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Wednesday, October 11, 2017

Thelma Boardman - my 168th pick to be named a Disney Legend.

Thelma Boardman is my 168th pick to be named a Disney Legend. 

She was an American voice actress. From 1941 to 1942, she provided the voice of Minnie Mouse in a handful of cartoons, including The Little Whirlwind, The Nifty Nineties, Mickey's Birthday Party and Out of the Frying Pan Into the Firing Line, as well as The Mickey Mouse Theater of the Air in 1938. Thelma also provided the voices of Donald's Angel in Donald's Better Self and Donald's Decision as well as Miss Bunny, Mrs. Quail and Pheasant in Bambi.

Walt Kelly - my 167th pick to be named a Disney Legend

Walt Kelly was an American animator and cartoonist, best known for the comic strip, Pogo. He is my 167th choice to be named a Disney Legend,

He began his animation career in 1936 at Walt Disney Studios, contributing to Pinocchio and Fantasia. Relocating to Southern California, he found a job at Walt Disney Productions as a storyboard artist and gag man on Donald Duck cartoons and other shorts, requesting a switch to the animation department in 1939. Starting over as an animator, Kelly became an assistant to noted Walt Disney animator Fred Moore and became close friends with Moore and Ward Kimball, one of Disney's Nine Old Men. Kelly and Kimball were so close that Kimball named his daughter Kelly Kimball in tribute.

Kelly worked for Disney from January 6, 1936, to September 12, 1941, contributing to Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs, Fantasia, Dumbo and The Reluctant Dragon. He also worked on animator for the Mickey Mouse animated shorts Mickey's Surprise Party, The Little Whirlwind and The Nifty Nineties. Kelly once stated that his salary at Disney averaged about $100 a week. During 1935 and 1936, his work also appeared in early comic books for what later became DC Comics.

Kelly's animation can be seen in Pinocchio when Gepetto is first seen inside Monstro the whale, fishing; in Fantasia when Bacchus is seen drunkenly riding a donkey during the Beethoven/"Pastoral Symphony" sequence; and in Dumbo of the ringmaster and during bits of the crows' sequence; and his drawings are especially recognizable in The Reluctant Dragon of the little boy, and in the Mickey Mouse short "The Little Whirlwind" when Mickey is running from the larger tornado.

During the 1941 animators strike, Kelly did not picket the studio, as has often been reported, but took a leave of absence—pleading "family illness"— to avoid choosing sides. Surviving correspondence between Kelly and his close friend and fellow animator Ward Kimball chronicles his ambivalence towards the highly charged dispute. Kimball stated in an interview years later that Kelly felt creatively constricted in animation, a collective art form, and possibly over-challenged by the technical demands of the form, and he had been looking for a way out when the strike occurred.

Kelly never returned to the studio as an animator, but jobs adapting the studio's films Pinocchio and The Three Caballeros for Dell Comics—apparently the result of a recommendation from Walt Disney himself—led to a new (and ultimately transitional) career. He also provided covers for Walt Disney's Comics and Stories, illustrated the aforementioned adaptations of two Disney animated features and did a series of pantomime (i.e., without dialogue) two-page stories featuring Roald Dahl's Gremlins for Walt Disney's Comics and Stories #34–41. His songs "Don't Sugar Me" and "Man's Best Friend" (also known as "Old Dog Trey") appeared in episodes 122 and 404 of The Muppet Show respectively.

Kelly has been compared to everyone from James Joyce and Lewis Carroll, to Aesop and Uncle Remus. He was elected president of the National Cartoonists Society in 1954, serving until 1956, and was also the first strip cartoonist to be invited to contribute originals to the Library of Congress.

1951: National Cartoonists Society, Reuben Award, Cartoonist of the Year[

1972: National Cartoonists Society, Silver T-Square Extraordinary Service Award for "outstanding dedication or service to the Society or the profession".

1989: The Comic-Con International Inkpot Award (posthumous)

Walt Kelly, an inductee into the National Cartoon Museum, (formerly the International Museum of Cartoon Art) is one of only 31 artists selected to their Hall of Fame.

Kelly was also inducted into the Will Eisner Award Hall of Fame in 1995.

Edwin Catmull - my 166th pick to be named a Disney Legend

Edwin Earl "Ed" Catmull is one of the three founding fathers of Pixar. He was President and CTO of Pixar and now is President of Walt Disney and Pixar Animation Studios. He is my 166th pick to be named a Disney Legend.

In 2009, Catmull was awarded the Gordon E. Sawyer award from the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences for his lifetime contributions to computer graphics used in the motion picture industry. Previously, in 2000, Catmull, with Rob Cook and Loren Carpenter, was awarded an Academy Award® of Merit for their work on the RenderMan® rendering system. He has also received two Scientific and Engineering Awards: in 1992 as part of the team for the development of the RenderMan system, and again in 1995 as part of a team for pioneering inventions in digital image compositing. Catmull also shared a Technical Achievement Award in 2005.

In 1986, Steve Jobs bought ILM's digital division and founded Pixar, where Catmull became Preseident and Chief Technical Officer, positions he retained until the Disney acquisition in 2006. At Pixar, he was the key developer of the RenderMan rendering system used in all Pixar films.

After Disney acquired Pixar in January 2006, Disney Chief Executive Bob Iger put Catmull and John Lasseter in charge of reinvigorating the Disney animation studios in Burbank.

Irene Bedard - My 165th pick to be named a Disney Legend.

She is probably best known as the speaking voice of the titular character in the 1995 Disney, which is enough to make Irene Bedard my 165th pick to be named a Disney Legend.

She is the princess in animated feature Pocahontas and its direct-to-video sequel Pocahontas II: Journey to a New World. Bedard was also the physical model for the character.

Irene Bedard is known for bringing a powerful emotional presence to her characters. She was chosen as one of People magazine 50 Most Beautiful People for 1995. She also played Nakooma in Squanto: A Warrior's Tale and voiced Forest Ranger Hero in Higglytown Heroes.

When asked if she had a favorite part or any special memories from the production of Pocahontas, she answered:

I remember giving hugs to everyone on the last day of recording. We had so much fun together. I really enjoy the process of animation; it's all about imagination. I would ask myself things like, "What is it like talking to a tree?" and "What tone of voice would I use to talk to a raccoon or hummingbird?" Even how far the hummingbird would be from me was important. Was it right by my head or farther away? I loved working at the Disney animations studios. It was so wonderful to be told to "take a left at Goofy and a right at Mickey."

Mickey Rooney - 164th choice to be named a Disney Legend.

Legendary actor Mickey Rooney is my 164th pick to be chosen as a Disney Legend.

Rooney was one of the many voices of Oswald the Lucky Rabbit during the character's run at Universal Studios. For Disney, he voiced adult Tod in the 1981 Disney animated film The Fox and the Hound, and played the role of Lampie in the 1977 film Pete's Dragon. In Flubber, he made a cameo appearance on Weebo's screen. 

He also played Movie Mason in the 2000 Disney Channel Original Movie Phantom of the Megaplex, and the voice of Sparky in the 2001 direct-to-video film Lady and the Tramp II: Scamp's Adventure, as well as a Smalltown resident in the 2011 film The Muppets. He also played Old Bailey and James Turner in Walt Disney's Wonderful World of Color.

In 1939, he was caricaturized by Disney himself in the Donald Duckshort, The Autograph Hound. Mickey Mouse was named after him.

He was also the father of Mickey Rooney, Jr.

Will Finn - my 163rd pick to be named a Disney Legend

Will Finn is an animator, writer, director, voice actor, and storyboard artist for Walt Disney Animation Studios. Her is my 163rd choice to be named a Disney Legend

Disney Filmography:


1978 The Small One Inbetween artist

1981 The Fox and the Hound Inbetween artist

1987 Sport Goofy in Soccermania Animator

1988 Oliver & Company Animator: Francis, Georgette

1989 The Little Mermaid Animator: Sir Grimsby

1991 Beauty and the Beast Supervising animator: Cogsworth

1992 Aladdin Supervising animator: Iago

1995 Pocahontas Character design ; Visual development

1996 The Hunchback of Notre Dame Supervising animator: Laverne


1996 The Hunchback of Notre Dame Story Supervisor; Additional screenplay material

2004 Home on the Range Writer


2004 Home on the Range Director

Voice actor

2005 Chicken Little - Hollywood Fish out of Water Voice acting

Phil Holmes - my 162nd pick to be named a Disney Legend

Phil Holmes, an executive with the Magic Kingdom, is my 165th pick to be named a Disney Legend.

There is a Portrait of Phil Holmes, Magic Kingdom Vice President, in the Bonjour Village Gifts shop in The Magic Kingdom's Fantasyland that contains a few secrets.

Mr. Holmes was a host of the Haunted Mansion, on the opening day of Magic Kingdom and has been with Disney for over 40 years!

Here are some of the Hidden Details in the portrait.
- 40 Year Anniversary Ring
- Donald Duck (40 Year Anniversary Award)
- The peanuts are for the Storybook Circus
- There is a piece of the Haunted Mansion wallpaper
- The genie lamp for the Aladdin ride
- A Magic Kingdom Park Map
- Snow White Apple

Phil Holmes was Walt Disney World's vice president for the Magic Kingdom, the busiest theme park in the world and the epicenter of Walt Disney Co.'s "Year of a Million Dreams" campaign. Holmes spoke recently with Sentinel staff writer Scott Powers. Posted June 19, 2007

Question: Is there still a lot of Walt Disney in this park?

Answer: I believe so. A lot of people such as myself have been here a long time. Yesterday, I was in with a group of about 100 of our salaried cast members, and we were listening to a little bit of a heritage session, called Walt and You, and it takes our newer salaried cast and takes them on that journey [to] understand Walt was a real man. He had this vision and dream, but it took a lot of work. This is the outcome.

Q: Like a remarkable number of other theme-park executives, not just here but anywhere, you started out at or near the bottom. How come that still works well in this business, compared with others?

A: For our company, a lot of our success is based on continuing to bring great people in. I think the culture is one of the draws. It really comes back to the associations and the people who are some of the best in the industry we do. You really enjoy the camaraderie and learning from each other. That has always served us well. What better way to learn the theme-park business than to grow up in it?

Q: Is Universal Orlando's planned new Harry Potter area any kind of threat, and is there a response in the works?

A: I think our opinion is the stronger each of this region's parks becomes, hopefully the more people that come into the Florida area and have a great experience. Hopefully it is the great experience of Florida we focus on. With all the great destinations around the world, it's easy for people to make choices other than Florida. Clearly, I think what Universal is doing will just help strengthen the overall portfolio that we all offer.

Q: What's been your favorite moment so far in the "Year of a Million Dreams" campaign?

A: It has to come back to the [Cinderella] Castle suite and interacting with some of these families that are randomly picked. It amazes me how so many of these families are so deserving and have such great stories of their own. One that comes to mind is a family of five, a mom and four kids -- had saved forever to come down, they were staying in a small campground off property. So when we award that to them, we go with them to pick up a few things so they can spend the night [in the castle]. So they go back, gather that up. They're walking down Main Street. The oldest boy is leading the way. The host says to the mom, "What a beautiful sweater you're wearing." The boy looks to the tour guide and says, "You know, nobody ever compliments my mom." We arrive up on the second floor, at the castle suite; without a word, every one of these kids slips off their shoes and places them at the door. And then the door opens and their mouths just kind of hang open.

Q: Have you had a personal opportunity to hand out any of the more intimate dreams?

A: No. I have had the opportunity to shadow the dream squad, but they entrust that very important job to those professionals, those cast members who are doing a great job with it.

Q: Do you worry at all that the increasingly digital generations will find the 40-year-old attractions quaint but not very exciting anymore?

A: I think what we have found is, especially in the Magic Kingdom, there are classic attractions like it's a small world, like Pirates of the Caribbean, like Haunted Mansion, where people really enjoy reliving the moment, because of the memories they built around those with their families. You know: "I was able to come with my parents, now I come with my son." Those are really the enhancement, too, the overall experience. I think there is a real balance there. With Monster's Inc. Laugh Floor, we've clearly taken the interactive experience to the next level, and people love that because they can be part of the show. I think we will continue to use technology in that way.

Q: For you, what's the Magic Kingdom's least appreciated feature?

A: I would say there still is a lot of opportunity that our guests can enjoy, as difficult as it is, by enjoying the park at a slower pace. It may take you a day and a half or two days. But, you know, spread it out. Take a ride on the train. Go ride the Tomorrowland Transit Authority. Take time to for the slower things, where you can enjoy the vistas and have family time where you can talk. There certainly are a good number of people who do that.

Thursday, September 21, 2017

Roger Mobley - my 161st pick to be named a Disney Legend

In 1964, after having been impressed with Mobley's performance as Gustav in Emil and the Detectives, Walt Disney signed him to the title role in the highly acclaimed and Emmy-nominated "Adventures of Gallegher" serials for his Wonderful World of Color. Gallegher is an amateur sleuth newspaper reporter, a character created by the author Richard Harding Davis. Contrary to popular rumor, it is Mobley's name that Walt Disney wrote on his very last memo.
some of his appearances on Disney's TV show include For the Love of Willadean, The Treasure of San Bosco, and the Mystery of Edward Sims.

After nine years and appearances in 118 television programs or feature films, Mobley's career was interrupted at the age of eighteen by military service. Mobley was quoted, accordingly: "Uncle Walt [Disney] had plans for me, but so did Uncle Sam, and Uncle Sam won." His last films with Disney were The Apple Dumpling Gang Rides Again and The kids Who Knew Too Much in the late 1970s and early 1980s.

George Vernon Stallings - my 160th pick to be named a Disney Legend

Animator, director and writer Vernon Stallings is my 160th choice to be named a Disney Legend. Stallings directed the Silly Symphonies short Merbabies before continuing writing for the Disney studios on feature films such as Fantasia, Dumbo, Victory Through Air Power and Bambi. He is the son of famous baseball manager George Stallings.
In 1946, Stallings worked on the writing for “Song of the South” and then took over the writing for the Disney comics and introduced new characters such as Molly Cottontail who would later become Brer Rabbit’s girlfriend. He worked for Disney Studios from 1935-1946.

Friday, September 1, 2017

Art Palmer - my 159th pick to be named a Disney Legend

Animator Art Palmer is my 159th pick to be named a Disney Legend. A cartoonist, painter, and etcher, he was born in Chicago, Illinois on November 27, 1913.  Palmer studied with Frank T. Chamberlin at the Chouinard Art School in Los Angeles.  During the 1940s he was an animator for Disney Studios.  He later had a studio in San Francisco and taught at the California College of Arts and Crafts and the Palo Alto Art Club.  His address was Woodacre (Marin County), California at the time of his death on July 7, 1982. His Disney Filmography includes:

1937  The Old Mill  (Disney - Silly Symphony - Animator )
1938  Wynken, Blynken and Nod (Disney - Silly Symphony - Animator )
               Mickey's Parrot (Disney - Mickey Mouse Cartoon - Animator )
               The Brave Little Tailor (Disney - Mickey Mouse Cartoon - Animator - Drafts Available)
1939 The Practical Pig (Disney - Three Little Pigs Cartoon - Animator )
               The Pointer (Disney - Mickey Mouse Cartoon - Animator - Drafts Available)
1940  Pinocchio (Disney - Disney Theatrical Feature - Animator )
               Toccata and Fugue in D Minor (Disney - Animator )
               Rite of Spring (Disney - Animator )
1941 Canine Caddy(Disney - Mickey Mouse Cartoon - Animator )
               The Reluctant Dragon (Disney - Animator )
               Dumbo  (Disney - Disney Theatrical Feature - Animator )

1942  Bambi (Disney - Disney Theatrical Feature - Animator )

Corey Burton - my 158th pick as a Disney Legend

Voice actor Corey Burton is my 158th pick to be named a Disney Legend.

Corey Burton (born Corey Gregg Weinberg) is an American voice actor best known as the current voice of Ludwig Von Drake, Captain Hook and many other characters for numerous Disney projects, as well as characters from Star Wars: The Clone Wars (including Count Dooku, Cad Bane and Ziro the Hutt) and other cartoons. He has a wide vocal range from voicing high characters, raspy characters and baritone voices. His baritone voice is the reason he took over Tony Jay's roles after his death in 2006.
He has also done a lot of narration work. In 2000, he was called in to dub over Deems Taylor's narration in Fantasia. This was done as when the restoration team was preparing Fantasia, some of Deems' narration was missing or in too bad of condition to be publicly released. So, Corey redubbed all of the film's dialogue to give it a consistent flow. He has also narrated several Disney documentaries and bonus features such as The Story Behind Fun and Fancy Free, Bambi: The Magic Behind the Masterpiece and The Jungle Book: The Making of a Musical Masterpiece. He also provided voice work in several attractions at Disney theme parks, most notably as the monorail tram narration at Disneyland and the Walt Disney World Resort.

He received an Annie Award for his work as Ludwig Von Drake in House of Mouse, and an Annie nomination for his voice work as Captain Hook in Return to Never Land and Jake and the Never Land Pirates. He also voices the Narrator in Future-Worm! He provides the "Feature Presentation" voice on numerous Disney home video releases. Burton has voiced sound-alikes and original characters for over 50 Disney Storyteller records.
He has voiced Professor Owl, Bertie Birdbrain, Jiminy Cricket, White Rabbit, Dale, and others in the Disney Sing-along specials. Her voiced Prince Achmed, Necklace Merchant in Aladdin. He was the Brutish Guard in The Hunchback of Notre Dame. He voiced Titans, Burnt Man, End-of-the-World Man, Tour Bus Guide in Hercules. He provided the voice for an ancestor in Mulan and Zeus in Hercules: From Zero to Hero. He was Dale in Mickey’s Once Upon a Christmas and the announcer in Toy Story 2. He was Gaëtan "Mole" Molière in Atlantis the Lost Empire. He played Gus in several Cinderella sequels and was Onus in Treasure Planet.

He has provided voices for the series Gravity Falls, Penn Zero: Part-Time Hero, Star vs. the Forces of Evil, Mickey and the Roadster Racers, Duck Tales, Mickey Mouse Clubhouse, Disney's House of Mouse, Goof Troop, The Lion King's Timon & Pumbaa, Chip 'n Dale Rescue Rangers, Disney's Adventures of the Gummi Bears and The Magical World of Disney.

Tuesday, August 1, 2017

Karen Pendleton - my 157th pick to be named a Disney Legend

Karen Pendleton (born August 1, 1946) was an original Mickey Mouse Club Mouseketeer on ABC television from 1955-1958. She was one of only nine Mouseketeers who were on the show during its entire original run. Karen toured Australia in 1959 and 1960 with a number of other Mouseketeers and Jimmie Dodd. She was often coupled with Carl "Cubby" O'Brien in the television series and in live performances as they were the youngest members of the cast.

After the show's run, she left show business and finished school. She got married in 1970, had a daughter in 1973, but divorced in 1981. Following an automobile accident in 1983, in which she was paralyzed from the waist down, she returned to college and earned a Bachelor's degree in psychology. She worked at a shelter for battered women and served on the Board for the California Association of the Physically Handicapped.

She is my 157th choice to be named a Disney Legend.

Monday, July 24, 2017

Jack Cutting - my 156th pick to be named a Disney Legend

Jack Cutting, my 156th pick for the Disney Legend honor, was an an animator who hired on at Walt Disney's fledgling cartoon studio in 1929 when he was 21, joining the 19 artists who then constituted the studio. Cutting, who headed the foreign department of Disney studios where he supervised the translations and dubbing of voices, was director of the 1939 Academy Award-winning cartoon "The Ugly Duckling." He retired in 1975.

His partial Disney filmography includes:

1929 : Springtime
1929 : The Merry Dwarfs
1930 : Summer
1930 : Autumn
1930 : Winter
1930 : Hell's Bells
1930 : Playful Pan
1931 : The China Plate
1931 : The Busy Beavers
1931 : Birds of a Feather
1931 : The Ugly Duckling
1932 : Santa's Workshop
1933 : Father Noah's Ark
1933 : The Mail Pilot
1936: The Three Blind Mousketeers
1936 : The Three Little Wolves
1938 : Farmyard Symphony  - director
1939 : The Ugly Duckling  - director
1941 : The Reluctant Dragon
1942 : Saludos Amigos
1942 : South of the Border With Disney
1948: Blame it on Samba
1948 : Melody Time
1960 : Donald Duck and his Companions

Saturday, July 22, 2017

Vance Gerry - my 155th pick as a Disney Legend

My 155th pick, Vance Gerry  was a screenwriter, character designer and storyboard artist. According to his LA Times obituary, Garry was  "Regarded as one of the most creative and talented story artists in the animation industry, Gerry joined the Walt Disney Studios in 1955 after studying at the Chouinard Art Institute. He rose quickly through the ranks to become a layout artist. He contributed to the television shows "Goofy's Cavalcade of Sports" and "How to Relax"; the short features "The Truth About Mother Goose" and "Donald in Mathmagic Land"; and the features "101 Dalmatians" and "The Sword in the Stone."

Gerry moved to the studio's story department on "The Jungle Book," Walt Disney's last animated feature. Looking back on that collaboration, Gerry said, "There was an aura about Walt: When he came into the room, you felt it. He focused very closely on what the characters would do and say."

Gerry later made major contributions to "Dalmatians," "The Aristocats," "Robin Hood," "The Rescuers," "The Many Adventures of Winnie the Pooh" and "The Fox and the Hound."

His Disney Filmography:

1959 Donald in Mathmagic Land Layout Artist

1960 Goliath II Layout Artist

1961 One Hundred and One Dalmatians Layout Artist

1961 Aquamania Story

1963 The Sword in the Stone Layout Artist

1966 Winnie the Pooh and the Honey Tree Story

1967 The Jungle Book Story

1968 Winnie the Pooh and the Blustery Day Story

1970 The AristoCats Story

1973 Robin Hood Story Sequences

1977 The Many Adventures of Winnie the Pooh Story

1977 The Rescuers Story

1978 The Small One Writer

1981 The Fox and the Hound Story

1985 The Black Cauldron Story

1986 The Great Mouse Detective Story Adaptation

1988 Oliver & Company Story

1990 The Rescuers Down Under Storyboard Artist

1990 The Prince and the Pauper Storyboard Artist

1994 The Lion King Character Designer

1995 Pocahontas Character Designer/Visual Development Artist

1996 The Hunchback of Notre Dame Character Designer/Visual Development Artist

1997 Hercules Story

1999 Tarzan Character Designer/Visual Development Artist

2000 Fantasia 2000 Conceptual Storyboard Artist: segment Carnival of the Animals

2004 Home on the Range Additional Visual Development Artist

Ray Conway - my 154th pick as a Disney Legend

Ray Conway was in charge of the construction of Disneyland and he is my 154th pick to be named a Disney Legend. Not much is known about Ray Conway, although he does have a window on Main Street Disneyland in his honor.  During Disneyland's construction, he worked closely with Charles Alexander, the construction field supervisor and George Mills, who was the foreman for the on-site mills & shops, and their names also appear on the same Main Street window.

Other than that I could not find much in my research about the man. But I thought, the guy was in charge of building Disneyland. Shouldn't he be a legend??

Tuesday, July 11, 2017

Pete Docter - my 153rd pick to be named a Disney Legend

Pete Docter, my 153rd choice to be named a Disney Legend, is an American film director, animator, screenwriter, producer and voice actor who is best known for directing the Pixar animated films Monsters, Inc. and Up, and as a key figure and collaborator in Pixar Animation Studios. The A. V. Club has called him "almost universally successful." He has been nominated for six Academy Awards (one win thus far for Up - Best Animated Feature), three Annie Awards (winning two), a BAFTA Children's Film Award (which he won), and a Hochi Film Award (which he won). He has described himself as a "geeky kid from Minnesota who likes to draw cartoons."

His most recent film that he directed was Inside Out, which was released on June 19th, 2015.

Feature Film Filmography

1995 Toy Story Story/Head Animator Pixar
1998 A Bug's Life Additional Storyboard Artist
1999 Toy Story 2 Story
2001 Monsters, Inc. Director/Story
2005 Howl's Moving Castle English Dub Director/Executive Producer: US Version Studio Ghibli
2008 WALL-E Story Pixar
2009 Up Director/Story/Screenplay/Voice Actors (Kevin and Campmaster Strauch)
2011 The Muppets Creative Consultant Walt Disney Pictures
2013 Monsters University Executive Producer Pixar
2015 Inside Out Director/Story/Voice Actor (Bill's Anger)
2019 Toy Story 4 Story

Animated Shorts Filmography

1997 Geri's Game Animator Pixar
2002 Mike's New Car Director/Story
2003 Boundin' Special Thanks
2008 Presto
2009 Partly Cloudy
Dug's Special Mission Executive Producer
2011 La Luna Special Thanks
2013 The Blue Umbrella
Party Central Executive Producer
2014 Lava Special Thanks
Toy Story That Time Forgot
2015 Sanjay's Super Team
Riley's First Date Executive Producer/Voice Actor (Bill's Anger)
2017 Lou Executive Producer

Thursday, June 29, 2017

Richard White - my 152nd choice as a Disney Legend

Voice actor Richard White is my 152nd pick to be named a Disney Legend. For Disney, he is most famous for voicing the character of Gaston from the Beauty and the Beast franchise. In a 1991 interview with Newsweek promoting the film, White said that he based Gaston on overconfident jocks he had seen during his teenage years and believed that "had Gaston made it to 30, he would have been twice-divorced with possible hypertension problems".

He of course sings in the film, taking part as one of the singers in one of the more memorable villain songs ever, named after his character - Gaston. Some of his lyrics -

When I was a lad, I ate four dozen eggs

Ev'ry morning to help me get large
And now that I'm grown, I eat five dozen eggs
So I'm roughly the size of a barge

He has also been a host of Walt Disney World's Very Merry Christmas Parade. He has voiced Gaston for other shows such as The House of Mouse.

Friday, June 23, 2017

Alex Kupershmidt - my 151st pick as a Disney Legend

Animator Alex Kupershmidt is my 151st pick to be named as a Disney Legend. He is considered one of the best animators in the Disney studio today in both hand-drawn and CGI. He is a graduate of the animation department at the School of Visual arts in New York and joined Disney at the opening of the Florida studio in 1989. His Disney debut was on Roller Coaster Rabbit and it was shortly followed by his position as animator in the Florida Gaston and Aladdin units.
Some of his Disney credits are:

(1990) Roller Coaster Rabbit (Animator)
(1990) The Rescuers Down Under (Animator: Percival C. McLeach)
(1991) Beauty and the Beast (Animator: Gaston)
(1992) Aladdin (Animator: Aladdin)
(1994) The Lion King (Supervising animator: Hyena Clan)
(1998) Mulan (Supervising animator: Khan and General Li)
(2002) Lilo & Stitch (Supervising animator: Stitch)
(2003) Brother Bear (Supervising animator: Koda)
(2005) Chicken Little (Animator)
(2007) Meet the Robinsons (Animator)
(2008) Bolt (Animator)
(2009) The Princess and the Frog (Lead animator: Shadow Demons)
(2010) Tangled ​(Animator)
(2012) Wreck-It Ralph (Additional Animation Support)
(2012) Paperman (Final Line Animator)
(2013) Get a Horse! (Animator)

Fred Kopietz - my 150th pick to be named a Disney Legend

Animator Fred Kopietz is my 150th choice to be named a Disney Legend. Prior to coming to the Disney Studios he worked for Walter Lantz, including some Oswald the Rabbit films. After coming to Disney he worked on several Donald Duck films and shorts, along with some of the classics.  Ward Kimball used Kopietz as his right-hand man on the title song animation of The Three Caballeros.

His Disnye credits include:

Walt Disney's Wonderful World of Color (TV Series) (animator - 1 episode)
- Man on Wheels (1967) ... (animator)

1961 Donald and the Wheel (Short) (animator)

1961 101 Dalmatians (animator - uncredited)

1959 How to Have an Accident at Work (Short) (animator)

1959 Sleeping Beauty (character animator)

1958 Paul Bunyan (Short) (animator)

1955 Lady and the Tramp (animator - uncredited)

1948 The Trial of Donald Duck (Short) (animation)

1947 Crazy with the Heat (Short) (animator)

1947 Sleepy Time Donald (Short) (animator)

1946 Dumb Bell of the Yukon (Short) (animator)

1946 Donald's Double Trouble (Short) (animator)

1945Cured Duck (Short) (animator)

1944 The Three Caballeros (animator - uncredited)

Thursday, May 25, 2017

Peter Schnieder - my 149th choice as a Disney Legend

Peter Schnieder was the first president of Walt Disney Feature Animation for The Walt Disney Company from 1985 to 1999 and he is my 149th chocie to be named a Disney Legend. He was responsible for helping to turn the feature animation department around and creating some of the most critically acclaimed and highest grossing animated features that Disney released. These films included Who Framed Roger Rabbit (1988), The Little Mermaid (1989), Beauty and the Beast (1991, the first animated feature to be nominated for an Academy Award for Best Picture), Aladdin (1992), and The Lion King (1994), the highest domestic grossing animated film of all time until 2003.
Schneider also sealed the deal that created the highly successful partnership between Pixar and Disney. He was promoted to studio chief in 1999. In 2001, Schneider left Disney to form his own theater production company. His first major production, developed in association with Michael Reno, was Sister Act (musical) which opened at the London Palladium in 2009. Peter graduated from Purdue University in 1972 with a theatre degree.

Along with producer Don Hahn, Schneider produced a documentary entitled Waking Sleeping Beauty in 2009, which focused on the revival of Disney animation during the 1980s and early 1990s. In Disney's 1988 animated movie, Oliver & Company, he was caricatured as a pawn shop owner whom Fagin tries to pawn his watch to.

David Swift - my 148th choice as a Disney Legend

David Swift, my 148th pick to be named a Disney Legend, was an American screenwriter, animator, director, and producer.
He began his career at The Walt Disney Studio as an office boy and rose to be an assistant animator under Ward Kimball in 1938.. He worked on such classic animated Disney films as Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs, Pinocchio, Fantasia and Peter Pan. He also worked on The Reluctant Dragon and The Nifty Nineties.

Swift eventually switched careers from animation to screenwriting and made his directing debut with the Disney film Pollyanna, starring Hayley Mills. After Pollyanna, Swift wrote and directed the film The Parent Trap, again starring Mills.

In the late 1970's, Swift returned to Disney and wrote the screenplay for the Jodie Foster movie Candleshoe. He was originally set to direct the picture, before being taken off the project and replaced with Norman Tokar.

Friday, May 19, 2017

Renie Bardeau - my 147th choice as a Disney Legend

Renie Bardeau was a Disneyland photographer who produced several of the most iconic Walt Disney photos.  He is my 147th pick to be named a Disney Legend. His first assignment the summer he was hired by head photographer Charlie Nichols was to take publicity photos of the opening of the new attractions for Tomorrowland, especially the Monorail, with Walt Disney and the Nixon family.
His summer job at Disneyland continued until 1963 when he graduated. He assumed he would work at Disneyland until he found some other job in the advertising field.
"One year became five and five became 10, then 10 became 20 and so on," Bardeau said. (It was a familiar story for many of the people that began working at Disneyland like Disneyland Band Leader Vessey Walker and Golden Horseshoe star Wally Boag.)
As those years passed by, Bardeau spent less time in the darkroom and more time in the park. He would receive three or four assignments a day, photographing celebrities or new rides or fireworks.
United States presidents, politicians, award-winning performers, famous athletes, royalty, and a host of foreign dignitaries have visited Disneyland and Renie was there snapping pictures for press packets, Disney archives and in-house newsletters.
When Charlie Nichols retired in 1968, Bardeau replaced him as chief photographer.
Last photo taken of Walt Disney at Disneyland
Bardeau has ridden every ride at Disneyland since 1959, many of them while sitting backward to get specific angles for photos used to publicize a coming attraction.
Bardeau was also responsible for the final professional photo taken of Walt Disney in Disneyland. As Renie recalled, it was at the end of August 1966 (Walt died a little more than three months later) and Walt had been shooting a commercial for Kodak. Walt was in front of Sleeping Beauty Castle sitting in the front seat of Disneyland Fire Department “Engine No. 1” vehicle with a costumed Mickey Mouse.
Bardeau once complained to Disney that the trees along Main Street had grown too large and obstructed the view of Sleeping Beauty's Castle. The trees were eventually replaced with smaller ones.
In all Renie worked as a photographer for Disneyland for 37 years. He snapped over a million pictures for the theme park. He has mingled with Hollywood stars, famous athletes--and, of course, Mickey Mouse, whom he has photographed more than 100,000 times. (Bardeau has seen subtle changes in the famous mouse over time: "He has a bigger tummy to make him look more like the cartoon and his ears are a little smaller.")
Some of this information was taken from an article by JimKorkis on

Ming-Na Wen - my 146th pick as a Disney Legend

Ming-Nw Wen is my 146th choice to be named a Disney Legend. She has been known by such variants of her name as Ming-Na, Ming Na, Ming Na Wen and Ming Wen.

She is well-known for providing the speaking voice of the title character in Disney's 1998 animated feature film, Mulan and has since reprised the role in most of the character's subsequent appearances, including Kingdom Hearts II, Sofia the First, the Disney Infinity series, and among others.

Many of the other voices actress who played Disney princesses have been named Legends already, including Jodi Benson (Ariel), Paige O'Hara (Belle), Lea Salonga (singing voice of Jasmine and Mulan), Linda Larkin (Jasmine), Anika Noni Rose (Tiana), Kathryn Beaumont (Wendy Darling), Adriana Caselotti (Snow White), Illene Woods (Cinderella) and Mary Costa (Aurora). Plus Carrie Fisher was just elected for her portrayal as Princess Leia. Just this omission is enough to drive an OCD person insane.

She also currently portrays Agent Melinda May on the ABC/Marvel TV series Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D., June Woo in The Joy Luck Club, and voiced Dr. Hirano in the Disney Channel animated series, Phineas and Ferb. She voices Savannah in Milo Murphy's Law and Vega in Sofia the First. She has been a celebrity narrator at the Candlelight Processional at EPCOT Center.

Friday, May 12, 2017

John Sibley - my 145th pick as a Disney Legend

Animator John Animator is my 145th pick to be named a Disney Legend. The following is a quote from the 50 Most Influential Disney Animators Blog:

"Sibley is known best for being the Goof master at Disney for many years. He animated Goofy on over 40 shorts and really did some of the greatest stuff on the character ever done. He also did lots of entertaining, brilliant animation in other shorts and in features. However John unfortunately was viewed down upon as a B-animator and hasn’t gotten the recognition that he deserves. This is a shame because he’s a very unique talent and one we’ll never see anybody like again."

He worked on several films and shorts, including:

The Reluctant Dragon (1941)

Three Caballeros (1944)

The Legend of Sleepy Hollow (1949)

Goofy Gymnastics (short) (1949)

Motor Mania (1950)

Lady and the Tramp (1955)

Sleeping Beauty (1959)

One Hundred and One Dalmations (1961)

The Sword and the Stone (1963)

Winnie the Pooh and the Honey Tree (1966)

Harrison Ford - my 144th pick as a Disney Legend

Harrison Ford is my 144th pick to be named a Disney Legend. He is best known for his roles as Han Solo in the original Star Wars trilogy, and as Indiana Jones in the Indiana Jones film series, both collaborating with George Lucas. He reprises his role as Han Solo in Star Wars: The Force Awakens. He set to star in the upcoming Indiana Jones 5. The official release date has been set for July 19, 2019, following a statement from Disney chairman Alan Horn. It read: “Indiana Jones is one of the greatest heroes in cinematic history, and we can’t wait to bring him back to the screen in 2019. 

He also played Quinn Harris in the 1998 Touchstone Pictures film Six Days Seven Nights. He appeared in the TV special Disneyland's 60th Anniversary to give a preview of the Star Wars lands coming to Disneyland and Walt Disney World Resorts.

I was quite surprised that Disney announced this year that Carrie Fisher and Mark Hamill would be named Disney Legends but did not name Harrison Ford or James Earl Jones. Ford and Jones actually have more impressive Disney resumes and are bigger cultural icons than Fisher or Hamill. It is possible that Ford (and/or Jones) could be a last minute surprise announcement like Johnny Depp was in 2015. I also wonder if Ford was not named due to his broken leg episode from Force Awakens and the subsequent lawsuit.

Thursday, May 11, 2017

Webb Smith - my 143rd pick as a Disney Legend

Artist Webb Smith is my my 143rd pick as a Disney Legend. He is credited with helping to develop the storyboard system. According to the Disney Institute blog, "Storyboards originated at Disney Studios in the 1930’s and were, according to Walt Disney, invented by Animator, Webb Smith. As the story goes, Smith would draw sequential scenes for a new cartoon and pin them to the walls of his office instead of describing the plot with words.

Walt, none too happy about the now blemished walls of his recently redecorated office, recognized the value in Smith’s design and ordered corkboards on which the sketches could be placed. Storyboarding soon became the standard for mapping out new cartoons and quickly translated into other areas of Walt’s business."

He was involved in the following Disney films:

  • The Three Caballeros
  • The Stork's Holiday 
  • Victory Vehicles  
  • How to Swim 
  • Saludos Amigos
  • Dumbo 
  • Fantasia 
  • Pinocchio
  • Mother Goose Goes Hollywood 
  • Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs 
  • Don Donald 
  • Three Blind Mouseketeers 
  • On Ice 
  • Three Little Pigs 
  • Birds in the Spring 
  • Mickey Cuts Up 

Tuesday, April 25, 2017

Jim Crouch - my 142 pick as a Disney Legend

Jim Crouch, Principal Color & Paint Specialist at Walt Disney Imagineering, is my 142nd choice to be named a Disney Legend. A gifted artist, Jim's work is evident throughout the parks, including the paintings of infamous Pirates along the attractions interior queue walls. Crouch is also responsible for the portraits of Captains Jack Sparrow and Barbossa that appear in the attraction queueJim's likeness makes a cameo appearance as one of the doomed bridegrooms in the Haunted Mansion's Attic Scene.
His significant contributions can be seen in all of the Disney Parks in regards to paint and sculptures. His production paintings in the park include the Ghost Host in the Walt Disney World Haunted Mansion and paintings of infamous pirates along the Disneyland attractions queue walls, among others. He recently led a team of artists who did a complete makeover of Peter Pan's Flight at some of the theme parks.

Saturday, April 22, 2017

Phil Dike - my 141st pick as a Disney Legend

Phil Dike was an artist, teacher, and story scenario developer who worked for the Disney studios from 1935 to 1945. He is my 141st pick to be named a Disney Legend. At the Walt Disney Studios he taught art and color theory while working on animated films. Among the many classic films he worked on were Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs, Fantasia and The Three Caballeros. In 1938, Dike served as president of the California Water Color Society.

After World War II, Dike left Disney and went back into teaching and painting full time.

Monday, April 17, 2017

Alan Silvestri - my 140th choice to be named a Disney Legend

Composer and conductor Alan Zilvestri is my 140th pick to be named a Disney Legend.

For Disney, Silvestri has scored the music for Flight of the Navigator, Who Framed Roger Rabbit, The Parent Trap, Lilo & Stitch, Stitch! the Movie, A Christmas Carol, The Wild, The Avengers, Captain America: the First Avenger and the upcoming Avengers: Infinity War. He has also composed the scores of several Miramax, Touchstone and Hollywood Pictures films such as Super Mario Brothers, Judge Dredd, Father of the Bride, Father of the Bride II, Outrageous Fortune, Holy Man, and Reindeer Games.

Saturday, April 15, 2017

Ellen Woodbury - my 139th choice to be named a Disney Legend

Animator Ellen Woodbury is my 139th choice to be named as a Disney Legend. She was an animator on many of the Disney Decade classics that Generation X and Millennials grew up. She attended the Experimental Animation program at the California Institute of the Arts under the mentorship of Jules Engle.

Her Disney Filmography

1986    The Great Mouse Detective                 Assistant Animator
1988    Oliver & Company                       Animation Assistant
1989    The Little Mermaid                        Character Animator
1990    The Rescuers Down Under             Character Animator
1991    Beauty and the Beast                 Animator: Maurice
1992    Aladdin                            Animator: Abu
1994    The Lion King             Supervising Animator: Zazu
1995    Pocahontas               Additional Animator
1996    The Hunchback of Notre Dame         Additional Animator
1997    Hercules                             Supervising Animator: Pegasus
1999    Tarzan                  Additional Animator
1999    Fantasia 2000                  Animator: Rhapsody in Blue segment
2002    Treasure Planet                        Supervising Animator: Silver's Crew
2004    Home on the Range                 Animator: Mrs. Caloway
2005    Chicken Little                   Animator
2007    Meet the Robinsons                    Animator

Thursday, April 13, 2017

Slim Pickens - my 138th pick as a Disney Legend

Actor Slim Pickens is my 138th pick to be named a Disney Legend.

He acted in several Disney movies: The Great Locomotive Chase as Pete Bracken, Tonka as Ace, Never a Dull Moment as Cowboy Schaffer, The Apple Dumpling Gang as Frank Stillwell, and famously The Black Hole as the voice of Old B.O.B.. He also played Ewald Plunkett in the Swamp Fox, Old Bill Williams in The Saga of Andy Burnett, Newt Pribble in  Bristle Face, and other roles, appearing in at least 19 episodes of Walt Disney's Wonderful World of Color. He was Rafe Jeffers in Wagon Train and Wiley Crup in Savage Sam. He played Bucky Steele in the television film Runaway on Rogue River.

Robert "Bud" Washo - my 137th pick as a Disney Legend

Robert "Bud" Washo was a senior designer for WED Enterprises or Imagineering. He is my 136th pick to be named a Disney Legend. He headed the Disneyland Staff Shop, where he supervised concrete and plastic modeling.
He was hired in 1954 as the superintendent of the Staff and Plaster shop for Disney Land Park. He and his crew were responsible for the molding, casting, and finishing of a vast array of unique Disney Park elements including Autopia cars, Jungle Cruise elephants, Primeval World dinosaurs, fiberglass stone archways, plaster rock battlements, and golden castle turrets. To create the mountain for the Matterhorn Bobsleds, Bud and his team laid four acres of plaster. In Orlando, he used an old fertilizer storage shed as the initial workshop for molding and creating the components for Cinderella castle in Walt Disney World Resort.
Bud Washo would go on to manage the Architectural Ornamentation Department at Walt Disney World. Washo and his departments were responsible for modeling pieces used for Animatronics, building facades and sculpting details for specific attractions. His son Bill Washo worked with him.
In addition to the theme parks he helped make exhibits for Disney's projects in the 1964 World's Fair. He was a member of the Disney Golden Years Club.

Washo has a window in his honor on Main Street (which he shares with son Bill) in the Magic Kingdom and at Disneyland (as seen above).

Tuesday, April 11, 2017

Cornett Wood - my 136th pick as a Disney Legend

Animator Cornett Wood is my 136th pick to be named a Disney Legend. He served as an animator on Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs, Pinocchio, Dumbo and Fantasia for Walt Disney. He worked on several shorts such as The Old Mill, Donald's Nephews, Polar Trappers, The Whalers, The Brave Little Tailor, Donald's Lucky Day, Society Dog Show, Tugboat Mickey, The Little Whirlwind, and Gentleman's Gentleman.    

After his time with Disney he transferred to animating for Warner Brothers and worked on many Looney Tunes cartoons.  He evidently left Disney after the animator's strike.

Saturday, April 8, 2017

Pete Crimmings - my 135th pick as a Disney Legend

Pete Crimmings, an executive for the Disney Theme Parks is my 135th choice to be named a Disney Legend. He worked for the company for many years in several different capacities. He has a window at the Magic Kingdom near the Crystal Arts store, along with Bob Allen, Dick Evans, Bill Hoelscher, Bob Mathieson and Bill Sullivan. Allen, Sullivan and Mathieson are already Disney Legends. Crimmings was, along with these gentleman, an initial member of the Park Operating Committee. He was in charge of the transportation department for some time at Walt Disney World.
At Disneyland he was in charge of Tomorrowland for some period of time as well. He was mentor to Disney Legend Tom Nabbe as well.
He is a difficult guy to get any research done. I would love to know more about him, but I figure he was part of the opening day management team at WDW and he is on the Main Street window with a bunch of current Legends. He is mentioned often is memories of Legends like Bill Sullivan and Marty Skylar, so he must be rather deserving of this honor.

Eleven Disney Legends announced - only three of them were on my list

The Disney Company recently announced their 2017 Disney Legends. They are:
  • Mark Hamill || Luke Skywalker in Star Wars 
  • Carrie Fisher* || Princess Leia in Star Wars 
  • Stan Lee || Marvel Publisher 
  • Wayne Jackson || Walt Disney Imagineer (Audio-Animatronics and construction) 
  • Clyde “Gerry ” Geronimi* || Animator, 1931-1959; Supervising Director of Sleeping Beauty 
  • Manuel Gonzales* || Animator and Comics Artist, 1936-1981 
  • Garry Marshall* || Film Director (Pretty Woman, The Princess Diaries) 
  • Julie Taymor || The Lion King Broadway Director 
  • Oprah Winfrey || Because why not?
*deceased at the time of the announcement

UPDATE - Later additions were made to this list and they include actress Whoopi Goldberg and Marvel creator and writer Jack Kirby. Goldberg was on this list at the time of the announcement. Kirby was not, but he was on my radar. He is a great pick to go in with Stan Lee.

The names marked in red are the only names I have included on my list thus far. I had anticipated in including Manuel Gonzales and Wayne Jackson in the top 250. I do have a list of nearly 10,000 names I put together as I put together this blog. All of these names were on the the "Big List." I am going to leave Stan Lee and Gerry Geronimi and just edit them to include the fact they have been "chosen." It will be interesting to see once I get my 250 done, how many get chosen over the years. I will not be including Gonzales or Jackson in the blog now however.

Tuesday, April 4, 2017

Terrell Stapp - my 134th choice as a Disney Legend

Terrell Stapp was an animator for Disney on several classic animated films. Stapp is my 134th choice to be named a Disney Legend. He worked as the art director on four classic films, Dumbo, Fantasia (segment "Night on Bald Mountain/Ave Maria"), Pinocchio  and Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs. He was a layout artist for the shorts Mother Goose Goes Hollywood, The Old Mill, Woodland Café and The Band Concert.

He also was a layout artist for the episode The Plausible Impossible on Walt Disney's Wonderful World of Color. His daughter, Nancy Stapp also worked in the art department at Disney for awhile.

Saturday, April 1, 2017

Andrew Stanton - my 133rd pick as a Disney Legend

Andrew Stanton is my 133rd choice to be named a Disney Legend. Stanton joined Pixar in January 1990 and was the second animator (John Lasseter being the first) and ninth overall employee hired at the studio. He has been an animator, writer, director, producer and vocie actor for the studio. In addition to his direction and writing work for Pixar, he voiced Crush, the laidback turtle in Finding Nemo.

His film work includes writing and directing Finding Nemo and WALL-E; both films earned him the Academy Award for Best Animated Feature. He directed his first Live-Action Disney film, John Carter, in 2012.

According to the Pixar Talk website "Finding Nemo‘s roots back to a 1992 visit to Six Flags Marine World and started Andrew thinking about the amazing possibilities of capturing an undersea world in computer animation. The film was inspired by a fleeting moment of realization in which Stanton observed that his overprotective fatherly instincts were preventing him from properly bonding with his son. It tells the tale of a young clown fish who is whisked from the ocean to a dentist-office aquarium and his father’s quest to bring his son back home safely. As with Stanton’s other writing efforts, Finding Nemo focused on character development and provided an emotional resonance and heart rarely seem in animation."

1995    Toy Story               Story/Screenplay/Additional Voices
1998    A Bug's Life          Co-Director/Story/Screenplay/Voice Actor (Fly Near a "Bug Zapper")
1999    Toy Story 2                 Story/Screenplay/Voice Actor
2000    Buzz Lightyear of Star Command: The Adventure Begins   Voice Actor
2001    Monsters, Inc.           Executive Producer/Screenplay
2003    Finding Nemo            Director/Story/Screenplay/Voice Actor
2004    The Incredibles           Additional Voices
2006    Cars     Voice Actor
2007    Ratatouille        Executive Producer
2008    WALL-E                  Director/Writer/Additional Voices
2009    Partly Cloudy           Executive Producer
2009    Up                      Executive Producer
2010    Toy Story 3     Story/Screenplay
2012    Brave                     Story
2012    John Carter     Director/Story/Writer
2015    Inside Out       Executive Producer
2016    Finding Dory   Director/Story/Screenplay/Voice Actor
2018    Toy Story 4     Story/Screenplay

Alan Young- my 132nd pick as a Disney Legend

Alan Young is my 132 choice to be named a Disney Legend. One of his best known TV roles being that of Wilbur Post on Mister Ed. For Disney, he provided the voice of Scrooge McDuck from 1974 to 2016. He voiced this famous duck in many Disney movies and television shows including: Ducktales, Mickey's Christmas Carol, Disney Sing-Along-Songs: The Twelve Days of Christmas , Mickey Mouse Works , Mickey's Once Upon a Christmas, The House of Mouse, Mickey's Twice Upon a Christmas, Mickey's Around the World in 80 Days and several video games and albums. He also voiced Hiram Flaversham in The Great Mouse Detective, and Doctor Cooper in the TaleSpin episode "The Old Man and the Sea Duck". He also played Dr. Winger in The Cat from Outer Space.

He also voiced Mickey Mouse and Merlin in the Disneyland record album An Adaptation of Dickens' Christmas Carol, performed by The Walt Disney Players, which would be the first and only time that Young voiced them. The album also marked Young's first performance as Scrooge McDuck.

Friday, March 31, 2017

Al Weiss - my 131st choice as a Disney Legend

Al Weiss is my 131st choice to be named a Disney Legend. He was president of worldwide operations for Walt Disney Parks and Resorts, the division of The Walt Disney Company that operates eleven theme parks and multiple resort hotels at seven sites around the world including Paris, France; Shanghai, People's Republic of China; Penny's Bay, Hong Kong; Tokyo, Japan; Hawaii, United States; Anaheim, CA, United States & Orlando, FL, United States.
Before being appointed to his most recent role in November 2005, Weiss served as president of the Walt Disney World Resort in Lake Buena Vista, Florida since 1994. He was named executive vice president of the Florida resort in 1996. Meg Crofton succeeded Weiss as president of Walt Disney World Resort in 2006.
Weiss began his Disney career as an 18-year-old Walt Disney World cast member in 1972. His first job was a "z-runner", a financial analyst who zeroed out cash registers at the end of shifts. He evidently was a ping pong champion in a cast member's tournament on year as well! In total he worked for the Disney company for 39 years when he retired in 2011.

Mike Gabriel - my 130th pick as a Disney Legend

Mike Gabriel is an animator and my 130th pick to be named a Disney Legend.

Gabriel is an American animator and film director, best known for his work at Walt Disney Animation Studios and as co-director of the Disney films The Rescuers Down Under (1990) and Pocahontas (1995). He was born in Long Beach, CA although he grew up in various small towns like Salina, Kansas while moving around due to his father's Air Force job.
Gabriel was very inspired with animation after watching Sleeping Beauty (1959) at the age of five. Soon after, he started drawing and practicing it for six hours every day to meet his goal as an Animation Director. It was in 1979 when he got his first chance to make his debut. Gabriel studied in the Character Animation program at the California Institute of the Arts. He originally began his career helping animate on The Fox and the Hound (1981) and later went on to animate on the 1982 animated short Fun with Mr. Future. He was mentored under Eric Larson's training program, and went on to work on the The Black Cauldron (1985). He also served as an animator on The Great Mouse Detective (1986) and Oliver and Company (1988). Hendel Butoy joined Gabriel to direct The Rescuers Down Under, a sequel to the successful 1977 Disney film The Rescuers, while Eric Goldberg and Gabriel collaborated on Pocahontas. Goldberg and Gabriel later reunited with each other in Wreck-It Ralph to work on animating Sour Bill.

In 2004, Gabriel directed an animated short for Disney entitled Lorenzo, a hybrid of traditional and computer animation about a lazy cat who has a spell cast on his tail that forces it to tango with him. Lorenzo was nominated for the 2005 Academy Award for Best Animated Short. It was also included in the Animation Show of Shows in 2004. His Disney filmography includes: 
The Fox and the Hound
The Black Cauldron
The Great Mouse Detective             
Oliver & Company                 
The Rescuers Down Under   
Home on the Range                          
The Princess and the Frog                
Winnie the Pooh                               
Wreck-It Ralph