Helloooo blog, a lot of my recent posts have been about Japan in some way or another, so today I am going to break it up with another of my interests – Disney! I LOVE DISNEY. I watched Tarzan the other day and forgot how awesome it was, it’s one of my favourite films of all time!
A little while ago I did a Pokémon trivia post which was really fun to research and write, and so I decided to do another one! There are lots of interesting things about the Disney films and the famous Disney World park itself, so here is a list of 25 fun and interesting facts – I bet you didn’t know half of these!!
1) Many of the Disney films are mother-free because of Walter’s guilt over his own mother’s death – I’m sure we have all wondered at some point, why-oh-why our favourite characters are/became motherless/parentless in their film; the reason being that Walter Disney feels guilty for the death of his own mother, and this is reflected in some of his earlier films such as Bambi and the Jungle Book. He bought his parents a house but due to a faulty heating system, his mother was killed of Carbon Monoxide poisoning.
2) There are only 4 films (traditional not Pixar) where both of the character’s parents are present for the entire film – These are 101 Dalmations, Peter Pan, Lady and the Tramp, and Mulan.
3) Pocahontas is the only princess based on a real person – All of the other princesses are fictional, and Mulan is based off of a legend which has no real evidence to support her existence.
4) There are secret tunnels underground at Disney World, Florida – Walter was apparently ‘unsettled’ by the sight of costumed characters running through the ‘wrong lands’ to get to their allotted spots which was spoiling the magic at the first site. He had tunnels built beneath Disney World so that actors could change into their costume and appear in the appropriate land without spoiling the illusion.
5) The Evil Queen from ‘Snow White’ does have a name – And that name is Queen Grimhilde, which sounds frightening in itself.
6) Scar from the ‘The Lion King’ also has a real name – His real name is ‘Taka’ which is Swahili for ‘want’, but there is no original plot line as to why he changed his name to Scar.
7) Jeremy Irons blew out his voice whilst singing ‘Be Prepared’ for TLK – So Jim Cummings (voice actor for Ed the Hyena) had to step in and mimic his vocals for the last third of the song; if you listen closely, you can hear the difference (I always thought it sounded slightly different).
8) Scar made a cameo in Hercules – In the part where Hercules is having himself painted onto a vase, he is wearing a lion skin over his shoulders; Zazu actually predicted this in TLK when he said that Scar would ‘make a very handsome throw-rug.’
9) Staff once weren’t allowed to grow any facial hair – Disney staff were once not allowed to grow a beard, and when the park first opened to guests, they were not granted admission if they had facial hair; despite his own rule, Walter Disney had a moustache!!
10) Simba’s roar was stolen from a Tigger – Because lion roars weren’t deemed loud enough, they used tiger roars instead for The Lion King.
11) Sid Phillips (the main antagonist in Toy Story) makes a cameo in Toy Story 3 – They’ve all grown up and Sid has managed to get himself a job as a garbage truck driver whilst Andy is off to college!
12) Mickey was originally going to be called ‘Mortimer’ – Walter was originally going to name Mickey as ‘Mortimer’ but his wife persuaded him that ‘Mickey’ had a much better ring to it; thank God she did and ‘Mortimer’ became another mouse character in the Mickey Mouse Cartoons!
13) ‘Man is in the forest’ was a code used by animators – It was used to warn colleagues to get back to work if Walter was coming down the hallway; it is also a quote used in Bambi by Bambi’s mother when she is asked by Bambi why they had to run – ‘Man was in the forest’.
14) Bambi’s mother was apparently killed by Judge Doom – In the early scripts of ‘Who Framed Roger Rabbit?’, it was revealed that Judge Doom was the man who killed Bambi’s mother.
15) Secret signature in The Lion King reads ‘SFX’ – Many people have spotted the hidden secrets within Disney films; whilst there are many, some people have unfortunately mistaken one of the hidden messages in TLK. When Simba flops down on a ledge, the dust thrown into the breeze spells ‘SFX’, and was placed there by the special effects team like a signature; but many people thought it said ‘SEX’.
16) A replica of Ellie and Carl’s house (inside and out) from Pixar’s UP was built IRL – It was built in Utah with an asking price of almost $400,000; Bangerter Homes got permission from Disney to build it.
17) The joke about what colour Princess Aurora’s dress should be was a real argument – In the film ‘Sleeping Beauty’, the fairies fight over what colour Aurora’s dress should be; this was inspired by the real squabble that occurred in the studio over whether it should be pink or blue.
18) Disney’s park operations were so tightly controlled that Disney characters shared underwear – Gross right? Apparently the staff were forced to wear provided underwear because there was a chance that their own underwear would bunch up whilst in costume and become visible to the guests. Actors would hand in their undergarments and they were supposed to be washed each night in hot water, but some would complain that their underwear was filthy and smelly; there were cases of pubic lice and scabies, and this led to an agreement with the actor’s union which allowed them to take home their own undergarments for washing! Ew!
19) ‘Pirates of the Carribean: At World’s End’ is the most expensive film ever made, with ‘Tangled’ being the second – Tangled cost $260 million to make, which means it cost more than James Cameron’s ‘Avatar’!
20) Monster’s Inc. character ‘Boo’ is really called Mary – It is written on one of her drawings, and the girl who voices her is also called Mary.
21) At least 50 children kissed frogs after watching ‘The Princess and the Frog’ – They were hospitalised after being diagnosed with salmonella.
22) Ariel from ‘The Little Mermaid’ is the only princess to have had a child – Although no one is really sure how old she is supposed to be in the second movie, I’m guessing she was 27 since she was 16 in the first movie and the straight-to-video sequel was released 11 years later.
23) Entering and exiting the park is tricked for your pleasure – Upon entering, the castle appears really far away; this is due to the gradual slope that it is built on and is called ‘forced perspective’, allowing excitement to build as you get closer (also to support those underground tunnels we learned about earlier). When you are leaving the park, the downhill walk is smoother and slightly less tiring; the railway station at the entrance was built in ‘reverse forced perspective’ from the castle, looking larger than it actually is and giving guests the feeling that they are closer to the exit than they really are.
24) There is no gum sold anywhere in the Disney parks – This is because Walter wanted to reduce the amount of litter created, especially gum; whilst they cannot prevent people from bringing their own gum into the parks, they can reduce the amount by not selling it. The bins are also strategically placed, as Walter himself counted the steps it took him to finish his food before wanting to throw away the rubbish.
25) ‘Sleeping Beauty’ took 7 years to make and didn’t earn back its cost – It took so long to complete ‘Sleeping Beauty’ because Walter preferred to sign off every creative decision, but at the time had the construction of the first theme park and 3 TV shows to oversee; animators were often called upon to do design work for the park and TV shows as these were the main priorities at the time. The film cost $6 million to produce, but although the initial release was a hit, it wasn’t big enough to earn back its cost; Disney then had to post a loss for the first time since the 1940s. Re-releases however, have made it the second most lucrative 1959 film; it hauled in $51 million in North American theatres which adjusted with inflation, totals to $607 million and therefore making it the 31st biggest domestic box hit ever!!
Did you learn something new? I know I did! I really hope to go to a Disney park one day, I absolutely love Disney! I know that I will dress up everyday and take lots of photos with all the characters!! I want to visit Tokyo Disneyland and Tokyo Disneysea; I’m going to continue saving so that I can go to these wonderful places, I can’t wait to take my own children to Disney World in the future! ♥