Disney’s A Christmas Carol – World Premiere Tickets

Walt Disney Studios will be holding the World Premiere of its new blockbuster movie Disney’s A Christmas Carol in Leicester Square on November 3rd 2009.
Starring Jim Carrey as Scrooge and as the Ghosts of Christmas Past, Present and Future, together with Gary Oldman, Colin Firth, Robin Wright Penn and Bob Hoskins, and produced and directed by Academy Award winner Bob Zemeckis (Back to the Future, Forrest Gump, Polar Express), this spectacular 3D motion capture movie will bring to life Charles Dickens’ classic Christmas tale as he truly imagined it and take audiences on an amazing journey from a snow covered London.
Ebenezer Scrooge begins the Christmas holiday with his usual miserly contempt, barking at his faithful clerk and his cheery nephew, but when the ghosts of Christmas Past, Present and Yet to Come take him on an eye-opening journey revealing truths Old Scrooge is reluctant to face, he must open his heart to undo years of ill will before it’s too late.
In support of Great Ormond St Hospital, this event will be one of the most glittering and star studded premieres that London has ever seen, attended by all of the major stars, and director Robert Zemeckis. The film will be screened in three of London’s leading cinemas at the same time – The Odeon Leicester Square, The Empire and The Odeon West End, all in cutting edge Disney Digital 3D, creating the biggest ever 3D screening.
You can join Jim Carrey and the stars on the red carpet and be part of this dazzling event and unique cinema experience and help launch the Christmas season around the world.  

Tickets for the premiere at the Odeon Leicester Square and The Empire Leicester Square  cost £50 per ticket which includeds full CCTV coverage of the event and special guest introduction, plus booking and transaction fee.  Tickets for the Odeon West End screening cost £25 per ticket and this also includes full CCTV coverage of the event, plus booking and transaction fee. 

Tickets are available from See Tickets.

New Generation Festival

Here is the announcement from Disneyland Paris about next years New Generation Festival! 
A new generation of Disney stars and stories are landing for one year only at Disneyland Paris from April 2010.
Join the festival-fun at the all-new generation shows and parades – where new Princess Tiana jazzes up the Once Upon a Dream Parade, and gourmet chef Remy drives you wild with excitement in Disney’s Stars ‘n’ Cars. Or choo-choo-choose which star to meet first on the Disney all stars express and at Monsters Inc. Scream Academy –shriek n’ greet like no other!
And, starting from Summer, shrink to the size of a toy in Toy Story Playland for the BIGGEST new family attractions: Toy Soldiers Parachute Drop, Slinky Dog Zig Zag Spin and RC Racer.
Finally, gather in front of Sleeping Beauty Castle for a true Disney showstopper finale – an all-singing, all-dancing, all-together perfect end to the perfect day.
The Disney new generation festival might only last a year but your all-new memories will last a lifetime.
Shows & Parades
Welcome Princess Tiana to the Disney’s Once Upon a Dream Parade
Princess Tiana from Walt Disney Pictures’ “The Princess and the Frog” brings a little jazz, snazz and pizzazz in the Once Upon a Dream Parade. She is joining the Disney Princesses in their Dreams of Romance. Hop along with your little ones to twist and twirl to the romantic music from each of their worlds and give a warm welcome to this new Princess.
Ratatouille starring in Disney’s Stars ‘n’ Cars
Drive your little ones wild with excitement as Disney’s Stars ‘n’ Cars presents the all-new Ratatouille roadster. It’s a party on wheels that goes into a spin when Remy pulls up alongside you! Get a taste of his cooking capers and the other crazy cars and characters. It’s the perfect recipe for a fun-filled motorcade.
Disney all star express
Get on track with the festivities on the Disney all stars express. This is your ticket to choo-choo-se which of your favourite Disney new generation Characters you want to meet n’ greet first. Will it be Buzz? A rendez-vous with Remy? Shootin’ the breeze with Woody? All aboard! It’s Minnie and her all stars express!
Disney showtime spectacular
It’s Showtime! It’s time to shine. It’s time to gather in front of Sleeping Beauty Castle on Central Plaza stage for an explosion of music from maestro Mickey. Together with an all-new A-list of guest stars it promises to be an all-singing, all-dancing all-new showstopper finale!
Monsters Inc. Scream Academy
All screams are welcome at Disneyland® Paris. Thrill-filled shrieks, surprised yelps and screams of delight! At Monsters Inc. Scream Academy we welcome screams to break the decibel meter! Join in the tonsil-tingling fun as you shriek n’ greet Sulley and scream as loud as monster-possible – it’s ear-popping fun for all the family.
Toy Story Playland
Opening Summer 2010 at Disneyland Paris
Toy Story Playland has the BIGGEST new family attractions. They’re GIANT – when you’re shrunk to the size of a toy! Join the toys for playtime in Andy’s backyard where everyone can explore this oversized world with its three larger-than-life rides – Toy Soldiers Parachute Drop, Slinky Dog Zig Zag Spin and RC Racer. Andy’s away and the toys are ready to play!
Toy Story Playland is inspired by Disney•Pixar film Toy Story
Toy Soldiers Parachute Drop
Attention! Your mission – join Andy’s troops for a high flying adventure – Toy Soldiers Parachute Drop. When Sarge yells “Go! Go! Go!” , hold on tight as you fall from way up high in a simulated parachute drop. Over and out!!
Slinky Dog Zig Zag Spin
Everyone’s tongues and tails are wagging about the all-new “zigzag-a-coaster” Slinky Dog Zig Zag Spin. Family pups of all sizes will howl with laughter as they join Slinky in a rollicking spin to catch his own tail. It’s barking mad fun in Toy Story Playland.
RC Racer
Andy’s speediest toy car is sure to get you and your family’s adrenaline pumping. RC Racer is the most thrilling new ride in Toy Story Playland. Race along a 25 metre-high half-pipe coaster, as RC zooms you around at full speed…it’s a real gas.

Disney’s clash at the top

Studio chief Dick Cook’s 38-year career that began as a Monorail operator ends abruptly after he chafes CEO Bob Iger.

After 38 years, the end for Dick Cook came in less than 10 minutes.
The chairman of Walt Disney Studios, who began his career as a Monorail operator at Disneyland and went on to launch billion-dollar franchises like “Pirates of the Caribbean” and woo filmmaker Steven Spielberg to the studio, didn’t know what was in store when his boss casually mentioned Tuesday that he wanted to see him for a few minutes later in the day.
Cook had back-to-back meetings that afternoon but was finally free to see Bob Iger at 5:30. He left his office on the sixth floor of the Team Disney Building in Burbank and walked down the hall to the chief executive’s suite.
Iger got directly to the point. He told Cook that after a “lot of thought,” he wanted to “make a change” at the studio that would affect Cook’s job, according to accounts of the meeting. “We need to go in a different direction,” said Iger, offering little explanation other than to say that people were complaining that the studio was overly secretive, uncooperative and isolated from the other divisions. When Cook pressed for examples, Iger demurred. The two executives shook hands, and Cook left Iger’s office.
Cook, who has more than three years remaining on his contract, afterward told colleagues that he was stunned by the sudden turn of events.
He shouldn’t have been.
It had been clear for some time that Cook and Iger were traveling different paths. The 59-year-old Cook knew he didn’t fit Iger’s mold, and they differed in both style and substance. The movie chief had steadily climbed the Disney corporate ladder over a nearly four-decade career but is not the prototypical Hollywood executive. The Bakersfield native wasn’t embarrassed to wear Mickey Mouse ties and say “gosh,” and he could be equally comfortable among ego-driven movie stars and small-town theater operators. His folksy nature stood in contrast to Iger, who is controlled, contained and cerebral. Iger, a onetime TV weatherman, oversaw the ABC network and ultimately assumed the helm of Walt Disney Co.
Iger has limited his comments about Cook’s departure to the prepared statement he released last week, saying, “On behalf of everyone at Disney, we wish him the best.”
The most recent moment of tension between the two executives came just four days before their Tuesday meeting. The studio had deliberately withheld the names of the big stars and filmmakers whom Cook was going to present at the D23 Expo in Anaheim, the inaugural convention for Disney fans that the company hoped would attract tens of thousands of attendees, a perfect opportunity for the entertainment giant to promote its movies, TV shows and theme parks.
Although Cook allowed his corporate colleagues to publicize the appearance of Nicolas Cage, who stars in the studio’s big 2010 summer movie “The Sorcerer’s Apprentice,” he nonetheless intentionally didn’t disclose to them his biggest headliners: “Pirates of the Caribbean” star Johnny Depp, teenage pop sensation Miley Cyrus and directors Robert Zemeckis and Tim Burton. Cook, angling for a showstopper, wanted to wow the paying crowd at the Anaheim Convention Center with a surprise, and he didn’t want it spoiled by a leak. Attendance at the four-day event, initially below internal projections, finally sold out.
The move, rather than impressing Cook’s superiors, instead exacerbated relations. It was viewed as a classic example of Cook’s play-it-close-to-the-vest style, said people at the studio who declined to be identified because they were not authorized to speak.
Once again, Cook had demonstrated a preference to go with his gut over the “Team Disney” style of management that is ingrained in the company’s ethos. Iger is known to value collaboration across Disney’s various operating divisions and grew increasingly irritated by the studio’s flying-solo approach.
“He felt the studio was an island,” said one person familiar with the situation. “And he couldn’t penetrate that island.”
Almost from the moment Iger was named to succeed Michael Eisner in 2005, there were signs that he and Cook had conflicting views about the future of the movie business.
In 2005 Iger publicly raised the notion of closing the gap between a movie’s release in theaters and its sale on DVD to give consumers the choice of seeing films whenever they want it, be it on the big screen, in their living rooms or on portable devices. He was the first Hollywood chief executive to suggest changing the age-old practice of showing movies in theaters months before they’re available in other media.
“I think that all the old rules should be called into question because the rules in terms of consumption have changed so dramatically,” Iger said at the time, conceding, “I’m sure we’ll get a fair amount of push-back there from the industry.”
Iger got push-back, all right.
And not only from angry theater owners, who argued that the simultaneous release of movies in other media would undercut their business, but from Cook, who agreed that moviegoing is not only vital to preserving the cinema industry but also has a societal role inasmuch as it provides an opportunity for strangers to sit in a darkened theater and collectively share an experience.
Clashes such as these, while seemingly small, apparently added up over time and set the stage for Cook’s ultimate undoing, according to a source familiar with the history who asked not to be named because of the sensitivity of the matter.
Along with their differences in personal style, there were bottom-line issues. Iger has been vocal about his displeasure with the studio’s box-office performance over the last year, including such costly misfires as “G-Force” and “Bedtime Stories.” Another big-budget gamble, “Surrogates,” a sci-fi adventure starring Bruce Willis, opens Friday.
In May, Iger took the highly unusual step of publicly castigating the studio to Wall Street analysts. “It’s about choice of films and the execution of films that have been chosen for production,” Iger said in an earnings call with financial analysts. “We’ve had a rough year. . . . It’s not the marketplace. It’s our slate.” The studio, which in a good year accounts for as much as 15% of the company’s operating income, posted a loss in its most recent quarter — its first since 2005.
At the time, Cook may have chalked up Iger’s blunt remarks to his boss’ desire to be candid with investors.
In hindsight, it was a clear indication of Iger’s discontent.
By Friday, his displeasure was known throughout the company.
Cook called all of his senior executives to a 3 p.m. meeting in the Frank G. Wells building and dropped the bombshell. He told the 86 attendees that he was going to go against the advice of a colleague never to begin a presentation with the finale.
“Today, I don’t know how to do it without the finale first,” said a teary-eyed Cook, according to people in the room. “After 38 years with the company that I’ve loved, today is my last day.”
The outgoing studio chief then read a prepared statement that he would later make public, asking the assembled staff for two favors: Don’t disclose the news before the official press release, and “give me two minutes to walk out the door alone.”
With that, Cook received a standing ovation as he left the room. He returned to his office and called some of the actors, filmmakers and executives with whom he had worked closely over the years, including Depp, “Pirates” producer Jerry Bruckheimer, and DreamWorks partners Steven Spielberg and Stacey Snider, said people who were contacted.
Like everyone who heard the news, Bruckheimer was stunned. “I’m still in shock about it,” he said. “Dick has been a huge part of our success at Disney. I loved working together and hope we’ll work together in the future.”
At about 7:30 p.m., Cook prepared to head home.
But first he took a detour. Cook made one last stroll down the main pathway through the studio known as Mickey Avenue, around the perimeter of the studio lot, past the soundstages and the animation building and all the familiar landmarks of his nearly four-decade career. Then he drove home.

Source: Los Angeles Times:  By Claudia Eller and Dawn C. Chmielewski

Disney and Virgin Media agree content deal

Virgin Media has announced a new multiplatform agreement to carry standard and high definition Disney content on cable TV, online and mobiles.
The Disney XD channel was recently launched on Virgin Media to replace Jetix. It joined the existing Disney Channel and Playhouse Disney channel on the platform.
Under the new deal, a variety of SD and HD Disney content will be made available on Virgin Media’s on-demand offering, with the operator also retaining rights to carry the programming on mobile phones and online.
Available programmes include Hannah Montana and Mickey Mouse Clubhouse, as well as movies such as High School Musical and Camp Rock.
Virgin Media executive director of content acquisition Katharine Burns said: “Virgin Media has been a pioneer in developing new TV services and our three-screen deal with Disney is a perfect example of how driving innovation can benefit the consumer and enhance their viewing experience.
“As the home of family entertainment, we’re uniquely positioned to give our customers the greatest range of flexibility and choice in their TV viewing, and with great premium content on-demand we think kids and families alike are going to love the freedom this Disney deal will bring.”
Disney channels vice president and general manager UK and Ireland Boel Ferguson added: “Our vision is to put choice in the hands of our viewers and allow them to access our content via as many potential platforms as possible – this new deal with Virgin Media helps make our vision a reality.
“We’re particularly excited about the potential for Disney XD, which was developed as a multiplatform entertainment brand with a multitude of content designed to be viewed at home or on the move.”

Sorce: DigitalSpy

Disney’s A Christmas Carol for London’s Christmas lights

Disney  has signed a deal with the City of London, Oxford Street and Regent Street to provide this year’s Christmas lights across the capital.
The illuminations in the three areas will be themed around Disney’s new film version of Charles Dickens’ A Christmas Carol, which will have its world premiere in London on the evening of Tuesday 3 November when the lights will be turned on simultaneously.

The film, which stars Jim Carrey and Bob Hoskins and is directed by Back To The Future’s Robert Zemeckis, uses ground-breaking 3-D technology and is expected to be one of this Christmas’s biggest box office hits.
Boris Johnson, London’s mayor, unveiled the tie-up at the Disney Store on New York’s Fifth Avenue, on the 12t September which had been redecorated as 19th century London for the occasion.

Mr Johnson said that the Christmas Carol theme will be echoed in tie-in events across London, such as concerts and an attempt to break the world record for carol singing. “It’s going to be one of the biggest festive celebrations the capital has ever seen,” he said.
Dick Cook, chairman of Walt Disney Studios, said: “In the spirit of Charles Dickens himself, there really can be no better place in the world than London to celebrate A Christmas Carol.”
The illuminations will use energy-efficient light bulbs – will be paid for by Disney, the Crown Estate and retailers via the New West End Company (NWEC) organisation.

Sorce: The Telegraph.

Astronauts pack Buzz Lightyear for ride home

The astronauts aboard the orbiting shuttle and station packed up Buzz Lightyear on Monday for the ride home from “infinity and beyond.”

The 12-inch action figure has been at the international space station for more than a year.  Mission Control asked Discovery’s crew to do a final check to make certain Buzz was safely stowed on the shuttle, in advance of the closing of the hatches between the linked spacecraft late Monday night. The shuttle will depart Tuesday.
The Buzz Lightyear toy had kept a relatively low profile at the space station since its June 2008 arrival, but was pulled out for extensive filming over the past week. Some of the movie scenes: Buzz going to sleep with an astronaut who lets go, causing the doll to float away and hit a wall, and Buzz flying through a chamber followed by a real spaceman.

NASA said the video will be used in an educational outreach effort for children and have a “Toy Story” movie spin.

As for Buzz, a Walt Disney World spokesman said the toy will take part in “several debriefing sessions” and then a tickertape parade with Apollo 11 moonwalker Buzz Aldrin at the beginning of October. The spokesman said Buzz has become “the longest serving astronaut in space.”
The 13 human astronauts had one last major job to accomplish together Monday before parting company.
A moving van holding a ton of trash and discarded equipment needed to be moved back aboard Discovery. It was delivered by the shuttle, fully loaded with supplies, and moved onto the international space station exactly one week ago.

In a series of Labor Day interviews, shuttle astronaut Jose Hernandez said his presence in space “means hope for all our people that speak Spanish.” He grew up in a migrant worker family from Mexico.  “If you work hard and study hard, any dream can be achieved,” Hernandez said in Spanish, “and I am the proof of that because I started (with) very little means.”
The space station’s new resident, Nicole Stott, said she’s looking forward to gazing down at her home state of Florida and the rest of the planet over the next three months. She took up a watercolor kit to paint what she sees.
She said the artwork might not be that good, “but it will certainly be fun for me to try.”
Stott flew up on Discovery as the replacement for Timothy Kopra, who has been in orbit since mid-July. Kopra will return to Earth on Thursday, along with the six other shuttle astronauts and, of course, Buzz.

The Associated Press