RSS Feed

Tag Archives: Promotional

August 14

August 14, 1942 – The New York Times Runs Review of Bambi

“The children at the Music Hall yesterday were content again; form all over the darkened house childish laughter broke forth continuously and one or twice childish tears and boohoos. For Bambi has come to town and with it the Music Hall has again become a children’s fairyland.”

On August 14, 1942, the day after the animated feature film Bambi premiered at Radio City Music Hall, the New York Times ran its favorable review of the film. The reviewer admired the characters, specifically Thumper and Flower, the colors of the woodland, and the story; however, the reviewer does muse of why Disney has cartoons at all, as “one cannot combine naturalism with cartoon fantasy.” Even with the concern about going too far into realism, the reviewer still notes that, even through his own “churlish exceptions,” many will love Bambi.

Advertisements

July 24

July 24, 2009 – Disney’s Christmas Train Arrives at Union Station

Disney’s A Christmas Carol is a thrilling, multi-sensory movie directed by Robert Zemeckis that takes the classic Dickens tale to the big screen like never before.”

On July 24, 2009, Disney’s A Christmas Carol Train Tour arrived at Union Station in Chicago, Illinois. Sponsored by Hewlett Packard and Amtrak, and promoting the upcoming film A Christmas Carol, the train was scheduled to stop in 40 cities through 36 states, ranging from New Mexico to New York. The train also gave guests a sneak peek at the movie, with a glimpse at the character designs and cutting-edge technology.

July 19

July 19, 2011 – Lightning McQueen Joins Lights, Motors, Action! Extreme Stunt Show

“We just received word that Disney’s famous racecar is revved up and ready to make his debut performance in the show beginning today.”

On July 19, 2011, the Lights, Motors, Action! Extreme Stunt Show attraction welcomed the Pixar character Lightning McQueen as its newest member of the show in Hollywood Studios Park. This cameo performance was part of the promotions for the Pixar film Cars 2, where Lightning and pal Mater are joined by secret agent Finn McMissile. After enjoying this themed performance, guests could meet Lightning and Mater at the Winner’s Circle area nearby. The attraction completely closed on April 2, 2016.

June 20

June 20, 1996 – Big Thunder Barbecue Becomes the Festival of Foods

On June 20, 1996, the Big Thunder Barbecue was renamed Festival of Foods, renamed and rethemed to promote the animated feature film The Hunchback of Notre Dame. It reverted back to the Big Thunder Barbecue on May 30, 1997.

June 13

June 13, 1996 – The Specialty Shop The Sanctuary of Quasimodo Opens in Disneyland

On June 13, 1996, the specialty merchandise shop The Sanctuary of Quasimodo opened in Disneyland’s Fantasyland area. The shop replaced the Disney Villains shop (which itself replaced Briar Rose Cottage, Mickey’s Christmas Chalet, and Merlin’s Magic Shop). The Sanctuary of Quasimodo was created to promote the animated feature film The Hunchback of Notre Dame, and featured a vignette in the window of Quasimodo ringing the bells of Notre Dame. The shop closed on February 9, 1997, and was replaced by the Knights Shop.

May 23

Posted on

May 23, 1982 – The Television Special Computers Are People, Too! Premieres

“Computers – they’re everywhere! There’s no escaping them, no matter who you are.”

On May 23, 1982, the television special Computers Are People, Too! premiered. Created as promotional tool for the live action feature film Tron, the feature sought to not only soothe the public’s fears that they would be displaced by computers and robots, but to show how people would work with machines peacefully. It was directed by Denis Sanders, and starred Elaine Joyce, Joseph Campanella, and Michael Iceberg.

The special begins with Elaine Joyce playing a computer game while other computer systems work around her. She loses her game, and the computer bets her “double or nothing” to play again. She wonders if she, as a singer, dancer, and actress, will be replaced by computers and machines. The main computer reminds her that computers are people as well, and simulates a juggler. Joyce then introduces the computer of the future: Telecommunicative Operative Memory, or TOM for short. TOM explains that he is an extension of a person’s intelligence, and on the verge of a partnership with several types of people, such as artists and athletes. He provides several examples of machine meeting art, including several clips from the upcoming film Tron. Joyce wonders how to work with TOM if she doesn’t know how the computer thinks. She panics, thinking that the computer will take over, but TOM reminds her that she has the control. TOM interviews several people about computers, and introduces a special summer camp in California that teaches campers how to use and code on a computer.

An early example of how computer animation was created using dancers hooked up to machines.

TOM then introduces how animation is done with computers, with the earliest example going back to Lee Harrison in 1960, with dancers wired to computers to capture the motion. He then goes through the advancements over the decades, and explains how we are then at 3-D animation. The consensus from artists is that computers will not replace creativity, but enhance it. Another animator relays the story of his search for a design machine, and then realized that he would have to create it. TOM then shows the graphical designs by the computer in a long, colorful segment. The segment then moves into how the computer can create special sound effects, or even create a “one-man band” through the use of a synthesizer known as the Fairlight CMI.

As Joyce remarks that she has the freedom to move TOM doesn’t because she is a dancer, TOM remarks that the computer has made advances in human understanding of human movement. The engineer talks about the difference between different types of athletic events and movements, ranging from dancing to diving. The engineers use the computer to look at the styles of two dancers and to determine the dancers’ centers of gravity. They see a flaw in one of the dancers’ takeoff and advise her how to correct it. After seeing this, Joyce thinks that her career as an artist is over due to technology. TOM informs her that he is powerless without her, and need her creativity. TOM then explains that computer games are the first foray into using computers, and shows several titles such as Pac-Man and Frogger. The segment also shows how computers created the look of Tron and its several games. Joyce finally accepts that the computer is the partner of the artist, rather than the adversary. The special ends with Joyce dancing alongside a computer animated counterpart.

May 2

Posted on

May 2, 1938 – The New York Times Publishes Editorial on Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs

“Figments of Disney’s imagination have already sold more than $2,000,000 worth of toys since the first of the year.”

On May 2, 1938, the New York Times published a special editorial on Walt Disney and the success of Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs, titled “Prosperity Out of Fantasy.” This editorial piece looked to Disney’s brand of “industrialized fantasy” to save the United States economy, as the country was still in the throes of the Great Depression. However, while the success of Snow White wasn’t the driving force in saving the economy, the editorial was notable in seeing the effects of Disney’s full-length feature film, which became the model for building a profitable and long-lasting film franchise.