Enjoy this slide show of photos of the Disney Legends Awards!
Listen to the interview directly under the photos.
Jeff Hoffman’s began his Disney career selling merchandise at Disneyland shop and ultimately becoming vice president of Disney Worldwide Outreach. He was largely responsible for the Disney Legends Awards for more than two decades.
AUDIO INDEX 1:15 The start of the Disney Legends Awards; the first Disney Legend ceremony, Fred MacMurray
6:52 The original committee to choose the Disney Legends; Choosing the term “Disney Legend”
11:43 Continuing the Disney Legends Awards after the Fred MacMurray ceremony; choosing the next Disney Legends; Walt’s “nine old men” honored; Ward Kimball’s “six-fingered” handprints
18:06 Annette Funicello’s handprints in the rain; the Sherman Brothers’ handprints mishap
21:09 The Disney Legends Award statuette; Award sculptor and designer Andrea Favilli; a large scale Award sculpture and the Legends Plaza; the 75th anniversary of The Walt Disney Company; Roy E. Disney’s award
Did you know that “it’s a small world” had it’s grand opening at Disneyland on this day in 1966? The ceremonies were complete with doves and countless helium filled balloons being released in the air. (This was before it was determined that releasing balloons may have negative environmental impacts.) Also, children of the world brought water from their native countries to pour into the ride’s moat. To keep with the international theme, Walt Disney spoke via telephone/loud speaker to 1966 Disneyland Ambassador Connie Swanson, who was in Skansen, Switzerland. Although today, Connie probably would appear via internet on a big screen, in the ’60s, the reception was far from what we can receive today. Connie told me, “I could hear Walt saying, ‘There’s some difficulty, we can’t get it through,’ and I thought, oh dear, here I am in Stockholm with the press and this Minister of Communications’ and the line just is going down, so I read my script as I was asked to do.” Despite any technical difficulties, the grand opening ceremonies were a success and “it’s a small world” continues to be a favorite Disneyland attraction 49 years later.
Jack Gladish worked as an engineer, responsible for submarines, dinosaurs, railroad locomotives and much more. Attractions include the “Carousel of Progress,” “Walt Disney’s Enchanted Tiki Room” and much more. During his career he headed the plastics and fiberglass shops at the MAPO department of Walt Disney Imagineering.
:56 How he got his start with Disney in the late ‘50s; Precision camera machinist, including work on the multi-plane camera; Mary Poppins’ robin for “Spoonful of Sugar”
3:06 Audio Animatronics; Abraham Lincoln’s head, including tongue, smile and expressions; Programming the movements;
9:50 The atmosphere at WED; Walt Disney; Walt making money
14:00 Roger Broggie; Troubleshooting at Disneyland; skins for Jungle Cruise animals; problem with zebra stripes
18:02 Railroad locomotives and submarines for the Magic Kingdom in Walt Disney World; how we became stationed permanently in Florida
21:12 World’s Fair; Primeval World; Carousel of Progress
Goofy was celebrated throughout Disney in 1992, including The World According to Goofy parade at Disneyland. Above are a few of the photos I took of the parade. The lavish parade represented Goofy in various settings including the Italian “Renais-sauce,” “Egyptian Daze” and running for president of the United States. I’d vote for him!
Enjoy this slide show of photos of Wally Boag! Listen to the interview directly under the photos.
Wally Boag starred in Disneyland’s Golden Horseshoe Revue stage show from 1955 to 1982. During that time, some of his other contributions include appearing in some of Walt Disney’s movies, entertaining the troops in Iceland, performing in a Walt Disney stage show at Radio City Music Hall, writing Walt Disney’s Enchanted Tiki Room attraction and providing the voice of that show’s emcee macaw, Jose.
2:35 His start in showbiz
9:26 Donald Novis; Golden Horseshoe Revue audition for Walt Disney
11:59 Fulton Burley; writing Walt Disney’s Enchanted Tiki Room; under contract with MGM; bring Fulton to the Horseshoe
14:03 History of “spitting out teeth” as Pecos Bill
16:33 More about the Tiki Room and writing for WED (now known as Walt Disney Imagineering); the Tiki Room in Tokyo Disneyland; the barker bird in Disneyland; his involvement in the Haunted Mansion
19:43 Stunt double for Fred MacMurray in the Absent-Minded Professor
Here’s a rarity from my collection. That’s Wally Boag, star of Disneyland’s Golden Horseshoe Revue with Hollywood legend Pat O’Brien. At this newsstand in Disneyland, guests could purchase “The Disneyland News” newspapers, and get their name personalized in the headline! By the way, I’ll be posting an interview I did with Wally very soon!
Back in the ’80s when I was working at Disney TV Animation, a wonderful artist gave me a collection of photos including the above. They depict Walt Disney returning to the Kansas City Art Institute in 1963, a school he attended as a child, to receive a Distinguished Alumnus award.
In this newspaper clipping, 1967 Disneyland Ambassador Marcia Miner is seen inside the all-new Adventure Thru Inner Space, giving a tour to John Gillis, vice president of Monsanto Company, the sponsor of the attraction.
I had the chance to talk with Marcia, and I will be posting that conversation very soon!