Monthly Archives: May 2014

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Peter Renaday Joins “Be Our Guest” Dinner for 2014!

Categories: A Look Back

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Pete Renaday is an American actor and voice actor who has done many voice-over and acting roles for Disney films, TV shows, attractions and record albums.

His most well-known voice roles in the parks are those of Henry and Max in Country Bear Jamboree.

Other attractions that he has lent his voice to over the years include Walt Disney World’s 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea (as Captain Nemo), The Hall of Presidents (as Abraham Lincoln from 1994-2008), the Disneyland version of The Many Adventures of Winnie the Pooh (as the narrator), The Walt Disney Story (as the narrator), the Tomorrowland Transit Authority, Adventure Thru Inner Space and Disneyland’s Mark Twain Riverboat.

His Disney film credits include The Aristocats (as the Milkman and Le Petit Cafe Chef) and The Rescuers (as the American delegate). He also portrayed Eddie Valiant in early screen tests for Who Framed Roger Rabbit.

Renaday is also famous for providing the voice of the Ghost Host on the Disneyland Records album Story and Song from The Haunted Mansion (Renaday was also an early choice for that role in the attraction, which eventually went to Paul Frees). He also voiced Mickey Mouse on several albums in the 1980s, such as Splashdance and Yankee Doodle Mickey.

Peter has also appeared in many leading roles on stage in the Southern California area for the past 45 years. He has been seen in the roles of King Henry II in The Lion in Winter, CS Lewis in Shadowlands, Abraham Lincoln in The Rivalry, Sherlock Holmes in The Hound of the Baskervilles, Jay Follet in All the Way Home, James Tyrone Jr in Long Day’s Journey into Night, and in musical theater as Henry Higgins in My Fair Lady, Harold Hill in The Music Man, King Arthur in Camelot, Fagin in Oliver, Michael in I Do, I Do and Don Quixote in Man of La Mancha.

Peter is well-known in the field of cartoon voices, having voiced the roles of Splinter in Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles and Mandrake the Magician in Defenders of the Earth, among many others.

He appeared for several years in the recurring role of John Jacks on General Hospital.

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Rick Farmiloe Joins “Be Our Guest” Dinner for 2014!

Categories: A Look Back

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Rick Farmiloe is an American animator and sequence director who has worked for various studios, including Walt Disney Animation Studios and DreamWorks.

Rick was born in Berkeley, California and raised in Santa Rosa. In 1978, he moved to Southern California to attend the California Institute of the Arts, but was offered a job at Filmation, which he accepted. Some of his first projects were Fat Albert, Mighty Mouse, Quacula, Tom & Jerry, Zorro, Sport Billy and Flash Gordon. In 1981, he was offered a job as an Assistant Animator at Walt Disney on The Fox and the Hound (1981) and The Black Cauldron (1985). After this, he was promoted to Animator and worked on such movies as The Great Mouse Detective (1986) and Oliver & Company (1988). He has been part of some of Disney’s most profitable animated features, such as The Little Mermaid, in which he animated the character of Scuttle the seagull, and on Aladdin, in which he animated the monkey Abu. In 1994, Rick was hired by Jeffrey Katzenberg, one of the founders of DreamWorks, as the company’s first animator. As a Directing Animator on The Prince of Egypt (1998), Rick was responsible for bringing Moses’ camel to life. He then tried his hand as a storyboard artist on Shrek (2001), which received an Academy Award for Best Animated Feature. As a Sequence Director for Klasky Csupo, he worked on The Wild Thornberrys Movie (2002).

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Alice Davis Joins “Be Our Guest” Dinner for 2014!

Categories: A Look Back

alice-davis-final-portraitAs Alice recalls with a gleam in her eye, “I went from sweet little children to dirty old men over night.”Born in Escalon, California, in 1929, she received a scholarship to attend Chouinard Art Institute in 1947, the renowned training ground for Disney artists, from the Long Beach Art Association. There, she met future husband, Marc, who served as an instructor at Chouinard for more than 17 years.

Alice launched her career designing women´s lingerie and undergarments for the Beverly Vogue & Lingerie House in Los Angeles and was quickly promoted to head designer. As her career progressed, she designed two lines of fashion lingerie and earned a reputation as an expert pattern-maker and authority on uses of fabrics.

One day, she received a call from her former art instructor and future husband, Marc. He needed a costume designed and created for Helene Stanley to wear for some live-action reference footage being filmed to inspire his animation of the lead character Briar Rose in “Sleeping Beauty” (1959).

Alice recalled, “Marc wanted to see how the skirt worked in live dance steps, and that was my first job at Disney.” That job led Alice to design costumes for Disney´s live-action motion picture “Toby Tyler” (1960).

In 1963, Walt Disney recruited Alice to contribute her skill to the attraction “It´s a Small World” for the 1964-65 New York World´s Fair. Collaborating with art designer and fellow Legend Mary Blair, Alice researched, designed and supervised the creation of more than 150 highly-detailed costumes for the Audio-Animatronics Children of the World.

During this time, Alice also formulated costuming procedures, set up a manufacturing base and developed quality control refurbishing techniques, which established the standards for three-dimensional characters in rides and shows created by WDI.

In 1965, she translated the pirates´ attire from Marc´s original drawings of the shiver-me-timbers cast and crew into clothing designs and patterns for all of the costumes featured in “Pirates of the Caribbean”. Two years later, when the attraction opened at Disneyland, guests were dazzled by the animated figures and their colorful, textured pirate-wear. Later, Alice contributed to General Electric´s “Carousel of Progress” and the “Flight to the Moon” attractions.

Her first assignments at Disney included designing the costumes for the live-action reference footage shot for Sleeping Beauty and for the feature, Toby Tyler. Her first project for what became Imagineering was to create all the costumes for It’s A Small World, which was followed by creating costumes for the Carousel of Progress and Pirates of the Caribbean. Alice also created the costuming and refurbishing procedures for Audio Animatronic figures that are still used today. At Walt Disney Imagineering (WDI), Alice Estes Davis was the original “designing woman.” Married to Disney Legend Marc Davis, she enjoyed a fashionable Disney career of her own.

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Willie Ito Joins “Be Our Guest” Dinner for 2014!

Categories: A Look Back

willie-ito-final-portraitWillie Ito says he started at Walt Disney Productions in 1954 on the feature Lady and the Tramp. I worked on the iconic spaghetti kissing scene as my indoctrination into the business. Later, I worked at Warner Bros. Cartoon’s infamous Termite Terrace. I worked with Chuck Jones on such classics as “One Froggy Evening” and “What’s Opera Doc?” I also worked with Friz Freleng doing layouts, receiving my first screen credits on “Prince Violent,” later retitled “Prince Varmint,” featuring Bugs Bunny and Yosemite Sam. After 6 years at Warner’s, Bob Clampett was starting production on The Beany and Cecil Show, and I was invited to join the new studio. I was in layouts and character designs. I also did many of the merchandise such as comic books, coloring books, and promo artwork. I was also doing many comic books such as CARtoons and CRAZY Magazine as well as spot magazine cartoons on a freelance basis. I joined Hanna-Barbera Productions during the development of The Jetsons and remained for the next 14 years. Flintstones and The Yogi Bear Show were part of my credits. Disney’s Comic-strip Dept. and later Disney Consumer Products beaconed and I returned to Disney. After 23 years of developing collectibles, mentoring Disney artist worldwide, I retired as Director of International Creative after a 45-year career. I received the “Golden Awards” from the Motion Picture Cartoonist Guild, The Pacific Citizen’s APA award, and the NJAHS Legacy award. In my retirement, I am currently writing, illustrating and publishing a series of children’s picture books recounting some of my personal accounts. “Hello, Maggie!” by Shigeru Yabu, with illustrations by Willie Ito.

Hong Kong Phooey (1978) Unit Manager Yogi’s Gang (1975) Layout Artist Inch High, Private Eye (1974) Layout Artist Josie and the Pussycats in Outer Space (1974) Layout Artist, Story By Roman Holidays (1973) Josie and the Pussycats (1972) Story By Perils of Penelope Pitstop (1971) Layout Artist Banana Splits Adventure Hour (1970) Layout Artist Wacky Races (1970) Layout Artist Moby Dick and the Mighty Mightor (1969) Layout Artist Atom Ant/Secret Squirrel Show (1968) Layout Artist