The 19th Annual “A Night at Sardi’s,” a star-studded benefit for the Alzheimer’s Association on Wednesday, March 16, 2011 at the Beverly Hilton, will honor The Walt Disney Company’s President and CEO Robert A. Iger for his contributions in the fight against Alzheimer’s disease.
Mr. Iger will receive the Abe Burrows Entertainment Award, which is presented to an individual who has shown an extraordinary commitment to the mission of the Alzheimer’s Association.
“We are thrilled to honor Robert A. Iger with the Abe Burrows Entertainment Award. Bob has witnessed first-hand the effects of Alzheimer’s and has been a champion for the Alzheimer’s Association for many years,” said event co-chairs Laurie Burrows Grad and Peter Grad. “‘A Night at Sardi’s’ is always an amazing evening of entertainment and hope for advancing the fight against Alzheimer’s, and we are delighted that Bob will be joining us to accept this award.”
Ms. Grad created this event to honor her father, the late playwright/director Abe Burrows, who had Alzheimer’s. This annual dinner gala and performance will feature favorite stars from television, film, and theater as they perform songs from Cole Porter’s songbook in the “Night at Sardi’s” show titled “Red, Hot, and Cole.”
“A Night at Sardi’s” has raised more than $18 million for Alzheimer’s Association (www.alz.org) programs that provide care and support to individuals and families impacted by Alzheimer’s as well as funding for critical Alzheimer’s research. A toll-free Helpline is available 24/7 at 1-800-272-3900.
For tables, tickets and donations to “A Night at Sardi’s,” visit www.alz.org/galas/la, call (818) 906-0240 or email [email protected]. To discuss sponsorship opportunities, call (323) 791-6136, or email [email protected].
For four decades, The Walt Disney Archives has been home to the most treasured items from Disney’s fabled history, and on Friday, June 25, the Archives will mark its 40th anniversary with a special celebration at the Walt Disney Studios.
During the event, Disney President and CEO Bob Iger, noted film historian Leonard Maltin and other surprise guests will honor Dave Smith, the founder of The Walt Disney Archives and Disney’s chief archivist, for his achievements in preserving the Disney legacy.
The special celebration is open exclusively to members of D23, Disney’s official fan club, and tickets to the once-in-a-lifetime Walt Disney Archives 40th Anniversary Celebration are currently on sale exclusively at http://www.disney.com/D23.
“The Walt Disney Archives is an incredible collection, and that’s due to the dedication and passion Dave has brought to the development of the Archives since Roy O. Disney hired him 40 years ago,” said Steven Clark, head of D23, who also oversees The Walt Disney Archives. “We’re excited to honor Dave and the Archives, and to give our members a close-up look at some rarely seen ‘jewels in the crown’ of Disney history.”
As part of the Archives’ 40th Anniversary celebration, a number of new pieces from recent Disney projects will be officially added to the Archives’ collection; their identities will be revealed during the event.
The Walt Disney Archives 40th Anniversary Celebration will also feature a champagne-and-dessert reception on the Walt Disney Studios lot, and the premiere of Archiving the Archives: Forty Years of Preserving the Disney Magic, an all-new film created for this special anniversary, which will be screened in the Studio Theatre. Additionally, D23 Members who attend will receive a special gift created for the occasion.
Only a limited number of tickets, at $50 per person, will be available to this once-in-a-lifetime event, which pays tribute to the past, present and future of The Walt Disney Archives.
As many of you are aware already, Fess Parker, best known for his portrayal as Davy Crockett, passed away earlier today at the age of 85. Parker was named a Disney Legend in 1991 and is held in such high regard that he even has a window dedicated to him in Disneyland’s Frontierland (pictured), an extreme honor typically reserved only for the windows on the buildings along Main Street USA.
In reaction to the news, Robert Iger, President and CEO of The Walt Disney Company, and life long Davy Crockett fan issued this statement:
“Like many kids growing up in the 50’s, Davy Crockett was my first hero, and I had the coonskin cap to prove it. Fess Parker’s unforgettable, exciting and admirable performance as this American icon has remained with me all these years, as it has for his millions of fans around the world. Fess is truly a Disney Legend, as is the heroic character he portrayed, and while he will certainly be missed, he will never be forgotten.”
You can read the Los Angeles Times obituary for Mr. Parker here.
Below is some footage provided to us by Disney from both the Bob Iger address and the induction of both Betty White and Robin Williams into the Disney’s Legends program. Enjoy!
Scheduled to begin at 10 am, the address by Disney President and CEO Bob Iger actually began at 10:30 am. Although it was clear by the fact that the 4,000 seat Arena was still having guests being ushered in after checking all cameras and cell phones and being wanded by security, it wasn’t until Iger took the stage that he declared the popularity of the address the ultimate cause for the delay. Popularity is a major understatement as well as although the address was set to begin at 10, D23 Expo guests came to the Anaheim Convention Center as early as 4 AM to wait for the doors to open at approximately 6:45 AM, only to immediately go wait in another line to enter the Arena.
The presentation began with a powerful video that really underlined the expanse and reach of The Walt Disney Company. Not just the conglomeration of individual divisions, but how the company is experienced by people the world over (indeed I learned that there was a reporter from Russia covering the event). The titles quickly formed the sentence ‘Every Minute of Every Hour, Someone is Experience the Disney Difference’ (or somthing to that effect) and flashed through snippets of productions past and productions yet to come in all mediums. The film ended with flashing The Walt Disney Company over and over in different languages.
Then Iger took the stage and talked about the birth of D23, how he would constantly have guests ask him why there was no way for Disney to reach out to its customer base and how a visit to the Walt Disney Archives became the catalyst for D23. He talked about how only a company like Disney could have the type of fan base that would enable them to pull off a convention like the D23 Expo.
Crediting it all to the fans, Iger talked about being a fan of Disney himself as a child. A brief mention of the Mickey Mouse Club quickly transitioned to a lengthy ode to Davy Crockett. Anette, he said, was cute, but she had nothing on Davy.