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PHOTOS: ‘Disney Festival of Fantasy Parade’ at Magic Kingdom Park

posted on May 22nd, 2015 by Shawn Slater, Communications Manager, Walt Disney Parks and Resorts Creative Entertainment


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The Coolest Summer Ever live stream has concluded.

Are you ready for one of the coolest parades ever seen at Magic Kingdom Park? It’s nearly time for all the beauty and majesty of the “Disney Festival of Fantasy Parade,” starting at 3 p.m. What are you most looking forward to seeing? From the joyous musical score and the spectacularly colorful costumes to those impressive floats and a fire-breathing dragon, the entire procession is a sight to behold!

Disney Festival of Fantasy Parade: Mickey's Airship

If you aren’t able to join us to experience the parade in person, be sure to follow along on the live stream. And you’ll be pleased to hear that this year, the live stream will bring you all the wonderful music and sound of the “Disney Festival of Fantasy Parade.”

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Set a Course for Star Wars Weekends This Friday, Saturday and Sunday at Disney’s Hollywood Studios

posted on May 22nd, 2015 by Shawn Slater, Communications Manager, Walt Disney Parks and Resorts Creative Entertainment


Our Star Wars Weekends event for 2015 is well under way and better than ever! And this week, the incomparable Warwick Davis is among the celebrity guests visiting from that galaxy far, far away.

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Warwick portrayed lovable Ewok Wicket from the forest moon of Endor and has brought to vivid life several beloved characters beyond the worlds of Star Wars. In fact, one of my favorite shows during Star Wars Weekends is “An Ewok’s Tale: My Short Story,” Warwick Davis’s hysterical one-man show through which he shares his adventures as only he can. It’s definitely not to be missed!

Of course, Warwick is just one of the stars of the saga joining us May 22 – 24. You can also see and hear from actors whose characters have inhabited the Jedi Temple on Coruscant, the Theed Royal Palace of Naboo and the grasslands of Lothal:

  • Event Host James Arnold Taylor: Obi-Wan Kenobi (Star Wars: The Clone Wars; Star Wars Rebels)
  • Warwick Davis: Wald, Wicket the Ewok (Star Wars: The Phantom Menace; Star Wars: Return of the Jedi)
  • Silas Carson: Ki-Adi-Mundi, Nute Gunray (Star Wars: The Phantom Menace; Star Wars: Attack of the Clones; Star Wars: Revenge of the Sith)
  • Vanessa Marshall: Hera Syndulla (Star Wars Rebels)
  • Ashley Eckstein: Ahsoka Tano (Star Wars: The Clone Wars; Star Wars Rebels)

No matter what part of the galaxy you hail from, you’ll want to make Star Wars Weekends your destination. With all the celebrities, Star Wars characters, special shows, fireworks and more, it is as close to the Force as you can get!

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Creating Custom Animation for the All-New ‘World of Color – Celebrate!’ at Disney California Adventure Park

posted on May 21st, 2015 by Shawn Slater, Communications Manager, Walt Disney Parks and Resorts Creative Entertainment


When it debuts tomorrow for the Disneyland Resort Diamond Celebration, the all-new “World of Color – Celebrate! The Wonderful World of Walt Disney” will illuminate the night at Disney California Adventure park like never before! In this celebration of the unparalleled imagination of Walt Disney, Mickey Mouse and host Neil Patrick Harris take us on a fun-filled and inspirational journey that explores Walt’s decades-long legacy of memorable animated moments and the dream of Disneyland.

In this behind-the-scenes video, Dave Bossert from Walt Disney Animation Studios shares a look at the making of some of the new animated sequences created just for this show.

“World of Color – Celebrate!” is part of our dazzling Disneyland Resort Diamond Celebration, which kicks off May 22 along with the new “Paint the Night” parade and the fully-immersive new “Disneyland Forever” fireworks spectacular.

Keep following Disney Parks Blog for more updates, and join the conversation with hashtag #Disneyland60.

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Perfecting Projections for the Immersive New ‘Disneyland Forever’ Fireworks Spectacular

posted on May 20th, 2015 by Shawn Slater, Communications Manager, Walt Disney Parks and Resorts Creative Entertainment


Coming May 22 as part of the Disneyland Resort Diamond Celebration, the new “Disneyland Forever” fireworks spectacular will be a sky-high extravaganza featuring sparkling pyrotechnics, immersive projections, and surprising special effects that transform Disneyland park right before your eyes. “Disneyland Forever” envelops you in an enthralling, breathtaking journey like never before, leveraging the largest installation of projection mapping technology in a Disney park.

Today, we’re taking you behind the scenes for a look at what goes on at night after the park closes, as our Creative Entertainment team is hard at work getting all those amazing projection effects ready for “Disneyland Forever.”

We’re just days away from the grand debut of “Disneyland Forever,” when this incredible new fireworks spectacular will join the “Paint the Night” parade and the all-new “World of Color – Celebrate!” as the sparkling crown jewels of the Disneyland Resort Diamond Celebration.

We’ll have even more sneak peeks for you soon here on Disney Parks Blog, and you can keep the conversation going on social media with the hashtag #Disneyland60.

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Prepare to be Dazzled for 24 Hours this Friday at Disneyland Resort

posted on May 20th, 2015 by Shawn Slater, Communications Manager, Walt Disney Parks and Resorts Creative Entertainment


The Disneyland Resort Diamond Celebration is almost here! The party kicks off Friday, May 22, at 6 a.m. and continues for 24 hours, through 6 a.m. Saturday, May 23, with multi-faceted entertainment experiences at both Disneyland Resort theme parks and the official debut of the three new spectaculars created just for the celebration.

In addition to the already stellar entertainment lineup at Disneyland and Disney California Adventure parks, here are some of the other highlights planned for Friday:

  • The parks open at 6 a.m. with countdown moments featuring some of your favorite Disney characters, including Mickey and the gang in their sparkly new Disneyland Resort Diamond Celebration outfits.
  • Throughout the parks, you can mark the hours at special celebration photo spots.
  • Beginning at 6 p.m., join us in the Main Street Opera House for a sing-along screening of Walt Disney’s classic “Mary Poppins.” If you miss it then (or just can’t get enough), the “Mary Poppins” sing-along will be presented again at 10 p.m., 12:45 a.m. and 3:30 a.m.
  • Over at Tomorrowland Theater, you can catch the sneak peek of scenes from the “Tomorrowland” movie during the day, and then return at 10 p.m. or 3 a.m. for a full-length screening of “Guardians of the Galaxy.” We’ll also be showing “The Avengers” in the Tomorrowland Theater at 12:15 a.m.
  • If live music is your thing, we’ll have a band playing retro hits on the Tomorrowland Terrace stage beginning at 7 p.m. and the Royal Swing Big Band Ball in Fantasy Faire, with four sets starting at 10:30 p.m.

Disney Parks Blog Celebrates the Disneyland Resort Diamond Celebration

  • The “Paint the Night” parade will be presented twice for its opening night, at 8:50 p.m. and 1 a.m., with the premiere of “Disneyland Forever” fireworks at 9:30 p.m.
  • After all that, you can hit the dance floor to the DJ mix at TLT Dance CLUB in Tomorrowland from 12:30 a.m. – 5 a.m., or head over to Mickey’s Toontown for a Pajama Party with your pals, starting at midnight and continuing into the wee hours of the morning.
  • At Disney California Adventure park, the all-new “World of Color – Celebrate!” will have three showings at 9 p.m., 10:15 p.m. and 3 a.m.
  • Over at Pacific Wharf, a DJ spices things up with a Latin dance party from 10:45 p.m. – 5 a.m.
  • Join the Mad T Party Band for the new Diamond Mad T Party in Hollywood Land from 8:30 p.m. – 1 a.m., and stick around as the White Rabbit DJ keeps things hopping ‘til morning.

Of course, Disney Parks Blog will be bringing you all the action as it happens that day, with updates and live streams from across the Disneyland Resort, so be sure to join us!

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Honoring Disney’s Electrical Parade Heritage in the All-New ‘Paint the Night’ Parade at Disneyland Park

posted on May 19th, 2015 by Shawn Slater, Communications Manager, Walt Disney Parks and Resorts Creative Entertainment


When the Disneyland Resort Diamond Celebration kicks off May 22, one of the brightest gems promises to be the new, state-of-the-art “Paint the Night” parade. This dazzling nighttime procession is led by Tinker Bell flying in a magical, musical overture, spreading pixie dust along the Disneyland parade route. Right on her tail (but never growing up!) is Peter Pan, perched high atop an enormous drum inspired by a float from the classic “Main Street Electrical Parade.”

And that’s not the only nod to Disneyland parade heritage. If you look closely, you may just spot a rosette taken from a light on one of the original Main Street Electrical Parade floats, hand-placed on the tip of Tinker Bell’s wand!

Of course, “Paint the Night” is just one facet of the Disneyland Resort Diamond Celebration, which is also bringing the all-new “World of Color – Celebrate!” and “Disneyland Forever” fireworks spectacular, all starting May 22.

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Favorite Musical Groups Sing New Tunes for the Disneyland Resort Diamond Celebration

posted on May 19th, 2015 by Shawn Slater, Communications Manager, Walt Disney Parks and Resorts Creative Entertainment


Beginning May 22, three of our most popular musical groups will be joining in the excitement of the Disneyland Resort Diamond Celebration, with the addition of some delightful, celebration-inspired enhancements in their performances.

On Main Street, U.S.A., at Disneyland park, the Dapper Dans will be expanding their repertoire of barbershop favorites with a festive new tune – actually a little-known, classic song by Disney Legend Richard M. Sherman, made new for the park’s 60th anniversary.

The Red Car Trolley News Boys with Mickey Mouse on Buena Vista Street at Disney California Adventure Park

At Disney California Adventure park, Mickey Mouse arrives on Buena Vista Street with the Red Car Trolley News Boys, sharing an original song that invites us to step inside Mickey’s vivid imagination and pay tribute to Walt Disney, the world’s greatest dreamer.

Five & Dime on Buena Vista Street at Disney California Adventure Park

And when Five & Dime swing into the party at the newly sparkling Carthay Circle, they’ll bring along three new songs that’ll keep toes tapping and put a smile on every face!

It’s shaping up to be a great summer filled with music and memories! Keep reading Disney Parks Blog over the next week, as we bring you more updates from the big kick-off of the Disneyland Resort Diamond Celebration.

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Creating the ‘Frozen’ Float for ‘Paint the Night’ Parade at Disneyland Park

posted on May 18th, 2015 by Shawn Slater, Communications Manager, Walt Disney Parks and Resorts Creative Entertainment


In “Paint the Night,” the innovative new nighttime parade coming May 22 as part of the Disneyland Resort Diamond Celebration, Mickey Mouse uses his vivid imagination to harness the power of Tinker Bell’s pixie dust and bring to light beloved characters and stories from “Monsters, Inc.,” “Cars,” “The Little Mermaid,” “Beauty and the Beast,” “Toy Story” and more.

From the world of “Frozen” comes the tallest float in the entire parade, inspired by Elsa’s shimmering palace of ice. Anna and Elsa will grace the float, accompanied by Olaf and a group of dancing frozen fractals, as they glide through Disneyland park. In this video, our team members take you behind the scenes for a look at the “Frozen” float under construction.

What part of “Paint the Night” are you most looking forward to seeing? Let us know in the comments, and be sure to check back – we’ll have more glimpses of this spectacular new parade for you soon.

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Star Wars Weekends Starts Today at Disney’s Hollywood Studios

posted on May 15th, 2015 by Shawn Slater, Communications Manager, Walt Disney Parks and Resorts Creative Entertainment


You are as close to the Force as you can get! The opening scroll on Star Wars Weekends 2015 is rolling at Disney’s Hollywood Studios. All weekend long, there will be dozens of Star Wars characters appearing throughout the park, the “Legends of the Force” celebrity motorcade, the all-new “Star Wars: Rebels” show at Theater of the Stars, “Symphony in the Stars” fireworks and so much more!

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And what’s this…? The Emperor is coming here?!

That’s right! Ian McDiarmid, the actor who portrayed Emperor Palpatine (aka the Sith Lord Darth Sidious) in the Star Wars films, has made his first hyperspace jump to our system as a celebrity guest for Weekend I of Star Wars Weekends. You’ll want to double your efforts to be here and see him, along with the other stars of the saga appearing this weekend. Here’s the complete list:

  • Event Host James Arnold Taylor: Obi-Wan Kenobi (Star Wars: The Clone Wars; Star Wars Rebels)
  • Ian McDiarmid: Senator/Emperor Palpatine (Star Wars: The Phantom Menace; Star Wars: Attack of the Clones; Star Wars: Revenge of the Sith, Star Wars: The Empire Strikes Back, Star Wars: Return of the Jedi)
  • Amy Allen: Aayla Secura (Star Wars: Attack of the Clones, Star Wars: Revenge of the Sith)
  • Tiya Sircar: Sabine Wren (Star Wars Rebels)
  • Ashley Eckstein: Ahsoka Tano (Star Wars: The Clone Wars; Star Wars Rebels)

Also new and not to be missed at Star Wars Weekends this year is Rebel Hangar: A Star Wars Lounge Experience and the Darth’s Mall complex on Streets of America, where you will find the droids (and T-shirts and other great merchandise) you’re looking for!

So who’s coming out this weekend? Let us know in the Comments section, and share the excitement on social media using the hashtag #SWW2015. If you can’t make it this weekend, Star Wars Weekends continues every Friday, Saturday and Sunday through June 14.

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Kicking Off the ‘Coolest Summer Ever’ with 24-Hours of Entertainment at Magic Kingdom Park

posted on May 14th, 2015 by Shawn Slater, Communications Manager, Walt Disney Parks and Resorts Creative Entertainment


Next week, Magic Kingdom Park is going to stay open from 6 a.m. Friday, May 22, to 6 a.m. Saturday, May 23, to celebrate the beginning of the “Coolest Summer Ever!” And everyone’s favorite snowman Olaf is inviting you to “Snow Your Disney Side” with a whole day (and night) full of magic.

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In addition to all your usual favorite characters and shows at the park, our Creative Entertainment team is also pulling together a full roster of amazing, unique entertainment experiences that will definitely make this day one of the coolest ever!

  • The extravaganza kicks off with some very special appearances in the Welcome Show as Anna, Elsa, Kristoff and Olaf join the rest of the gang welcoming everyone into the park.
  • A Flag Raising ceremony will be held at dawn in Town Square, featuring the Reedy Creek Honor Guard.
  • Some of your favorite stars from Disney Channel will be joining us as Grand Marshals for the “Disney Festival of Fantasy Parade” at 3 p.m.
  • Over in Tomorrowland, Disney Channel Club Chill takes over Rockettower Plaza Stage from 4 p.m. to 11 p.m., with DJ Frost leading a dance party with music videos from Disney Channel stars and sneak peeks of upcoming Disney Channel Original Movies “Teen Beach 2” and “Descendants.”
  • Once things cool down in Tomorrowland, Rockettower Plaza switches gears for sing-along screenings of Disney’s “Frozen” from midnight – 4 a.m.
  • There’s even more “Frozen” fun in store, when Olaf, Kristoff, Anna and Elsa put Magic Kingdom Park “on ice” with pre-parade appearances just ahead of the 11 p.m. and 1 a.m. performances of the Main Street Electrical Parade.
  • Looking to dance the night away? You can join some of your Disney pals – all dressed in their PJs – at one of two late-night dance parties. Kick up your heels at the Frontierland Dance Party, near Country Bear Jamboree, from 2 a.m. – 6 a.m. At Cinderella Castle, Disney’s “Up All Night” Dance Party keeps things hopping from 2:00 a.m. – 5:45 a.m. with awesome DJ, stiltwalkers and lots of fun party people!
  • As that 24th hour comes to a close, make your way to Town Square on Main Street, U.S.A., for a special finale moment with Mickey and the gang that you won’t want to miss.

Be sure to check back here throughout the day on Friday, May 22, as Disney Parks Blog brings you all the action, live from the “Coolest Summer Ever!” Will you be joining us? What part of the event sounds the coolest to you? Let us know in the comments.

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