castle flag crest
Q: In the opening Disney Castle sequence that has opened Disney movies since 2006, there is a flag flying on top of the castle that I can't identify. I've looked everywhere but can not find an answer or any image that matches it. The most common guess on blogs is that it is a Disney family Crest, but can not find confirmation on that. I have also read that the castle is a morph of all the Disney castles and likewise, the flag is representative of European coats without being any in particular. And I know that this sequence frequently modifies per film. Does the flag change? I feel like it was red most recently for The Jungle Book. I hope you can clarify.
Erik, Chicago, Illinois
A: We contacted Mike Gabriel who conceived, storyboarded, did all development pieces, directed, and art directed the Disney motion pictures logo. Here is his answer: "That is the authentic Disney family crest on the flag. It matches the Disney family crest stone plaque that is directly above Sleeping Beauty Castle's front entrance arch at Disneyland. I wanted the Disney family represented as the first thing you see on the castle as we descend from the wishing star.  I was asked by Baker Bloodworth, who was producing an updated CG version of our logo if I had any ideas on how to redo it. I boarded a version in less than an hour and showed it to Baker and Susan Butterworth and they approved it to move forward. Baker produced. The castle is a hybrid of Disney park castles. Only secret hidden fun fact:  Look for Roy E. Disney's Pyewacket, the dark silhouetted yacht in the river behind the castle, which I added to convey Roy will always have the studio's back. Disney executives approved the logo, and Weta Digital in New Zealand, led by Michael Pangrazio and his team, did all the final design and CG work based on my paintings thru teleconferencing with Baker and myself. They improved all elements."