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Why (For) Pat Carroll wasn't actually Disney's first choice to voice Ursula in "The Little Mermaid"
Steve T. writes in to say: My family and I caught a sneak preview of " Nancy Drew " this past weekend. And I was surprised to see Pat Carroll do a cameo in that movie. She's always been one of my favorites, even before she did her memorable turn in Disney's " The Little Mermaid ." But I've also heard...
14 Jun 2007
Wandering the halls with Roy E. Disney
To hear Roy Disney tell the tale, he basically owes his entire career in animation to his mother needing a babysitter. "When my Mother needed to go shopping, she'd drop me off with my Dad's office," Roy explained. "And my Dad would eventually say 'Get out of my office and find someone else to play with...
11 Apr 2007
A special behind-the-scenes version of Why For
Karen M. writes in to ask a special favor: Dear Jim -- I just want to send you a quick e-mail to thank you for writing about Charlie Ridgway 's new book, " Spinning Disney's World ." On your recommendation , I picked up a copy and found that Mr. Ridgway's biography was just as you said it would be: Loaded...
29 Mar 2007
John Lasseter to be feted at Sonoma Valley Film Festival
For the past decade, the Sonoma Valley Film Festival has heard the refrains of "You've Got A Friend In Me" from John Lasseter , the creative force behind Pixar . Now the festival is turning the tables and planning quite a bash April 11-15 in recognition not only of its 10th anniversary but in tribute...
28 Mar 2007
Toon Tuesday : How Disney is fixing "American Dog"
It's often been said that you can't teach an old dog new tricks. Well, I'm guessing that the folks at Walt Disney Feature Animation have never heard that expression. For they're right in the middle of an Extreme Makeover of their 2008 release, "American Dog." Gone is Chris Sanders ' quirk-filled take...
12 Feb 2007
A special DreamWorks edition of Why For
First up, Robert M. writes in to ask: Jim, This may have been asked before. But since Robert Zemeckis is now back with Disney, what do you think the chances are that they will try to produce that long anticipated Roger Rabbit sequel? Rob M. Rob M. To be honest, I think that the ship has already sailed...
8 Feb 2007
Is Mickey going to botch "Ratatouille" 's marketing? Don't Betty on it
This week's "Toon Tuesday" column (I.E. "How will 'Ratatouille' fare in Hollywood's Summer 2007 rat race ?" ) generated an awful lot of controversy. I got phone calls from Burbank, e-mails from Emeryville. With all sorts of folks who are intimately involved with this production chiming in, wishing to...
3 Jan 2007
Scrooge U : Part XXIX -- "An All Dogs Christmas Carol" is mutt ado about nothing
Well, at least there's some truth-in-advertising to be found in this 1998 home premiere. For -- though " An All Dogs Christmas Carol " may not actually be an adaptation of Charles Dickens' classic tale -- this holiday special is definitely a dog. Copyright 1998 Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer Animation...
20 Dec 2006
"Today in Disney History" is a perfect last-minute gift for the Disney obsessive on your holiday shopping list
It's Christmas-crunch time, kiddies. You know what I mean. That horrible moment that arrives every holiday season. When you're feeling all smug & self-satisfied because you think that you've completed your Xmas shopping. Only to suddenly sit bolt upright in your chair and say: "Oh, cr*p! I forgot...
19 Dec 2006
"Disney Comics: 75 Years of Innovation" offers an entertaining overview of this international artform
Earlier today, Mark S. sent me an e-mail asked: Dear Jim: Today's "Scrooge U" article compelled me to pull out my old VHS copy of " Mickey's Christmas Carol ." And you're right. It is fun spotting all of those characters from earlier Disney films that pop up in the picture. In addition to those " Mr...
5 Dec 2006
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