The United States Air Force "Thunderbirds" fly over Walt Disney World. The Las Vegas, Nevada-based air demonstration team, who are celebrating their 55th anniversary, soar over the resort following an air show in Punta Gorda, Florida.
In a public ceremony, Jackie Autry, wife of the late Gene Autry ("The Singing
Cowboy") accepts a star on the Anaheim/Orange County Walk of Stars in honor of her husband and Orange County’s baseball pioneer. Actor & singer-songwriter Gene Autry is the sixth honoree on the Anaheim/OC Walk of Stars (Walt Disney was the first) and is recognized for his contributions to baseball and professional sports in Orange County. Autry once owned the California Angels and later sold a quarter share of the team to The Walt Disney Company.
A themed airplane adorned with the image of Tinker Bell on the
fuselage and golden Mickey Mouse ears on the tail from Alaska Airlines soars
into Seattle-Tacoma International Airport. The bright blue Boeing 737-400 named the
"Magic of Disneyland" celebrates the 50th anniversary of Walt Disney's Anaheim park.
It is reported that thirty-five nonprofit organizations from five Central Florida
counties received a collective $600,000 in awards from the Walt Disney World
Resort as part of Disney's Helping Kids Shine program.
It is announced that Brooke Tansley, who started her run as Belle in Disney's
Broadway musical Beauty and the Beast on September 14th, 2004, and was
extended through May 1st, has been extended again through September
Actor James Garner, the voice of Commander Lyle Tiberius Rourke (pictured
left) in Disney's 2001 animated release Atlantis: The Lost Empire, is born in
Norman, Oklahoma. His live-action Disney film credits include the 1974 The Castaway Cowboy,
the 1973 One Little Indian., and the 1992 The Distinguished Gentleman. Garner also played Jim on the
ABC-TV sitcom 8 Simple Rules, following the death of John Ritter. In September 2004 he appeared with the cast of the show at an event at Disney California Adventure park called ABC Primetime Preview Weekend. In November 2011 Simon & Schuster published Garner's autobiography The Garner Files: A Memoir, which included a forward by actress Julie Andrews. (Garner was best known for his television roles in the 1950s Western series Maverick and the 1970's detective drama series The Rockford Files. Movie fans remember him for his roles in the 1963 The Great Escape and the 2004
The Notebook.) At the 26th Television Critics Awards in 2010, Garner was presented with the Career Achievement Award.
Disney's final Silly Symphony cartoon The Ugly Ducking is
released. Based on a story by Hans Christian Andersen, this short retells the
tale of an outcast duckling who turns out to become a beautiful swan. A color remake of the 1931 Disney
short, it will win an Academy Award for Best Cartoon.
Sound recording for Disney's newest feature Fantasia begins. (The project will consume a half million feet of sound film during 42 days of recording!)
Actor Russell Crowe, who starred as John Biebe in Disney's 1999 drama "Mystery, Alaska" (distributed by Hollywood Pictures) is born in Wellington, New Zealand.
He also co-starred in Touchstone Pictures' The Insider with Al Pacino.
At the 42nd Academy Awards (held at the Dorothy Chandler Pavilion in Los Angeles), Disney's It's Tough To Be A Bird wins an Oscar (Short Subjects, Cartoon).
At Walt Disney World's Downtown Disney, Cage replaces Videopolis East (one of the original Pleasure Island clubs for the under-21).
Animator and filmmaker Dick Lundy passes away at age 82 in California. Known for his work at several animation studios including Walt Disney Animation Studios, he was a pioneer of personality animation and will be best remembered as one of the creators of Donald Duck. Starting out at Disney in 1929, he worked on such early shorts as Steamboat Willie, Midnight in a Toy Shop, The Ugly Duckling, Mickey's Mechanical Man, and The Wise Little Hen. Although he was not the first to draw or even animate Donald Duck, Lundy helped form Donald's personality. In 1943, Lundy departed the Disney studios and worked for Walter Lantz Productions and later Hannah-Barbera.
Walt Disney's sister Ruth (the youngest of the family) passes away at the age of 91.
The Disney film A Goofy Movie is released. When Max makes an preposterous promise to his girlfriend,
his chances to fulfilling it seem hopeless when he is dragged onto a cross-country trip with his embarrassing father,
Goofy. This film was animated primarily at a new Disney studio in France, after character design, art direction, and
storyboarding had been completed in Burbank, California. It features the voices of Bill Farmer (as Goofy), Jason
Marsden (as Max Goof), Kellie Martin (as Roxanne, Max's high school crush and romantic interest), Jim Cummings (as Pete, Goofy's co-worker), Jo Anne Worley (as Miss Maples), Wallace Shawn (as Principal Mazur), Jenna von Oÿ (as Stacey, Roxanne's best friend), and Frank Welker (as Bigfoot). A Goofy Movie is based on Goof Troop, an animated Disney Afternoon show that centered around Goofy and his son Max.
Disney's Frank and Ollie premieres at the Cleveland Film Festival. A documentary about the
lives and careers of legendary Disney animators, Frank Thomas and Ollie Johnston, it is directed and writen by
Thomas’s son, Ted Thomas.
The 12th Annual Walt Disney World's Happy Easter Parade,
hosted by Regis Philben and Joan Lunden, airs on television.
Disney's House of Mouse debuts the episode "Thanks to Minnie."
Who Wants To Be A Millionaire - Play It! officially opens at Disney-MGM Studios.
The attraction is a modified version of the popular Who Wants to Be a Millionaire television game show.
The National Association of Broadcasters inducts the Disney anthology television series into the NAB Hall of Fame at the NAB2003 Television All-Industry Luncheon in Las Vegas. CEO Michael Eisner accepts the award on behalf of The Walt Disney Company. The Disney anthology includes "Disneyland," "Walt Disney Presents," "Walt Disney's Wonderful World of Color," "Disney's Wonderful World," "Walt Disney," "The Disney Sunday Movie," "The Magical World of Disney" and, as it is currently known, "The Wonderful World of Disney." Michael Eisner also speaks at the Television All-Industry Luncheon (at the Las Vegas Hilton). He talks about Disney's Movie Beam, a new video on demand service.
Roy E. Disney and his wife Patty tour the new $22.5 million "Roy E. Disney Center for Performing Arts" at the National Hispanic Cultural Center & Foundation in downtown Albuquerque, New Mexico. The Disney's have contributed $1 million to help fund the construction of the 700-seat theater.
Disney World's biggest ride yet, Expedition Everest - Legend of the Forbidden
Mountain, a 20-story, white-knuckle roller coaster spin officially opens in Animal
Kingdom. The ceremonial grand opening is led by Disney CEO Bob Iger and theme parks chairman Jay Rasulo.
The attraction, which features a snowy mountain setting and an "abominable snowman" figure, is currently Florida's
tallest peak, sculpted from 1,800 tons of steel, and covering more than six acres!
The third Hannah Montana episode "She's A Super Sneak"
debuts on Disney Channel.
Walt Disney World welcomes its 150-millionth guest - Carrie Stahl!
ABC-TV airs Walt Disney World's Happy Easter Parade.
Parade magazine features the "Luckiest Boy in the World," a cover story on Cast
"When I started working, I didn't have a clue what I was doing, in that I was just wandering around, hoping that I could succeed. Then after I got a little under my belt, it took me about 25 years to feel like I knew what I was doing." -James Garner
"Certainly, I wish Gene were here. His star is so close to Walt Disney's and that's very fitting. They were both visionaries."
THIS DAY MADE IN THE USA
A Goofy Movie released
Actress Faith Prince joins the cast of Broadway'sThe Little Mermaid.
She takes over the role of of the evil sea witch Ursula.
The first three volumes of Disney Animation Collection are released to DVD.
Unstoppable, the sixth studio album by the American country pop group Rascal Flatts, is released on Disney's Lyric Street label.
The television sitcom Herbie, The Love Bug airs episode #4 - "Herbie, the Best Man."
The series centers on Jim Douglas (played by Dean Jones) and his partner Bo (Richard Paul) who run a small
driving school with a very "human" Volkswagen Beetle named Herbie.
Disney's Pluto short Wonder Dog, directed by Charles Nichols, is released. Pluto envisions
himself as a circus dog in order to win the heart of Dinah, who has fallen for a poster of Prince the Wonder Dog.
Walt Disney's Wonderful World of Color airs part two of "The Mystery of Edward
Sims" on NBC-TV. Based on one of the many "Gallegher" stories by Richard Harding Davis, "The Mystery of
Edward Sims" stars Roger Mobley stars as Gallegher, a turn-of-the-century teenaged newspaper reporter who
helps a Cornish immigrant and his family.
Songwriter Jack Lawrence is born in Brooklyn, New York. He co-wrote "Once Upon A Dream"
with Sammy Fain for Disney's 1951 Sleeping Beauty. Along with Frank Churchill, Lawrence penned "Never Smile At
A Crocodile" and the title song (with Victor Young) for Disney's 1953 Peter Pan. (Lawrence is probably best known for his
hit song "Beyond the Sea," co-written with Charles Trenet & Albert Lasry for singer Bobby Darin.)
A ceremony to officially break ground on the Shanghai Disney Resort takes place in China. The ceremony features Mickey Mouse dressed in a traditional Chinese costume, a 50-voice Shanghai children’s choir, a female soloist singing in Mandarin and traditional Chinese drum music. After the entertainment, President and CEO of The Walt Disney Company Bob Iger and Chairman of Walt Disney Parks and Resorts Tom Staggs are joined by Shanghai Party Secretary Yu Zhengsheng and Shanghai Mayor Han Zheng to officially break ground on the project. Scheduled to open in about five years, Shanghai Disneyland will be the name of the theme park itself, but the property will also have two themed hotels and a venue for retail, dining and entertainment. This will be the first Disney park in mainland China but the second within the Greater China region.
April is 1964/65 New York World's Fair Month
Andi Mack, a comedy-drama television series created by Terri Minsky, premieres on
Disney Channel. The series stars Peyton Elizabeth as Andi, a young teen who is working through her teenage
life with the help of her family and her friends. (Back in 2001, Minsky had created the popular sitcom Lizzie McGuire.)
Stanley Tong, a film director, producer, action choreographer, screenwriter, entrepreneur and philanthropist, is born in Hong Kong. His only English language non-martial arts film was Disney's live-action comedy Mr. Magoo (1997).
Today is World Health Day
In honor of World Health Day, Disney Parks and Resorts worldwide show appreciation for the hard working healthcare teams battling the current global pandemic. In Shanghai Disneyland, the Enchanted Storybook Castle has been lit up with the words "thank you" in numerous languages. Disneyland Paris features a floral arrangement of "Merci" in front of that park's castle. At Walt Disney World in Florida, Disney Security Cast members stand on Main Street USA holding "Thank You" signs while a beautifully lit Cinderella Castle shines in the background.
Disney+ is launched in France.
Remember... Dreams Come True, a fireworks display first created to commemorate Disneyland's 50th anniversary in 2005, plays its last show.
Actor, director and screenwriter James Hampton passes away at age 84 in Texas.
Best known for his comedic TV roles such as Private Hannibal Shirley Dobbs on F Troop (1965-1967), and Leroy B. Simpson on The Doris Day Show (1968-1969), he also appeared in 2 live-action Disney films. Hampton played Captain Anderson in the 1978 science fiction comedy The Cat from Outer Space, and Harry Oslo in the 1981 adventure comedy superhero film Condorman.