Sunday, April 29, 2012

They Made the Magic: McLaren Stewart

Duncan McLaren Stewart was born on April 29, 1909.  In October of 1934 he joined the Disney studio as a story sketch man.  He worked in the animation department for many years, was a layout artist, and also worked on Walt Disney's Wonderful World of Color, including art styling on Disneyland After Dark.  He died May 14, 1992.

Saturday, April 28, 2012


Pennant given to D23 Members

Last night I went down to the Walt Disney Studios for the D23 Fanniversary event.  It was a nice event held in the theater on the studio lot.  For those of you who have tickets to an upcoming event, stop reading!  It's much better to attend unaware of what to expect.  The D23 cast members were very strict about no photography or recording, in part because there was a bunch of audio and film clips that hadn't been seen by the general public, so I don't have pictures for you. 
So what was the event?  I was wondering that even when I bought the tickets.  I, of course, was drawn to it because it is Snow White's 75th this year.  Well the presentation is more or less was a slide show going over all kinds of areas of the Disney Company that is celebrating a 15, 20, 25, 30, 35...anniversary this year hosted by a cast member from D23 and another from the archives.  Most of the time they showed unusual artwork or pointed out details or shared audio or video with us.  So read on to see what was celebrated:
85th: Oswald: (we saw rough sketches of an uncompleted Harem Scarem cartoon)
80th: Goofy: (Bill Farmer had a recorded a message)
75th: Flowers and Trees, Clock Cleaners, Hawaiian Vacation, Magician Mickey, Lonesome Ghosts, The Old Mill, Multiplane Camera, Huey/Dewey/Louie (Did you know that they are on a newspaper in Eddie Valant's office in Roger Rabbit?), Daisy Duck, and Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs  (we were shown a variety of artwork and a few production notes)
70th: Bambi (We listened to a test recording of an unused song Happy Little Raindrops that was replaced by April Showers)
60th: Susie the Little Blue Coup, Little House, Trick or Treat, Lambert, Walt Disney Imagineering
55th: Sleeping Beauty Castle Walk Thru,
50th: In Search of the Castaways (Where our host, Jeffery, spent much time wondering how Maurice Chevalier's hair didn't move on the speeding sled)
45th: Pirates of the Caribbean (We saw footage of the opening ceremony which was cut down later, it was fun to see the crazy and not so crazy antics), New Tomorrowland (We watched silent footage of Walt walking around with top cast members planning and sped up footage of the construction), Jungle Book (a recorded messages from Richard Sherman), Happiest Millionaire
40t: If you had Wings, Electrical Parade (video footage of the first year of the parade), Mouse Factory
35th: Pete's Dragon
30th: Tron (Did you know there is a pacman and a Mickey in the film?), EPCOT
25th: Duck Tales (complete with sing along) , Star Tours, Disney Dollars (we saw a news report of Mickey and Scrooge inspecting and delivering the money)
20th: Walt Disney Classic Collection (this was just a silly shout out), Aladdin, Newsies, Honey I Blew Up the Kid, Mighty Ducks, Disneyland Paris, Fantasmic
15th: Hercules (footage of the Hercules Electrical Parade in NYC)
10th: Lilo and Stich
Button given to all guests

Friday, April 27, 2012

They Made the Magic: Harry Stockwell

Harry Stockwell was born April 27, 1902 in Kansas city, Missouri.  He sang in nightclubs and eventually landed in some Broadway shows.  His film debut was in 1935 in Strike Up the Band.  He provided the singing and speaking voice for the Prince in Snow White.  He also played Curly from 1943-1948, replacing the original actor in the stage production of Oklahoma!  He continued his career in film into the seventies.  Stockwell was father to Dean and Guy Stockwell.  He died on July 19, 1984.

Sunday, April 22, 2012

TCM celebrates Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs

Last week I was able to head down to Hollywood to attend the D23 screening of Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs for the Turner Classic Movie Film Festival at the Grauman's Chinese Theatre.  What a treat to see her on the big screen and in such an amazing venue.  Gennifer Goodwin (from ABC's Once Upon a Time) and Lenard Maltin introduced the film prior to the screening. 
Marge Champion (Snow White's live action model) was also introduced to the crowd as she was in attendance.  Bravo D23 and TCM!
From the TCM Film Festival Program

Thursday, April 19, 2012

They Made the Magic: Robert Stokes

Robert G. Stokes was born April 19, 1908.  He worked on a variety of Bosko cartoons.  He eventually started working for Disney and worked as an animator on Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs.  He died February 17, 1980 in Palm Springs, California.

Sunday, April 8, 2012

Wednesday, April 4, 2012

They Made the Magic: Harold Miles

Harold Miles was born April 4, 1892 in Kansas.  Before joining the Disney studios he worked as a set designer.  He was an art director for Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs and completed atmosphere sketches for Bambi.  Miles died October 31, 1951.

Monday, April 2, 2012

They Made the Magic: Marc Davis

One of Disney's nine old men, Marc Davis's 34 year Disney career was impressive.  He was born March 30, 1913 in Bakersfield, California but he moved around a lot as a child eventually returning to California during the depression.  Walt once referred to him as a renaissance man.  He joined Disney in 1935 and was assigned as assistant to Grim Natwick to animate Snow White.  Natwick called Davis "an expert animator even at that young age."  Davis said the first thing he can really take credit for the model sheets for Snow White in her ragged costume wearing Dutch wooden shoes and did some work on the dance scene.  Davis went down to the Carthay Circle theater the night of the premiere but tickets were too expensive and it was too cold, so he left.  Joe Grant asked Davis to joining the model department but he went onto story and character development on Bambi.  Davis was responsible for many classic characters: Flower, Maleficent, Cruella De Vil, and Thinker Bell.  After completing 101 Dalmations he joined WED to work on the 1964 World's Fair, and the theme parks attractions: Great Moments with Mr. Lincoln, The Haunted Mansion, Pirates of the Caribbean, It's a Small World, America Sings, and the Country Bear Jamboree.  Davis has a window in both Disneyland and Walt Disney World.  He retired in 1978, became a Disney legend in 1989, and died in 2000.
For more information see the 50 most influential Disney artists blog.  Beginning in 1994 Marc Davis Lectures have been held in the field of animation.

They Made the Magic: Leigh Harline

Leigh Harline was born March 16, 1907.  In 1928 he came to California from Utah and started working in radio.  By 1932 he had joined Disney and wrote song for shorts.  He was responsible for writing the score for Snow White ad the Seven Dwarfs.  His most well known work was "When you Wish Upon a Star" from Pinocchio.  He left Disney in 1941 and worked for a variety of studios. Harline died December 10, 1969 and became a Disney legend in 2001.

They Made the Magic: Larry Morey

Larry Morey was born on March 26, 1905.  He worked at paramount and Warner Brothers before joining Disney in 1933.  While working for Disney, he joined forces with Frank Churchill to write over 25 songs for Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs.  Seven of those songs were used in the final film. He worked on a variety of film's songs including Ferdinand the Bull, Bambi, and So Dear to My Heart.  He died at age 66.