LCI Remy Could be Staying at Les Chefs de France Beyond September 5

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While Luxo Jr. has problems staying, it appears that the gastronomical Remy may have problems leaving.

Initially scheduled to perform at Les Chefs de France through September 5, the Walt Disney World Resort is set to cast additional escorts for the Living Character Initiative Remy, who entertains diners throughout lunch and dinner, in late August. The position makes no mention of the job taking them elsewhere so it would seem a tad bit odd to hire someone for just a couple of days when all is said and done.

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International Veterinary Team Helps Swaziland Save Habitat and Help Control Elephant Population

Veterinarians Perform an Elephant Vasectomy

LAKE BUENA VISTA, Fla., Aug. 5, 2009 – Led by Disney’s Animal Programs, an international coalition of veterinarians from conservation groups, zoos, universities and private industry have returned from Africa after effectively sterilizing seven bull elephants in Swaziland’s Big Game Parks.

As a result of this effort, Swaziland wildlife officials will be able to better manage the elephant population in wildlife parks and reserves over the next decade.

Elephant overpopulation in wildlife parks and reserves in Swaziland and other southern Africa countries is a growing concern that can have devastating effects on the natural habitat as well as other animal species that live there. Wildlife officials in several countries are considering culling elephants in order to control the population growth. One of the ways to address this concern is with an innovative population management tool developed by an international veterinary team to help save habitat without harming elephants.

“Surgical vasectomy helps reduce elephant birth rates, while maintaining normal hormone levels and common elephant social behaviors,” according to veterinarian Dr. Mark Stetter, director of Animal Health at Disney’s Animal Programs. ”With this procedure, we’re pleased to help wildlife officials in Africa balance the need to provide quality elephant care with an eye toward sustaining the ecosystem for other native animals.”

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Imagination Movers Announce First-Ever National Concert Theater Tour

Imagination MoversBURBANK, Calif. — With a hit Disney Channel series and a newly released Walt Disney Records CD under their belt, the wildly popular kid-pop quartet Imagination Movers will launch their first-ever U.S. concert theater tour. The “Live From The Idea Warehouse Tour” kicks off October 10 in Shreveport, Louisiana and winds up December 13 in Spokane, Washington. Details on the tour can be found at http://www.imaginationmovers.com/website/shows.php. Tickets for most dates go on-sale Saturday, August 15 at 10:00am at various outlets.

The Imagination Movers are: Rich Collins, a former journalist and father of five; Scott Durbin, a teacher and father of two; Dave Poche, an architect and father of two; and Scott “Smitty” Smith, a New Orleans firefighter who was part of the Hurricane Katrina search and rescue effort. “Imagination Movers” features the blue-suited band – Rich, Scott, Dave and Smitty – as brain-stormers working hard to solve “idea emergencies” in their Idea Warehouse. Each episode features five songs.

After signing to Walt Disney Records, Imagination Movers released their debut album “Juice Box Heroes” in March 2008. The CD ranked in the Top 10 on iTunes Children’s Music chart. Parenting Magazine awarded it a “Parenting Pick” and Common Sense Media recognized Imagination Movers among the Best TV of 2008, citing the quartet’s “addictive sense of humor and quest for fun.” Their new Walt Disney Records CD, “For Those About to Hop,” shipped last month. The album’s smart, high-energy pop was described in the New York Times as “prized by many parents for non-condescending lyrics and music that evokes the Beastie Boys or Red Hot Chili Peppers.”

“Imagination Movers” airs weekdays at 9:30 a.m., ET/PT and weekends at 10:00 a.m., ET/PT during Disney Channel’s Playhouse Disney programming block for preschoolers. The series carries a TV-Y parental guideline.

Currently-scheduled tour dates are below, with additional dates planned (details to follow):

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Disney Channel Announces D23 Expo Wizards of Waverly Place Panel: Cast Q&A, Season Premiere and More

Cast of Wizards of Waverly PlaceDisney Channel will present a fun-filled, must-see event for kids, tweens and families, “A Magical Afternoon with the cast of ‘Wizards of Waverly Place’” — Selena Gomez, David Henrie, Jake T. Austin, Jennifer Stone, Maria Canals-Barrera and David DeLuise, and executive producer Peter Murietta — at the largest Disney fan gathering ever, D23 EXPO on SUNDAY, SEPTEMBER 13 (2:00-5:00 p.m.) at the Anaheim Convention Center in Anaheim, California. Summer to date, “Wizards of Waverly Place” is TV’s #1 program among Kids 6-11 and Tweens 9-14. This D23 EXPO exclusive Q&A session provides a chance for fans to ask their favorite stars about the Emmy-nominated series and the Disney Channel Original Movie it has inspired.

The afternoon will include an exclusive preview screening of the “Wizards of Waverly Place” season premiere episode and a surprise musical performance.

Popular radio personality Ernie D from Radio Disney, the 24-hour contemporary hits radio network and the only radio broadcaster for kids and families, will join in the fun at “A Magical Afternoon with ‘Wizards of Waverly Place’” event. Ernie D will also make appearances with the Radio Disney on-air team – Jake, Candice and Blake – Thursday, September 10 through Sunday, September 13 (schedule to be announced) on the D23 EXPO floor. In addition, the Radio Disney Road Crew will be on hand with the “JONAS” Fan Van, playing music and inviting young fans to win prizes.

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Disneyland’s and Walt Disney World’s Rivers Come Alive This Holiday Season with Tiana’s Showboat Jubilee!

From November 6 through January 3, guests at Disneyland will be treated to performances of Tiana’s Showboat Jubilee! featuring songs and music from Walt Disney Picture”s newest animated classic, The Princess and the Frog. Tiana, Naveen and Dr. Facilier will all be aboard the colorful, vibrant riverboat extravaganza.

UPDATE: After receiving additional reports from multiple sources, it appears the show will also take place aboard the Liberty Belle in Magic Kingdom’s Frontierland. That show is expected to begin October 26.

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When Princess Tiana Visits Walt Disney World, She’s Bringing Friends… and Enemies

Princess TianaAs we reported some time ago, casting had begun for Princess Tiana to appear at Walt Disney. Now we are pleased to announce casting will also soon begin for her beau Prince Naveen and Dr. Facilier, the villain in The Princess and the Frog.

According to the casting notices, Tiana will be between 5’5 – 5’8 while Naveen and Dr. Facilier will be between 5’10 – 6’2.

Also according to the notices, the trio will be appearing daily in shows and parades in addition to meet & greet opportunities.

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Disney Channel’s Second Season of ‘Suite Life on Deck’ Begins August 7; Guest Stars to Include Jordin Sparks

Disney Channel premieres the second season of the hit comedy series “The Suite Life on Deck,” FRIDAY, AUGUST 7 (8:30 p.m., ET/PT). The new season delivers notable guest stars, including recording artist Jordin Sparks (“American Idol”), Charo (“The Love Boat”), NFL quarterback Kurt Warner, Ed Begley, Jr. (“Living With Ed”) and magician Justin Kredible.

Larramie “Doc” Shaw joins the cast as new character, Marcus Little, a former singing sensation whose career ended when his voice changed, so he’s now making a fresh start at Seven Seas High on the SS Tipton. Shaw starred as Malik Payne on Tyler Perry’s “House of Payne,” for which he received a 2009 NAACP Image Award nomination, the 2009 Young Artist Award and a 2009 NAMIC Vision Award for Best Performance in a Comedy.

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Kouzzina Soft Opening Menus Available

While we await more concrete menus to share with you, wdwmagic.com has published what they refer to as pre-opening menus for breakfast and dinner at Cat Cora’s Kouzzina here. The restaurant begins serving August 15 with a grand opening set for September 17.

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D23 Expo Live Auction ‘Auctioneers Package’ Details Released

D23 Expo Live Auction

Beginning Wednesday, August 5 at 2 PM ET, interested attendees of the D23 Expo can purchase the ‘Auctioneers Package’ here for the live auction to take place during the D23 Expo on September 12.

While attending the live auction will be free to all D23 Expo attendees, the ‘Auctioneers Package’ will be required to those who wish to participate in the auction.

The cost of the package is $40 and that includes: preferred floor seating for the event; a D23 Expo Live Auction commemorative catalog; a D23 Expo Live Auction paddle; and a D23 Expo Live Auction Limited Edition pin.

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WDW Refurb Updates: Typhoon Lagoon, Flights of Wonder, Old Key West

A few additions to the upcoming Walt Disney World refurbishment schedule:

Typhoon Lagoon will be closed the entire month of November

Flights of Wonder at Disney’s Animal Kingdom will have no performances from September 13 through October 23

The Miller Road Quiet Pool at Old Key West will be closed from August 24 through September 11

ReSearch! will be updated at my earliest convenience.

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