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Hiya pals, it’s Saturday, which means relaxation is the name of the game, and with a lot happening in the Disney realm, you’re probably playing catch up with all of the big news and happenings in the Mouse House. From Disney moving forward to sue Ron DeSantis to the debut of Peter Pan & Wendy, and even the sneak peek at Flounder that has a fandom divided, it’s been a busy week for fans of the magic.
As the news cycle slows down (knock on wood), we’re taking a look back at some of the sweet moments you might have missed from the last 24 hours, including a peek at Disney partnering with Make-A-Wish to make some special dreams come true, the release of a special edition 100 Year celebration print, and the fact that Ron DeSantis continues to make more enemies than friends where Disney and it’s surrounding areas are concerned.
You know the drill from here, grab your favorite Disney blanket and mug — because we know you have them too, and get cozy because we’re giving you a front-row seat to the magic. Oh, if you still need time to evaluate your stance on the new live-action Flounder, you’re not alone.
DeSantis continues building enemies in the Happiest Place on Earth
First things first, Ron DeSantis has been in a very public ongoing feud with Disney World since they took a public stance against his “Don’t Say Gay” bill, having first been mum about it. Since they made their opinion known, they’ve continued standing up against DeSantis and the plentiful tactics he’s tried using against them. It all feels very personal and very elementary — like he’s mad at a friend who disagreed with him, and now he’s trying to turn the whole school against them.
Disney isn’t fearful of DeSantis, however, and it looks like many who call the Most Magical Place on Earth home are also losing whatever positive feelings they had left towards him. Earlier this week, Disney announced plans to sue DeSantis, and people in the surrounding areas are speaking out about their feelings and opinions on the vendetta DeSantis has against Disney.
Speaking to the Washington Post, a resident of Celebration, FL, named Ted Baker, is opening up about the mess DeSantis has made for himself with locals. First, he credits DeSantis for doing good things for the state but says that even those on the same political side as the governor are beginning to lose faith in him as his feud with Disney continues.
“He has done a wonderful job for the state of Florida, so why he has decided to pick a fight with Disney just doesn’t make any logical sense to me. I now have people from Ohio calling me asking me, ‘If this is going on, is the governor screwing up other things in the state? And I will be very honest with you, as a moderate Republican, he’s lost my vote for presidency. And my wife’s too.”
Baker isn’t the only one talking, and it’s evident that people on both sides of the political argument are sick of the way DeSantis has handled his disagreement with Disney. Lauren Gunnyon, Celebration’s executive director, says some locals are beginning to feel like they have to pick a side.
“You have a lot of Disney fanatics in this town, a lot of them moved here or bought a second home here because of Disney, but you do have a wide range of political views.”
People aren’t just concerned with their love of Disney and the magic but with the longevity of their businesses, homes, and investments. With many things changing in the Disney space, it’s no surprise that the magic has been a little harder to find lately — even for those who run off of it; the DeSantis vs. Disney debacle is only making it more prominent that something has to change.
Make-a-Wish partners with Disney to bring kids’ ultimate dreams come true
On a positive note, Disney’s not letting the DeSantis debacle run the course of its entire company, as the Mouse House recently partnered with Make-A-Wish for a special celebration for fans of everything from Marvel to Pixar.
The Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3 red carpet premiere took place this week, and a few kids from the Make-A-Wish Foundation were there to celebrate the event with their favorite heroes as they gear up for the last film in the trilogy. Snapping pictures with Chris Pratt, attending a Marvel premiere, and dressing up for the big event — these kids were given a once-in-a-lifetime chance to enjoy their childhood despite facing struggle and unfair odds in their lives up to this point.
The beauty of Disney and Make-A-Wish is that it takes children out of what surrounds them daily and brings them something right out of a dream. The foundation helps children aged two and a half to under 17 (at the time of referral) who have been diagnosed with a critical illness.
Today is known as #WishDay, and Disney also shared a story of a girl named Addie who wanted to be a voice-over actor for Pixar. She could tour backstage areas, lend her voice to a character, and be part of something larger than life.
It’s a testament to Disney and Make-A-Wish that so many children hope to be surrounded by the magic for their special day, and we shouldn’t forget what a positive impact they have on all of us every single day.
Disney celebrates 100 years with a beautiful piece of art
While honoring Disney means there’s always something to celebrate, the company reached a couple of huge milestones over the last few years. For one, Walt Disney World celebrated its 50th anniversary in a significant way, with unique happenings, food and drink options, character experiences, and clothing options for fans who visited the park.
The celebration also led to some changes in the parks, like revamping the castle and gold statues that interacted with park guests and can be visited as you walk through Walt Disney World. It felt like an extra dose of brilliance was added during this time, and another came after one celebration.
Disney is also celebrating 100 years of magic, which kicked off on Walt Disney’s birthday: Dec. 5, 1901. The salute to Disney is taking place across all parks and within the hearts of all fans, and with additions of new merch will soon come new looks for characters and experiences for fans as the celebration continues throughout 2023. To help honor the journey with Disney so far, artists got together to create a collectors print that will be a treasure for anyone lucky enough to get their hands on one.
The piece is called Time Flies, and Disney describes it as a way to honor the 100th anniversary of Disney Studios, a significant moment for fans.
“In ‘Time Flies: Celebrating 100 Years,’ Mickey Mouse and Minnie Mouse take to the skies above the past and present Disney Studios to honor the 100th anniversary. With the background evolving from black and white to vivid color – just as Disney’s films did – Mickey and Minnie soar over the 100 years of Disney history depicted by three iconic buildings that have been the home of Walt Disney Animation Studios. Their flight begins over The Hyperion Studio, where Mickey and Minnie were first created, then over the Burbank Lot, built after the success of “Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs,” and then finally pass over the iconic “Hat Building,” the current home of Walt Disney Animation Studios.”
There are only 100 prints available, and for now, you can find the prints in California at Disneyana at the Disneyland Resort. The art should be making its way to Walt Disney World resort galleries soon.
On this day in Disney history:
Disney has been spreading magic for a century, meaning there’s no shortage of beautiful moments we’ve all experienced with our most beloved mouse, his best pals, and so many fairytales and stories of friendship, brilliance, tenacity, and love. As we look at the present and future of Disney, we’re also taking a look back at what got us this far. On this day in Disney history, a few awesome things happened, including the following:
- Pluto’s Sweater, a film about everyone’s favorite dog, had its theatrical release.
- The West End’s production of Beauty and the Beast opens with Julie Alanah Brighton taking on the role of Belle, Burke Moses wearing the mantle of Gaston, and Alasdair Harvey cast as the Beast.
- Michael J. Fox adds his handprints to the collection at the Disney-MGM Studios at Walt Disney World. If you’ve been to Disney World, you’ll know MGM Studios is now Hollywood Studios, and you can still see his handprints there to this day.
Here’s to Disney magic, 100 years of honoring the man who made it possible and the Mouse House that dishes out so much joy; may we all have faith, trust, and pixie dust when we need it the most.