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Carole Shelley Dead at 79

Carole Shelley, the Tony Award-winning actress who portrayed one of the Pigeon sisters in the stage, film and television versions of Neil Simon's The Odd Couple, has died. She was 79. Shelley passed away following a battle with cancer at her home in Manhattan on August 31.

The actress also was known for originating the role of Crage Hall headmistress Madame Morrible in the Broadway sensation "Wicked" in 2003.

Shelley won her Tony in 1979 for playing Mrs. Kendal, the gracious real-life English actress who befriends John Merrick, in the best play winner "The Elephant Man."

"I've learned a lot in playing her," Shelley, who started out as a comic actress, said in a 1979 interview with The New York Times. "So much of what I've been working toward in the past few years — the effort to achieve stillness, spareness, clarity in my acting — seems to have come together in Mrs. Kendal. She's been
See full article at We Love Soaps »

Carole Shelley Dies: ‘Odd Couple’ Star And Tony Award-Winning Actress Was 79

  • Deadline
Carole Shelley Dies: ‘Odd Couple’ Star And Tony Award-Winning Actress Was 79
Odd Couple actress Carole Shelley died Friday from cancer at her home in Manhattan. She was 79.

Born in London, Shelley was a star of stage and screen. She made her Broadway debut in 1965 in the original cast of Neil Simon’s The Odd Couple. In 1975, she received a Tony Award nomination for her role in Alan Ayckbourn’s Absurd Person Singular. In 1979, she received another nomination and a win for Best Actress in a Play for her performance in the original company of The Elephant Man.

Shelley went on to reprise her role of Gwendolyn Pigeon in the film and TV series adaptation of The Odd Couple. She and Monica Evans are the only two actors to appear in all three major iterations of Simon’s play as the same characters.

Shelley’s award streak would continue as she won an Obie Award in 1982 for her work in the Off-Broadway
See full article at Deadline »

Dave Michener Dies: Veteran Disney Animator, Story Artist, Director Was 85

Dave Michener, a veteran Disney animator, story artist, and director from 1956 up until his retirement from The Walt Disney Studios in 1987, has died at 85. He passed away on February 15 at his home in Los Angeles from complications due to a virus, according to his wife.

Over the course of his 31-year career with Disney, Michener contributed his artistic talents to such Disney classics as Sleeping Beauty, One Hundred and One Dalmatians, Mary Poppins, The Jungle Book, Winnie the Pooh and the Blustery Day, The Aristocats, Robin Hood, The Rescuers, The Fox and the Hound, and finally The Great Mouse Detective (for which he received a co-directing credit alongside John Musker and Ron Clements).

Michener was born in Los Angeles on November 5, 1932. His father was a famous architect who helped design many of the iconic buildings in the Miracle Mile district of the city. His uncle was the best-selling author James Michener.
See full article at Deadline »

Disney Animator Dave Michener Dies at 85

  • Variety
Dave Michener, an animator and story artist who worked at Walt Disney Studios for more than 30 years, died on Feb. 15. He was 85. His wife Donna said he died at his Los Angeles home from complications due to a virus.

He co-directed “The Great Mouse Detective” alongside John Musker and Ron Clements.

Michener worked at Disney starting in 1956 until his retirement in 1987, contributing to classics like “Sleeping Beauty,” “One Hundred and One Dalmatians,” “Mary Poppins,” “The Jungle Book,” “Winnie the Pooh and the Blustery Day,” “The Aristocats,” “Robin Hood,” “The Rescuers” and “The Fox and the Hound.”

The animator started his career at Disney right out of college when he was hired by Walt Disney himself, who had seen one of his art exhibits at the Chouinard Art Institute. Michener went on to produce and direct character animation for the Epcot Center in Orlando, Fla. in the 1980s, followed by similar
See full article at Variety »

1970: The Aristocats

Our year of the month is 1970. Here's Tim Brayton...

From the standpoint of 1970, we find ourselves at the dawn of what is almost certainly the least-interesting decade in the history of American animation. Television screens were then dominated by the flat, cheap nonsense of Hanna-Barbera while Warner Bros. and MGM had abandoned their short film programs. Just about the only person trying to do anything with the medium was Ralph Bakshi, whose vulgar cartoons for adults were very often "fascinating," but almost never "good." The problem, in all likelihood, is that for 40 years, American animation had been primarily a matter of people reacting to the things Walt Disney had done; and in 1970, Walt Disney had been dead for four years.

This left his namesake studio in a state of full panic and confusion, looking to find any sort of project that felt like it might be "what Walt would have done.
See full article at FilmExperience »

10 Animated Movies With Surprisingly Racist Undertones

Animated movies are, as a general rule, typically created as innocent, harmless fun for children. However, it’s quite a well known fact that some of them are hiding some very dark secrets – and that can, frankly, sometimes include some quite racist content. In this video, we’ll run through ten movies that have some seemingly very racist undertones in them (not like, for example, Song of the South, which is Clearly very racist). Those include; 2016’s Sing having a group of gorilla characters who are like stereotypical black gangsters, Disney’s 1937 classic Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs having an abundance of Eurocentric and racist language in it, 2014’s sequel movie Rio 2 having its singing, dancing, comic-relief characters voiced by black and hispanic actors, 2013’s Epic having a very stereotypically black character voiced by rapper Pitbull, 2004’s Shark Tale having countless racial stereotypes amongst its cast of characters,
See full article at Screen Rant »

Sherman Brothers' New Musical Levi! to Have World Premiere in Los Angeles

The Los Angeles City College Lacc Theatre Academy and Kritzerland Entertainment present the world premiere of Levi, a classic fit new musical based on the life of Levi Strauss, with a book by legendary cult film writerdirector Larry Cohen and Janelle Webb Cohen, and music and lyrics written by Disney's most celebrated Oscar-winning composers Richard M. Sherman and Robert B. Sherman Mary Poppins, The Jungle Book, Chitty Chitty, Bang Bang, Charlotte's Web, The Aristocats, Bedknobs and Broomsticks and more.
See full article at BroadwayWorld.com »

30 Disney Songs That Will Bring You Right Back to Your Childhood

Catchy, heartfelt songs have been a staple of Disney movies since Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs debuted in 1937 and got us all humming "Heigh-Ho" whenever we have tedious work that needs to be done. It's nearly impossible to narrow down the dozens upon dozens of timeless classics into this "best of" list, but PopSugar took on this Herculean task in order to create a thorough, varied and toe-tapping playlist for all the Disney fanatics out there. Check out our favorite Disney songs of all time, and then use our Spotify playlist to enjoy them for yourself. RelatedFeel the Love Tonight With This Romantic Disney Playlist "Heigh-Ho," the Dwarfs chorus (Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs) "When You Wish Upon a Star," Cliff Edwards (Pinocchio) "Zip-a-Dee-Doo-Dah," James Baskett (Song of the South) "Bibbidi-Bobbidi-Boo," Verna Felton (Cinderella) "Once Upon a Dream," Mary Costa and Bill Shirley (Sleeping Beauty) "Cruella De Vil,
See full article at BuzzSugar »

Judy by the Numbers: "Take My Hand, Paree"

This week's number is hands down the weirdest entry in Judy's filmography. It doesn't fit neatly into Judy's biography or star image; it really appears to be one of those things that happened because the timing was right. In 1962, Warner Bros released a Upa animated feature called Gay Purr-ee. It's a movie about Parisian cats that feels like An American in Paris meets The Aristocats as played by the Looney Tunes. In a bit of early celebrity stunt casting Upa cast two big voices for its dimunitive feline leads: Judy Garland and Robert Goulet

The Movie: Gay Purr-ee (WB, 1962)

The Songwriters: Harold Arlen (music) & E.Y. Yarburg (lyrics)

The Cast: Judy Garland, Robert Goulet, Red Buttons, Hermione Gingold, Paul Frees, Mel Blanc, directed by Abe Levitow.

The Story: Gay Purr-ee really needs to be seen to be believed. Done in the limited-animation style of Upa, the movie sets
See full article at FilmExperience »

Movie Review – The Jungle Book (2016)

The Jungle Book, 2016.

Directed by Jon Favreau.

Starring Neel Sethi, Bill Murray, Ben Kingsley, Idris Elba, Lupita Nyong’o, Scarlett Johansson, Giancarlo Esposito and Christopher Walken.

Synopsis:

An orphan boy is raised in the jungle with the help of a pack of wolves, a bear, and a black panther.

The Jungle Book rests on the shoulders of Mowgli. He’s the human we relate to. It’s through Mowgli that we see danger, and fear man’s “red flower”. His human error can be found in how he trusts those that wish to hurt him and his instinctive nature to create and build things is in his bones. Jon Favreau, directing another Disney live-action adaptation after Kenneth Branagh’s Cinderella, knows that in this jungle adventure, Mowgli is key. Indeed, actor Neel Sethi is magnificent, simultaneously holding the posture of his cartoon counterpart and holding the human heart that beats throughout this tale of support,
See full article at Flickeringmyth »

10 Talking Animals We Love (and the Voice Actors Behind Them!)

In honor of Disney’s “Zootopia” hitting theaters this Friday, March 4, we’ve rounded up 10 of our favorite animated animals and the voice actors behind them! From Disney classics like “The Jungle Book” to modern favorites like “Kung Fu Panda,” check out our top talking dogs, lions, and donkeys below. 1. Judy Hopps, “Zootopia” (voiced by Ginnifer Goodwin) As the protagonist to Disney’s latest animated marvel, Judy Hopps is the first bunny to join Zootopia’s police department and is eager to prove herself as a force to be reckoned with. Goodwin brings her trademark everygirl charm to the role. Don’t miss it! 2. Baloo the Bear, “The Jungle Book” (voiced by Phil Harris) This happy-go-lucky singing bear is hardly Harris’ only time working with Disney. The late actor also voiced O’Malley in “The Aristocats” and Little John in “Robin Hood,” but he won our hearts as Mowgli’s jolly,
See full article at Backstage »

Jason Manford, Lee Mead and Martin Kemp lead cast in Chitty Chitty Bang Bang tour

The fantastic Chitty Chitty Bang Bang musical will hit the road again in 2016, and it has been confirmed this morning that the show will feature a new, all-star cast.

Caractacus Potts will be played by Jason Manford (The Producers, Sweeney Todd) from 10 February until 24 April, and he will return to the show from 5 October 2016. Lee Mead (Casualty, Legally Blonde, Joseph and The Amazing Technicolour Dreamcoat) will play Caractacus Potts from 4 May until 18 September 2016.

Martin Kemp (EastEnders, The Krays) will play the Childcatcher until 24 April 2016, and Amy Griffiths (Everyman, Stephen Ward, The Pajama Game) will play Truly Scrumptious.

Chitty Chitty Bang Bang will also feature Phill Jupitus (The Producers, Hairspray) as Lord Scrumptious/Baron Bomburst until 24 April 2016, Michelle Collins (EastEnders, Coronation Street) as Baroness Bomburst, and Andy Hockley (The Phantom Of The Opera) as Grandpa Potts.

Ewen Cummins plays The Toymaker/Mr Coggins, with Sam Harrison as Boris and Scott Paige as Goran,
See full article at The Hollywood News »

See Disney's First Attempt at 'Who Framed Roger Rabbit?' Starring Paul Reubens

Before Robert Zemeckis brought Charles Fleischer, Bob Hoskins, Christopher Lloyd and Kathleen Turner to the screen in 1988’s Who Framed Roger Rabbit?, Disney crafted an early version of the Gary K. Wolf adaptation starring Paul Reubens as the voice of the eponymous rabbit. Rights to the hardboiled tale set in a city where humans and cartoon characters coexist were purchased shortly after the book Who Censored Roger Rabbit? was published in 1981. Disney saw dollar signs and set about hiring Darrell Van Citters for the job, casting the soon-to-be Pee-wee Herman as the lovable rabbit. Peter Renaday (The Aristocats) was cast as detective Eddie Valiant, and Russi Taylor (Disney’s current Minnie Mouse) became the dangerously curvaceous Jessica Rabbit. The early test...

Read More
See full article at Movies.com »

Disney Classics Getting Blu-Ray Release August 12th – Tarzan, Hercules, And More

A slew of classic Disney movies are hitting for the first time on Blu-Ray, including one double-pack release, and you’re going to want to make sure to pick these up. You haven’t paid attention to some of these titles for a while, and it’s about time you got the chance to catch them on Blu-Ray. The best part is that there’s a great mix of releases hitting. Bedknobs and Broomsticks is all but lost in the cultural consciousness, and it deserves a return. The Academy Award-winning movie from the year I was born is filled with a lot of fun and adventure, and like most Disney films, holds up well for a whole new generation.

The rest of the group covers a great spectrum, including two animated “big” titles, and a 10th Anniversary release. There’s a lot to expose your family to here, so check out all the info below,
See full article at AreYouScreening »

Fascinating Disney animated films that never were

Feature Mark Harrison 5 Mar 2014 - 06:39

For every animated movie that gets made, there are dozens more that never make it. Mark looks at some failed Disney projects...

In the age of the internet, Hollywood studios are much quicker to announce the projects they have in development than they used to be. Now that the demand is there, there's a huge turnover of movie-related news every day, and if you follow it in any significant way, there are probably a whole bunch of projects that you've heard about, maybe even gotten excited about, that never came to fruition.

Still, it's not only via the easier availability of such information that we know about projects that never came to be. At a studio like Disney, projects will get as far as being fully developed in animatic form before falling apart, and the artefacts left behind from such abridged projects have made for some fascinating reading.
See full article at Den of Geek »

28 Days of Disney Animation: ‘The Aristocats’ are the ones who deliver the goods, naturellement!

The Aristocats

Written by Ken Anderson, Larry Clemmons, Eric Cleworth et al.

Directed by Wolfgang Reitherman

USA, 1970

The 1970s and early 1980s represent a curious episode in the history of Walt Disney Animation Studios’ features. The famous studio rarely produces outright poor movies, yet this period is just as rarely mentioned in the same breath as its first decade or so, when classics like Pinocchio, Bambi, and Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs came to be, or the baptized renaissance that began with The Little Mermaid and lasted until Tarzan. It feels as though the aforementioned decade and a half feature a steady stream of decent, generally appreciated outings but nothing most people cite as being their favourite efforts. The Many Adventures of Winnie the Pooh, The Rescuers, The Fox and the Hound, Robin Hood; few if any of these make anyone’s top 5 lists. Neither does the film that opened the 1970s,
See full article at SoundOnSight »

Entertainment Geekly: My Top 100 Disney Things, off the top of my head

Entertainment Geekly: My Top 100 Disney Things, off the top of my head
Entertainment Geekly is a weekly column that examines contemporary pop culture through a geek lens and simultaneously examines contemporary geek culture through a pop lens. So many lenses! Click here for past columns.

Last week I wrote a long and rant-y column about the Disney Myth, as constructed in Saving Mr. Banks and deconstructed in Escape From Tomorrow. In an effort to prove I’m not the world’s biggest grouch — and because I spent the past week in the metaphorical Disneyland known as “being back home with my family for the holidays” — I decided to try an experiment that
See full article at EW.com - PopWatch »

Walt Disney Company is 90: Digital Spy staff pick their favourite movies

Walt Disney Company is 90: Digital Spy staff pick their favourite movies
On October 16, 1923, Walt Disney and brother Roy signed a contract with Margaret Winkler to make a series of animated cartoons called Alice Comedies. What was then known as The Disney Brothers Studio eventually became The Walt Disney Company, a multi-billion dollar creative force crossing movies, TV, video games and theme parks.

With Disney celebrating its 90th birthday today, we here at Digital Spy are marking this momentous anniversary by picking out our favourite Disney movies. Disney has produced and released an eclectic range of films crossing classic animation (see Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs), live-action blockbusters (Tron, Pirates of the Caribbean) and trail-blazing Pixar offerings (Toy Story, Wall-e).

Without further delay, here are 13 movies from the Disney back catalogue that we absolutely adore...

Tom Eames, Entertainment Reporter - Robin Hood

There have been many adaptations of Robin Hood over the decades, from Russell Crowe's multi-accented gruff take, to
See full article at Digital Spy - Movie News »

Walt Disney Company is 90: Digital Spy staff's favourite Disney movies

Walt Disney Company is 90: Digital Spy staff's favourite Disney movies
On October 16, 1923, Walt Disney and brother Roy signed a contract with Margaret Winkler to make a series of animated cartoons called Alice Comedies. What was then known as The Disney Brothers Studio eventually became The Walt Disney Company, a multi-billion dollar creative force crossing movies, TV, video games and theme parks.

With Disney celebrating its 90th birthday today, we here at Digital Spy are marking this momentous anniversary by picking out our favourite Disney movies. Disney has produced and released an eclectic range of films crossing classic animation (see Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs), live-action blockbusters (Tron, Pirates of the Caribbean) and trail-blazing Pixar offerings (Toy Story, Wall-e).

Without further delay, here are 13 movies from the Disney back catalogue that we absolutely adore...

Tom Eames, Entertainment Reporter - Robin Hood

There have been many adaptations of Robin Hood over the decades, from Russell Crowe's multi-accented gruff take, to
See full article at Digital Spy - Movie News »

Disney 53 Double Feature Part I: The Fox and the Hound

As we march bravely on through 2013, Thn will take a nostalgic yet critical look at the 53 Walt Disney Animated Classics, from Snow White to Wreck-it Ralph, through the obscurity of Fun And Fancy Free to the Golden Age of Beauty And The Beast. These are the films the Walt Disney company are most proud of, the ones that hold a special place in our hearts, the ones that still cost a fortune to buy on DVD. This time, The Fox And The Hound.

Directed by Ted Berman, Richard Rich and Art Stevens

1981/ 83 minutes

Based upon the original novel by Daniel Mannix, The Fox And The Hound began its life under the working title Tod and Copper.

The original novel had a more realistic and bleak story, following the quest of a hunter and his dog, Copper, to shoot Tod after he has killed the hunter’s new dog, Chief. The
See full article at The Hollywood News »
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