Fantasy Land Mad Hatter’s Tea Party Cashier costume sketch by Renié Conley

What’s in a Name? – Renié Conley, Costumer to the Stars – Part One

By Kevin Kern, Walt Disney Archives

“Walt realized that a visit to an amusement park could be like a theatrical experience—in a word, a show.”  — Disney Legend John Hench

No part of the Disneyland “show” was overlooked while preparing to open in the months leading up to July 17, 1955. When Walt and his staff set out to create their new entertainment…

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Haunted Mansion Tombstone

Haunted Mansion Tombstones

By Kimi Thompson, Walt Disney Archives

When the Haunted Mansion was being developed for Disneyland, Walt Disney asked Imagineer X Atencio to help develop the storyline for the attraction. He even wrote the now-famous lyrics to the iconic theme song, “Grim Grinning Ghosts.” As a fun homage to the Imagineers who helped create the Haunted Mansion, X wrote epitaphs…

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Mary Poppins, Burt and Penguins

Mary Poppins’ “Jolly Holiday” Boots

By Rick Lorentz, Walt Disney Archives

In its production heyday, The Walt Disney Studios had five sound stages and several backlot locations. Also located on the studio grounds were a costume department and prop warehouse. The proximity of wardrobe and set decoration made it convenient for production staff to prepare for filming. Another advantage to having such…

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Peter Cushing folder

What’s in a Name? – Peter Cushing

By Kevin Kern, Walt Disney Archives

Sometimes, the most interesting historical rediscoveries we make in the Walt Disney Archives come when you least expect it, usually while you’re not looking for what you find. Being a fan of all things Star Wars, I just about fell over when, while perusing a box of Disney studio Casting Department files from the 1950s and 1960s,…

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Fantastic Voyage concept art

A Look Back at the Oscars®, 1967

By Lynne Drake, Walt Disney Archives

The 39th Academy Awards were held on April 10, 1967, at the Santa Monica Civic Auditorium. The 20th Century Fox film, Fantastic Voyage (1966), was shot in CinemaScope Color and won the night’s top prize for Art Direction (Color). Art direction for the film was overseen by Jack Martin Smith and Dale Hennesy, with set decoration…

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Behind the scenes photograph from 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea (1954)

20,000 Leagues Under Sersen Lake

By Cesar Gallegos, Walt Disney Archives

From galaxies far, far away to 20,000 leagues under the sea, motion pictures have the ability to transport audiences to new worlds.

In order to create these worlds, filmmakers apply a bit of ingenuity and movie magic. To help craft the underwater world in Disney’s 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea, the studio used Sersen Lake…

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