Saturday, October 30, 2010

Walt and Roy are Disney Legends?

Q: I've always wanted to know why Walt Disney and his brother Roy have not yet been inducted to be part of the "Disney Legends" awards. Is there a good specific reason as to why this may be?
Joe, Livonia, Michigan

A [Dave Smith]: Good question, and I'm not sure what the answer would be. I guess that Walt and Roy Disney essentially were the company during their lives, and it didn't seem necessary to give them the Disney Legend award (which bore their name). They have already been sufficiently honored.

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

1981 Snow White Picture Disk

Q: I have a Disney picture disk of Walt Disney's Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs. Can you tell me what year they came out with these and if they made other picture disks besides this one?
Edward, LaPlace, Louisiana

A [Dave Smith]: The phonograph record picture disc of Snow White was released in 1981 — there were 10 others from that and the following year: Pinocchio, Lady and the Tramp, Mary Poppins, The Jungle Book, The Fox and the Hound, Cinderella, Bambi, Mickey's Christmas Carol, Peter Pan, and Mickey Mouse Disco.

[Marcio Disney]

Sunday, October 24, 2010

The Secret of Boyne Castle

Q: There was a Disney movie in the late '70s that was about a spy from America who was visiting a friend in England and their adventures. I would love to find out the title and see it again. Can you help?
Troy, Apple Valley, California

A [Dave Smith]: You may be remembering The Secret of Boyne Castle, a three-part television show from 1969 starring Glenn Corbett and Kurt Russell. The plot concerns an American agent trying to meet a defecting scientist in Ireland, with the Russians trying to prevent that meeting. It was repeated in 1978 under the title The Spybusters. The film is not currently available.

[Marcio Disney]

This three part Disneyland movie from 1969 runs somewhere in the neighborhood of 140 minutes! That’s something like 20 minutes longer than Citizen Kane! For a movie starring Kurt Russell as an American exchange student running around Ireland trying to avoid getting caught by Commie secret agents!

The 140 minutes includes the opening and ending credits for each individual episode as well as a “last week on Secret of Boyne Castle” recap that played before parts 2 and 3, but even if you cut out those 15 minutes or so, you’re still left with a movie that’s easily a half hour too long.

Click Here to read a great article about this movie at

This is a scene from Walt Disney's 3-part, made-for-TV feature, "The Secret of Boyne Castle". Originally shown on Disney's "Wonderful World of Color", then re-edited into a feature film for European theatrical release under the title, "Guns In The Heather". Filmed in Ireland in all of its rugged beauty with gothic castles, quaint villages and lively pubs.

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Tick-Tock, the Crocodile from Peter Pan

Q: In the movie Peter Pan, what's the name of the alligator that wants to eat Captain Hook's hand? I've heard him referred to as Tick-Tock, but I am not sure if that is his name.
Julie, Anaheim, California

A [Dave Smith]: The Crocodile is unnamed in the Peter Pan film, but in later comic book stories he was called Tick-Tock.

[Marcio Disney]

Tick-Tock Croc is a comic book character that first appeared with this name in Four Color #442

#442 - Walt Disney's Peter Pan is a comic book published by Dell & released on 12//1952

Peter Pan

Tick-Tock the Crocodile first appears at the beginning of the film. Captain Hook laments Peter Pan's role in causing the crocodile to follow him. Tick Tock, then appears in the sea next to the ship, sending Hook into a panic. However, Smee shoos off the crocodile. Later, when Captain Hook kidnaps the Indian princess, Tiger Lily, in an attempt to learn Peter Pan's hiding place, Hook is forced to hang from a cliff while fighting Peter Pan. The crocodile approaches, seeing a golden opportunity to eat the Captain. Peter recognizes Tick Tock and almost decides to kick Hook off the cliff but decides against it when Wendy yells at him not to. Hook eventually slips, but is apparently able to escape the crocodile. And of course, Tick-Tock has a part in the climatic battle against Captain Hook. As the Captain falls in the water, Tick Tock begins another pursuit of Hook. He ends up chasing Captain Hook away from Never Land.

Goliath II

The crocodile appeared in the Disney animated short Goliath II. The short was created in order to test the new xerox animation process in order to spend less money on making animated films.

Chip 'n Dale Rescue Rangers

Tick Tock made a guest appearance as a villain in the Rescue Rangers episode "Kiwi's Big Adventure".

Mickey Mousecapade

The Crocodile made an appearance as the second boss of the Nintendo game Mickey Mousecapade, but only in the American release. In the original Japanese version, the Dodo from Alice in Wonderland is the second boss.

Return to Neverland

It is unknown why he did not show up in the 2002 sequel, Return To Never Land but he was replaced by a giant octopus that made a blip-bloop sound in the waters. But he was mentioned in it by Captain Hook and Smee as well as his silhouette is seen in the clouds, with the clock in his stomach, in the opening of the movie, with a snippet of "Never Smile at a Crocodile".

Aladdin (TV series)

Tick-Tock appeared in cameo of the episode "Vocal Hero" with the other look-like crocodiles.

House of Mouse

Tick Tock Croc appears in the series House of Mouse. He was even one of the villains that appeared in Mickey's House of Villains.

Jungle Cubs

The Crocodile appeared in cameo of Jungle Cubs. He appeared at the end of the episode The Humans Must Be Crazy he also swallowed a clock, after Young Bagheera throw the watch in the water.


The crocodile appeared in the Stitch! anime.

Kingdom Hearts Series

The Crocodile is a character from the Neverland world, and one of Captain Hook's enemies in Kingdom Hearts. He acquired a taste for the pirate captain when Peter Pan chopped off the captain's hand and fed it to him. He now follows Hook around everywhere, hoping to get a second taste of the captain. The crocodile isn't truly a villain, since he primarily hunts Captain Hook, but he will also attack Sora and Ventus, making him a neutral character.

The crocodile also swallowed a ticking alarm clock, that now, unfortunately for the crocodile, warns Captain Hook if he is approaching. This has become something of a trademark for the crocodile, foreshadowing its arrival in a way that terrifies the captain, much to his humiliation.

Kingdom Hearts Birth by Sleep

The Crocodile plays a small role in Terra's story when he shows up in the Skull Cave and scares Captain Hook away. He also appears during Ventus' story shortly before his fight with Captain Hook. During Ven's fight, the Crocodile swims around in the water attacking Ven if he gets too close and scaring Captain Hook back onto the rock if he goes in the water. After defeat Captain Hook, he tossed to the water by Ven, the Crocodile chasing Hook away. Then Crocodile later appears once again in Aqua's to frighten Hook away for a third time.

Kingdom Hearts

The Crocodile plays a small role at the end of the storyline in the Neverland world though he is mentioned before then. After Sora and Peter Pan defeat Captain Hook, the Captain falls into the water only to be chased away by the Crocodile. This is almost identical to his fate in the movie.

Disney Parks


The crocodile along with many other beloved Disney characters has played a role in Disney's Fantasmic at Disneyland Resort. In Disneyland he appears during the Peter and Hook sword duel chasing after the the ship. In Walt Disney World Fantasmic at Disney's Hollywood Studios the Peter and Hook duel is replaced with a Pocahontas scene. The tick tock crocodile is bigger then a grown man and is long as a bus.

Disney Park Parades

Tick Tock Croc appeared in the Disney parks on special occasions and on regular days sometimes. In the parade the croc walks around and looks at the crowd while the clock ticks in his belly. In the parade it is true what people say Tick Tock is larger than a grown man.

Peter Pan's Flight

Tick-Tock the Crocodile appeared in Peter Pan's Flight in the Disney Parks to eat Captain Hook.

Dream Along With Mickey

In the show Tick Tock's iconic alarm clock was used to make Captain Hook to Peter Pan during a duel. In the show while the clock is being tossed by characters the song Never Smile at a Crocodile is herd.

Disney On Ice

The Crocodile appeared in Mickey and Minnie's Magical Journey in Disney on Ice with Peter Pan story.

Sunday, October 17, 2010

The Mickey Mouse Club First Days

Q: I heard that the Mickey Mouse Club started as a local club until Walt Disney turned it into a TV show. Can you clarify the story for me?
Andrew, Seattle, Washington

A [Dave Smith]: The first Mickey Mouse Clubs were run in hundreds of movie theaters nationwide beginning in 1929. At the height of their popularity, in 1932, there were more than a million members.

[Marcio Disney]

Click Here to read an article by Steven Miller (Project Manager for Disney Trading) talking about Vinylmation '55 - The Mickey Mouse Club

The Mickey Mouse Club is one of the most memorable pieces of 1950's pop-culture Americana, with catchy lyrics that have rung through time from Baby Boomers on down. This club, with its daily half-hour television show, song and dance skits, theme days and mouse ears, was not the first Mickey Mouse Club, however. Before Annette and Bobby, before "M-I-C See ya real soon! K-E-Y Why? Because we like you!", before television and Disneyland, was the original Mickey Mouse Club.

Created in 1929 by Harry Woodlin for the Fox Dome Theatre in Ocean Park, California, this original Mickey Mouse Club was a cartoon matinee club for gregarious, all-American youngsters. Clubs of this sort, based around a character with some drawing power like a Mickey Mouse or a Popeye the Sailor Man, were popular with both kids and theatre owners. The kids loved the opportunity to see their animated hero and win prizes, while the owners loved the radically increased patronage and profits they brought with them. Within a year, 150 theatres organized Mickey Mouse Clubs with some 200,000 members. By 1932, the number of members inflated to a million kids spread over 800 theatres.

The weekly club festivities would always get underway with its very own theme song, originally featured in the cartoon Mickey's Follies and comprising the very first original song written by the Disney studios: "Minnie's Yoo Hoo"...

Friday, October 15, 2010

Dave Smith's Final Day of Work

T H I S   D A Y   I N   D I S N E Y   H I S T O R Y

October 15, 2010

Disney Legend Dave Smith, the founder and head of the Disney Archives, puts in his final day of work at the Burbank studio. Smith started the archives after being approached by Walt Disney’s family, including Roy O. Disney four years after Walt’s death in 1966, to preserve the history  of the company.

In the video below, Dave Smith, receives the Disney Legends award, 10/10/2007:

Dave Smith (Archives)
Inducted 2007
Walt Disney Archives founder and chief archivist David R. Smith officially joined The Walt Disney Company on June 22, 1970, but his Disney roots are even deeper.

A fan of Disney films throughout his youth, Dave adds, "I grew up in Southern California, and so my appreciation of Disneyland began as a child." In 1967, he had become interested in compiling an extensive bibliography on Walt Disney. With approval from the Disney organization, he spent more than a year researching all Disney publications and productions. 

When the Disney family and Studio management decided to attempt to preserve Walt Disney's papers, awards and memorabilia, it was natural for them to contact Dave to do a study, and make a recommendation which established the guidelines and objectives of the Archives. Dave was selected as archivist, and in the years since the Archives was established, it has come to be recognized as a model among corporate archives in the country?and Dave is regarded as the final authority on matters of Disney history. 

Born on October 13, 1940, and raised in Pasadena, Dave graduated as valedictorian from both Pasadena High School and Pasadena City College. He earned his B.A. in history at the University of California at Berkeley. While in school, Dave worked part-time for six years in the Manuscript Department of the Huntington Library in San Marino. 

Upon receiving his Masters Degree in Library Science from the University of California in June 1963, he was selected as one of seven outstanding graduates of library schools throughout the country to participate in an internship program at the Library of Congress in Washington. 

He returned to California where he served for five years as a reference librarian at the UCLA Research Library. While there, Dave authored several articles and had bibliographies published on the Monitor and the Merrimac Civil War warships, and on Jack Benny. 

Of his Disney role, Dave said, "The thing I like best is the tremendous variety in our work. We never know when we come to work in the morning what we'll be doing that day. It keeps the job interesting when you're not doing the same thing day in and day out." 

Dave has written extensively on Disney history, with a regular column in The Disney Channel Magazine, Disney Magazine, Disney Newsreel, and numerous articles in such publications as Starlog, Manuscripts, Millimeter, American Archivist, and California Historical Quarterly. He is the author of the official Disney encyclopedia Disney A to Z (now in its third edition), with Kevin Neary he co-authored four volumes of The Ultimate Disney Trivia Book, with Steven Clark he co-wrote Disney: The First 100 Years, and he edited The Quotable Walt Disney. Dave has written introductions to a number of other Disney books. 

"My greatest reward has been getting to know the many people who have come to use the Archives over the years. I have been especially proud to be a guide and mentor to so many young people who have gone on to exceptional careers in the Disney organization." Dave says humbly. 

"I have had the pleasure and privilege to work with Dave Smith for nearly 35 years," author and animator John Canemaker says, "and, to me, he has always been legendary. For his steady building of the Disney Archives over the years into one of the greatest, most invaluable, world-class resources for studying American animation?and for his kindness and generosity to all researchers." 

Thursday, October 14, 2010

Where's the Original Plans to Epcot

Q: Why is the Epcot of today so different from the original plans given by Walt in the Disneyland show? Also, what ever happened to those original plans that hung on the wall in the background?
Joe, Springfield, Missouri

A [Dave Smith]: Walt Disney's 1966 film giving his ideas for EPCOT were shown on local television stations in Florida, but not on his regular television show. Since Walt did not have time to refine his ideas before his untimely passing, plans had to be changed in ensuing years to make the project viable. The original plans for EPCOT are filed at Walt Disney Imagineering.

The Florida Project – September 9-11, 2011

The Florida Project

I wish I could have attended the opening of Walt Disney World in 1971 (some of you reading this probably did – lucky!). One of my all time favorite Disney films from that time period is called “The Magic of Walt Disney World.” It was released in 1972, but I recall seeing it on the Disney Channel in the 1980s. What a classic slice of Disney – the lush sounds of Buddy Baker; the images of polyester and people eating food; groovy music in Tomorrowland and just pure 1970s Disney fun. A different time and a different place. It is in that same vein that I’m pleased to announce “The Florida Project: a Disney Trading and Collecting Experience” coming to World ShowPlace at Epcot on September 9-11, 2011. The image above is a rough concept poster designed by Chris Chapman from Disney Design Group. He is the lead designer for this event and spoke about the origin of this event.

“With the 40th Anniversary of Walt Disney World in 2011, we wanted to focus on the feeling of nostalgia that people have when thinking about those early years,” said Chris. “The story for this event involves an alternate Preview Center that we uncovered. It was never used because the official Preview Center opened on Buena Vista Drive. The experience will be as if you stepped back in time as we will pay tribute to as much as possible from that era.”

Vintage Walt Disney World Postcards

When we had our initial idea session, I brought several of my vintage Disney items to share (it’s one of the things I collect – Disney merchandise from 1970 to 1984). We looked at vintage postcards, at images in souvenir books and even at my Polynesian Village glass vase (behold those 1970s colors). We all agreed that we wanted the merchandise created for this event to have a similar vibe.

Vintage Polynesian Village Glass Vases

“We plan to create a retro look with the character designs” explained Alex Maher, senior character artist with Disney Design Group. “The character designs in the early 1970s were unique. We want to incorporate a similar look with the merchandise we are designing.”

Vintage Walt Disney World Souvenirs

As mentioned, this event will be a Disney Trading and Collecting Experience. This means you will find a variety of items from pins to Vinylmation to potentially some additional categories. And there will be trading (of course). I consider this event an evolution of our Disney Merchandise Events. We still have plenty of details to finalize, and feedback to consider from our previous events. I will share additional information in the coming months on the Disney Parks Blog, so stay tuned.

I leave you with one final question: Did you visit Walt Disney World in the 1970s? What was it like (as sadly my time machine is still not functioning)? I’d love to hear your stories.

Everyday, Disney fans send dozens of questions for Disney Chief Archivist Dave Smith. Here are Dave's answers to your questions. Check back every day for a new post with a new question.

Dave Smith (born October 13, 1940) was the Walt Disney Archives founder and chief archivist which is located in the Frank G. Wells Building at Walt Disney Studios in Burbank, California. He joined the company June 22, 1970. Forty years later, on July 2010, he retired.

oº Marcio Disney Family Sites Network ºoº

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

The Rainbow Road To Oz

Q: I recently saw an old Disneyland television program on DVD in which the Mouseketeers surprise Walt Disney with a presentation of a musical extravaganza called The Rainbow Road To Oz. On the show it is revealed that the Studio purchased all the rights to all of the other Frank Baum Oz stories and in the DVD Walt promises the kids that he's going to make a wide-screen Technicolor production of The Rainbow Road To Oz. Whatever happened to that promised-to-the-Mouseketeers project. There must be a great story there.
Michael, Burbank, California

A [Dave Smith]: I wish there was a happy ending to that story, as I loved the Oz books as a kid, not to mention the MGM film, but unfortunately The Rainbow Road to Oz was never made as Walt Disney never was able to get a script that satisfied him. We have only the two musical sequences that appeared in that 1957 television show. Our only Oz film was Return to Oz, many years later, and it was not a musical and had nothing to do with the earlier concept.

[Marcio Disney]

Click Here to read The Rainbow Road to Oz - The Oz Film Walt Disney almost Made at

Everyday, Disney fans send dozens of questions for Disney Chief Archivist Dave Smith. Here are Dave's answers to your questions. Check back every day for a new post with a new question.

Dave Smith (born October 13, 1940) was the Walt Disney Archives founder and chief archivist which is located in the Frank G. Wells Building at Walt Disney Studios in Burbank, California. He joined the company June 22, 1970. Forty years later, on July 2010, he retired.

oº Marcio Disney Family Sites Network ºoº

Sunday, October 3, 2010

A Fond Farewell from Dave Smith

Disney Archivist Dave Smith 

As many of our readers already know, Disney Archivist Dave Smith is retiring this month, after 40 years of service. Dave created the Disney Archives, saving decades of Disney history for future generations to enjoy and learn from. He has also made himself an invaluable resource for Disney enthusiasts, sharing his time and expertise to answer trivia questions (a longtime feature for Disney Insider readers!), meet Guests at the Parks and on Disney Cruises, and create trivia and reference guides to all things Disney.

Dave and his partners at D23 have been kind enough to let us share a special farewell letter from Dave with you. As he makes it clear, he will still be very much a part of the Disney family – as he will always be!

Dear friends, fellow cast members, and Disney fans:

It has been so gratifying to me to have established the Walt Disney Archives and run it for the past 40 years, helping to preserve the history of a company that means so much to so many people around the world. When I reported for my first day of work at the Disney Studio back in June 1970, I never envisioned myself staying in the same role for four decades. But, what started out as a mere job turned into a labor of love.

From a glimmer of an idea, the Archives has turned into a department which continually proves itself invaluable to The Walt Disney Company. I am very pleased to have had the support of an ever-growing and knowledgeable staff and of every CEO of this company from Roy O. Disney to Bob Iger. If these corporate leaders had not championed the Archives, we would not have the department that we have today – one that is so beneficial to the entire Disney organization.

But I won't be going far. Rest assured, I will still be dropping by the office occasionally to help out when needed – keeping up "Disney A to Z," speaking to D23 and other groups, and advising authors that are writing on Disney subjects. And of course, I'll also be on hand to answer future "Ask Dave" questions.

So as I retire, I am comforted to know that I am leaving behind a very viable department for our new director, Becky Cline, to take over. And with your support, I am sure that the Archives will continue to serve our company for many years to come!

Yours always,

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