Acclaimed astrophysicist Dr. Neil deGrasse Tyson, host of the PBS series “NOVA scienceNOW” and director of the Hayden Planetarium at the American Museum of Natural History in New York, taped a segment of the PBS series Oct. 9, 2009 in the Magic Kingdom in Lake Buena Vista, Fla. Joining Tyson for the taping was beloved Disney character Pluto, for an episode that focuses on the dwarf planet of the same name. Tyson, who authored a book entitled “The Pluto Files: The Rise and Fall of America’s Favorite Planet,” was at the center of the controversy surrounding the planetary status of Pluto. A frequent guest on “The Daily Show with Jon Stewart” and “The Colbert Report,” Tyson attributed the public outcry over the dwarf planet’s demotion to America’s love of the Disney character.
Comedy superstar Tim Allen, who provides the voice of Buzz Lightyear in Disney/Pixar’s “Toy Story,” “Toy Story 2” and the upcoming “Toy Story 3,” offered an official thumbs up to the space ranger this week for spending more than 15 months in space onboard the International Space Station as part of a NASA-Disney educational outreach collaboration. Buzz returned home aboard Space Shuttle Discovery STS-128 on September 11. He’ll be treated to a ticker-tape parade down Main Street, U.S.A. in the Magic Kingdom at Walt Disney World Resort in Florida on Oct. 2, which coincides with the big-screen return of “Toy Story” and “Toy Story 2”—this time in a Disney Digital 3D double-feature. The Toy Story celebration culminates in a brand new adventure starring Buzz and Woody: “Toy Story 3”— in theaters June 18, 2010. Photo by Eric Charbonneau ©Disney/Pixar. All Rights Reserved.
Singer & Actor Mitchel Musso (“Hannah Montana,” “Phineas & Ferb”) poses Sept. 18, 2009 with the Disney character Goofy at Disney’s Hollywood Studios in Lake Buena Vista, Fla. Musso was at the Walt Disney World theme park to meet fans and sign copies of his self-titled debut CD. (Gene Duncan, photographer)
– Additional photography/recording restrictions have been laid down. In addition to no photography of the Treasures of the Archives exhibit, all cameras (and perhaps all electronics/bags) must be checked prior to entering the Arena for the Bob Iger presentation, the 2009 Disney Legends Ceremony on Thursday and the Dick Cook presentation on Friday. Additional panels and screenings also specficially prohibit photography. The D23 Expo schedule has been updated to reflect at least some of these changes.
– The Treasures of the Archive Exhibit will have a delayed opening on Thursday only. The exhibit will open at 12 pm, following the Disney Legends Ceremony
Hannah Montana actor and Disney recording artist Mitchel Musso will be making appearances where he will meet & greet with his fans and sign his self-titled CD.
On September 3, Mitchel will be appearing at Studio Disney 365 in Downtown Disney at the Disneyland Resort from 1-2 pm. Only one item per guest may be signed and the item must be purchased at the event, so no personal items will be allowed. Photography will be allowed, but no posing is allowed with Mitchel. Guests are asked to queue up no earlier than 6 am.
Singer, musician and “American Idol” season seven champion David Cook takes a ride Aug. 17, 2009 aboard the Magic Carpets of Aladdin attraction at the Magic Kingdom in Lake Buena Vista, Fla. Joining Cook on the family vacation to Walt Disney World were his nieces and nephews: Pictured are Gracie (right), age 6 and Marshall (held by Cook), 18 months. (Garth Vaughan, photographer)
Tyler Perry poses with Disney characters and more than 70 campers from Creative Steps in Philadelphia July 31, 2009 at DisneyQuest, an indoor, interactive theme park at Walt Disney World Resort in Lake Buena Vista, Fla. Earlier this month, the campers were the subject of a story that they were turned away from a local Philadelphia pool. Perry sent each child who was turned away, along with a legal guardian, to Walt Disney World to enjoy the theme parks and other recreational activities at the resort. Perry said he wanted to do something kind for the children to let them know that for every person out there who treated them poorly, there was someone else waiting with an act of kindness. During a surprise appearance July 31 at DisneyQuest, Perry addressed the children and spoke of racism and challenged each child to live their life to the betterment of the community. (Quantrell D. Colbert, photographer)
Chef Robert Irvine from Food Network’s “Dinner Impossible,” gets tips from Chef Mickey for his Oct. 25 appearance at the Epcot International Food & Wine Festival. Epcot kitchens turn up the heat for a global tasting experience worthy of every palate Sept. 25-Nov. 8 at the 14th annual Epcot International Food & Wine Festival at Walt Disney World Resort. During the six-week, entertainment-packed event, park guests can taste fine cuisine and wines from the top “foodie” cities of the world. Some 250 chefs including Disney chefs and guest chefs from across the country conducting culinary demonstrations and hosting elegant dinners and tasting events. Guest chefs who have graced the festival include Irvine, Tory McPhail of Commander’s Palace, Rock Harper of “Hell’s Kitchen,” plus Jeff Henderson, Todd English, Warren Brown, Mary Meyers, Jamie Deen, Iron Chef Cat Cora and many other culinary stars. (Kent Phillips, photographer)
Hip-hop artist Big Boi, one-half of the Grammy Award-winning duo “OutKast,” poses July 24, 2009 with Minnie Mouse at the Magic Kingdom in Lake Buena Vista, Fla. Big Boi (born Antwan Andre Patton) is scheduled to release his first solo album, entitled “Sir Luscious Left Foot: The Son of Chico Dusty” in 2009. In addition to his work with OutKast, the Atlanta-based artist and producer has appeared on tracks by Beyonce, Jay-Z and Missy Elliott. In 2008 he collaborated with the Atlanta Ballet for a series of critically acclaimed performances.. He is visiting the Walt Disney World Resort on vacation this week. (Garth Vaughan, photographer)