Pooh's Heffalump Movie is released to DVD. Originally released in February
2005, it features the voices of Jim Cummings (as Pooh), John Fiedler (as
Piglet), and newcomer Kyle Stanger (as Lumpy). The animated film is the first
in which Pooh narrates.
Walt Disney Records releases the CD Mousercise.
In recognition of his distinguished public service and outstanding contributions to the
United States and to the world, U.S. President Johnson presents a Congressional
Gold Medal to the widow of the late Walt Disney. The Congressional Gold Medal is an award
bestowed by the U.S. Congress and is, along with the Presidential Medal of Freedom, the highest civilian award in
the United States. Disney had also been awarded the Medal of Freedom back in September 1964.
The Wonderful World of Disney airs "Down the Long Hills."
Raymond A. Disney (one of Walt's brothers & the second child born to Flora & Elias Disney) passes at the age of 98. He had been in the insurance business.
Disney Channel airs the 23rd episode of MMC.
Today is Anything Can Happen Day!
Walt Disney Pictures Wild Hearts Can't Be Broken, starring Gabrielle Anwar
and Cliff Roberston, is released. This true-life adventure tells the story of Sonora Webster, a
teenage runaway during the depression, who wants to be a rider of diving horses.
Disney Interactive launches Toontown Online, a 3D multiplayer game.
It is announced that Disney has launched an 18-month publicity
campaign for its theme park in Hong Kong (which will open in 2005). Oil millionaire, entrepreneur and Disney Legend Jack Wrather - the
original owner and financer of the Disneyland Hotel in Anaheim,
California - is born in Amarillo, Texas. Making his first fortune in the oil industry,
Wrather moved to California in 1946, convinced that the entertainment industry would experience
huge growth in the post-war era and would be a profitable investment. There he met and married
actress (and future Disney Legend) Bonita Granville in 1947, famous motion picture child star in
the 1930s and 1940s. By the time Disney tapped him to build the Disneyland Hotel, Wrather was
a movie producer, television producer, broadcast station owner and the operator of two small
resorts. For almost 30 years, until his death in 1984, Wrather (along with his wife Bonita) enlarged
and improved the Disneyland Hotel.
Award-winning matte designer, special effects creator, artist and
Best known for his incredible matte paintings, he worked as a special effetcs
technician/matte artist on such Disney films as 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea, Treasure
Island, The Story of Robin Hood, and most famously Mary Poppins - for which he won an
Academy Award. He was also awarded an Oscar for the 1971 Bedknobs and Broomsticks
for art direction. His talent and experience in special visual effects was so respected that Disney
called him out of retirement after 10 years to work on the 1979 nThe Black Hole. After he retired
from the film business, he dedicated his life to fine art painting.
Thousands of colorful fireworks fill the nighttime sky over Barcelona, Spain as, for
the first time, the Disney Magic cruise ship enters the Spanish port city.
It is Disney's first-ever foray into the European cruise market.
Hollywood Party - a musical film starring Jimmy Durante, directed by Roy Rowland and
distributed by Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer, premieres. It features 31 stars like Laurel and Hardy, The Three
Stooges, George Givot, and Mickey Mouse - who introduces the Technicolor 7-minute cartoon sequence "The Hot
Choc-Late Soldiers," created by the Disney Studio. (The film will be generally released June 1.)
At Disney's Haunted Mansion,
the image of Madame Leota is
that of former Disney Imagineer
Leota Toombs Thomas. But
Madame's voice is supplied by
Eleanor Audley (the voice of
Maleficent in Disney's
Disney Magic visits Spain
Disney's stage musical Tarzan completes its Holland engagement at the
Circus Theatre in Scheveningen, just outside Amsterdam after 900
performances. The production, which opened in April 2007 has been seen by 1.6 million audience
members during its run, making it one of the most successful musicals in Holland.
"What was Walt Disney like? That's what we'd all like to know, isn't it? Walt was the only person who was not an artist who could talk to you like an artist. The only problem you would have had with Walt was if you were not as enthusiastic about a project as he was." -Peter Ellenshaw (born This Day 1918)
"Serpents and spiders,
tail of a rat call in the
Disney's Nightmare Ned airs on ABC-TV with two new epsiodes -
"Tooth or Consequences" and "Show Me the Infidel."
Spy Hard, a comedy distributed by Disney's Hollywood Pictures, opens in theaters. Leslie
Nielsen plays Secret agent WD-40 Dick Steele, in this parody of James Bond films. The cast includes Andy Griffith, Nicollette Sheridan, Charles Durning, John Ales, and Barry Bostwick.
Steelers' wide receiver Hines Ward (pictured left)
and his partner Kym Johnson win season 12 of the
ABC-TV dance competition Dancing with the Stars.
Hosted by Tom Bergeron, as of the 2011 season, 28 athletes have
competed on the show, representing 20% of the contestants. (Back
in 2006, Hines proclaimed "I'm going to Disney World!" when his
team won Super Bowl XL.)
Disney's Hollywood Studios was the first new gated park built during Michael Eisner’s tenure as CEO of the Walt Disney Company. Because he knew of secret
plans for a movie park to be built by Universal in Orlando (through his dealings with Paramount), Eisner directed the Imagineering team to begin work
on Disney’s own movie park as soon as he became CEO. Although Universal was announced first, Disney's Hollywood Studios opened a year earlier, in 1989.
"It was 1954 when I got a call that Walt was putting in something very special out there in
Anaheim and I was asked if I would be interested in building a hotel next to it." -Jack Wrather
"Painting never comes easily to those who take it seriously. The more one
knows the harder it gets." -Peter Ellenshaw
Actor, comedian & singer John C. Reilly, the voice of the 2012 Wreck-It Ralph and
the 2018 sequel Ralph Breaks the Internet, is born in Chicago, Illinois. He also
portrayed Corpsmen Rhomann Dey in the 2014 live-action Guardians of the Galaxy and narrated Disneynature's
The Monstrous Summer "All-Nighter" begins at the Disneyland Resort.
Thousands of people count down along with Mike and Sulley as fireworks light up the entrances to both Disneyland and Disney California Adventure parks.
Down in Florida, guests meet outside of Magic Kingdom Park as early as
4:30 a.m. this morning to be among the first to enter and kick off Walt Disney
Animator Edward H. Love is born in Tremont, Pennsylvania. Working at various studios
during the golden age of animation, his early career included a near 10-year run at Disney starting in 1931.
Love's credits include the shorts Flowers and Trees, Mickey's Mellerdrammer, Mickey's Trailer and
Wynken, Blynken & Nod. (He later worked for MGM, Walter Lantz Productions and Hanna-Barbera. Love was
given the Golden Award at the 1984 Motion Pictures Screen Cartoonists Awards.)
"I started there at $18 a week and I animated for the first six months at $18 a week. Walt (Disney) was away on
a trip to Europe and when he came back he raised me to $2. In those days it was a good raise." -Ed Love
Six years in the making, Pandora – The World of Avatar, is dedicated in Disney's Animal
Kingdom at Walt Disney World. The new land, featuring rides, a restaurant and immersive entertainment,
is based on John Cameron's 2009 movie "Avatar." Attractions include Na’vi River Journey (where riders can see the bio-luminescence quality of the planet’s fictional plant life) and Avatar Flight of Passage (which places riders on devices
to make them feel as if they are flying on the back of a “Banshee,” the flying creatures on the fictional planet).
Disney's Pandora will officially open Saturday May 27.
The original Disney princess castle, Sleeping Beauty’s pink and blue palace at
Disneyland in Anaheim, California, unveils a new look on this day. The castle has been
blocked off from visitors since January, as groups of maintenance crews have been giving it a spruce. The castle
now features brighter, more vibrant pink walls and blue rooftops, plus some sparkling gold shingles that look like
"pixie dust." The crews also added some artistic tricks to make the castle seem bigger. A painting technique was
used that involves painting the lower parts of the 70-foot tall castle walls in darker and warmer hues of pink paint,
gradually getting lighter and cooler as it goes up to the top in order to blend in with the atmosphere. This tricks the
eye into thinking the object in front of them is larger or taller than it is.
Aladdin is released in 3D, Dolby Cinema and IMAX
by Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures. A live-action
adaptation of Disney's 1992 animated film of the same name, it is
directed by Guy Ritchie, and stars Will Smith, Mena Massoud, Naomi
Scott, Marwan Kenzari, Navid Negahban, Nasim Pedrad, and Billy
Magnussen. Alan Tudyk supplies the voice of Iago (Jafar's sardonic
and intelligent scarlet macaw companion), and Frank Welker reprises
his voice roles from the original animated version as Abu, Rajah and
Cave of Wonders. The film follows Aladdin, a street urchin, who finds
a magic lamp and must use it to win over Princess Jasmine and
defeat the conspiring vizier Jafar.
Rivers of Light: We Are One opens at Animal Kingdom. A retooled version of Rivers of Light, the nighttime show takes place in the park's Discovery River lagoon.
Songwriter, composer, and screenwriter Tom Adair passes at age 74 in Hawaii.
Married to Frances Jeffords in 1949, they worked together on songs and teleplays for Disney. His credits include
the television series The Mickey Mouse Club.
Actor and voice artist Alfred Molina is born in Paddington, London, England. His Disney voice credits include Rango (2011) as Roadkill, Monsters University (2013) as Professor Knight, Ralph Breaks the Internet (2018) as Double Dan, and Frozen II (2019) as King Agnarr. Molina's live-action Disney credits include White Fang 2: Myth of the White Wolf (1994), Prince of Persia: The Sands of Time (2010), and The Sorcerer's Apprentice (2010).
Actor Cole Sand, Nelson in the Disney Channel show Austin & Ally, is born in Hollywood, California. He's also contributed to episodes of Modern Family and Star vs. the Forces of Evil.
Actor, comedian, writer and director Tommy Chong is born in Edmonton, Alberta, Canada.
First known for his Cheech & Chong comedy albums and movies with Cheech Marin, Chong voiced the character Yax in Zootopia (2016).
Actor Jim Broadbent is born in England. He portrayed the villain Lord Kelvin in the 2004 adventure comedy Around the World in 80 Days, voiced Sergeant in Valiant, and played Professor Digory Kirke in The Chronicles of Narnia: The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe.
Samuel Edward Wright, the original voice of Sebastian in The Little Mermaid, passes away at age 74 in New York. Singing "Under the Sea" and "Kiss the Girl" in the 1989 hit animated feature, he later revived the character for the direct-to-videos Sebastian's Caribbean Jamboree, The Little Mermaid II: Return to the Sea, and The Little Mermaid: Ariel's Beginning. He also voiced Sebastian for 31 episodes of the animated television series The Little Mermaid. In 1997, Wright played the part of Mufasa in the original cast of The Lion King on Broadway and voiced Kron the Iguanodon in Disney's 2000 CGI/live-action film Dinosaur. He was nominated for a Tony Award in 1998 for Best Featured Actor in a Musical as the original lead actor for Mufasa.