Olympic Gold Medal-winning gymnast Shawn Johnson poses Feb. 27, 2010 with Minnie Mouse at Disney’s Hollywood Studios in Lake Buena Vista, Fla. Johnson, a past champion on ABC-TV’s “Dancing with the Stars” series, was at Walt Disney World appearing at “ESPN The Weekend,” a sports fan festival held annually at the theme park. She also was a special celebrity guest for the grand “re-launch” of the ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex. (Matt Stroshane, photographer)
TRON is, I say with no shame to speak of, one of my all-time favorite films (it’s so me and Al Gore will always have something to discuss). So when Walt Disney Studios decided to revive its viral campaign a second time (the first being San Diego Comic-Con’s reincarnation of Flynn’s Arcade) and combine it with my hometown, I was at the ready.
It all started when Flynn Lives, a grassroots campaign of members unknown, published what was almost immediately identified as a binary clock counting down to February 24 at 11 am ET. Apparently ENCOM CEO Kevin Flynn (Jeff Bridges) had gone missing twenty years ago and hadn’t been heard of since, but the organization is certain Flynn is alive and is doing whatever it can to bring his cause to the nation’s attention.
As the countdown continued, a list of 25 cities worldwide appeared below the clock. Then at 11 AM ET on February 24, the cities were each listed alongside a numbered grid and — throughout the day — cities would become active, requesting than a volunteer operative go to a designated location revealed only when the city opened up (an arcade) and be the first to locate a contact in a FLYNN LIVES tshirt and pass along the secret phrase. In return, the operative received a nylon TRON wallet containing newspaper clippings about the campaign, three TRON trading cards (which then translated into the numbered mosaic of a new image from the film) and a Flynn’s Arcade token.
It was then revealed that a special IMAX event would be taking place earlier today with limited tickets simultaneously becoming available at 9 PM GMT for five cities: Los Angeles and New York in the United States, Toronto, London and Sydney. Based on the audience size, I suspect no more than 50-75 tickets were available (each being a +1), so I was fortunate enough to secure one.
Entering the IMAX theatre (the 8-story tall one in New York), we were handed our 3D Glasses and a free FLYNN LIVES tshirt and found our seats. Shortly after 10 am ET, the lights dimmed and the trailer unceremoniously began. And now, the review/spoilers:
Many Walt Disney World Resort guests are familiar with the miniature train garden located outside the Germany pavilion in Epcot’s World Showcase. But we’re willing to bet a much smaller number of them realize that the garden is actually specially decorated for holiday seasons and festivals going on inside the park. Today, Walt Disney World released this photo showing horticulturist Julia Clark working on the garden for this year’s International Flower and Garden Festival which kicks off March 3 and shows off one of the neatest feature of this year’s decor: miniature horticulturists working on a dollhouse-size topiary of Snow White. Photo by Kent Phillips.
Thanks to our good friends at Walt Disney Records, we are pleased to offer our biggest giveaway to date! Not just one, but BOTH soundtracks to Tim Burton’s Alice in Wonderland (ARV: $37.98) with not just one but TEN sets to give away in all and not just one but THREE ways to enter. Here’s how!
IMPORTANT: You will be able to enter once per method, but can win only once regardless of the methods chosen.
Television columnist Lisa de Moraes of The Washington Post reports that the former co-star of TLC’s Jon and Kate + Eight-turned occasional The View co-host stand-in will be announced as one of the new cast members of the upcoming season of Dancing with the Stars when ABC reveals the list throughout the season finale of The Bachelor on Monday night.
In related news, ABC has announced that on March 1, Jimmy Kimmel will interview one of the new celebrities set to compete in this season’s competition as well as the new Bachelorette.
Shortly after arriving in the Underland, Alice re-acquaints herself with the Cheshire Cat after a chance encounter with the bandersnatch, a horrible beast that has an appetite for destruction (and virtually everything else).
We already know that children aboard the new Disney Dream from Disney Cruise Line will have the opportunity to interact with their favorite characters in mobile versions of Turtle Talk with Crush and Stitch Encounter but now DCL may be hinting at yet another popular Disney character added to the mix.
An easy-to-miss detail in current casting call notices for the Disney Dream note that eligible cast members may also be asked to voice Stitch, Crush and/or Jack Sparrow. So it appears Captain Jack may be going interactive, or perhaps simply be making the ship’s announcements.
(L-R) Ken Potrock, senior vice president of Disney Sports Enterprises; George Bodenheimer, co-chairman of Disney Media Networks and president of ESPN, Inc. and ABC Sports; Al Weiss, president of worldwide operations for Disney Parks and Resorts; and Meg Crofton, president of Walt Disney World Resort, pose Feb. 25, 2010 with a football-clad Mickey Mouse during the official re-launch ceremony for the ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex in Lake Buena Vista, Fla. ESPN Wide World of Sports is a 220-acre international sports complex located at Walt Disney World Resort. (David Roark, photographer)
After the film and a quick wardrobe change (for some), no one was late to the after party at the Sanderson Hotel, even Crispin Glover who makes his first appearance in our photos for the evening. Also on hand were famed directors Terry Gilliam and Wes Anderson amongst others.
And of course the usual suspects were all in attendance: Tim Burton, Johnny Depp, Anne Hathaway, Helena Bonham Carter, Mia Wasikowska, Matt Lucas, Alan Rickman (Absolum), Michael Sheen (White Rabbit), Paul Whitehouse (March Hare), Timothy Spall (Bayard), Barbara Windsor (Dormouse) and Christopher Lee (Jabberwocky), et al.
Cast, crew and celebs of Tim Burton’s Alice in Wonderland from Walt Disney Studios braved the weather and gathered earlier tonight at the Odeon Leicester Square in London, England to enjoy the royal world premiere of the film.
Also joining the evening’s events on the red carpet were His Royal Highness Prince Charles and his wife Camilla, as the event benefited The Prince’s Foundation for Children & the Arts.
Below you’ll find dozens of of cast members Tim Burton, Johnny Depp, Anne Hathaway, Helena Bonham Carter, Mia Wasikowska, Matt Lucas, Alan Rickman (Absolum), Michael Sheen (White Rabbit), Paul Whitehouse (March Hare), Timothy Spall (Bayard), Barbara Windsor (Dormouse) and Christopher Lee (Jabberwocky), Avril Lavigne, Danny Elfman and many more. Photos from the event courtesy of Walt Disney Studios.
In case you missed the live streaming of the Alice in Wonderland premiere, you can catch it all right here.
Make sure you also check out our photos of the after party.