Disney Becomes First Jersey Sponsor for Orlando Magic

Over the years, the relationship between Walt Disney World Resort and the Orlando Magic basketball team has been, well, magical. Now it’s about to get even more magical as we expand our relationship as the team’s uniform sponsor.

As part of the NBA’s three-year trial period in which the league welcomes uniform sponsorship partners, Disney will have its logo on the Magic players’ jerseys for all games starting next season.

Disney Making Even More ‘Magic’

Disney became one of the team’s Champion of the Community partners in 2010, and this expanded partnership is another way we are working with the Magic to solidify Central Florida’s presence as a global sports destination. And it’s just cool.

Disney Making Even More ‘Magic’

Disney is also adding a special seating and hospitality area at the Amway Center for annual passholder upgrades during select Orlando Magic games. As part of our expanded partnership, Magic fans can purchase or renew their Walt Disney World Annual Passes at the Amway Center, including the Orlando Magic Team Shop. And doing it there comes with some perks. Throughout the multi-year agreement, fans who renew or purchase their annual pass at the Amway Center will receive one of the new Orlando Magic jerseys with the Disney logo.

“At Walt Disney World Resort, we naturally believe in all things magic and are happy to support our hometown team,” said George A. Kalogridis, president of Walt Disney World Resort. “This long-term relationship symbolizes our shared focus of solidifying Orlando as a world class city for sports.”

When you think about it, this agreement really is a slam-dunk. But don’t take my word for it. Check out this video of Mickey Mouse and Magic star Aaron Gordon playing ball. Now this is “Pure Magic.”

Disney’s Iger Says Shanghai Resort Close to Breaking Even

Walt Disney Co.’s ambitious $5.5 billion Shanghai theme park is close to breaking even after its first full year of operations — a mark none of its resorts have been able to hit in the last 30 years, said Chief Executive Officer Bob Iger.

“That’s an extraordinary achievement. I’m not sure we’ve ever done that,” said Iger in an interview with Bloomberg Television’s Tom Mackenzie on Friday as the Shanghai Disney Resort celebrated its first anniversary. “After the first year, I’m pleased to say that prospects are really strong for continued success and continued growth.”

The park logged more than 11 million visitors earlier this week, Iger said. The Shanghai development, Disney’s first in mainland China and its largest foreign investment, throws the Burbank, California-based giant into the race to dominate the country’s $204 billion media and entertainment industry.

In China, there’s potential for Disney to build a second park in the long run, Iger said, adding it would focus on the Shanghai resort first. A Toy Story themed land opening is planned for next year.

“Before we really look to the horizon geographically, we will focus on expanding this park,” Iger said. “Might we build in another city over time? Yes. There’s a great likelihood that we will. But it’s way too early.”

Disney’s shares rose 0.3 percent to $106.34 as of 9:30 in New York trading.

Half the resort’s visitors are from Shanghai and adjacent areas, with the remainder coming from other Chinese cities, Iger said. Park attendance is higher than expected, with “extremely high” occupancy rates at its hotel. The food and beverage business, as well as merchandising, has faced some challenges, he said.

The resort’s attendance for the 12 months after its opening puts it in the top seven of theme parks worldwide, ahead of Disney’s Hong Kong and Paris parks but behind its most popular parks in Florida, California and Japan.

From Bloomberg

iTunes is Celebrating the Opening of Pandora – The World of Avatar

In Celebration of the opening of Pandora – The World of Avatar at Disney’s Animal Kingdom Park, iTunes is providing a limited time offer that is “out of this world”!

The Avatar Extended Collector’s Edition on iTunes is available at the reduced price of $7.99 (reg. $19.99) through June 5th. Exclusively on iTunes, the Extended Collector’s Edition will include a video behind the scenes look inside the Land. The over eight minute piece features an in-depth look at how this dream world became a reality through the collaboration between Lightstorm Entertainment, led by James Cameron (Creator/Director of Avatar) and Jon Landau (Producer of Avatar), and the Walt Disney Imagineering team led by Joe Rohde, Creative Executive.

The Extended Collector’s Edition also offers a look at the filmmakers’ journey in the documentary Capturing Avatar, featuring interviews with the creative team behind the film. The set includes three versions of the film including a Family Friendly Audio version, plus over 45 minutes of never-before-seen footage, the Exclusive Alternate Opening on Earth, The Art of Avatar and more!

Visit apple.co/Avatar for this very special, limited time offer and share with Avatar fans

Disney and LuLaRoe Announce Partnership for Official Disney-Themed Leggings and More

The world of LuLaRoe leggings have taken the world by storm over the last year or so, and now, they’re only going to get bigger as they have partnered with Disney. There had been a lot of rumors going around for days when LuLaRoe called for a huge meeting of their consultants in Disney California Adventure at the Disneyland Resort. Late on Thursday night, the rumors came true as the partnership announcement was made.

The Disney Collection features leggings, dresses, tops, and more, all in fashionable Disney-inspired prints.

It’s not clear when the new collection will be available to order, but there are reports that order dates will be between May 30 and June 6. The coveted Disney items will reportedly only be available at in-home parties and sales.

LuLaRoe has offered patterns that evoke Disney in the past but this is the first time the two companies are officially partnering.

If you weren’t already a LuLaRoe fan, this Disney Collection might get you hooked. Stay tuned for more updates about ordering and follow LuLaRoe on their Facebook page.

Sources: Danny Cox, Inside the Magic

Shanghai Disneyland Welcomes 10 Million Guests in Its First Eleven Months

As part of its celebration of China’s National Tourism Day, Shanghai Disney Resort has announced that Shanghai Disneyland recently welcomed its 10 millionth guest – and in just 11 months! That makes Shanghai Disneyland the most popular theme park opening ever in China.

“We’re thrilled to see millions of people from across China embrace Shanghai Disney Resort,” said Bob Iger, chairman and CEO of The Walt Disney Company. “Their reaction has been everything we’d hoped for and, thanks to their enthusiasm, this incredible resort is exceeding our expectations across the board. It’s a fantastic success that gives us even more reason to be excited about the future of Disney in China.”

It’s hard to believe Shanghai Disney Resort is already about to celebrate its first anniversary, but today the resort also announced plans for a special month-long celebration leading up to an unforgettable magical moment at Enchanted Storybook Castle on June 16.

 

Iceland Joins Lineup of Adventures by Disney Vacations in 2018

Adventures by Disney has announced its newest destination – Iceland! In 2018, you can navigate the diverse landscapes of this country and explore the natural powers of majestic waterfalls, massive glaciers and stunning volcanos. This new 8-day, 7-night, action-packed vacation takes you from Reykjavik and the Golden Circle in the South to Akureyri and Lake Mývatn in the North. Prepare to be immersed in rich Icelandic culture and unparalleled natural beauty that join forces through this land of fire and ice.

Visit the iconic Thingvellir National Park, breathtaking Goðafoss waterfall and massive Kerið crater. Prepare to unwind and relax at the soothing Blue Lagoon and Mývatn Nature Baths. Explore the high seas with a spectacular humpback whale-watching expedition.

Even more thrilling, you’ll come face-to-face with magnificent glaciers on a scenic cruise, and even hike on the massive ice caps themselves. Embark on a whitewater rafting adventure through the glacial river of Skagafjörður and trot through the scenic countryside on an Icelandic horse. Hike along, and even behind, some of the region’s most awe-inspiring waterfalls, including Seljalandsfoss and Goðafoss.

Unique culinary stories are also a large part of this vacation, as you learn to make bread baked using geothermal heat. You can also discover the secret to Iceland’s traditional smoking process.

Also in 2018, Adventures by Disney vacations to Germany, Costa Rica and Ireland have been reimagined, expanding upon the already rich authentic experiences and local storytelling of these destinations. In all, Adventures by Disney will offer trips to more than three dozen destinations in 2018.

Bookings for all 2018 vacations open May 19, 2017!

Disney to Bring Back ‘Mickey Mouse Club’ as a Facebook Show

Remember those Mouseketeers? They’re back, but for a Facebook audience.

Disney is creating a new series called “Club Mickey Mouse,” a remixed version of the classic variety show “Mickey Mouse Club” that aired on-and-off between 1955 and 1996. But instead of airing on TV like its predecessor, “Club Mickey Mouse” will be a Facebook exclusive series.

“That’s the beauty,” Josh Mattison, vice president of digital ad sales for Disney Consumer Products and Interactive Media, told CNBC. “We’re not bound to one format. We’re not bound to one length. … You don’t have those same lines when you’re not producing 11s and 22s [referring to 11-minutes and 22-minute standard length TV series]. What makes sense for a consumer? How long would you spend looking at something?”

The announcement was made during its Digital Content NewFront presentation in New York on Tuesday, which is an annual presentation where advertisers preview upcoming online video programming. Other Facebook shows included a series focused on millennial fathers, an animated gaming-themed show called “Coin,” and an IBM-sponsored Star Wars series called “Science and Star Wars,” which is also part of the Facebook Anthology program.

“Branded content is a priority for Facebook,” Rita Ferro, president of advertising sales for Disney, told CNBC. “We’re going to be working with them on a bunch of things.”

“Club Mickey Mouse” is one of nine programs created in partnership with Facebook Anthology, advertising partnerships between the platform, media companies and brands.

“It’s really a partnership with Facebook where we come to the market together,” Ferro said.

No cast has been named for “Club Mickey Mouse,” but the company will draw from Maker Studios, its in-house multichannel network and talent company. The original “Mickey Mouse Club” was notable for launching the careers of Annette Funicello, Ryan Gosling, Justin Timberlake, Britney Spears, Christina Aguilera and Kerri Russell, among others.

Disney Wonder Becomes First Passenger Vessel To Transit New Panama Canal Locks

The Disney Wonder transited the Panama Canal as the first passenger vessel to go through the canal’s new set of locks, marking a milestone for the cruise industry. The Disney Cruise Line 2,713-passenger ship was transformed in late 2016, expanding the length of the Disney Wonder to 984 feet.

Headlining the ship’s enhancements are new imaginative spaces for children – including areas themed to the Marvel Universe and Disney’s “Frozen” – a jazzy restaurant inspired by Disney’s “Princess and the Frog,” and an authentic neighborhood English pub with subtle nods to classic Disney films.

The Disney Wonder Panama Canal crossing is part of a 14-night voyage from Port Canaveral, Fla., to San Diego, where the ship will sail cruises to Baja, Mexico, before a summer season from Vancouver to Alaska.

Star Wars Celebration Reveals New Star Tours Adventure

During Star Wars Celebration in Orlando last week, Star Wars fans got their first look at the teaser trailer for Star Wars: The Last Jedi. Fans attending a special panel discussion entitled Star Wars and Disney Parks: A Galaxy in the Making also learned that a new destination will be coming to Star Tours – The Adventures Continue at Disneyland park and Disney’s Hollywood Studios later this year featuring some of the iconic actions and locations showcased in the trailer!

New Star Tours Adventure - Star Wars: The Last Jedi

This new Star Tours adventure, first announced by Walt Disney Parks and Resorts Chairman Bob Chapek last fall, will take guests to the planet of Crait in the middle of an epic battle … and it’s like nothing that frequent Starspeeder travelers have ever seen!

Broadway’s ‘Frozen’ Sets Initial Principal Casting

Initial principal casting has been announced for Broadway’s Frozen, the new musical based on Disney’s Academy Award-winning musical film. As previously reported, the show will play the Denver Center for the Performing Arts’ Buell Theatre August 17–October 1 before arriving on Broadway in spring 2018 at the St. James Theatre.

The cast will be led by Caissie Levy and Patti Murin as Arendelle’s royal sisters.

Levy, who last appeared on Broadway as Fantine in the revival of Les Miserables, will create the role of Elsa, a young woman wrestling with powers beyond her comprehension or control (voiced on screen by Idina Menzel). Levy’s additional credits include Ghost and Hair, both in the West End and on Broadway, as well as Broadway’s Wicked and Hairspray.

Murin, who made her Broadway debut in Xanadu and has since appeared on the New York stage in Lysistrata Jones, Lady, Be Good!, and Love Labour’s Lost, will star as Elsa’s younger sister Anna, who tries to reconnect with the person once closest to her.

The two will be joined by Greg Hildreth (Peter and the Starcatcher, Cinderella, Bloody Bloody Andrew Jackson) as Olaf, Robert Creighton (The Little Mermaid, Anything Goes, Off-Broadway’s Cagney) as Duke of Weselton, John Riddle (The Visit) as Hans, and Jelani Alladin in his Broadway debut as Kristoff. Additional principal and ensemble casting will be announced soon.

Tony winner Michael Grandage (Red) directs the production.

Producers also announced April 17 that Tony Award winner Rob Ashford has joined Frozen’s creative team as choreographer. Christopher Gattelli, previously announced as choreographer, has chosen to leave the show ahead of rehearsals in June. Ashford is a Tony winner for Thoroughly Modern Millie.

Single tickets for the Denver engagement, which start at $25 with a limit of eight tickets per account, will go on sale May 1 at 10 AM MT at DenverCenter.org. Tickets for the Broadway production will go on sale later this year.

In spring 2018, Frozen will join Disney Theatrical’s other Broadway mainstays The Lion King and Aladdin. Broadway dates will be announced at a later date. Levy and Murin were previously announced to play Elsa and Anna in a developmental lab.

The new musical features music and lyrics by the creators of the film’s score, Kristen Anderson-Lopez (In Transit, Up Here) and EGOT winner Robert Lopez (Avenue Q, The Book of Mormon, Up Here), and a book by Jennifer Lee (Wreck-It Ralph), the film’s screenwriter and director (with Chris Buck).

The design team for Frozen includes Tony- and Olivier-winner scenic and costume designer Christopher Oram (Wolf Hall Parts 1 & 2, The Cripple of Inishmaan, Evita), Tony-winning lighting designer Natasha Katz (Aladdin; Hello, Dolly!; An American in Paris), and sound designer Peter Hylenski (The Scottsboro Boys, Motown, After Midnight).

Two-time Tony Award winner Stephen Oremus (Avenue Q, Wicked, The Book of Mormon) is music supervisor and creates vocal and incidental arrangements.

Frozen won two Oscars in 2014: Best Song (“Let It Go”) and Best Animated Feature.

Frozen is produced by Disney Theatrical Productions.