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NOW IT'S TIME TO SAY GOODBYE...
People
Posted on May 25 2009 by Greg
I know I'm a little late, but I wanted to add my condolences and remembrances of the great Wayne Allwine, who I think brought a dimension to Mickey that was uniquely his own, especially in performances such as THE PRINCE AND THE PAUPER.



He and Russi Taylor did several Mickey and Minnie sessions for stuff I worked on and it was always a marvel to see them connect professionally.

It was also a pleasure to see them at various Disney press events, though the way Wayne's less vigorous appearance in recent years did concern me, but that was their private business.

He once told me about a radio show concept he was passionately pursuing, apparently in association with Roy E. Disney, and he regretted that it did not get off the ground. If anything remains of this project, hopefully it will be salvaged and given a spotlight.

More than anything, Wayne was extremely dedicated to the magnitude of carrying on the legacy of doing Mickey's voice, kind of like becoming a Jedi master, only even more singular an honor.










Good Grief, Simon Cowell!
People
Posted on Feb 28 2009 by Greg

My sharp-eyed daughter noticed, as the credits for the new DVD of You're the Greatest, Charlie Brown were racing by, that Casey Carlson was a voice actor in that special.



The imdb.com listing credits her as the voice of Marcie, as well as an American Idol contestant. But how can she be 20 years old if the Peanuts special first aired in 1979?



Either the imdb is wrong (and there are two Casey Carlsons) or she's got some kind of Benjamin Button thing going on. Or, it's like that Twilight Zone with Ann Blyth and she was also really Cleopatra, too.










WHY MARK EVANIER -- AND HIS BLOG -- ARE SO COOL
People
Posted on Feb 09 2009 by Greg

If you are at all interested in classic comedy, great television, animation, show business or life in general, you should take a look at Mark Evanier's blog at www.newsfromme.com. There is also a lot of previous material that is fascinating.



Mark grew up in the Hollywood area during several phases of entertainment, either in his youth as a spectator (including watching tapings of "Rowan & Martin's Laugh-In," or as a participant (as a writer/producer and in countless brushes with greatness).

My thanks to Mark for turning me on to Shokus Internet Radio (www.shokusradio.com) and the various BBC online things to listen to.

Shokus Radio is a paradise for baby boomers who love classic TV, music and comedy. See here for the schedule, then click and enjoy. If you'd like to save shows to hear whenever you want, you might want to look into something like Audio Hijack. Then you can set the timer like a TiVo.

There are about seven BBC Radio stations, but my favorites are BBC 2 (music and variety, www.bbc.co.uk/radio2), BBC 4 (comedy and drama, www.bbc.co.uk/radio4) and BBC 7 (new and classic comedy and drama, www.bbc.co.uk/bbc7).

Pretty much all of their programs can be enjoyed for up to seven days after the initial broadcast. The best thing to do is go over the programming lists or schedules, pick some shows here and there and see what suits you.

Thanks, Mark!










WHY RICARDO MONTALBAN IS -- AND WILL ALWAYS BE -- COOL
People
Posted on Jan 15 2009 by Greg

Take a look at the
remarkable recollection writer/ producer Mark Evanier recounts on his superior blog and you'll see just one example of the kind of family bond and values of the late Ricardo Montalban. I really can't add anything beyond that except some other factoids you probably won't see anywhere else.



Senor Montalban was related by marriage to one of our dearest Mouse Tracks friends, the lovely Teri York. Her son Gil Smith, an
acclaimed photographer by the way, is married to Anita, one of the four Montalban children. Gil is very involved in the Ricardo Montalban Theater in Hollywood -- which was originally the famed Lux Radio Theater where Cecil B. DeMille and most of the biggest stars and greatest voice actors of all time re-enacted movies in a one-hour format. Unlike ao many imaginary locations concocted for golden age radio, this theater was for real and still stands -- only now it is dedicated to The Ricardo Montalban Foundation and hosted the Nosotros American Latino Film Festival and other events.

One of the stars who appeared frequently on Lux Radio Theater was the Oscar-winning
Loretta Young. Senor Montalban's widow is Loretta's half-sister, Georgiana. Theirs was one of the longest Hollywood marriages in history.



The Montalban connection to other Hollywood/Disney royalty doesn't stop there, either. Georgiana's half-brother-in-law was Norman Foster, who directed Walt Disney's Davy Crockett shows as well as episodes of Zorro. Take THAT, Kevin Bacon!



And speaking of Zorro, as Tim Hollis remarked today,
"Now NO ONE will ever know that Zorro was really Don Diego de la Vega!" (Senor Montalban played Captain Esteban in the 1974 TV movie version, The Mark of Zorro.)
- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
COMMENT FROM TIM HOLLIS (1/16): "Yes, but what I actually had in mind was that segment of the 25th anniversary show in 1978, where they showed repeated clips from the old b&w show in which Montalban tried to tell people about Zorro's identity and they laughed at him. Then, he calls in Ed Asner as Lou Grant and claims he has a big scoop for his newspaper. Lou/Ed is unimpressed."



GREG: Oops! My bad. Tim was referring to Senor Montalban's role of Ramon Castillo on the Disney Zorro TV series. As Albert Mouse said, "I've learned that I still have a lot to learn!"]











PATRICK McGOOHAN'S "VILLAGE" & DISNEY'S "VILLAGE"
People
Posted on Jan 14 2009 by Greg



The immensely talented Patrick McGoohan has passed away, prompting an observation from me that you are free to scoff and guffaw upon: his landmark TV series The Prisoner was created and produced in 1967, shortly after the actor/writer/director performed in the exceptional Walt Disney productions The Three Lives of Thomasina and Dr. Syn.


Disneyland

Undoubtedly Mr. McGoohan must have visited Disneyland during those days, and I cannot help wondering if his idyllic-yet-totalitarian vision for The Prisoner was based in part on the relentlessly happy Disney theme park environments that belied the rigidity beneath. The doors opened automatically, everything was sparkling clean.


Walt Disney World Village

When I joined Disney over two decades ago, there was a place in Florida called "Walt Disney World Village" which was renamed Disney Village Marketplace and is currently Downtown Disney Marketplace. The directional signs leading to the area called it "Disney Village," but those inside Disney simply called it "The Village." The irony was not lost on me. Or maybe it was just me.


"The Village"

Anyway, the real location for the TV "Village" was Portmeirion in Wales. Want to vacation there? Book a lovely getaway package right here. Maybe you'll luck out and be there when "the flavor of the day is STRAW-Bree." Only be on the lookout for those giant white balloon thingys that used to chase those who tried to escape. You can even order those weird telephones they used on the show!


The weird phone

We'll miss McGoohan, particularly his unique voice -- my siblings and I often mimicked his line from the movie Silver Streak: "Don't put yerr foot on the pedalll!"













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