Cat Cora’s Kouzzina Scheduled to Open at Walt Disney World’s Boardwalk September 17

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Celebrity Chef Cat Cora’s Kouzzina, which will replace Spoodles at Disney’s Boardwalk Inn Resort, is expected to have its grand opening on September 17 as per @DisneyParks.

The restaurant is scheduled for a soft opening of August 15 and reportedly guests who had previously had an ADR for Spoodles during this period have automatically been switched over to Kouzzina. Although availability appeared to be nil, we were assured that bookings are being accepted during the soft opening period.

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Disney Unveils Fall ’09 Tween Fashions with Virtual Runway Show on YouTube

Models sport fashions inspired by Disney Channel's JONAS television seriesGLENDALE, Calif. — Disney today unveiled all new tween fashion lines inspired by Disney Channel smash hits JONAS and the Emmy-nominated Wizards of Waverly Place with the launch of a virtual fashion show video on the official Disney Consumer Products YouTube channel, Disney Living. With fashion, accessories, footwear, and more hitting the runway for an audience of ecstatic tweens, this unique video is the first to take Disney-inspired fashions directly to the online tween community. Tween models wearing the latest back-to-school looks rocked the runway as they showed off the hottest styles hitting retailers in July including JC Penney, Kmart, Sears, Walmart, Target and DisneyStore.com.

The red carpet event in Los Angeles was attended by “JONAS'” Nicole Anderson; “Wizards of Waverly Place’s” Maria Canals-Barrera; “Sonny With A Chance’s” Tiffany Thornton, Brandon Mychal Smith, Doug Brochu, Allisyn Ashley Arm; “Princess Protection Program’s” Samantha Droke; “Zeke and Luther’s” Daniel Curtis Lee and Ryan Newman; “Camp Rock’s” Anna Maria Perez de Tagle; “The Game Plan’s” Madison Pettis and hosts Jennifer Stone (“Wizards of Waverly Place”) and Chelsea Staub (“JONAS”). In addition to never-before-seen footage of the runway show, the video also features red carpet interviews and an exclusive interview with Selena Gomez (“Wizards of Waverly Place”) sharing some of her personal fashion ideas.

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Disney Interactive Announces Alice in Wonderland, Filled with Illusion, Magic and Impossible Ideas

A screenshot from Disney Interactive's Alice in Wonderland

A screenshot from Disney Interactive's Alice in Wonderland

BURBANK, Calif. — As Tim Burton and Lewis Carroll fans become curiouser and curiouser (Carroll, 1865) about Walt Disney Pictures’ upcoming “Alice in Wonderland” film, Disney Interactive Studios today announced development of video game adaptations of the beloved story. The video games, inspired by Tim Burton’s highly anticipated film starring Johnny Depp, Anne Hathaway, Helena Bonham Carter and Mia Wasikowska as Alice, find Alice several years after the original “Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland” and “Through the Looking Glass” stories. Alice in Wonderland for Wii™, Nintendo DS™ and Windows-based PC takes players on a topsy-turvy and immersive journey in Underland as Alice finds herself in a world of illusion and magic where nothing is quite like it seems. Alongside her endearing friends – Mad Hatter, March Hare, Cheshire Cat and White Rabbit – players aid Alice to defeat the Red Queen and Jabberwocky. Alice in Wonderland mobile games will begin launching later this year.

“These games fully capture the magnificent and whimsical world of Underland while experiencing key moments from the film,” said Craig Relyea, senior vice president of global marketing, Disney Interactive Studios. “More than just a retelling of the movie, Alice in Wonderland introduces fans to an entirely new style of innovative gameplay designed to challenge the puzzle solving skills of older players while making the adventures accessible and enjoyable for the younger crowd. Innovative gameplay and distinct artistic styles on each platform give players a range of unique and engaging experiences.”

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‘U Rock 2′ Video Contest Finalists Announced, Voting Open Until August 3

NORTH HOLLYWOOD, Calif. — Thousands of future rock stars uploaded videos to Disney.com for the chance to win the ultimate rocker experience but only one rocker in each category will win. Finalists for U Rock 2 have been selected and are currently up for voting on Disney.com (www.Disney.com/URock) allowing fans to decide the winning rock stars. Launched in June, U Rock 2 gave music lovers the opportunity to create their own videos set to songs from popular Disney artists and post their original videos on the U Rock site.

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Bay Lake Tower to Open August 4, Bringing Disney Vacation Club Conveniences to Contemporary Resort

Bay Lake Tower (Kent Phillips/Disney)LAKE BUENA VISTA, Fla. – Nearly 38 years after Disney’s Contemporary Resort opened its doors, its modern Disney Vacation Club addition, Bay Lake Tower at Disney’s Contemporary Resort, is scheduled to welcome guests on Aug. 4.  This will be the seventh Disney Vacation Club (DVC) property at Walt Disney World Resort.

All 15 stories of the ultra-sleek design continue the original building’s iconic style, which opened with the Magic Kingdom theme park Oct. 1, 1971.  Bay Lake Tower complements and pays homage to Disney’s Contemporary Resort while also offering a variety of new amenities and conveniences – kitchenettes or full kitchens complete with granite countertops and modern appliances, and other homelike amenities.  In addition, most of the 295 two-bedroom equivalent villas in the crescent-shaped tower offer spectacular views of Bay Lake or Magic Kingdom.

Bay Lake Tower, like all DVC resorts, blends Disney magic with elegant design and premier accommodations.  DVC members – and, based on availability, overnight Walt Disney World guests staying at Bay Lake Tower – can choose from a number of recreation activities and facilities, including a children’s interactive water play area, Bay Cove Pool, a barbeque pavilion, a Community Hall and two nearby tennis courts.

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Must Have: The Mickey Mouse Treasures Now Available at Barnes & Noble for $15

Mickey Mouse TreasuresThe Mickey Mouse Treasures by Robert Tieman, manager of the Walt Disney Archives, is the third in a series of collectibles. This third volume focuses on Mickey Mouse himself, from his (and Walt’s) humble beginnings (and even a bit before that) to his worldwide popularity today. From films to merchandising, this book literally has it all — and that’s an understatement.

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A Sneak Peek Inside the Walt Disney Family Museum Opening October 1; Timed Tickets on Sale August 1

The Walt Disney Family Museum at The Presidio in San Francisco

The Walt Disney Family Museum at The Presidio in San Francisco

San Francisco, CA, July 16, 2009—The fascinating and inspiring story of Walt Disney, whose artistry, creations, and vision helped define 20th-century American culture, will be brought to life at The Walt Disney Family Museum, which opens in San Francisco in October 2009. The Museum will illuminate Walt Disney’s tremendous successes, disappointments, and unyielding optimism as he pursued innovation and excellence while entertaining and enchanting generations worldwide through his pioneering ventures.

The earliest known drawings of Mickey MouseThe creator of Mickey Mouse, Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs, Disneyland, and the global yet distinctly American company that bears his name, Disney was an independent risk-taker who started his first business at the age of 19 and worked tirelessly to elevate animation to an art form. He invented timeless characters and stories that brought the fantastical to life and continue to inspire a sense of wonder. Through animated and live action films, television programs, and theme parks, Disney created global symbols, icons, and characters that, more than 40 years after his death, are an indelible part of popular culture in America and around the world.

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The Motivator (and High Ratings) Kick ‘Wipeout’ Into Third Season on ABC

“Wipeout,” ABC’s outrageously popular reality series, has been picked up for a third season. Twenty-four thrill-seekers will compete in the world’s largest extreme obstacle course designed to provide the most spills, face plants and wipeouts ever seen on television.

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Disney Japan to Bundle DVDs with Mobile-Compatible Flicks on MicroSD

TOKYO (Reuters Life!) – Walt Disney Co’s Japan unit said it would sell movies on flash memory cards as small as a fingernail so that people can watch them on mobile phones and other portable devices.

The movie studio plans to package pre-recorded microSD cards together with DVDs holding the same movie content, allowing customers to watch at home as well as on the go. These cards will be available in November.

Users can watch movies stored on microSD cards on mobile phones capable of showing terrestrial digital broadcasting, and other portable gear such as car navigation systems.

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Following the El Capitan Theatre on Twitter Can Get You Free Food, Exclusive Opportunities and More

Inside the El Capitan © Brad K. All Rights Reserved.

Inside the El Capitan © Brad K. All Rights Reserved.

Smack-dab in the heart of Hollywood, California, the El Capitan Theatre brings a spot of Disney to one of the world’s most famous neighborhoods. Across from the Kodak Theatre (home to the Academy Awards) and the Grauman’s Chinese Theatre, the theatre is a result of a $14 million dollar renovation in which Disney literally re-built the theatre to faithfully restore to its original grandeur.

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