Pooh's Heffalump Halloween (an all-new original
movie) is released direct to DVD and VHS.
Legendary singer-songwriter Mel Tormé, best known for
co-writing "The Christmas Song", is born in Chicago, Illinois.
He wrote the song "County Fair" for Disney's 1948 live-action
So Dear to My Heart and in 1996 recorded and released A&E: An
Evening With Mel Tormé Live From the Disney Institute.
Walt Disney's father Elias passes away in Los Angeles, California at
the age of 82. Walt is currently in South America in the middle of a 10-week trip.
Original Mouseketeer Judy Harriet Spiegelman is born in Los
Angeles, California. A veteran performer with over 8 years of experience before
becoming a Mouseketeer, she will be signed to a 7-year contract with the Disney Studios.
Conductor Leopold Stokowski passes away in his house in Hampshire,
England, at age 95. In 1940, Stokowski made the famous film Fantasia together with Walt
Disney, in which cartoon figures move in ballet-like sequences to classical music. Stokowski was
also a transcriber of music originally written in other forms. He arranged many of J.S. Bach's
keyboard and instrumental works, as well as songs and cantata movements. Probably his best
known work is the "Toccata and Fugue in D minor," (originally composed for organ) which serves
as the opening piece in Disney's Fantasia.
Animator Don Bluth quits Disney and takes a third of the top artists with
him. (Often controversial, Bluth will become Disney's most serious rival
since Max Fleischer!)
The TV series Disney's Wonderful World airs for the last time on NBC. Starting
on September 26, the series will be called simply Walt Disney and air on CBS.
The Themed Entertainment Association presents its 1997 THEA Awards at the
Beverly Hills Hotel. Among the winners is Disneyland's Pirates of the Caribbean.
One Saturday Morning, a two-hour ABC Saturday morning show (airing various
episodes of animated series along with various short segments) first airs. Debuting
as part of One Saturday Morning are two new series from Disney: Pepper Ann and Recess. Pepper Ann
focuses on a quirky 12-year-old girl (voiced by Kathleen Wilhoite) with an eternal quest to be cool. Recess
follows a small group of fourth-graders at Third Street Elementary School and their interactions with teachers
and other students.
Muppets Tonight, an updated version of The Muppet Show, debuts on Disney
Channel. It is the second season for the series, as the first 10 episodes aired on ABC-TV in 1996.
Members of Disney's stage show The Lion King perform "Can You
Feel the Love Tonight" on ABC-TV's Good Morning America.
The thirty-sixth episode of Disney's Recess, "Hustler's Apprentice/The Spy
Who Came in From the Playground" premieres on UPN and in syndication.
Disney World enters what they call "Level 5 Hurricane Preparedness" as tropical
storm Gabrielle threatens Florida.
Out of respect for the victim's of the September 11th terrorists attack, Disney
World's New Year's Eve celebration (held nightly at Pleasure Island) is again
Actress Dorothy McGuire, known for her roles in many live-action Disney films
such as Summer Magic, Swiss Family Robinson, and Old Yeller, passes at the
age of 85 in Los Angeles, California. (Film fans will remember McGuire for her roles in such
classics as A Tree Grows in Brooklyn, The Spiral Staircase, and Gentlemen's Agreement.)
Singer-actress Maya Days steps into the role of Aida for the first time in Disney's
Broadway musical Aida. She is the second actress to portray the lead character.
Who Wants To Be A Millionaire - Play It! premieres at Disney's California
The Lizzie McGuire episode "Movin' On Up" debuts on Disney Channel.
The campy and glamorous Mistress of the Dark, Elvira, hosts a wild
Friday the 13th party at Disney-MGM Studios.
Latin Rhythm Nights kicks off with Marc Anthony at
Pleasure Island, Florida.
Disney World recycles
over 1 million pounds of
scrap metal and 1.5
million pounds of wooden
Disney World's Haunted Mansion reopens after a summer
refurbishment ... just in time for the Halloween season.
A special afternoon event takes place at the Fox Dome Theater in Ocean Park,
California. Walt Disney, Ub Iwerks, and Carl Stalling (Disney's musical director) give a live presentation
on how the Mickey Mouse shorts are created.
The Walt Disney Company acquires Discover - a science magazine. The
monthly publication was originally launched in October 1980 by Time Inc. Disney will later sell
Discover in October 2005 to Bob Guccione Jr.
British novelist, short story writer and screenwriter Roald Dahl is born in Wales.
His most popular books include "The Twits," "Charlie and the Chocolate Factory," and "James and the Giant Peach."
First published in the USA in 1961, "James and the Giant Peach" was released as a film by Walt Disney Pictures in
1996. Dahl also received posthumous songwriting credits for the soundtrack of Tim Burton's 2005 film adaptation of
Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, as several songs written by Dahl for the novel were used in the film, set to music
composed by Danny Elfman. (Dahl's book Revolting Rhymes features a rewritten version of Snow White. His Snow
White is a savvy young woman who steals the magic mirror to help the dwarfs gamble on winning horses!)
The fourth and final day of the first D23 Expo takes place at
the Anaheim Convention Center in California. Among this day's 17
events - "The Making of Toy Story Mania!," a glimpse of what the future holds for
Disney/Pixar, a Silver Banjo Barbecue Panel with David and Ron DeFore - sons
of film & TV star Don DeFore, "From Annette to Miley: How Disney Pop Changed
the World," and a sneak peek at what's in store for Toy Story 3.
"Music can be all things to all persons. It is like a great dynamic sun in the center of a solar system which
sends out its rays and inspiration in every direction .... music makes us feel that the heavens open and a
divine voice calls. Something in our souls responds and understands." -Leopold Stokowski
WDW Haunted Mansion re-opens
Disneyland employees take part in Minnie's Moonlit Madness. An annual fundraiser, the
event pits four-person teams of Disney employees, their family members and friends against each other in a
trivia game and scavenger hunt.
Actor Richard Dawson Kiel, best known for his role as the steel-toothed Jaws in
two James Bond movies, is born in Detroit, Michigan.
He is the voice of Vladamir for Disney's 2010 animated feature Tangled.
Entertainer and Disney Legend Wallace Vincent Boag is born in Portland, Oregon. In 1955, a friend told Boag about auditions for Disneyland's
Golden Horseshoe Revue. "Wally" won the role of Pecos Bill and quickly became one
of Walt's favorite comedic actors and an important part of Disneyland's live entertainment.
Both Boag and The Golden Horseshoe Revue are cited in The Guinness Book of World
Records for having the greatest number of performances of any theatrical presentation. At Disneyland, Boag also
provided the voice of the Audio-Animatronics parrot, Jose, in the Enchanted Tiki Room, and later, opened the
Diamond Horseshoe Revue at Walt Disney World in 1971. He also appeared in such live-action 1960s films as
The Love Bug and Son of Flubber. (Boag's performances have influenced many performers and comedians, most
notably Steve Martin, who studied Boag's humor and timing while working at Disneyland as a teenager!)
Mickey's Not-So-Scary Halloween Party is held for the very time this
season at the Magic Kingdom in Disney World. The family-friendly after-hours event
(from 7PM-midnight) offers loads of treats, character meet and greets and special entertainment unique to
the party. Mickey's annual Halloween bash is scheduled for 22 more selected nights through November 1.
"I can’t believe I’m a Disneyland Oldtimer...it seems like only yesterday, or maybe last week, that I couldn’t
get to the stage door of the Golden Horseshoe because they were still laying asphalt." -Wally Boag
Disney's Hollywood Studios celebrates Friday the 13th with the Unleash the
Villains event. Part of Disney's Limited Time Magic promotion, it includes a dance party hosted by Hades
(the ancient Greek god of the underworld), a meet-and-greet for villains around the park's
Echo Lake and "Villainy in the Skies" fireworks.
Photographer Yale Joel, an original staff member of Life magazine, passes away
at age 87 in New York City. Known as the "photographer of the impossible," Joel shot the group portrait
of all 1,500 Disney World employees for the iconic October 15, 1971 Life magazine cover. He also had 12 additional
Disney photographs inside the issue, several of kids with characters, including such rarities as Jose Carioca and
Giuseppi Cat. Born in the Bronx borough of New York, Joel began his photography career at 19. After serving as a
combat photographer in the U.S. Army Pictorial Service from 1942 to 1946, he joined the staff of Life. He remained
there until 1972, when he went into advertising and industrial photography.