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The Little Mermaid Resurfaces at Hollywood's El Capitan Theatre

Disney's Oscar-winning animated feature, THE LITTLE MERMAID, makes its digital debut during a special limited engagement from Sept. 7-24 at Hollywood's legendary El Capitan Theatre.

The engagement, which celebrates the upcoming Oct. 3 release of the special edition DVD from Walt Disney Home Ent., will spotlight an all-new digital restoration of the film with enhanced picture and sound. Plus, every show throughout the entire run will offer a live appearance by Ariel.

Opening night will include an informative filmmaker's panel at 6:30 pm that will be hosted by veteran Disney animation producer Don Hahn (BEAUTY AND THE BEAST, THE LION KING, WHO FRAMED ROGER RABBIT). Also on the panel will be the film's directors John Musker & Ron Clements (currently developing THE FROG PRINCESS as the studios return to 2D), Jodi Benson (the voice of Ariel), supervising animator Glen Keane (currently developing RAPUNZEL as director in 3D) and Sherri Stoner (the live-action reference model for Ariel).

As a special added attraction on opening night, guests will get a sneak preview of Disney's newest animated short, THE LITTLE MATCH GIRL, based on the Hans Christian Andersen story, and directed by Roger Allers (THE LION KING). Every show throughout the entire run will offer a live appearance by Ariel.

In addition to the activities at the theatre, Disney's Soda Fountain and Studio Store (located adjacent to the El Capitan) will be serving up a delicious ice cream treat in celebration of this special engagement called "The Dinglehopper Sundae." Dive into this mouth-watering creation that includes one scoop of blue cotton candy ice cream, and one scoop of vanilla ice cream, covered in fish shaped sprinkles, and topped with whipped cream and a sea creature. And, of course, it is served with a dinglehopper!

"THE LITTLE MERMAID is one of the most beloved animated films of all time, and it ushered in a new golden age of musicals and fairy tales for Disney, observed Lylle Breier, svp of worldwide special events for Buena Vista Pictures Distribution. We're thrilled to be bringing it back to the El Capitan so that a new generation of moviegoers can experience it on the big screen. Longtime fans of the film will be able to see it digitally projected and with enhanced sound for the first time. The film has never looked or sounded better and we know that audiences are going to love being part of Ariel's world once again."

Meanwhile, the THE LITTLE MERMAID two-disc special edition includes new bonus features such as deleted scenes, an all-new music video, a new "Making of Disney's THE LITTLE MERMAID" and "The Little Mermaid Virtual Ride," which brings to life a fascinating Disney theme park ride, games and more.

THE LITTLE MERMAID was Disney's first new fairy tale adaptation in 30 years at the time of its initial release in 1989. With its acclaimed song score by lyricist Howard Ashman and composer Alan Menken, the film set a new high water mark for contemporary film musicals and helped to launch a new era of Disney animated classics. The film went on to win two Academy Awards for Best Song ("Under the Sea") and Best Original Score (by Alan Menken) and received a third nomination for the song "Kiss the Girl."

Daily showtimes are 10:00 am, 12:30 pm, 3:00 pm, 5:30 pm and 7:45 pm. Tickets can be purchased at the El Capitan box office, on line at, or by calling 1-800-DISNEY6. Group rate tickets are available for parties of 20 or more by calling 1-818-845-3110.

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Bill Desowitz, former editor of VFXWorld, is currently the Crafts Editor of IndieWire.