The groundbreaking for Hong Kong Disneyland, the first Disney theme park in China was held on January 13, 2003. Hong Kong Disneyland is being built in partnership with The Walt Disney Company and the Hong Kong government, is scheduled to open in 2005/06. Against a backdrop of Lantau Island's mountains, the waters of Penny's Bay and a facade of the soon-to-be-built Sleeping Beauty Castle, the honorable Tung Chee Hwa, chief executive, Hong Kong Special Administrative Region of the People's Republic of China, Michael D. Eisner, chairman and CEO of The Walt Disney Company, and Robert A.
Dedicated to preserving the art and legacy of Charles M. Schulz, the popular PEANUTS cartoon artist, the Charles M. Schulz Museum and Research Center has been opened in Santa Rosa, California. The Museum is near Schulz's studio and across the street from the Redwood Empire Ice Arena (now called Snoopy's Home Ice); the two places where Schulz spent most of the last 30 years of his life.
Gullane Entertainment has signed a multi-year deal with ITEC Entertainment Corporation for exclusive North American theme parks and attractions representation of the THOMAS & FRIENDS brand. "We are very excited to be working with ITEC to bring THOMAS & FRIENDS into the world of theme parks," said Jennie Saul, Gullane Entertainment's VP, group head of live events.
King Features, the rights holder to many classic characters like Popeye, has hired DMA Animation to bring Betty Boop to a new line of video slot machines. The machines are being scripted by Top Gun Gaming and manufactured under a licensing agreement with Las Vegas-based Bally Gaming and Systems. The new BETTY BOOP game starts off with images of Betty in her dressing room, asking players to help her pick her next movie role. She points to three posters on the wall that illustrate her choices - Circus Extravaganza, Daredevil Betty or Game Show Sweetheart.
Big Ideas Productions has entered a two-year worldwide agreement with Clear Channel Entertainment to produce a new stage version of its upcoming CGI feature JONAH -- A VEGGIETALES MOVIE. Both the theatrical film and stage show are set to debut in 2002. The touring show will launch in February at Minneapolis' State Theater. Other cities targeted for the initial 40-week run in the U.S. include: Dallas; Philadelphia; Indianapolis; Cincinnati; Denver; Detroit; Chicago; Los Angeles; Atlanta; Seattle; and Orlando.
BBC Worldwide Ltd. and Hyper Entertainment Inc. have entered into a major new partnership to develop a WALKING WITH DINOSAURS theme park attraction. Currently in development, the proposed attraction (scalable from 27,000 square feet) will be licensed to theme park operators around the globe, ready for proposed openings in autumn 2002. BBC Worldwide and Hyper Entertainment are also actively seeking sponsorship partners around the world.
Iwerks Entertainment has opened a new Iwerks 3D/4D FX Theatre at Xidan Cultural Plaza in Beijing, China. The new multimedia attraction showcases PIRATES, a 3D attraction film from the Iwerks film library, enhanced with in-theater special effects. This is the second Iwerks 3D/4D FX Theatre installed in China. The first opened in Shenzen in 2000. Don Iwerks, co-founder and chairman of Iwerks Entertainment, said, "Only one year later, we've installed the second in Beijing and another is slated to open in Shanghai later this year.
Universal Studios Hollywood has launched a live, interactive musical and comedy adventure, based on the new DreamWorks computer-animated feature SHREK. Shrek Live is scheduled for weekend performances through June 16, 2001, followed by daily performances through Labor Day weekend. Set on a renaissance faire-themed stage, the 20-minute live performance, which includes elaborately costumed SHREK characters, invites guests to participate as one of many popular fairy tale characters, including the THREE LITTLE PIGS and SNOW WHITE AND THE SEVEN DWARVES.
This year, the Annecy International Animated Film Festival (June 4-9, 2001) will pay tribute to Great Britain, with a profile of Aardman Animations, along with screenings of classic British shorts, THE YELLOW SUBMARINE, the Bolex Brothers' THE SECRET ADVENTURES OF TOM THUMB, and more. For its 2001 edition Annecy received 1,070 films (1,092 in 2000). 242 of them, representing 26 countries, have been selected for official competition with 193 in competition and 49 in panorama. Confirmed jury members are: AWN's Ron Diamond (producer and publisher, USA), John R.
On Wednesday, March 28, Nickelodeon and Universal Studios Recreation Groupannounced the signing of a strategic alliance for the development of newNickelodeon-branded attractions at various Universal theme parks. Under thenew agreement, the two companies will develop two major attractions, createco-branded promotions, sell merchandise and increase marketing andadvertising on the Nickelodeon cable channel. As part of the agreement,Universal will get rights to use Nickelodeon characters such as THE RUGRATS,
Walt Disney will be releasing a sing along version of Walt Disney's Academy Award-winning classic MARY POPPINS. At Disneys El Capitan in Hollywood, a restored 35mm Dolby Stereo print of the classic 1964 film will feature on-screen lyrics of all the songs so that audiences can join in. Like a family-friendly ROCKY HORROR PICTURE SHOW screening, moviegoers are encouraged to dress as their favorite character from the film. Prizes for best costume will be awarded at each show.
When everyone was making toons in New York, Walt Disney was in Kansas City. Now the KANSAS CITY STAR reports that the Walt Disney heirs have pledged funds to refurbish the original animation studio of Walt Disney. For nearly a decade, the Thank You, Walt Disney organization has been fighting to set up a Disney Museum in Kansas City, the birthplace of Mickey Mouse and other early Disney characters. The US$450,000 pledge by the Walt and Lily Disney Foundation is contingent on whether the Thank You organization can match the amount.
The Castle Museum and the organizers of the Annecy Festival have begun to gather a collection of animation artifacts. The museum is calling for filmmakers to contribute documents, drawings, artwork etc. from their productions to be preserved. The collection has many optical machines and toys from the early days of cinema. The museum started gathering objects of importance in the 1960s and wishes the continued support of filmmakers to protect and honor the rich heritage of the medium.
On June 9, 2000, Universal Studios Hollywood will roll out a new stage attraction based on Nickelodeons RUGRATS entitled "Rugrats Magic Adventure!" The new stage show is based off the popular RUGRATS episode, "Angelica the Magnificent." The 20-minute performance will feature musical numbers and magical effects.
Paramount Parks and Stan Lee Media, Inc., in association with Blur Studio, have teamed up to create "Stan Lee's 7th Portal 3D Simulation Experience." This deal marks the first time an Internet property has been turned into a location-based entertainment experience. The project is scheduled to debut at all U.S.-based Paramount Parks in spring 2001. Under the pact, Paramount will sell branded merchandise and provide links between its own Web sites and those of Stan Lee Media. The attraction will also be distributed to a worldwide network of simulation theaters by Iwerks Entertainment.
Starting January 1, 2000, Looney Toons Sylvester and Tweety hit the air,
that's the friendly skies, when Delta Air Lines began presenting Cartoon
Network's pigskin parody, BIG GAME: SYLVESTER VS. TWEETY during its
in-flight entertainment. Select domestic flights will show highlights from
BIG GAME, a Cartoon Network parody special featuring classic cartoon
episodes along with analysis by Jerry Glanville, Nick Buonoconti and Len
Dawson of HBO's INSIDE THE NFL. These football personalities break down the
If you're planning to kick back with the Rockettes this holiday season at
New York City's Radio City Music Hall look forward to a more interactive
show. To be featured in the Christmas Spectacular, Black Logic, a visual
effects, 2D/3D animation and live-action production house, has created a 3D
animated sequence to interact with the Rockettes. A happy "Man in the Moon"
character, based on Georges Melies' A TRIP TO THE MOON, smiles, winks and
A strike by union employees at Disneyland Paris may stop the park's rocking
New Year's Eve celebration. Disney played down the chance of a strike,
however local union leader Elena Stanciu warned, "The party'll be ruined,"
citing staff frustration over slow-moving pay talks and dissatisfaction
with a $115 New Year's Eve bonus as the main reasons for the latest threat
of a walk out. Stanciu said seasonal staff were being offered almost four
Liquid Light Studios of Los Angeles helped give birth to Valencia,California's theme park Six Flags Magic Mountain's new roller coaster --"The Goliath." Liquid Light created a 3D simulation of the ride, so execscould take in the thrills before tracks were even laid. Last year, theanimation studio completed a similar 3D simulation for the park's"Riddler's Revenge." Built around an "Indiana Jones," jungle theme, themain highlights of this new coaster is that it travels up to speeds of 85
Charles Schulz, the 77-year-old creator of the PEANUTS comic strip, hassecured final go-ahead to build a museum as a permanent home for CharlieBrown, Lucy, Linus and the rest of the gang. Plans for the17,000-square-foot Peanuts museum in Santa Rosa, California, a town 50miles north of San Francisco, where Schulz continues to work in a studio hebuilt twenty-five years ago, were unanimously approved at a city councilmeeting October 26, 1999. Schulz and his wife first suggested the idea of a
The Walt Disney Company and the Hong Kong SAR Government have reached anagreement for a proposed Hong Kong Disneyland, a theme park development tobe built as the anchor of a tourism center on Lantau Island. Overlookingthe water at Penny's Bay, and on a main transit route from the new HongKong International Airport, the project will make Lantau Island aworld-class tourist destination and take advantage of the location's easyaccess by rail, highway and ferry to attract guests to the Park. Currently
Euro Disney has announced plans to open THE DISNEY STUDIOS, a second themepark in 2002 near the existing Disneyland Paris theme park inMarne-La-Vallee, east of Paris. The park will include attractions based oncinema, animation and television, similar to the Disney-MGM Studios at WaltDisney World in Orlando, Florida. Visitors to the park will be able toobserve animators working, special effects demonstrations and the filmingof TV programs. "The goal is that visitors pass through the movie screen
Glendale, California-based Galaxy Digimation has created a thirty-minuteanimated newscast for Universal Studios' The Amazing Adventures ofSpider-Man ride in Orlando, Florida. The Spider-Man ride integratesroller-coaster thrills, realistic motion simulation, and stereographic 3Dcomputer-generated effects while immersing riders in a story thattransforms them into active photojournalists. Galaxy Digimation's newscastplays on monitors while riders wait in line inside the newsroom of The
Beginning July 2, star characters from Nickelodeon's popular BLUE'S CLUESand RUGRATS shows, "character breakfasts" featuring Woody Woodpecker,Spiderman, and other world-famous cartoon stars are part of the fun plannedfor kids this summer at Universal Studios Hollywood. "Blue's Clues Live"follows the format of the children's television show. Guided by cluessupplied by "Blue," kids solve puzzles, play games, and sing songs alongwith Blue. "Woody Woodpecker's Clubhouse" features a themed playground
The five members of rock band Aerosmith, Steven Tyler, vocals; Joe Perry,guitars; Brad Whitford, guitars; Tom Hamilton, bass; and Joey Kramer,drums, have teamed with Walt Disney Imagineering to create a high-speedthrill ride for Walt Disney World Resort in Orlando, Florida, called Rock'n' Roller Coaster starring Aerosmith. It debuts this summer at Disney-MGMStudios. The indoor roller coaster features a high-speed launch of 0-60 mphin 2.8 seconds, three inversions, rock-concert lighting and a specially