Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Rest In Peace Roy E. Disney

Roy E. Disney passed away this morning.  For some odd reason all Disney passings happen within 5 days of eachother:

Walt Disney- December 15
Lillian Disney- December 16
Roy E. Disney- December 16
Edna Disney(Roy O's Wife)- December 18
Roy O. Disney- December 20.

Here is a letter from Bob Iger about Roy's Passing:

 It is with great sadness that I inform you of the passing of our friend and colleague Roy E. Disney. After a courageous year-long fight with stomach cancer, he passed away peacefully this morning at Hoag Hospital in Newport Beach, surrounded by his loving family.

Roy played an important role in our lives here at Disney, and in the success of our Company over many years. Along the way, he touched many of us in a personal way. During his 56-year association with the Company, his true passion and focus was preserving and building upon the amazing legacy of Disney animation that was started by his father and uncle. His commitment to the art of animation was unparalleled and will always remain his personal legacy and one of the greatest contributions to Disney's past, present and future.

Roy not only helped to keep the legacy alive, but he also embraced new technologies, and gave the filmmakers the tools they needed to tell their stories in new and exciting ways. He encouraged talent, and loved working with the creative community. And they loved working with him.

Roy was a Disney Legend in every sense of the word, and his contributions to this great company have been profound and will always be remembered. For the next week we will be flying the Disney flag at half mast here at the Studio and at our parks, and I know you join me in sending thoughts and prayers to Roy's wife, Leslie, his four children, and his 16 grandchildren. For those who wish to pay their respects, the family has requested that donations be made in Roy's name to the California International Sailing Association (CISA) to benefit youth sailing.

Rest in Peace Roy

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

December 15, 1966

As you may or may not know today marks the anniversary of Walt Disney's passing.  A lifetime of smoking gave Walt a large tumor in his left lung.  Removing the lung was his only option but he sadly died a few days later.

Walt was cremated and his ashes placed at Forrest Lawn Glendale.  You can find his grave in a small garden outside The Freedom Mausoleum.  I was able to visit it a few months ago during a trip to California.

Here is the entrance to Walt's Garden.

And a shot from the inside.

Buried with Walt are his wife Lillian, and their son in law.

If you are interested in paying your respects to Walt you can visit Forrest Lawn Glendale.  The employees are not permitted to tell you where someone is buried though.  If your looking for Walt follow the signs to The Freedom Mausoleum.  His garden is on the left hand side of the entrance.  The first page of my Flickr has an aerial shot with his garden circled.

Thursday, December 10, 2009

Go Ask Dave....

Over the summer I was watching the 1936 Hitchcock Film "Sabotage."  During the opening credits I was shocked to see a full screen thank you to Walt Disney.  Seeing as how I love Walt and Hitch I was curious to see what had brought the two of them together.  I won't give you the entire plot line but it surrounds a theater owner who is also a saboteur.  Towards the end of the film we see people in the theater watching and an animated short, which happens to be Walt Disney's Silly Symphony "Who Killed Cock Robin."

(screen shot stolen from page/15/)

It really got me thinking "Were Hitchcock and Walt Disney friends/ fans of each others work?"  Well I knew there was only one person to ask and that was Dave Smith.  Dave Smith is head of the Walt Disney archives and probably knows more about Disney History than anyone.  I submitted my question to him via the "Ask Dave" section of the D23 website.  I had pretty much given up my hopes of him answering my question until last Friday.  I enjoy "Ask Dave" so I check it regularly, and wouldn't you know this week he answered my question!

So there it is, sadly we don't know is Hitch and Walt were friends or fans of each other.  We do know that this is not the last time their paths will cross, but i'll save that for another entry.....

Friday, December 4, 2009

Walt in Kansas City

Well since tomorrow is Walt Disney's birthday I better make this post about him.  If you have read my previous post you know that I spent a rainy afternoon in Marceline Missouri.  What you do not know is that I spent that morning in Kansas City visiting Walt Disney landmarks as well.

Here is the house the Disney's lived in on Bellefontaine Ave.

As many of you might know, Walt made his first cartoons in a garage behind this house.  I did some research before my trip and saw that there was an alley behind Bellefontaine that would lead me to the garage!  The only problem was this wasn't the nicest neighborhood and some people were already standing on their porches staring at me taking pictures of a house.  I decided that I probably wasn't going to be in Kansas City again any time soon so I let them stare and I turned the corner and headed down the alley.

A car stopped and the woman inside asked me if i had been taking pictures of the house.  "That's my grandmas house." she said.  My mom who was with me (we were driving to a wedding in Omaha when I made her detour to all my Disney destinations) told the woman that I was a big fan of Walt Disney and had wanted to see the house.  The woman was very nice and a fellow Houstonian, so after a little chit chat she drove away and we were heading down the street towards the alley.

To get to the alley we had to walk past an auto repair shop where some shady looking guys were standing around.  My mom suggested we get the car and just drive down the alley, but as we turned around we heard someone yell "Ya'll lookin' for Walt Disney?"  We turned around and yelled back to him that we were.  He yelled back "Well come on, it's right back in this alley, you wanna see the garage?"

At this point I felt a lot like Karen in Goodfellas when Robert Di Nero's character is telling her he has some fur's for her down an alley and she runs off terrified.  I'm no Karen so I walked towards the alley and the repair shop.  Turns out the guys were very friendly and walked down the alley with me to see the shed as well.  He had just learned that Walt Disney had lived in the house.  I asked him if a lot of people came to look at the shed, he said no....

So here it is, Walt Disney first studio still standing in all it's glory.  Built by Elias Disney himself!


Check out my flickr for more pictures of the house and garage.

More post about Walt Disney landmarks to come.  We still have some left from Kansas City , Marceline, and a few from LA.

Happy Birthday Walt!