This day's Disney DVD releases include Walt Disney's Timeless Tales: Volume 1 (containing 5 classic animated shorts including The Three Little Pigs), Walt
Disney's Timeless Tales: Volume 2 (containing 4 classic animated shorts including
The Ugly Duckling), Pom Poko, My Neighbors the Yamadas, That's So Raven:
Disguise the Limit, and Phil of the Future: Gadgets & Gizmos.
The Disney-owned Hollywood Records releases Hilary Duff's new album
Most Wanted (a greatest hits collection featuring four new tracks). Also released is
Into the Rush the debut album from teen pop duo Aly & AJ.
Walt Disney Records releases the Valiant Soundtrack - featuring music from the
newest computer-animated comedy-adventure opening nationwide August 19.
Tragedy strikes when Joe Ranft, the widely respected story artist for many
Disney/Pixar features, is killed in an automobile accident in California. The 45-year-old
was one of seven writers nominated for an Academy Award for best original screenplay for the 1995 Toy Story.
After graduating from the California Institute of the Arts, Ranft worked at Disney throughout the 1980s doing story
work on animated features including The Lion King and Beauty and the Beast before joining Pixar in 1992. He
worked on story development for all of Pixar's feature film releases, most recently as Head of Story on Cars.
Animation giant & film director Myron "Grim" Natwick is born in Wisconsin Rapids, Wisconsin. He worked for all the major studios of the classic era including Fleischer Studios where he
created Betty Boop. At Disney Natwick worked on such shorts as The Cookie Carnival, Broken Toys and
Mickey's Fire Brigade, and was a key player in the creation of Snow White. He lived to be an amazing
100-years-old thus becoming known as "the man who lived the entire history of animation"!
Donnie Dunagan, one of the many voices of Bambi in the Disney's 1942 classic,
is born in San Antonio, Texas. He was also chosen by Walt to be the facial model for the Disney artists who handled the baby deer’s expressions. (Horror fans may remember Dunagan as the young
Peter von Frankenstein in the 1939 film Son of Frankenstein.)
Walt and Lillian Disney arrive in Honolulu, Hawaii aboard the Matson liner Lurline. Walt's arrival in the islands will be big news, rating a headline at the top of the Advertiser's August 17 front page, accompanied by photos of both he and Lillian.
Sharon Baird, a member of the 1950s Mickey Mouse Club (for
all 4 years), is born in Seattle, Washington. She also appeared on the 2001
television special Walt: The Man Behind the Myth.
Disney's True-Life Adventure The Vanishing Prairie, directed by James Algar, is
released. Narrated by Winston Hibler, this film will win an Oscar in 1955 and be re-released in 1962
as Large Animals That Once Roamed the Plains.
Disneyland's Dumbo Flying Elephants opens in Fantasyland on the same day
the 14 Tomorrowland Boats are renamed Phantom Boats of Tomorrowland.
(Walt had originally hoped to have Dumbo ready on July 17, but the fiberglass
elephants only arrived about three weeks before opening day.)
Disneyland attendance hits a record 82,516 visitors!
Santa Rosa Land Company, Incorporated (which owns some of the Walt Disney World
Resort) changes its name to Walt Disney Travel Company, Incorporated.
TIME magazine features the article "Running Disney Walt's Way" in this week's issue.
Walt Disney World announces relief efforts for Central Florida families and
Cast Members impacted by Hurricane Charley.
Hurricane Charley has severely affected the state of Florida. There were eight direct fatalities, 16 indirect fatalities, and 792 injuries attributed to the storm.
The Disney Wonder
was built at
Fincantieri Shipyards in
Venice, Italy (the largest shipyard/naval
engineering complex in
"Joe had a great passion for telling stories, and he told them better than anyone. He was funny, poignant, original, and he had an infallible sense for how to structure a story." -John Lasseter
The United States Post Office debuts a new set of four 41-cent Disney
character stamps at Disney World. Honoring the theme of magic, the stamps feature Dumbo &
Timothy Mouse, Peter Pan & Tinker Bell, Mickey Mouse as "The Sorcerer's Apprentice," and Aladdin & Genie.
Hollywood Records recording artists Aly & AJ perform at the House of
Blues in Downtown Disney, Florida.
Actress Carole Shelley, the voice of Amelia in Disney's 1970 The Aristocats, is born
in London, England. Her Disney credits also include Robin Hood, Hercules, and the live-action Jungle 2
Jungle. (Fans of classic TV will know her as Gwendolyn Pigeon on the series The Odd Couple.)
Mexican President Avila Camacho announces his selection of four American
film producers to receive the Mexican Order of the Aztec Eagle (the highest decoration awarded to foreigners by the Mexican government). Walt Disney, along
with Louis B. Mayer, James Fitzpatrick and Francis Alstock have been chosen to receive the medal (given
to luminaries as a reward for services to humankind or Mexico).
Disney's 1979 feature The Black Hole is released to
U.S. theaters for a third time. A science fiction film directed by
Gary Nelson for Walt Disney Productions, The Black Hole stars
Maximilian Schell, Robert Forster, Joseph Bottoms, Yvette Mimieux,
Anthony Perkins, and Ernest Borgnine.
Former Vice President Richard Nixon and his family visit Disneyland. (At this time
Nixon is running for president.) Because of their close proximity to Anaheim, the Nixon family have been frequent visitors to Disneyland ever since August 1955.
"Joe (Ranft) is the very best story man ever and the best human being I've known in animation. He is mentor, friend and inspiration to all of us who do this job."
In memory of Joe Ranft (1960-2005)
Today is Roller Coaster Day
(first patented on this day in 1898).
At Disneyland, a motorized fire truck is added to Main Street, U.S.A.'s fleet of vehicles.
Actress Lesley Ann Warren, who made her big screen debut in Disney's 1967 live-
action The Happiest Millionaire, is born in New York City. Chosen by Walt Disney himself for
the role of Cordy, Warren also appeared in the 1968 The One and Only, Genuine, Original Family Band.
Actor Fess Parker, famous for his
Disney role of Davy Crockett, is
born in Fort Worth, Texas (though
he was raised in San Angelo).
in 1955 (dressed as Crockett), Parker also
appeared on the 1955 TV special Dateline:
Disney, the prequel Davy Crockett and the
River Boat Pirates, and the feature films
The Great Locomotive Chase, Westward Ho,
the Wagons!, and Old Yeller. He was
also one of many celebrities who took part in
a Disney Legend in 1991. In January 1992
he left his handprints in front of Hollywood Hills Amphitheater at Disney-MGM Studios.
(Upon retiring from acting, Parker owned and operated a family winery and two hotels in California.)
Disney Post, the official blog of The Walt Disney Company, debuts.
Voice actress Christine Cavanaugh is born in Utah. Known for her distinctive speaking style, her
Disney credits include Aladdin, 101 Dalmatians: The Series, Recess, and Hercules: The Animated Series.
Audio production begins on the Recess pilot episode, "The Break In." It will be used to
pitch the idea to Disney as a television series and ultimately become the first episode of season one in 1997.
This Day in Disney History - THE FIRST - THE ORIGINAL
Traveling in time since 1999!