As Disney Interactive prepares to introduce the world to its multi-platform ‘Disney Infinity’ video game, Stitch Kingdom continues to be at the forefront of reporting the game news as it develops. Later this morning, Disney and its Avalanche Software developer plan on introducing the game at the historic El Capitan Theatre at an invitation-only event. Presiding over the announcement will be DIMG co-president John Pleasants as well as John Lasseter.
Billed as ‘Toy Box,’ the first video game in which Disney and Pixar characters unite and play together, we are anticipating the announcement to include many features reminiscent of Activision’s popular ‘Skylanders’ franchise, though nothing has yet to be confirmed by Disney.
As preparations for the event continue, the El Captain has been transformed to support the game, including a marquee that reads ‘THEIR WORLDS. YOUR IMAGINATION. NO RULES.’ and promotes the use of Twitter hashtag #DisneyInfinity and the website http://disney.com/infinity (which forwards to https://infinity.disney.com) but is not yet active at press time. Inside, a large standee featuring the Disney Infinity logo and flanked by representations of Captain Jack Sparrow from Pirates of the Caribbean 5, Mr. Incredible and Monster University’s Sulley.
The announcement is scheduled to take place at 2 pm ET/11 am PST. Be sure to follow @stitchkingdom on Twitter for more exciting live updates throughout the day.
Last month, we introduced the official character description as well as several fun facts for Oz the Great and Powerful. You can read that post for the first set of fun facts, but today, we now have several more fun facts about the film courtesy of Walt Disney Studios:
- Rachel Weisz, Mila Kunis and Michelle Williams play the three witches in Oz The Great and Powerful, respectively: Evanora, Theodora and Glinda. All three have special powers that emanate from natural elements. Evanora has the power to create lightning; Theodora can make fireballs appear; and Glinda commands water.
- The Oz The Great and Powerful production was spread out over seven soundstages at the Michigan Motion Pictures Studios’ soundstage facility in Pontiac, Michigan. All the sets for the film were built indoors with every frame shot on the studios’ sound stages.
- In a filmmaking first, a marionette was used to create a reference for a CG character. Marionette artist Philip Huber created the China Girl character as an 18-inch figure. China Girl, voiced by Joey King, is made entirely from porcelain — as is everything and everyone from China Town. The fragile, but resilient, China Girl is befriended by Oz on his journey.
- Special makeup artist Howard Berger (The Chronicles of Narnia series), an Academy Award® winner, and his partner Greg Nicotero, created the looks of several of the unique denizens of Oz, including characters such as the Munchkins, the Tinkers and the Winkies. Over the course of the five-month shoot, Berger estimates that he and his staff applied over 2,500 character makeups.
- Prop master Russell Bobbitt was very proud of Oz’s satchel, which he built from concept illustrations. It was a beautiful bag, something like an old-time doctor’s bag, that opened in a tri-fold manner. After he finished building the bag, he showed it to director Sam Raimi, who loved it but decided to stick with the old satchel they had been rehearsing with. Because they only had one of those, Bobbitt and his crew had to turn around and recreate several more old satchels.
- The fauna-rich Whimsie Woods set was a challenge to create indoors on a soundstage, but greensman Dan Gillooly stepped up to help Stromberg realize his vision for the enchanting, idyllic forest enclave. To balance the big, bold silk flowers used in the set, Gillooly brought in a huge order of tropical plants with large leaves. The resulting set was so lifelike that it created its own mini-ecosystem.
- The Land of Oz would not be complete without Munchkins, so the production’s extras casting directors found three-dozen little people, mostly from the Detroit area. Their average 3’6” height contrasted sharply with the four-dozen Winkies, the spear-toting palace guards, none of whom were under 6’6” with some even exceeding seven-feet tall.
Merchandise supporting the movie has also started to roll out as well online at DisneyStore.com. Now available are items such as 12″ James Franco as Oscar Diggs (Oz) doll, ‘Mastering Magic’ replica journal, notecard set, wizard mug, wicked witch of the west mug, three witches mug and water bottle with more on the way.
Lastly, Disney has released this ad titled ‘which witch is which?’ which offers up some exciting new footage:
On the day its new Disney Junior series, ‘Sofia the First,’ launches, Disney has also released Sofia the First: Story Theater for Apple iPhone, iPod Touch and iPad devices.
The app contains two modes: the first is an interactive storybook, a retelling of the Sofia the First: Once Upon a Princess movie which is narrated by Sofia (Ariel Winter) and features audio clips from the movie as well as dozens of individual animations.
The other mode is the theater mode in which the user chooses multiple ‘cutout’ elements such as main characters, backdrops, props and even background music. Once each of the elements is chosen, the user is able to press the record button and record an audio track (dialogue) while moving the elements around the backdrop. After halting recording, the ‘production’ can be played back and even saved for later enjoyment.
The innovative theater mode appears to work well, although there was a bit of a learning curve. For example, though the backdrop consists of just a small portion of the stage, the theater mode records only elements that are in front of it. This actually means that you are able to keep props and characters out of view until desired. Also, characters are abnormally large against the backdrop by default (and props are small), but they can be resized with the usual pinch to zoom, as well as rotated. The resize and rotate functions even work while recording, allowing for some interesting use of perspective and overall weirdness. The app’s description even boasts multi-touch to allow friends to work together to move multiple characters at once.
For more information or to purchase ‘Sofia the First: Story Theater,’ click here.
As for the original televised film itself, it will be available to own on Disney DVD with special Royal Sing-Along mode on March 5, 2013 and is now available for pre-order. The DVD is set to include bonuses such as a ‘Princess in Training Activity Kit’ featuring stickers and tiaras.
Today, Disney Store Disney Store launched a new line of “Sofia the First” product in celebration of the highly-anticipated debut of the animated children’s series “Sofia the First,” on January 11th, on Disney Channel (9:30-10:00 a.m., ET/PT) and Disney Junior (5:30-6:00 p.m., ET/PT). Available exclusively at Disney Store and DisneyStore.com, the product line features an assortment of items inspired by the series, including Sofia’s iconic amulet necklace and tiara, costume, accessories, “Sofia the First” picture book and more.
The November 18 premiere of Disney Junior’s animated television movie “Sofia the First: Once Upon a Princess” introduced a record number of viewers to Disney’s first little girl princess, Sofia the First, delivering a crowning glory of 8.2 million Total Viewers on Disney Channel, handily becoming the #1 cable TV telecast of all time among Kids 2-5 (2.9 million/18.2 rating) and Girls 2-5 (2.1 million/27.2 rating) and 1 preschool cable TV telecast of all time in Total Viewers and Women 18-49 (1.7 million/2.6 rating). A family viewing event, the movie also delivered with older kids and adults, attracting more than 5.0 million Kids 2-11 and more than 2.4 million Adults 18-49.
Enchanting product highlights include:
- Sofia the First Costume – Complete with ruffles, bows and all the same beautiful details as Sofia’s gown in the TV series “Sofia the First,” this costume will have little girls enjoying hours of dress-up time all year long. Size run- 18-24 mos, 2/3, 4, 5/6 ($39.50)
- Sofia the First Light-Up Amulet of Avalor Necklace – A beautiful purple amulet necklace that lights up, just like Sofia’s! ($9.50)
- Sofia the First Tiara – Little girls can feel like a true princess-in-training with this beautifully embellished tiara. This Sofia-inspired crown matches perfectly with the Sofia the First costume for girls. ($14.50)
- Sofia the First Book and CD- The story of a young girl whose life changes when her mom marries the King is told in this enchanting Sofia the First picture book which includes a CD with three exclusive songs! ($17.99)
- Sofia Plush Doll – Royally huggable, this soft Sofia plush doll is the perfect companion for any little princess. Complete with her signature purple dress and tiara, this doll is ready for fun–from play time through bed time. ($19.50)
- Sofia’s Friends Mini-Bean Plush Toys- Sofia’s best animal friends are more huggable than ever, with our Sofia the First mini-bean plush collection. Features: Clover, Blue Bird, Whatnaught and Robin. ($8.50 each)
Also, in celebration of the product line launch, Disney Store will be offering a “Sofia the First – My Royal Family Crest” activity to surprise, delight and engage guests from Monday, January 7th, through Sunday, January 20th, or while supplies last. The Family Crest activity sheet, along with other activities and games, can be viewed and downloaded on Disney.com.
For the entire Sofia assortment, guests can visit the Sofia the First online boutique at DisneyStore.com or visit their local Disney Store.
It doesn’t seem to rain much in the rainforest-like environment of Avatar’s Pandora, but we’re pretty sure that if and when it does rain there, it pours. No sooner than a forum thread pop up suggesting James Cameron gave the okay to Disney to proceed with AvatarLand at Disney’s Animal Kingdom at the Walt Disney World Resort, that purported ‘leaked’ blueprints of some sort involving the layout of the new land’s attractions.
While many tout its authenticity and nobody appears to doubt its validity, at question is whether the leak was intentional or not, which is essentially the same scenario proposed when a far more detailed design of the New Fantasyland at Magic Kingdom surfaced months before the formal announcement. Of course then it wasn’t a confirmed project at the time, whereas AvatarLand should come as no shock to anyone at this point (other than it apparently is in the on-again stage of the development process).
The surfaced images show layouts for two attractions, suspiciously identified as ‘E-ticket’ and ‘C-ticket,’ but it’s possible these are just terms to suggest their scope to an outsider such as a contractor or sponsor. The ‘E-ticket,’ which is known in some circles as ‘Soarin’ 2.0,’ is shown as a massive multi-level show building with four independent theaters, believed to house a 3D flight over Pandora, but using a ride vehicle that perhaps moves along a track or at least moves quite a bit more than the Soarin’ handglider vehicle does. Arguably even more interesting is that the layout calls for a 3D glasses cleaning area which is as equally fascinating as it is suspicious. Granted a new 3D attraction calls for more 3D glasses, Walt Disney World already has a ‘central’ location for cleaning glasses from all attractions at Epcot, so it’s worth noting that perhaps the additional load, coupled with Animal Kingdom’s ‘isolation’ is enough to justify an additional cleaning system which would presumably also handle the glasses from ‘It’s Tough To Be A Bug.’ The second attraction appears to be a water-based attraction such as a mild flume ride, that many are likening to ‘Living with the Land.’
AvatarLand is expected to consume the area of Disney’s Animal Kingdom’s Camp Minnie-Mickey, home to several character meet and greets as well as the Festival of the Lion King stage show. Although we did previously report that it looked as though the show would close at is present location in early 2013, reportedly for about six months until a permanent location in Africa was available, we also noted recently on Twitter that Walt Disney World is now casting for the show throughout November, suggesting an immediate closure is not nearly as likely to occur. As of this time, those auditions are still listed as happening, although we will advise of any changes.
Many are anticipating that Disney Parks and Resorts will make further announcements and perhaps release concept art during its media extravaganza for New Fantasyland on December 7, but it’s fair to note it would not be unprecedented if the day came and went without so much as a whisper.
In Marvel’s Iron Man 3, brash-but-brilliant industrialist Tony Stark/Iron Man played by Robert Downey Jr., is pitted against an enemy whose reach knows no bounds. When Stark finds his personal world destroyed at his enemy’s hands, he embarks on a harrowing quest to find those responsible. This journey, at every turn, will test his mettle. With his back against the wall, Stark is left to survive by his own devices, relying on his ingenuity and instincts to protect those closest to him. As he fights his way back, Stark discovers the answer to the question that has secretly haunted him: does the man make the suit or does the suit make the man?
Tinker Bell and her sister Periwinkle took to the Mainland earlier today to play host to the premiere of Secret of the Wings in New York City. The fairy twins – born of the same baby’s laugh — graciously welcomed some of the cast and crew from the film along with local celebrities and their families.
In attendance were Mae Whitman (Tinker Bell), Anjelica Huston (Queen Clarion), Timothy Dalton (Lord Milori), Raven Symone (Iridessa), Matt Lanter (Sled) and filmmakers Peggy Holmes and Michael Wigert. Joining them were Disney Channel star Debby Ryan, celebrity stylist Ken Paves, Miss USA Oliva Culpo, Kerry Butler, Mike Tyson, Clare Foley, Alexis Welch, Faith Wladyka, Brent Zachery and more.
Below is our gallery of photos from the event. Click on any of the thumbnails to see a larger version.
For Tinker Bell and the other warm season fairies, the Winter Woods remains a mysterious and forbidden place. Secret of the Wingstakes audiences on an amazing journey of discovery with Tink, into this forbidden world where she discovers a magical secret that changes her life forever.
Secret of the Wings is available to own on October 23, 2012 on Disney 3D Blu-ray,
Categories: DVD/Blu-Ray, Movies Tags: Animation, Anjelica Huston, Cinema, Clare Foley, Debby Ryan, Disney, Disney Fairies, Fairies, Films, Mae Whitman, Matt Lanter, Mike Tyson, Movie News, Movies, Periwinkle, Pixie Hollow, Raven Symone, Secret of the Wings, SOTW, Timothy Dalton, Tink, Tinker Bell, Tinkerbell
It’s been months since we shared the news that The Muppet Christmas Carol will be finding its way onto Disney Blu-ray on November 6 with very few details to go on due to a lack of an official press release. Today that has changed — a little.
We have received an official press release from Walt Disney Studios Home Entertainment confirming the release as well as providing a few additional details on the bonus features as well as the transfer which are sure to amaze and daze you, our beloved reader.
First up, the bonus features:
- Disney Intermission — An all-new bonus feature. When the film is paused, fans can watch and ‘cluck-a-long’ to five classic holiday-themed songs performed by the Muppets Chickens and chums.
- Audio Commentary — All-new audio commentary with fan-favorite characters, Kermit, Rizzo, Gonzo, and more, all reflecting on their experience making The Muppet Christmas Carol.
- Frogs, Pigs and Humbug: Unwrapping a New Holiday Classic. A Behind the Scenes Look — Hosted by director Brian Henson, Gonzo and Rizzo fans go behind-the-scenes of the making of The Muppet Christmas Carol.
- Blooper Reel — ‘On the Set’ bloopers from the set of the film.
- Pepe Profiles Gonzo: ‘Portrait of the Artist as a Young Weirdo’ — A special look at the man, the myth, the legend the Great Gonzo, hosted by the one and only Pepe the King Prawn.
- Christmas Around the World — Gonzo and Rizzo take a look at how Christmas is celebrated all over the planet.
The DVD edition contains all of the blu-ray bonus features except for the behind-the-scenes look and the Disney Intermission.
Finally, for the technical aspects, it is shown in 1:85:1 format and has a running time of ‘approximately 89 minutes.’ Although the running time may suggest it, and conflicts with Amazon’s list of 85 which undoubtedly refers to previous editions of the film, there is no indication as to whether this film includes ‘When Love is Gone’ which appears to be a sore point amongst many a fan.
A request to Walt Disney Studios Home Entertainment for clarification has gone unanswered at this time.
Oops! With all the recent hubbub over Walt Disney Studios’ slate shuffle and the announcement that Iron Man 3 will be available in both Digital 3D and RealD, not to mention the official synopsis for Thor: The Dark World, we neglected to notice we were sitting on the synopsis for Iron Man 3 as well. Surprisingly, a few Google searches revealed that it’s only been published on an extreme few international sites, so without further ado, we present to you the full synopsis for Iron Man 3 courtesy of Walt Disney Studios, Marvel Studios, Paramount Pictures and DMG Entertainment:
Marvel Studios’ Iron Man 3 pits brash-but-brilliant industrialist Tony Stark/Iron Man against an enemy whose reach knows no bounds. When Stark finds his personal world destroyed at his enemy’s hands, he embarks on a harrowing quest to find those responsible. This journey, at every turn, will test his mettle. With his back against the wall, Stark is left to survive by his own devices, relying on his ingenuity and instincts to protect those closest to him. As he fights his way back, Stark discovers the answer to the question that has secretly haunted him: does the man make the suit or does the suit make the man?
Starring Robert Downey Jr., Gwyneth Paltrow, Don Cheadle, Guy Pearce, Rebecca Hall, Stephanie Szostak, James Badge Dale with Jon Favreau and Ben Kingsley, Iron Man 3 is directed by Shane Black from a screenplay by Drew Pearce and Shane Black and is based on Marvel’s iconic Super Hero Iron Man, who first appeared on the pages of Tales of Suspense (#39) in 1963 and had his solo comic book debut with The Invincible Iron Man (#1) in May of 1968.
Iron Man 3 is presented by Marvel Studios in association with Paramount Pictures and DMG Entertainment. Marvel Studios’ President Kevin Feige is producing and Jon Favreau, Louis D’Esposito, Stephen Broussard, Victoria Alonso, Alan Fine, Charles Newirth, Stan Lee and Dan Mintz are executive producers. The film releases May 3, 2013, and is distributed by Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures.
Famed culinary experts Ludo Lefebvre and Brian Malarkey are confirmed to join no-holds-barred chef Anthony Bourdain and British food star Nigella Lawson as Mentors on eight episodes of ABC’s innovative new cooking competition show, “The Taste.” Bourdain and Lawson are also executive producers. The new one-hour alternative series from Kinetic Content will premiere in 2013 on the ABC Television Network.
On “The Taste,” each of the four culinary superstars – Bourdain, Lawson, Lefebvre and Malarkey — will coach a team of four competing pro and amateur cooks chosen from a nationwide casting call as they vie to create the best tasting dish. In each episode, the groups will face team and individual challenges with a variety of culinary themes through several elimination rounds. At the end of each episode, the Mentors will have to judge the competitors’ dishes blind, with no knowledge of whose creation they’re sampling, what they’re eating, how it was prepared or whom they could be eliminating.
Ludovic Lefebvre is the pioneer of a guerilla style “pop-up” restaurant event called LudoBites that currently takes place at locations around Los Angeles. His newest book release, LUDOBITES: Recipes and Stories from the Pop-Up Restaurants of Ludo Lefebvre, is the story of the seven LudoBites events that showcase Lefebvre’s wildly inventive food with recipes that merge the techniques he has perfected in his years at the finest French restaurants with the simplicity forced upon him by the limits of a pop-up kitchen. Lefebvre trained at Restaurant L’Esperance with Marc Meneau, Restaurant Pierre Gagnaire and Arpege with Alain Passard, and Le Grande Vefour with Guy Martin in France. He moved to Los Angeles to work at L’Orangerie, where he became head chef at 25, and at the age of 26, was named as one of the world’s 50 Greatest Chefs by Relais & Chateaux. Under his guidance, L’Orangerie became one of the top-rated restaurants in California, receiving the Mobil Five Star Award. He then moved on to Bastide, where he also received the prestigious award. He was a nominee for the James Beard Foundation Rising Chef Award in 2001, and is the author of the cookbook Crave.
An award-winning maverick chef, Brian Malarkey is one half of the brain trust that in less than two years has conceived five wildly successful restaurants in San Diego, including Searsucker, Burlap, Gingham, Gabardine and Herringbone. Each has opened to rave reviews, and Searsucker was named “the country’s no. 2 hottest restaurant” by Time Magazine and OpenTable Diners Choice Awards. On the horizon is national expansion to 15 restaurants over the next five years, including a Searsucker in Scottsdale in November 2012, plus the release of Malarkey’s first cookbook, Come Early, Stay Late. Growing up on a ranch in Bend, Oregon, and spending summers enjoying the fresh seafood on the coast, Malarkey discovered his love for food and cooking at a young age. He attended Le Cordon Bleu in Portland. He was later hired as sous chef at Oceanaire Seafood Room in Minnesota, before opening their San Diego location as executive chef and operating partner. Under his direction Oceanaire received over 60 industry awards in less than five years.
“The Taste” is executive-produced by Chris Coelen, Matilda Zoltowski, Emma Conway, Anthony Bourdain and Nigella Lawson. Brian Smith is the director.