Monday, November 09, 2009

July 1957 Batch, Pt. 3 & More Disney Studio

Mom and dad look charming, posed on the bridge near the Castle; and this wooden bridge looks absolutely authentic for the Frontierland area that it leads to. A veritable FEAST for termites! Munch! In the background we can see the Monsanto House of the Future as well as the state flags at the entrance of Tomorrowland.

Time to call security, as these ladies appear to be trampling the flowers outside the castle. This was 10 years before Tiny Tim’s “Tip-Toe Through The Tulips!”

In front of the castle, one of the tots decides to wear his hat at a rakish angle. This is the same hat shown in photo #1 of post #1 on his younger brother. In this shot, you can almost hear, “Gimme my hat back, you creep!” Meanwhile, sister is just posing happily, ignoring all of the drama between her brothers.

Back to the Walt Disney Studio in Burbank…

Thanks to the folks at D23, I was able to tour the Studios again. Although the Eisner building has been criticized for its design which does not blend into the 1930’s deco campus look of the rest of the studio, there is some truth to it: Dopey & the Seven Dwarfs are the ones who started the whole thing and made it possible...after Mickey, of course! How fitting that they are holding the building up! It’s pretty cool to be able to get up close and personal with Blaine Gibson’s Partner’s Statue; definitely not something you can do at Disneyland in Central Plaza.

Having the WDW Roy Statue nearby is also touching; and being able to see the two brothers holding Mickey & Minnie’s hands...well, it can get a little emotional here!

Here’s a vintage overview of the studio when there were actually sets on the backlot:

Today, all that remains of the outdoor sets is one lonely street that constantly has to change the name of its tenants, depending upon the project being filmed:

I understand how times change and how economies and new technologies make these changes necessary, but from the standpoint of a fan, it does make me a little sad. When you watch characters and their environments on the big screen or at home in the setting of your living room, it is easy to form an attachment to these fictional plays. Can you imagine the thrill of being able to walk onto a studio lot and seeing the ACTUAL setting that Zorro fought the bad guys? Or the street that Pollyana lived on? But times marches on...

Back at the archive, the display cases were full of fun memorabilia, including famous hats from Disney:

Let’s zoom in for a closer look at Mary Poppins’ chapeau:

And from one of my favorite Disney films of recent years comes a dress from “Enchanted”:

Inside the actual archives we were welcomed with an evolutionary depiction of Mickey Mouse:

And another gem from Mary Poppins: the original snow globe from the “Feed the Birds” sequence...amazing that this stuff is still around!

And how’d you like to have this piece of furniture? The wardrobe from the “Chronicles of Narnia” film:

And a statue of James McAvoy as Mr. Tumnus, frozen by the evil White Witch:

Speaking of McAvoy, I happened to stumble upon him in Savannah last week as he was filming “The Conspirator.” You might also recognize the director of the film.

But I digress. Time to wrap this post up and save some photos for tomorrow. See more Studio photos at my website.


Viewliner Ltd. said...

Fantastic post Dave. Always enjoyable. Thanks.

Major Pepperidge said...

Love that vintage aerial of the studio! There's the sliver of land across Riverside Drive, where the original plans for a little "Mickey Mouse Park" were to be built. And across Buena Vista, sort of in the lower right, St. Joseph's Hospital, where Walt died.

William Bezek said...

Thanks for the studio visit, I am sad to hear all the outdoor sets are gone. I saw it in the 80's when they still had the neighborhood of famous houses back there.

TokyoMagic! said...

What did they end up building on the backlot property?

Chiana_Chat said...


Great post :)