Why DC should put Batman and Superman in the public domain

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Alex Schmidt of Cracked makes a passionate (and hilarious) argument for DC putting Superman and Batman into the public domain, pointing out that comics companiesmake a hell of a lot of money on public domain characters from Sherlock Holmes and Thor. Read the rest

Cool Haunted Mansion Umbrella Will Make You Smile On a Rainy Day

Haunted Mansion Umbrella Exterior

You walk into Disney’s Haunted Mansion, and whether you’re in Orlando, Anaheim, or Tokyo, after the foyer you enter a place known as The Stretching Room. The Ghost Host intones, “Our tour begins here in this gallery where you see paintings of some of our guests as they appeared in their corruptible, mortal state. Your cadaverous pallor betrays an aura of foreboding, almost as though you sense a disquieting metamorphosis. Is this haunted room actually stretching? Or is it your imagination, hmmm? And consider this dismaying observation: This chamber has no windows and no doors, which offers you this chilling challenge: to find a way out!”

And the room stretches, growing many many feet taller, the four paintings on the wall (by Imagineer Marc Davis) also stretch, revealing that the seemingly innocent pictures are actually much more devious and reveal peril at every turn for those portrayed in them.

If you’re a Haunted Mansion fan then you know all this backward and forward. But how would you like to carry The Stretching Room around on a rainy day to cheer you up with a fancy new Stretching Room Umbrella? The price is $34.99 with a money back guarantee. The seller gives the details:

Stretching Room Umbrella. Imagine you are in the Haunted Mansion every time you open your umbrella

Made from 100% polyester pongee waterproof fabric.

Image imprinted using heat sublimation technique to prevent discoloring.

Opens up to 41" span.

Can be reduced to a collapsed height of 9"

8 ribs made from strong fiber for extra support.

Read the rest

Teen comes out to her family on Disneyland's Splash Mountain

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Gina is 16 and gay, something she was sure her folks would be cool with, so she told them in the best way possible: by holding up a sign at a strategic moment on the family's plunge down Disneyland's Splash Mountain. She's hoping others will do the same. Read the rest

Lego's doing a 4,080-piece, $350 Cinderella's castle

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No release date as yet! (Thanks, Sal!) Read the rest

Grandad builds miniature backyard Disneyland

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Steve Dobbs grew up near the present-day site of Disneyland and was profoundly influenced by watching the park get built while he zipped by on his bike; today the reitred aerospace engineer has built a charming miniature Disney-inspired theme-park in his backyard in Fullerton, CA. Read the rest

New Frozen Ride at Epcot Surprises Everyone

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Whether you like it, hate it, or just couldn’t give a flying fig (personally, I haven’t seen it), the Disney movie Frozen has been a huge success for the Walt Disney Company.

Sometimes the popularity of a film can have an unexpected benefit. With all the hand-wringing among Disney fans about how The Walt Disney Company has been throwing all of its resources into Shanghai Disneyland at the expense of the Disney theme parks in the United States, everyone got a big surprise yesterday when the new ride “Frozen Ever After” opened at the Norway Pavilion in World Showcase at Epcot simply because they spent a lot of money on it and did a swell job.

Disney has used its state-of-the-art internal digital projection systems for the faces of the "human" characters and the Audio-Animatronic figures of Olaf are top of the line and move with great fluidity.

"Frozen Ever After" replaces “Maelstrom,” which I think was well liked simply because it was one of only two rides in World Showcase, the other being “Rio Del Tiempo” in the Mexican pavilion (which was clichéd and boring, but is now much more enjoyable since a rehab several years ago which added the Three Caballeros—Donald, Jose Carioca, and Panchito).

Originally, almost every country’s pavilion was supposed to have a film, show, or ride, though many were the victim of budget cutting. “Frozen Ever After” is destined to be extremely popular judging by its almost three-hour wait time yesterday.

Don’t forget to get a Fast Pass Plus BEFORE you go! Read the rest

The Art of Finding Dory – Beneath the surface of Disney's amazing aquatic adventure

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See sample pages from this book at Wink.

The Art of Finding Dory by Disney and Pixar Studios (preface by John Lasseter) Chronicle Books 2016, 176 pages, 9.5 x 11.5 x 1 inches $36 Buy a copy on Amazon

The Art of Finding Dory is more than a companion book to the new Disney Pixar movie – it’s an in-depth look at all aspects of the development and production process for an animated film. Finding Dory the movie explores the life of the forgetful little blue fish known as Dory, while the book not only delves into Dory’s background, but also lets the reader experience the imagination (and magic) of Pixar and Disney. The team behind the movie spent countless hours at beaches, aquariums, marine rehabilitation centers, and along the California coastline to create the most realistic world possible under the sea. They researched how light filters through the ocean, how sea life travels in deep water, and how to make authentic-looking coral reefs out of clay. The Art of Finding Dory chronicles their creative process through photos, hand drawings, computer generated images, story boards, and detailed color palettes. It took four years to bring Finding Dory to the big screen. Once you read The Art of Finding Dory you will understand what a true labor of love the journey was. – Carole Rosner Read the rest

The best thing you will read about the revelation that Captain America was a Nazi spy

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This week, Marvel Comics published the first issue of Captain America: Steve Rogers in which it's revealed that since his earliest days, Captain America has been a double agent for Hydra, the thinly veiled allegory for the Nazis; in an epic Twitter rant, Livejournal alumnus and Dreamwidth cofounder Denise Paolucci explains the way that perpetual copyright and business concentration has neutralized the ancient custom of collective storytelling of epic narratives, magnifying the harm from bad corporate decisions. Read the rest

A Fairy Friend: storybook illustrated by a Disney animation legend

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Claire Keene is a legendary Disney animation artist whose work has appeared in Frozen and Tangled; she provides such lively illustrations for children's author Sue Fliess's poem A Fairy Friend that readers are transported to an enchanted world where play and imagination can take you out of this world.

Disneyland's Tower of Terror is turning into a Guardians of the Galaxy ride

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The beloved Tower of Terror ride at Disneyland California Adventure features some of the most elaborate themeing and set-dressing of any of Disney's built environments, consisting of a series of staged scenes that are reminiscent of interactive theater troupe Punchdrunk's sets, followed by a spectacular thrill-ride -- it rarely has less than a 30 minute wait. Read the rest

POV video from Shanghai Disneyland's Tron lightcycle ride

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Ricky from Inside the Magic writes, "This weekend Shanghai Disneyland began soft openings and that means the world has now had the pleasure of finally seeing a TRON ride come to life - and it's brilliant. The Tron Lightcycle Power Run is a roller coaster that lets guests hop on the film series' signature vehicles and race around the track to Daft Punk's Tron: Legacy tunes, surrounded by special effects. The Grid is live and is very real." Read the rest

R2-D2 derby

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You know, for your Star Wars/Mary Poppins mashup theme wedding! $550 from Etsy seller The Blonde Swan, who makes them to order, and will also do you a BB-8 bowler (same price) if that's your thing. (via Geeks Are Sexy) Read the rest

An early peek at 'The Jungle Book,' new Disney live-action remake of Kipling classic

Detail of a poster for 'The Jungle Book' by artist Vincent Aseo for Disney

Disney today released two new clips and a new little featurette from the studio's upcoming live action film “The Jungle Book.” I'm also loving the stunning poster art for the new film by Vincent Aseo, shown above in detail and below in full.

Read the rest

Inspired Haunted Mansion stretch gallery/Star Wars mashup

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Karen Hallion, a frustrated Disney animator, has updated her brilliant Princess Leia/Haunted Mansion mashup from 2014 with an inspired, complete set of Star Wars inspired Haunted Mansion stretch-gallery portraits. Read the rest

Awesome new Disney LEGO minifigs will be available starting in May

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If you love and collect minifigs, May will be a big month for you! This via LEGO's twitter feed.

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Disney and Marvel threaten boycott over discriminatory Georgia law

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Georgia has become very friendly to entertainment companies looking to create media there, however the state is far less friendly to folks not identifying as heteronormative. If Georgia's Governor Nathan Deal signs a new "religious liberty" bill into law, Disney and Marvel will boycott the state.

The bill allows faith-based businesses, and religion practitioners, to reject customers who violate their "sincerely held religious beliefs."

Via Variety:

The Walt Disney Co. and Marvel Studios indicated opposition to a Georgia religious liberty bill pending before Gov. Nathan Deal, saying that they will take their business elsewhere “should any legislation allowing discriminatory practices be signed into state law.”

With generous tax incentives, Georgia has become a production hub, with Marvel currently shooting “Guardians of the Galaxy 2” at Pinewood Studios outside Atlanta. “Captain America: Civil War” shot there last summer.

“Disney and Marvel are inclusive companies, and although we have had great experiences filming in Georgia, we will plan to take our business elsewhere should any legislation allowing discriminatory practices be signed into state law,” a Disney spokesman said on Wednesday.

Read the rest

Haunted Mansion loot crates!

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Disney has announced a series of three monthly subscription loot crates from the Haunted Mansion, released by the "Ghost Relations Department." Read the rest

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