transport dreamers to all the places they imagine.

P1080100.JPG

Video of the entire show:

[SPOILERS follow for those concerned about such things.]

The ensemble proceeds to carry out his wishes, to the tune of the original song, "Journey of the Imagination."

P1080104.JPG

To his dismay, Mickey is apparently unqualified to help out with this project, having not yet finished his apprenticeship and gotten his degree in mapmaking.

P1080105.JPG

Left to his own devices, however, he manages to find an unfinished spot on the map, and decides painting it in would be a good proof of his abilities. Unfortunately the spot has other ideas and he finds the process a little more involved than it initially appeared. In pursuit of Spot he ends up entering the map and getting carried away to different worlds of classic Disney films.

P1080107.JPG

The first stop is The Jungle Book, where King Louie performs "I Wan'na Be Like you," with the ensemble cast.

P1080112.JPG

Next, a highlight of the show presents three Princesses in sequence: Pocahontas, singing "Just Around the Riverbend..."

P1080118.JPG

...Mulan, performing "Reflection..."

P1080120.JPG

...And Rapunzel singing "I See the Light," with Flynn Rider.

P1080123.JPG

They end up all singing their different songs together. The map plays a nice role in differentiating the numbers as each section morphs in turn, into a background suitable for each respective princess.

P1080126.JPG

The spot isn't finished with Mickey yet, by a long shot, and the next stop is "Under the Sea," with Sebastian and guys in bubbles.

P1080131.JPG

In retrospect, I'm not really sure why the bubble guys aren't asphyxiating, since you have to figure their heads are completely covered in latex.

P1080134.JPG

Eventually Mickey comes to the realization that not only are all who wander not lost, but not all who are not painted really want to be painted. Happily accepting the status quo, Mickey and Spot scoot off for one more adventure with "Hawaiian Roller Coaster Ride," from Lilo and Stitch.

P1080142.JPG

Sorcerer Yen Sid returns to congratulate his apprentice on learning the lesson that just as there are no bounds to our imagination, the map can never be finished as long as there are new dreams left in the world.

P1080145.JPG

Mickey graduates from his apprenticeship and is given his choice of anywhere the magic will take him. He chooses...New Orleans? Well, that's as magical as any, I guess. Princess Tiana and her showboat make an appearance to the tune of "Dig a Little Deeper."

P1080150.JPG

To end the show, Mickey appears back out of the map and closes with a reprise of "Journey of the Imagination," with the usual blast of confetti streamers.

P1080162.JPG

Afterwards, we were treated to a brief Q&A with Kevin Eld, Head of WDI Creative Entertainment, and Michael Jung, Theatrical Development Executive, WDI Creative Entertainment.

P1080170.JPG

For the most part, they spoke of how glad they were to be able to utilize the theater to tell more stories, now that the Princesses have relocated to the new Fantasy Faire area. The process of choosing musical numbers was multifactorial, including the criteria that the songs well articulate the heart of the story--that imagination can take you anywhere. Songs were mostly kept upbeat, to better deal with the open-air theater's ambient audio.

Although the nature of the show seems to lend itself to changing different numbers, possibly to support new films ("Frozen?") and remain relevant, the team assured us that the current incarnation would likely stay around for awhile.

P1080171.JPG

Laura also interviewed Executive Producer Doug McIntyre:

The show is certainly entertaining, with a plethora of energetic singing and dancing. The screens are used inventively with Mickey's transition from outside to inside the map handled particularly well, although the subsequent interstitial bits combining animated Mickey with live-action Mickey seem a little rough to me.

As a whole, the show reminded me a great deal of some of the newer shows Disney has recently unveiled on the cruise ships. "Wishes" in particular has the same heavy use of the video screens as background, and also includes "I Wan'na Be Like You," "Reflection," and "Hawaiian Roller Coaster Ride," as well as different songs from the movies "Tangled" and "The Little Mermaid." The production values look good and the songs are mostly your classic Disney standards...so whether or not you find the saga of Mickey and the Unpainted Spot compelling, the musical numbers are pretty solid entertainment.

"Mickey and the Magical Map," runs 22 minutes long, and is scheduled to run five times a day throughout the summer.

Return to Blog Central

About May 2013

This page contains all entries posted to Salute to All Things Disney but Mostly Disneyland in May 2013. They are listed from oldest to newest.

April 2013 is the previous archive.

June 2013 is the next archive.

Many more can be found on the main index page or by looking through the archives.