Wednesday, August 27, 2008

Pick Me! Pick Me! for Retirement!!

Honored today as a dry retirement is the Alien from Disney/Pixar's Toy Story 2. The Alien made his WDCC debut in May, 2006.

Squeeze Toy Aliens are a bunch of three-eyed space aliens voiced by Jeff Pidgeon in the motion pictures Toy Story and Toy Story 2. These identical toys were prizes in a game of skill at the Pizza Plant Restaurant and each one believes that The Claw will somehow choose one of them to go on to a better place. Three of these toys are rescued by Mr. Potato Head in Toy Story 2 and become attached to him. Mrs. Potato Head chooses to adopt them.

A dry retirement means that there is no more product in the warehouse. Please check with your authorized dealer for availability.

Thursday, August 21, 2008

Incandescent Magic in Whiteware!

Part of the process in creating memorable Walt Disney Classics Collection sculptures is creating whiteware.

The final clay sculpt is cut into pieces and a plaster mold of each piece is made. The more complex and delicate the sculpture, such as the Blossom Fairy, the more pieces are needed. Special Note: Some Classics Collection sculpts have up to forty pieces.

Liquid clay called 'slip' is poured into the molds and partially air dried into 'greenware' pieces, which are then re-assembled using more slip. The greenware is sprayed with a translucent glaze and fired in a brick kiln, creating a glazed whiteware. The whiteware is then painted with a yellow dye to pick up any flaws within the whiteware.

The Blossom Fairy, a Numbered Limited Edition of 500 is plussed with a bronze fairy, bronze tree, wire flower pollen, brass wand and Swarovski Elements (Swarovski™ gems). If you click on the image at right, you will be able to see and study the amazing detail that went into this sculpture, sculpted by Master Sculptor, Kent Melton.

Tinker Bell Sold Out!

The Walt Disney Classics Collection Tinker Bell ("Blithe Spirit") a Limited Edition of 2,000 is SOLD OUT!

Tinker Bell (5") will be available through all Authorized Walt Disney Classics Collection Dealers and the Walt Disney Theme Parks, October 17-19, 2008 and is the First Release in the Disney Artist Series.

What is meant by Sold Out? The edition size has been sold out at the retailer level and no more are available at the warehouse for order. Be watching for the announcement of another sculpture that just recently sold out!

The first release in the series will honor David Pacheco. The artists name will be included in the backstamp. Future releases will either be limited or subject to retirement.

Tinker Bell was sculpted by Margi Wray.

Revisiting Monsters, Inc.

The childhood phenomena of imagining monsters lurking in one's bedroom closet or under the bed, is in actuality a reality that exists solely for the world of the monsters. They use all the energy extracted from a child's screams, as their natural resource, to power their communities and subsist in their parallel universe.

Specifically Scream Heat ("We Scare Because We Care"), the corporate entity that harnesses the youngsters' reactions to its hard-working crew of creatures including our heroes James P. "Sulley" Sullivan (marvelously voiced by John Goodman) and his best buddy Mike Wazowski (ditto for Billy Crystal). Sulley is a bear-like, blue and purple hairy and horned monster and Mike is a cyclopean lime green M&M clone. The two couldn't be more different yet both share their passion for their vocation and the only thing getting in their way is their rival colleague Randall Boggs (Steve Buscemi, at his oiliest menacing), a reptilian nasty who wants to beat Sulley for the all-time factory record of most points racked up in a single day on the job … at any cost.

One day after work Sulley accidentally lets into their world a tiny 4 year old girl, a big no-no! Legend has it that one touch is toxic and fatal which causes mass havoc wreaked upon the populace as the authorities attempt to corral the tyke while decontaminating the infected workshop's workers (a running gag has the SWAT like DEA agents popping in at a moment's notice whenever a sign of human contact – i.e. a small cotton white sock attached to an unsuspecting monster – makes its ugly presence known!).

Mike is in a panicky sweat that they will lose their jobs and tells Sulley he can't hide Boo (the nickname the big guy dubs the adorable tot) and they must return her to her bedroom. Easier said than done when Randall gets wind of the partners abetting the unsuspecting crime and he too has his plans to use Boo for his own selfish endeavors…at any cost!

The Walt Disney Classics Collection released it's first scene from Monsters, Inc. in September, 2002. This scene consisted of the Opening Title, Sulley, Mike, Boo and Boo's Door Station. Sulley, Mike and Boo were sculpted by Patrick Romandy-Simmons and Boo's Door Station by Doug Hild. Boo was retired in August, 2007.

A second release in November, 2005 consisted of Boo (in Monster Costume) and Randall Boggs. This time around, Boo was sculpted by Bruce Lau. Both releases were released as Open Edition and the image above depicts all the sculptures currently available.

Today, I updated the Image Gallery and Secondary Guide with updated images of Boo's Door Station.

Thursday, August 14, 2008

Sleeping Beauty Anniversary Hint in Newsflash!

As you are aware, Newsflash will no longer be mailed and is now included in the Members Only section of the Walt Disney Classics Collection section on the Enesco website and can now be viewed on-line.

The latest issue of Newsflash included the following Q&A:

Q. I'm delighted with your choice for the 2008 Disney Villains sculpture, as the Queen of Hearts is one of my favorite baddies. Now I'm wondering about next year. Is there any chance the 2009 Villain will be Maleficent, in honor of the 50th anniversary of Sleeping Beauty?

A. As you point out, 2009 is the Golden Anniversary of Sleeping Beauty, and to celebrate we're planning something very special. Keep your eyes open (even if you are under a spell) for a 50th anniversary Sleeping Beauty sculpture in fall 2009. We cannot awaken any details now, but rest assured this very special piece will capture the majesty and power of Walt Disney's magnificent animated masterpiece.

Thank You Matthew for the heads up!

Tuesday, August 5, 2008

Good Times: Weekend at the Shore

Last night Mary, Amanda and myself returned from an amazing weekend at the Jersey Shore with some very special Disney friends. It was non-stop fun from the moment we arrived. Needless to say, the trip went much TOO fast!

The weekend was a gathering from Pennsylvania (Mary, Amanda & myself, Babs and Carl), New Jersey (George and Jeff) and Virginia (Greg). Everyone driving anywhere from 1.5 to 8 hours. You couldn't have asked for better weather (or a better time). We were blessed with incredible weather. Sunny each day (except for an early morning storm on Saturday), a nice, consistent breeze and no humidity. Friday and Saturday were perfect days at the beach. After awesome breakfasts made each morning by Chef Babs, we headed to the beach (which was about two blocks away) with beach towels and chairs, sunscreen and coolers in tow.

Part of our Disney Family at Babs B&B By The Sea

Time at the beach was first priority and food was second (are you surprised?) If ever in the N. Wildwood area, I highly recommend the following (my personal favorites):
  • Owen's Pub -- awesome fries (with cheese and bacon of course), burgers and cheese steak sandwiches. Great food, excellent service and reasonable pricing. My only complaint, they didn't serve Blue Moon :(
  • Russo's Deli -- The largest hoagies I've ever seen! Highly recommend the Italian or Mom Russo's Special. Conveniently located on the way to the beach, so perfect to pick up and enjoy at the beach with a nice cold one!
  • Curly's -- OMG! These french fries were amazing!! Don't waste time on the cup or bucket, go straight for the barrel :) Curly's is located along Morey's Pier on the Boardwalk.
  • Other recommendations are Westy's, Flip Flopz and Mack's Pizza on the Boardwalk.
  • A visit to the Boardwalk would not be complete without fudge and saltwater taffy. We sampled fudge up and down the Boardwalk and leaned towards Laura's Fudge and Douglass Fudge. I had my very first chocolate covered molasses pop and became hooked! Thanks Peter for telling me about these!

You can't put together a group of Disney fans and not do something Disney, right? We had our typical conversations about WDCC and even watched Cars, Finding Nemo and Frankenweenie (a bonus short on Tim Burton's The Nightmare Before Christmas).

After an evening on the Boardwalk, Curly fries and karoake, we decided to play a game of Disney Monopoly. Monopoly has always been a board favorite of mine since my youth. I've played the original, Italian, Disney and Rudolph versions in the past but NEVER did I laugh as hard and have so much fun as I did this past weekend. From Pinocchio unable to get past go and consistently going to jail, Sleeping Beauty trying to get her cottage back from that squatter Peter Pan and getting in trouble with Snow White each time after stopping by the Emperor's Place to everyone stopping by the Meadow and Pleasure Island, it was an evening that will be long remembered.

Sunday was a hard day as we had to say good-bye to Jeff, Greg and Carl as they had to head home. Our time together went entirely TOO fast :(

Since this was Mary, Amanda and myself's first time to this area, Sunday evening we drove down to Cape May with George and Michelle. What a beautiful area. The Victorian architecture was amazing. We visited Congress Hall and did a little shopping at the Washington Street Mall, stopped in Our Lady Star of the Sea Roman Catholic Church and had dinner at the Ugly Mug. Thanks George and Michelle, you were awesome tour guides!

I know I sound like a broken record but the weekend went too fast. It will be remembered with a lot of great memories, laughs and as the blog title says, good times!

Michelle, thanks again for not only being an awesome hostess but for just being you! You made us all feel so welcome and never will forget those awesome breakfasts you made us each morning. I think I can speak for everyone when I say, we hope you make this an annual thing.

To the gang, don't forget:

  • 2PPC
  • George and I becoming BFF
  • Jeetjet? No, J'ew? and Sammitch
Miss you guys and can't wait for the next time we're all together again.