It’s easy to forget — even for a Disney nerd like myself — that before Walt Disney died of lung cancer in December of 1966, EPCOT (the Experimental Prototype Community of Tomorrow) was supposed to be a real city. The code name “Project X” was given to the undertaking that would eventually become Walt Disney World, which today includes the Magic Kingdom, Epcot, Disney’s Hollywood Studios and the Animal Kingdom parks.
Fascinating. And the rabbit hole goes deeper still.
[via Tim Maly]
“Hey, Bob, I saw the movie you just released last night, and it sucked.”
Germain Lussier for /Film:
The studio that helped pioneer 2D, hand drawn, theatrical animation is currently at a crossroads with the process. At Wednesday’s Walt Disney Company shareholder’s meeting, CEO Bob Iger revealed none of Disney’s animation companies, which includes Disney Animation, Pixar and Disney Toons, are currently developing, or have plans to develop, any 2D, hand drawn animation for the big screen. He’s not ruling it out, but the current slate - which probably stretches 3-4 years – has none of it.
The end of an era. Just imagine if Disney had not bought Pixar — and that would not have happened if Michael Eisner remained as CEO instead of getting replace by Bob Iger. Disney could have been in a lot of trouble right now…
Sometimes acquisitions don’t work. Sometimes they’re the only thing that works.
“I had to repair the relationship. So the day the board called me to say I was CEO. … I decided to call my parents, my grown children, a couple of friends and Steve.”
Disney chief Bob Iger speaking to producer Brian Grazer at a Hollywood luncheon. And yes, he means Steve Jobs.
Brooks Barnes for The New York Times:
MyMagic+ will allow users of a new Web site and app — called My Disney Experience — to preselect three FastPasses before they leave home for rides or V.I.P. seating for parades, fireworks and character meet-and-greets. Orlando-bound guests can also preregister for RFID bracelets. These so-called MagicBands will function as room key, park ticket, FastPass and credit card.
MagicBands can also be encoded with all sorts of personal details, allowing for more personalized interaction with Disney employees. Before, the employee playing Cinderella could say hello only in a general way. Now — if parents opt in — hidden sensors will read MagicBand data, providing information needed for a personalized greeting: “Hi, Angie,” the character might say without prompting. “I understand it’s your birthday.”
Love it or hate it, this is absolutely the future of this kind of experience.
Informed sources tell Vulture that Star Wars: Episode VII has found a leading candidate to write the film’s screenplay: Michael Arndt, the Pixar favorite who was nominated for an Oscar for Toy Story 3, won an Oscar for Little Miss Sunshine, and wrote The Hunger Games: Catching Fire, which is currently shooting. Insiders confirm that Arndt has written a 40- to 50-page treatment for the film and is likely to be at least one of the writers when the Disney/Lucasfilm project begins shooting in 2014.
Great news. Hopefully this is the beginning of an expansive Pixar/Star Wars talent share.
That’s about half of what Disney paid for Pixar nearly seven years ago.
And yes, apparently Star Wars Episode VII is coming in 2015.
Update: Here’s the release. Of note, Kathleen Kennedy, the current Co-Chairman of Lucasfilm, will become the president of the group within Disney. You may know her best as Steven Spielberg’s production partner throughout the years. The other key:
Ms. Kennedy will serve as executive producer on new Star Wars feature films, with George Lucas serving as creative consultant. Star Wars Episode 7 is targeted for release in 2015, with more feature films expected to continue the Star Wars saga and grow the franchise well into the future.
Begun, the post-Lucas Star Wars have.