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March 27

March 27, 1989 – The Walt Disney World Casting Center Opens


On March 27, 1989, the Walt Disney World Casting Center opened. Designed by architect Robert A. M. Stern and contracted by H. J. High Construction, the 61,000 square foot building is known as the place where those who wish to work at Walt Disney World submit their applications. The building is also known for its peculiar diamond design on the outer walls, earning it the nickname of the “giant argyle sock.” Many aspects of hiring take place in this building, including new-hire administrative processing, and scheduling for the first day of training.

March 26

March 26, 1999 – The Mickey MouseWorks Short Film Donald’s Dynamite: Opera Box Premieres in Theaters


“Aw, nuts!”

On March 26, 1999, the Mickey MouseWorks short film Opera Box from the Donald’s Dynamite series premiered in theaters in front of the animated feature Doug’s 1st Movie. It heavily features the piece “Coro di zingari” from Giuseppe Verdi’s opera Il trovatore. The short was directed by William Speers.

Daisy has taken Donald to the opera, although he equates going to the opera with taking a nap. Daisy asks Donald to grab her lipstick from her purse, but when he does, he finds a bomb in there instead. He tries to put out the bomb’s fuse, but to no avail. The amount of water he tries to use increases, until he finally resorts to throwing it back into Daisy’s purse and having it explode in there. Fortunately for Donald, the bomb does little damage, and pops out Daisy’s lipstick into his hand. She thanks him for the lipstick, but is less than pleased when it melts all over her hand.

March 25

March 25, 1947 – Singer, Songwriter, and Disney Legend Sir Elton John is Born


“I sat there with a line of lyrics that began, ‘When I was a young warthog,’ and I thought, ‘Has it come to this?’”

On March 25, 1947, Sir Elton John (born as Reginald Kenneth Dwight) was born in Pinner, Middlesex, England. As a young boy, John showed great promise for music, being able to play the piano starting at the age of three. After taking formal lessons at the age of seven, he was awarded a scholarship to the Royal Academy of Music at the age of 11. A keen composer, John met lyricist Bernie Taupin in 1967, and the two collaborated on several hit songs for other artists. John’s first album Empty Sky was released in 1969, but it was the second album Elton John in 1970 that established John as an artist with the top ten hit single “Your Song.” Between the years 1970 and 1982, Elton had 30 hits under his belt from 15 albums. In the early 1990s, John was asked to work with lyricist Tim Rice (known for his work with Andrew Lloyd Weber) for a new Disney animated feature, The Lion King. The film was a smashing success, with John and Rice earning three Academy Award nominations for “Circle of Life,” “Hakuna Matata,” and “Can You Feel the Love Tonight,” with the latter winning the award. In 1997, the film was then translated to the Broadway stage, with most of the songs intact. John and Rice collaborated again for Disney with the creation of the 2000 Broadway Musical Aida, which would go on to win three Tony Awards, including Best Original Musical Score. John has continued to stay busy in many areas, including theater, charity, and of course, music. He was knighted in 1998 to become Sir Elton John, CBE, for his humanitarian efforts in fighting against AIDS, and was further honored in 2004 with a Kennedy Center Honor. He was honored as a Disney Legend in 2006.

March 24

March 24, 1956 – The Tomorrowland Attraction Astro-Jets Opens in Disneyland

Rocket Jets

“Pilot your very own rocket ship high in the sky above Tomorrowland…”

On March 24, 1956, the Tomorrowland attraction Astro-Jets opened in Disneyland. The attraction has gone through several renamings and redesigns. In 1964, the attraction was known as the Tomorrowland Jets, until 1966, when it was closed to make way for a refurbishment of Tomorrowland. The new incarnation of the attraction returned in 1967, and was renamed the Rocket Jets. In 1997, the attraction was closed again when Tomorrowland needed renovations. The newest version of the attraction, the Astro Orbiter, opened in 1998. The attraction itself is similar to Dumbo the Flying Elephant, where guests board their vessel and, while spinning around a central column, use a lever to drive the vessel up and down, giving guests a birds-eye view of the park.

March 23

March 23, 1951 – The Donald Duck Short Film Corn Chips is Released to Theaters


“I ougta knock your block off!”

On March 25, 1951, the Donald Duck short film Corn Chips was released to theaters. It was directed by Jack Hannah, with story by Bill Berg and Nick George.

Donald is shoveling his sidewalk after a heavy snowfall, but finds that Chip and Dale are brushing their own tree sidewalk, leaving snow all over his freshly shoveled walk. Donald manages to trick the two into finishing his work, and laughs when they finally realize that they’ve been tricked. Angered, the two run to his door and watch through the key holes to see Donald making some popcorn. The pair manage to sneak into the house and knock over the box of popcorn kernels, but realize that they aren’t edible. Chip kicks some kernels into the fire, and the two are surprised when they start to pop. Donald pours the kernels into a popper, not realizing that the chipmunks have fallen in as well. Donald pops the corn over a fire, and pours the popcorn, and chipmunks into a bowl, but the chipmunks abscond with the entire bowl. Donald chases them outside and manages to steal the bowl back by hiding all the popcorn under his hat, but the pair gets it back, and Donald chases them all around his house. In the end, Donald tries to smoke them out of the tree, but the two pop the rest of the box of popcorn, leaving Donald’s clean sidewalk covered in a sea of popcorn that Donald has to shovel again.

March 22

March 22, 1975 – The Lake Buena Vista Village Opens at Walt Disney World


“…Shopping took on a whole new meaning as the Lake Buena Vista Shopping Village…opened.”

On March 22, 1975, the Lake Buena Vista Village area opened at Walt Disney World. The village area was comprised of a few dozen shops around a lagoon, including Toys Fantastique, and The Pottery Chalet. The area has evolved several times, beginning in 1977, when it was renamed Walt Disney World Village and became more focused on being a shopping experience for Walt Disney World guests. In 1984, more attractions and events were added to the area to keep guests of the park on property; in 1986, an area for adults known as Pleasure Island was introduced, and the shopping area was renamed Disney Village Marketplace. In 1995, Pleasure Island was combined with Disney Village Marketplace to become on Downtown Disney area, and was expanded even further with the addition of World of Disney character store and the upgrade of the AMC Theaters. In 2013, it was announced that the area would be expanded again and be renamed as Disney Springs.

March 21

March 21, 2014 – The Pixar Short Film Party Central Premieres in Theaters

Pixar Party Central

“Beach Ball to Throw Rug, come in! Are you in position?”

On March 22, 2014, the Pixar short film Party Central premiered in theaters before the live-action feature Muppets Most Wanted. The short features the characters from Pixar films Monsters, Inc. and Monsters University, with the characters from the Oozma Kappa fraternity hoping to put on a party, only no one shows up. The short was originally previewed at the 2013 D23 Expo to great fan acclaim. The short itself was intended to be a special short on the home video release of Monsters University, but enough faith was placed in the animators to turn it into a theatrical short. It was directed by Kelsey Mann, and stars Billy Crystal as Mike, John Goodman as Sulley, Peter Sohn as Squishy, Julia Sweeney as Sherri, Charlie Day as Art, Dave Foley as Terry, and Sean Hayes as Terri.


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