The first phase of Disney World's All-Star Sports Resort, Surf's Up
(located at 1991 West Buena Vista Drive) opens. A haven for sports
fans, the Florida resort will eventually consist of 5 themed hotels
(10 buildings in all) each bordered by a giant sports icon.
Disney's 2002 animated Treasure Planet is released to DVD.
Disney's Pluto's Sweater, directed by Charles A. Nichols, is released in theaters. Pluto has to
wear a pink sweater that Minnie has knitted ... much to his dismay and the delight of laughing Figaro (Minnie's cat). The
short features the voices of Pinto Colvig (as Pluto), Ruth Clifford (as Minnie Mouse) and the music of Oliver Wallace.
Actress Nora Dunn, Lilly Keeble in the 2001 Max Keeble's Big Move, is born in Chicago, Illinois. (TV fans will recognize her as a member of Saturday Night Live from 1985-1990.)
Disney's live-action Something Wicked This Way Comes is released. Based on a Ray Bradbury novel, the film stars Jason Robards, Jonathan Pryce, Diane Ladd, and Royal Dano (the voice of Abraham Lincoln for Disney's Great Moments with Mr. Lincoln attraction). Two young boys named Will and Jim encounter a sinister carnival whose proprietor, Mr. Dark, lures the people of a small town to their doom by promising to fulfill their childhood desires.
At the 61st Academy Awards, the live-action/animated Who Framed
Roger Rabbit wins Oscars for Film Editing, Sound Effects, Visual
Effects, and for Animation Direction.
Disney-MGM Studios holds a press preview with such celebrities
as Audrey Hepburn, Bette Midler, Betty White, George Burns, and
The Pointer Sisters. As she won't be present when the park officially opens Monday May 1,
Audrey Hepburn leaves her handprints and signature on the courtyard of The Great Movie Ride.
In Florida, five-time Grammy winner Al Jarreau performs two shows at Disney World's Pleasure Island's West End Stage.
The West End production of Beauty and the Beast opens at London's Dominion Theatre. The live musical features Julie Alanah Brighton as Belle, Alasdair Harvey as the Beast,
and Burke Moses (reprising his Broadway role) as Gaston.
Actor Michael J. Fox pays a visit to Walt Disney World to
add his handprints to the Disney-MGM Studios collection.
MousePlanet holds its "Mouse Adventure" competition at Disneyland. This light-hearted event, loosely based on the Cast Member event "Minnie's Moonlit
Madness," is a scavenger hunt-like game which awards prizes to the top teams.
Victoria and Albert's
(located on the second floor
restaurant at Walt
Disney Channel is launched in Turkey exclusively on the DIGITURK digital platform.
Disneyland's Pendleton Woolen Mills Dry Goods Store (in Frontierland) closes.
It will reopen as the Bonanza Outfitters shop the following June.
"Dang it, Jim. I'm an astronomer, not a doctor! I mean, I am a doctor, but I'm not that kind of doctor. I have a doctorate, it's not the same thing. You can't help people with a doctorate. You just sit there and you're useless!" -Doctor Doppler (Treasure Planet)
Former Imagineers Rolly Crump and (the late) Don Edgren are honored at Disneyland with Main Street windows. Prior to the park's opening, family, friends and fans of the two Disney Legends gather to witness the dedication of the store windows. Walt Disney Imagineering Ambassador Marty Sklar and Disneyland Resort President Ed Grier are on hand for the ceremony.
Disney-MGM Press Preview Day
The Academy Awards of Science - the Discover Magazine Awards for Technological Innovation, are presented at Epcot's America Gardens Theatre.
To participate in the Florida Green Lodging program, WDW had to install ENERGYSTAR® rated equipment, energy efficient lighting, and timers on outdoor lighting, reduce greenhouse gas emissions as well as utility costs. In addition, the resort also implemented a towel and linen reuse program and low-flow faucets and showerheads, and hotels began recycling newspaper, office paper and aluminum cans.
Disney's Touchstone Pictures releases The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy in U.S.
theaters. A science fiction comedy starring Sam Rockwell, Mos Def, Zooey Deschanel and John Malkovich, it
is based on the book of the same name by Douglas Adams.
LIFE magazine offers "Still Magic After All These Years," a 3-page article celebrating
Disneyland’s 50th anniversary.
Disney's Hollywood Records releases Raven-Symoné, the self-titled fourth studio
album by singer/actress Raven-Symoné (known to Disney Channel fans for her role on the series That's So Raven).
The Disney-owned Lyric Street Records releases the self-titled debut album from
singer Phil Stacey. First gaining national attention on season 6 of American Idol, he was signed to a recording contract with Lyric Street after being eliminated from the competition in May 2007.
Shirley Temple takes part in the dedication of the Sleeping Beauty Castle walk-through
at Disneyland. In attendance is Walt Disney and Temple's oldest daughter Linda, son Charles, and youngest daughter
Lori. (Back in 1939 child star Shirley Temple had presented Walt with an honorary Academy Award - one big Oscar & seven little ones - for Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs.)
The wedding of Prince William and Kate Middleton is broadcast live from Westminster Abbey on large screens in the lobby of the Dolphin hotel at Walt Disney World beginning
at 5 a.m. Meanwhile over at Disney's Wedding Pavilion, Disney’s Fairy Tale Weddings & Honeymoons host their very first tweetup at the Walt Disney World Resort for a Royal Sleepover. Wearing wedding gowns and pajamas, guests watch the Royal Wedding live on big screen televisions in the pavilion and outside on the beach. At Epcot, the United Kingdom Pavilion is decorated with flags in honor of the special occasion and cast members greet one another with calls of "happy wedding day!"
Over on the West Coast, the Disney Wonder sails under the iconic Golden Gate Bridge
in San Francisco for the very first time. The ship is currently charting a course up the West Coast to
reposition for Disney's first-ever voyage to Alaska.
Timothy and Amy Sumabat (from Everett, Washington), winners of D23's Behind the
Magic contest, arrive on the Disney Studio Lot for their very special private tour. (The
contest was launched to celebrate Walt Disney Studios' November 2010 DVD release of The Boys: The Sherman
Brothers Story, Walt & El Grupo and Waking Sleeping Beauty.)
Prom, a teen romantic comedy film directed by Joe Nussbaum and produced by Ted
Griffin and Justin Springer, is released through Walt Disney Pictures. About teenagers going to their prom, the film features Aimee Teegarden, Nicholas Braun (most famous for his role in Disney's Sky High), Danielle Campbell (known for her role as Jessica Olson in the 2010 Disney Channel Original Movie Starstruck), Cameron
Monaghan and Christine Elise.
The first Grad Nite of the 2011 season kicks off this evening at Walt Disney World's
Magic Kingdom at 10PM. A yearly event for high school seniors since 1972, this will be the last year for
Grad Nite at WDW. (The event will also be held April 30 and May 6 & 7.)
It is reported that Disney has purchased The Carousel Inn, a hotel that sits
directly across Harbor Boulevard from its two Anaheim theme parks, for $32 million.
Disney, through a limited-liability corporation, Carousel Holdings EAT, purchased the 131-room Carousel Inn & Suites
on 1530 S. Harbor Blvd. from Good Hope International. (Disney had finalized the purchase on March 23.)
The premiere run of Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs comes to a close when the
Disney studio pulls it off the market in the U.S. by day's end.
(First premiering in December 1937, the popular animated film has been running since January 1938.)
Disney confirms that the Earffel Tower, one of the original and iconic structures of
Disney's Hollywood Studios, has been removed. The company announced last January that the 130-foot-tall "water tower" (it didn't actually hold water), topped with a gigantic set of mouse ears, would be coming down. The tower's name which played off Paris' Eiffel Tower, was used as a symbol of Disney-MGM (Hollywood Studios' original name) since 1988.