Well, it happened. After an amazing year and a half, the Diamond Celebration at Disneyland has departed. I’ll really miss those projected orange groves at the beginning of Disneyland Forever and all those sparkly diamonds. A girl can dream. But there’s something I love almost as much that will replace it all . . . HALLOWEEN! I’m getting giggly. I’d better get on with this column before I start filling you in on all my wonderful costume ideas, but that’s an article for another time.
It’s the Most Wonderful Time of the Year at Disneyland!
Halloween Time Officially Started on the ninth of September, and as my pally Tim said after a visit last week, Walt’s park no longer has an “off time”, but it’s not miserably crowded, and the weather is lovely. Fall favorites like those incredible poison apple mugs are back (til they sell out, hurry up!), and in terms of decor, orange is the new….blue. The Diamond Celebration is now something we’ll bore our grandkids about, along with other great Disneyland celebrations of the past, like the 25th Anniversary “Family Reunion”, “Blast to the Past!”, and “State Fair”, complete with Ferris wheel and pig races on Main Street, U.S.A. Ah, the days when Disneyland was nothing but dignity and class, when instead of the Partners Statue, there was the Wheel of Death, or the Disneyland Dream Machine that played music and spun as it gave away stuffed toys, DVDs and Geo Metro automobiles for the 35th Anniversary. The machine is still down there, underneath Walt and Mickey, silently plotting its return for the 70th Anniversary.
(Don’t worry, I’m joking. Yes, it’s there, No, it’s not plotting. Well, it might be plotting, but at this point it’s too rusted to actually carry out anything it might be plotting, so don’t worry.)
Here’s a few photos my daughter Alice Hill took at Disneyland this afternoon:
I promised that I would post photos of Sally in our Haunted Mansion and the Gingerbread House as soon as I could, and the great people at Disneyland came through. These two photos were taken by Scott Brinegar and put up today in honor of the #HalloweenTime media event today at Disneyland. I don’t know if Scott is the new Paul Hiffmeyer or even if there will be a new Hiffmeyer. Those straps are pretty hard to fill, but I think these photos came out really swell – in fact, they’re gorgeous:
Universal Studios Hollywood Unleashes a Terrifying Trio of All-New Mazes at “Halloween Horror Nights”
Freddy Krueger. Jason Voorhees. Leatherface. Michael Myers. The four most terrifying names in horror come together at this year’s “Halloween Horror Nights” at Universal Studios Hollywood as the silver screen’s extreme serial killers bleed into a trio of all-new slasher-themed mazes, beginning Friday, September 16, 2016. (That’s THIS WEEKEND!!! Are you ready???)
In “Freddy vs. Jason,” demented killer Freddy Krueger (A Nightmare on Elm Street) returns to the scene of the crime, this time accompanied by notorious hockey mask killer Jason Voorhees (Friday the 13th) to inflict twice as much terror. Inspired by New Line Cinema’s 2003 film that brought together the biggest horror icons in history, this new experiential maze thrusts guests into an epic battle in which the fate of only one killer will survive.
Warning: Dead fake/stuffed armadillo, gruesome masks. 38 seconds:
The unspeakable terror embroiled within “The Texas Chainsaw Massacre: Blood Brothers” maze, based on Tobe Hooper’s original film, will pit guests against the unsavory wrath of the demented killer, Leatherface, and his mentally unhinged brother, Chop Top, as they unite in misery to expand the family’s cannibalistic enterprise and slaughter a new generation of innocent victims. With the perverse duo at the helm of a grotesque BBQ restaurant staged inside a dilapidated roadside gas station, unwitting guests will soon realize that new terror awaits as the blood brothers (and their deadly Daddy too!) continue their hedonistic prey on human flesh.
Escaped mental patient Michael Myers makes a homecoming return in “Halloween: Hell Comes to Haddonfield,” an all-new maze inspired by the second film in the classic “Halloween” horror franchise. Echoing the infamous words uttered by the film’s Dr. Sam Loomis, “You can’t kill the Boogeyman,” the twisted maze will shed new light on the terrifying lunacy of Michael Myers as he scours the streets of Haddonfield and stalks the halls of Haddonfield Memorial Hospital in ruthless pursuit of his victims.
“Halloween Horror Nights” 2016 at Universal Studios Hollywood kicks off on Friday, September 16, 2016. The popular event brings together the sickest minds in horror to immerse guests in a living, breathing, three-dimensional world of terror. Featuring an all-new slate of unrivaled film production quality mazes, frightful scare zones and a fully re-imagined “Terror Tram” experience uniquely themed to today’s most definitive horror properties, “Halloween Horror Nights” will taunt, terrorize and torment guests with spine-chilling haunted attractions as part of Southern California’s most extreme Halloween experience. The all-new “The Walking Dead” permanent attraction, based on AMC’s hit show will further enhance “Halloween Horror Night’s” terrifying lineup.
Finding Dory Swims Home for the Holidays!
The summer blockbuster hit, Disney•Pixar’s “Finding Dory,” swims home just in time for the holidays on Digital HD and Disney Movies Anywhere (DMA) on Oct. 25 and on Blu-ray 3D™, Blu-ray, DVD and On-Demand on Nov. 15. Viewers can watch Dory’s hilarious and heartwarming quest to find her family and continue the underwater adventure with hours of immersive bonus features.
The film’s playful and plentiful bonus offerings include “Piper,” the theatrical short film starring an irresistible sandpiper hatchling; an all-new mini short featuring interviews with Dory’s pals from the Marine Life Institute; a behind-the-scenes look at the most challenging character Pixar has ever created; never-before-seen deleted scenes, including a digital exclusive featuring the Tank Gang from “Finding Nemo” who make it their mission to get Marlin and Nemo to the Marine Life Institute; and much, much more.
“Finding Dory” features an all-star voice cast, reuniting Ellen DeGeneres (“The Ellen DeGeneres Show”) and Albert Brooks (“This is 40”) as Dory and Marlin, the ever-optimistic blue tang and the uptight but loyal clownfish. Ed O’Neill (“Modern Family”) lends his voice to “septopus” Hank, Kaitlin Olson (“It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia”) voices whale shark Destiny, and Ty Burrell (“Modern Family”) gives voice to beluga whale Bailey. Dory’s doting parents Charlie and Jenny are portrayed by Eugene Levy (“Schitt’s Creek”) and Diane Keaton (“Love the Coopers”), and 12-year-old Hayden Rolence (“Beta Persei”) steps in as Nemo, the young clownfish with a lucky fin.
Thirteen years after the original, audiences get a new chapter in the story of their favorite forgetful blue tang. As returning director Andrew Stanton describes, “I realized that I was worried about Dory. The idea of her short-term memory loss and how it affected her was unresolved. What if she got lost again?” His response is a touching tale of friendship and family that’s truly unforgettable … perhaps even for Dory.
Bonus features include*:
Blu-ray 3D, Blu-ray & Digital HD:
- Theatrical Short: “Piper” – A hungry sandpiper hatchling ventures from her nest for the first time to dig for food by the shoreline. The only problem is that the food is buried beneath the sand where scary waves roll up onto the shore.
- Marine Life Interviews (All-New Mini Short) – Meet the inhabitants of the Marine Life Institute as they remember our favorite blue tang.
- The Octopus That Nearly Broke Pixar – Pixar’s “Team Hank” unravels the challenges, frustrations, and rewards of bringing to life the studio’s crankiest and most technically complicated character ever.
- What Were We Talking About? – This piece showcases the complex routes Dory’s story took as the filmmakers worked to construct a comprehensive narrative involving a main character with short-term memory loss.
- Casual Carpool – What’s it like to commute with the voices of Marlin, Charlie, Bailey and Hank? Join “Finding Dory” writer/director Andrew Stanton as he drives Albert Brooks, Eugene Levy, Ty Burrell and Ed O’Neill to work.
- Animation & Acting – How do you create a connection between a human audience and a fish? This behind-the-scenes look behind the curtain examines the process of constructing believable performances through a unique collaboration between the director, voice actors and animators.
- Creature Features – The cast of “Finding Dory” share cool facts about the creatures they voice in the film.
- Deep in the Kelp – Disney Channel’s Jenna Ortega guides us on a research trip to the Monterey Bay Aquarium to show how far the “Finding Dory” crew went to make Dory’s world feel real.
- Skating & Sketching with Jason Deamer – “Finding Dory” character art director Jason Deamer talks about how he got to Pixar, how he draws the characters in the film, and how falling off a skateboard teaches you lessons you can use in art and life.
- Dory’s Theme – A spirited discussion among the composer, music editor and director of “Finding Dory” about the musical elements that shape Dory’s quirky and joyful theme.
- Rough Day on the Reef – Sometimes computers make mistakes. Here you’ll see some of the funny, creepy and just plain bizarre footage the crew encountered while making “Finding Dory.”
- Commentary – Director Andrew Stanton, co-director Angus MacLane and producer Lindsey Collins deliver their personal perspective on “Finding Dory.”
- Deleted Scenes (introduced by director Andrew Stanton)
- Losing Nemo – While watching the stingray migration, Dory starts to follow two fish that remind her of her parents, leaving Nemo all alone.
- Little Tension in Clown Town – In this alternate version of the film, Dory tries to “follow her fins” to her parents, but ends up in a strange place with even stranger fish fashion.
- Dory Dumped – In this early version of the story, Dory’s parents had short-term memory loss as well.
- Sleep Swimming – Dory begins to talk and swim in her sleep, revealing what seem to be clues to her past.
- Meeting Hank – Wandering the Marine Life Institute’s elaborate pipe system, Dory happens upon the abode of Hank the cranky octopus.
- The Pig – Frantically navigating the pipes of the Marine Life Institute in search of her parents, Dory crosses paths with a terrifying cleaning device.
- Starting Over – Director Andrew Stanton presents four different versions of the movie’s opening scene to illustrate the filmmakers’ search for the best way to introduce Dory’s backstory and to connect this new film to “Finding Nemo.”
- Tank Gang (Digital exclusive) – After a close encounter with a squid leaves them separated from Dory, Marlin and Nemo unexpectedly meet up with the Tank Gang from “Finding Nemo,” who make it their mission to get to the Marine Life Institute … by any means necessary.
- Hidden Seacrets of Finding Dory (Digital exclusive) – Take a deep dive to catch secret Easter Eggs throughout the movie. And just like Hank, they’re hidden in plain sight.
- Theatrical Short: Piper & Commentary
Moana Trailer Coming Thursday – New Poster Now
Here’s the new poster for Disney’s Moana coming to theatres in 3D this Thanksgiving. Yesterday, Dwayne Johnson (voice of Maui) revealed it exclusively on Instagram and announced that the brand new trailer will debut this Thursday, September 15!
Meet Admiral Thrawn on Star Wars Rebels September 24!
Let the tea houses and ice cream shops of the world just shut down already; the ValHilla gals will be curled up in front of warm, comforting glow of the television as Star Wars Rebels launches into Season Three with a one-hour special and all I have to tell you is:
Disney Enchanted Tales – More to come
I’m Fabshelly if you want to look me up while you’re playing. I got a late start playing because I had to work. Thursday, I’ll give you a more in-depth look at gameplay and a nice peek at the launch party, which was magnificent. Usually, when an IP-heavy company tries to go after a genre like world-building, etc, they come up short. Disney came at it from a unique perspective – the story quilt, and really turned on the storytelling and charm – what could have been something annoying and tacky is, instead, adorable but not sickeningly so, much more Jim Shore than Lisa Frank. You’ll see Thursday.
The game itself has four out of five stars, not bad for an unknown quantity in its genre. The closest it’s had has been Magic Kingdom.
Kevin and Jody at Pop! Comics SEVEN MORE WEEKS
A whole lot sold the first night, but Jody Daily (or Davis if you’re a Celebration, Florida travel agent) told me and Noe that it’s barely the beginning of what they have, so GET OVER THERE!!!!
Here’s a small taste of what I’ll be showing you Thursday:
To go look at and/or buy these incredible amazing wonderful things so that those two nice men pictured above can finally have room to make more stuff, go here.
Putting the Fun in Fundraiser
We are getting ever closer to the Anaheim Halloween Parade. It’s on October 29. Please do your Fabby a solid and see if you can help out in some way or other, whether it’s with your art, your acting, or your awesome brute force. Go to http://anaheimhalloweenparade.org/ and follow the half-moon.
I was celebrating Jeff Tucker’s birthday in Buena Park – Happy birthday, Jeff!!! So Noe represented Familia VallHilla and had a great time with our friend Steve Russo and a bunch of other nice people, all for a great cause. Walt Disney had his artists and animators design a few of the original floats, and the later generations are restoring them, along with people who love Disney, love history, love Anaheim, love Halloween, and just love a parade. Wouldn’t it be fun?
Upcoming MiceChat Events – Mark Your Calendars!
October 1st – MiceChat Knott’s Scary Farm Halloween Haunt Event
Join us in the fog for a night of spooky treats and VIP experiences. For one low price, you’ll get an all you can eat BOO-ffet dinner, early entry into the event, tours, meet and greets with Knott’s creatives, front of line for the mazes, VIP seating for shows, Skeleton Key access and a night of fun with your mice pals at the haunt which started it all. We have a VERY limited number of tickets available this year, SIGN UP NOW – HERE
October 10th – Mickey’s Halloween Party @ Disneyland
Join the MiceChatters for a not so scary Halloween event on Monday October 10th. Please buy your own tickets directly from Disney for the October 10th Halloween Party. Then sign up for MiceChat’s event list HERE to be notified about event meeting times and locations. It promises to be a night filled with candy, friendship, headless horsemen, scary parades and fireworks!
November 3rd and 4th – New York Meet-ups and events
The MiceChatters invade NYC in November before their New York to Puerto Rico cruise. We’ll be seeing Aladdin and Cirque Du Soleil Paramour as well as taking a city tour. If you are interested in any or all of these activities, please contact [email protected] for more information.
And The Answer Is:
The pumpkin in a tree photo that I shared at the top of today’s column is from the “Halloween Tree” in Disneyland’s Frontierland. It’s a tribute to Walt Disney’s good friend Ray Bradbury. One of Ray’s most beloved stories is “The Halloween Tree”. Here’s a photo of the full tree and a recording of the story.
And the story, so you’ll understand why this tree is so special.
Thanks to my Patreon Patrons and to Nick Cotton and his team of DVC Pros at DVCResaleMarket.com, where you can go and learn about Disney Vacation Club points and how they work without having to hand over any personal information. It’s right there on their website and YouTube Channel. But if you do have any questions, there’s no one better to ask. With almost a decade of experience both inside and outside of Disney, you can be sure to get unbiased and informed information and personalized care. Check out DVCResaleMarket.com today! PLUS, if you mention MICECHAT, you’ll get $50 OFF closing costs!
If you want to reach me I’m on Twitter, on Facebook,
and also available at [email protected]
If you’d like to support Fab News, I’d appreciate it. You can pledge a dollar or more a month through Patreon. Just click on the link or the banner below. Thanks!
FTC-Mandated Disclosure: Sponsorship for this month’s Fab News was provided by DVC Resale Market.