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General Disney Trivia and Games Discuss This Day in Disney History in the Trivia and Games Forums forums; February 2 1922: A young Walt Disney begins work at his own cartoon company called Newman's Laugh-O-Grams in Kansas City, Missouri. He will produce animated versions of 6 fairy tales, ...
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    February 2

    1922:
    A young Walt Disney begins work at his own cartoon company called Newman's Laugh-O-Grams in Kansas City, Missouri. He will produce animated versions of 6 fairy tales, each lasting just one minute Walt had felt that Kansas City theaters - which featured cartoons made by studios on the east coast - might be willing to buy some from a local company. He created a few and brought them to the Newman Theater. In order to clinch the deal, Walt calls them ... "Newman's Laugh-O-Grams." The cartoon series is regarded as Walt's first effort in animation.

    1938:
    The first Donald Duck daily strip (drawn by Al Taliaferro) is published.

    1967:
    Roy Disney outlines his late brother's plan to build the world's first futuristic metropolis, or EPCOT when Disney Productions announces it will build the world's first glass-domed city in central Florida. The presentation, narrated by Walt Disney, who died December 15, is termed by Disney officials as "Walt's last film." It premieres at the Park East Theater in Winter Park, Florida, where it is screened for Florida business and government figures. The 25-minute film shows a 50-acre, air conditioned "city of tomorrow" centered in a 1,000-acre industrial park between Orlando and Kissimmee.

    1988:
    The first filming for the television movie "Splash Too" (a sequel to the popular romantic mermaid drama) begins at the Disney-MGM Studios.

    989:
    Shooting begins on the Disney film, "**** Tracy."

    1992:
    Disney World's Dixie Landings Resort opens at 1251 Dixie Drive, Lake Buena Vista. This 2,048 unit resort, located in the Downtown Disney Resort Area, is themed after the Louisiana Countryside.

    1994:
    Disney announces it will buy and restore the New Amsterdam Theater on 42nd Street in New York City.

    1996:
    Gerry Laybourne, of Nickelodeon, is hired as the new president of Disney/ABC Cable Networks, where she will oversee The Disney Channel and Disney's interests in A&E and Lifetime.

    2004:
    Walt Disney Records continues the legacy of the 1970s album Free To Be You and Me with the release of the new CD A World of Happiness. The collection includes original songs, poems and skits performed by well known artists.

    Super Bowl hero Tom Brady of the New England Patriots returns to Disney World with family and friends to celebrate his team's big win. (This is the quarterback's second post-Super Bowl celebration at Disney World in three years.)

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    February 3

    1930:
    Roy Disney signs a deal with M. George Borgfeldt Co. of New York to sell figurines of Mickey and Minnie Mouse. (Many will consider this the beginning of Disney merchandising.)

    1931:
    Disney's Silly Symphony cartoon "Birds of a Feather" is released.

    1941:
    Disney's animated feature Pinocchio is released in Sweden.

    1945:
    Disney's 7th (animated and live-action) feature film "The Three Caballeros" is released in the U.S. It will earn 2 Academy Award nominations. (Though after a brief initial run, Walt will pull the film from general release, due to bad press reviews.)

    1967:
    The article "Disneyworld Amusement Center with Domed City Set for Florida" appears in the New York Times the day after Walt Disney Productions announces plans to build the world's first glass-domed city.

    2001:
    A smoking electrical panel triggers a fire alarm at Disneyland, prompting an evacuation of the new California Adventures attraction. Employees evacuate a movie theater and simulation ride when smoke coming from a ventilation system clouds an IMAX giant screen. Moviegoers experiencing the "Soarin' over California" hang-gliding film are ushered out. Firefighters are called but thankfully no one is hurt.

    2002:
    Super Bowl XXXVI MVP Tom Brady of the New England Patriots proclaims "I'm going to Walt Disney World!" following his team's victory over the St. Louis Rams in New Orleans. The twenty-four-year-old quarterback tapes the 32nd episode of the famous Disney commercial following the game.

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    February 4

    1938:
    Snow White & the Seven Dwarfs is generally released.

    1999:
    Pixar Animation Studios announces that it has developed a proprietary laser recording system called PIXARVISION for converting digital computer data into images on motion picture film stock with unprecedented quality. The new system was successfully tested on the 1998 animated hit, A Bug's Life, and will be used to produce Pixar's future animated features including Toy Story 2.

    2002:
    Super Bowl XXXVI MVP Tom Brady of the New England Patriots appears in a gala parade down Hollywood Boulevard at Disney-MGM Studios in Florida.

    2003:
    Walt Disney Records releases the CDs "Sing Along With Disney's Princesses" and "Jungle Book 2: Songs From the Film and Other Jungle Favorites."

    2004:
    The Disney World special event "This Is Love: A Royal Knight to Remember" takes place at the Magic Kingdom.
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    February 5

    1934:
    The U.S. Patent Office grants a patent to the Ingersoll-Waterbury Clock Company, of Connecticut, for the first Mickey Mouse watch.

    1953:
    Disney's 14th animated film, "Peter Pan" (based on James M. Barrie's 1904 story) opens at the Roxy Theatre in New York City. The film features the voices of Bobby Driscoll (as the boy who won't grow up) and Kathryn Beaumont (as Wendy Darling).

    1976:
    The Disney live-action film No Deposit, No Return (starring David Niven, Darren McGavin and Don Knotts) is released.

    1992:
    Disney's "Beauty and the Beast" is nominated for 6 Academy Awards. Among the nominations is one for Best Picture. It is the first time in the history of the Motion Picture Academy that an animated feature is nominated in this category.

    2004:
    Imagineer, artist and Disney Legend John Hench passes away at the age of 95 in California. An employee of the Walt Disney Company for more than 60 years, Hench worked on Disney movies (he won a special effects Oscar for his work in the 1955 film 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea) and many theme park attractions (like Disneyland's Space Mountain). He was also the official portrait painter of Mickey Mouse.

    A celebration for the upcoming Disneyland production "Snow White - An Enchanting New Musical," takes place with a handprint ceremony at Grauman's Chinese Theatre. Snow White and all the dwarfs take part with Honorary Mayor of Hollywood Johnny Grant officiating.
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    February 6

    1859:
    Elias Disney, father of Walt Disney, is born to Kepple Disney II and Mary Richardson in Bluevale, Ontario, Canada. While still in his teens, Elias will move with his family to the United States and eventually settle in Ellis, Kansas.

    1911:
    Our 40th U.S. president Ronald Reagan is born in Tampico, Illinois. Besides being immortalized in Disney World's Hall of Presidents attraction, Reagan took part in Disneyland's opening day television broadcast in 1955.

    1914:
    Voice actor/singer Thurl Ravenscroft, the voice behind many of Disney's animated characters (Shere Kahn in "The Jungle Book," the Knight in "The Sword in the Stone," and the Captain in "One Hundred and One Dalmatians") is born in Norfolk, Nebraska. As a member of the vocal group The Mellomen, Thurl can be heard on countless Disney television shows, records and theme park attractions. He also took part in Disneyland's opening day as an announcer for many of the events. (You may recognize Thurl's voice from such TV classics as "How The Grinch Stole Christmas" and "The Cat in the Hat.")

    1928:
    Disney's Oswald the Lucky Rabbit cartoon
    "The Ol' Swimmin' 'Ole" is released.

    1938:
    The music from Disney's "Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs" is nominated for an Academy Award.

    1943:
    Disney's "Saludos Amigos," a 42-minute film about Latin America (made up of four animated segments tied together by live-action footage of the activities of Walt Disney and his artists on their trip) is generally released. It will earn 3 Academy Award nominations.


    1984:
    At EPCOT's Future World, Astuter Computer (an attraction that debuted with the rest of the park in 1982) becomes Backstage Magic.

    1985:
    Disney and Lucasfilm reach an agreement for Lucasfilm to develop new attractions for Disney's theme parks.

    1986:
    Walt Disney Productions officially changes its name to The Walt Disney Company.

    2000:
    The halftime show at Super Bowl XXXIV features Disney's "Tapestry of Nations." The 20-minute performance at the Georgia Dome includes Christina Aguilera and Enrique Iglesias singing "Celebrate the Future Hand in Hand." Phil Collins entertains the Atlanta crowds with his "Two Worlds" from Disney's Tarzan. The show also includes Travis Tritt, Tina Turner, and an 80-member orchestra.

    2004:
    Walt Disney Pictures releases Miracle, starring Kurt Russell, in theaters.

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    February 7

    1940:
    Disney's animated feature film, "Pinocchio" (based on the 19th century book by Carlo Collodi) premieres at the Central Theatre in New York City. It has cost a staggering $2.6 million to make. (This film is felt by many film historians to be the most technically perfect of all the Disney animated features.)

    1956:
    Keller's Jungle Killers, a circus act in the Mickey Mouse Club Circus tent, opens in Disneyland.

    2001:
    Die-hard Disney fans begin to line up at 5 p.m. Wednesday, 15 hours before the 8 a.m. Thursday opening of Disney's California Adventure. Disneyland officials discourage people from camping out, although bathrooms are available, and a limited amount of food and beverages are offered for sale. Meanwhile, Disney officially dedicates their "Golden Dreams" attraction at Disney's California Adventure with a ceremony emceed by Disney President Robert A. Iger. Also in attendance are Whoopi Goldberg, the star of "Golden Dreams" and singer Rene Goldsberry who performs "Just One Dream" live with gospel groups from throughout Southern California. Disney officially also dedicates the ABC Soap Opera Bistro in a ceremony attended by the stars of ABC daytime. During the ceremony a representative of each Soap donates an item from their show to live permanently at the Bistro.

    2004:
    The Disney/Pixar animated feature Finding Nemo earns nine Annie Awards at the 31st annual event. Roy E. Disney's appearance on stage as a presenter prompts a thunderous applause and a standing ovation. Will Ryan and his ukulele, leads the audience in a round of "Happy Birthday" for absent Winsor McCay honoree Thurl Ravenscroft (whose voice can be heard all over Disney television shows, movies and theme park attractions). The late John Hench is awarded the Winsor McKay Award for Lifetime Achievement in the service of animation.

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    February 8

    1952:
    The Disney animated film "Lambert, the Sheepish Lion," featuring the narration of Sterling Holloway, is released.

    1953:
    Walt Disney appears as a guest on a one-hour special tribute of Ed Sullivan's hit TV show The Toast of the Town. Sullivan narrates "The Life Story of Walt Disney" with a little help from Donald Duck, as the company celebrates Mickey Mouse's 25th birthday and the release of Peter Pan. Other guests include animators Ward Kimball and Frank Thomas, Pinto Colvig (the voice of Goofy) and even Walt's secretary Beverly Jordan.

    1955:
    "A Progress Report," the next Disneyland-oriented TV show airs. Construction on the park has accelerated over the last few months and the viewing public finally sees what is really going on in Anaheim, California.

    1965:
    Julie Andrews receives a Golden Globe Award for her role in Disney's Mary Poppins.

    1974:
    Ringo Starr's single "You're 16" is released. The tune is written by Richard and Robert Sherman (of Disney songwriting fame).

    2001:
    Disney's second Anaheim park, California Adventure officially opens along with its new Grand Californian hotel. California Adventure is the centerpiece of a $1.4-billion expansion of what will now be called the Disneyland Resort. The new park, which has its own distinct identity separate from the 45-year-old Magic Kingdom's, is divided into 3 main theme areas: Paradise Pier ,a nostalgic California beachfront amusement section, Hollywood Pictures Backlot, inspired by Hollywood Blvd. and the movies, and the Golden State ,a more sprawling area devoted to the people, natural beauty and industries of California. The Grand Californian, a Craftsman-style hotel, resembling a luxury lodge at a Western national park, has 751 rooms. The hotel sits at the edge of the new park and shares its theme celebrating the Golden State.

    The dedication on this day includes these words:

    "To all who believe in the power of dreams ... Welcome! Disney's California Adventure opens its golden gates to you. Here we pay tribute to the dreamers of the past ... the native people, explorers, immigrants, aviators, entrepreneurs and entertainers who built the Golden State. And we salute a new generation of dreamers who are creating the wonders of tomorrow ... from the silver screen to the computer screen ... from the fertile farmlands to the far reaches of space. Disney's California Adventure celebrates the richness and the diversity of California ... its land, its people its spirit and above all, the dreams that it continues to inspire."

    2002:
    Disney World's Downtown Pleasure Island begins its Mardi Gras celebration.

    Disneyland officially announces the upcoming additions to Disney's California Adventure in a short ceremony celebrating the park's first birthday. Two new attractions, "A Bug's Land" and the "Twilight Zone Tower of Terror" will be added to the California park.

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    February 9

    1940:
    Disney's animated feature film, "Pinocchio" opens in Los Angeles theaters (2 days after premiering in New York). Actor Dickie Jones supplies the voice of the living puppet. The film will win 2 Academy Awards. (Although it is Disney's first treatment of the classic story it is actually the second filmed version of it. In 1911 a silent black-and-white Pinocchio was produced in Italy.)

    1951:
    Disney's Pluto cartoon "Cold Storage" is released.

    1979:
    Disney's live-action The North Avenue Irregulars (starring Edward Hermann, Barbara Harris, Karen Valentine, Michael Constantine, and Cloris Leachman) is released in theaters.

    1996:
    The Disney Institute opens at Walt Disney World, Florida. The Institute offers more than 60 programs in eight interest areas ranging from animation, culinary arts, rock climbing and wilderness exploration. Guests stay in bungalows and townhouses on this 75 acre, 457 room resort.

    2001:
    "Believe There's Magic in the Stars" returns to Disneyland. This fireworks show (originally staged during Disneyland's 45th anniversary) features some all new pyrotechnics, many low level fireworks and crisscrossing comets.

    It is reported that attendance for the opening of Disney's California Adventure on February 8, fell far below the estimate of 33,000. By 2 p.m. (usually Disney's peak hour) 14,000 tickets had been purchased and roughly 10,000 people were inside the park. When the gates opened at 8 a.m., only 3,000 were waiting to get in. Officials had prepared for more than four times as many.

    Jim Henson's Muppet Vision 3D debuts at Disney's California Adventure.

    2003:
    Disney's The Jungle Book 2 has its premiere at the El Capitan Theatre in Hollywood, California.
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    February 10

    1870:
    The California city of Anaheim is incorporated. Its name is a blend of "Ana" (after the Santa Ana River) and "heim" (which means home in German).

    1927:
    The Alice Comedy Alice at the Carnival is released.

    1934:
    Disney's Silly Symphony cartoon "The Grasshopper and the Ants" is released. The grasshopper is voiced by Pinto Colvig (also the voice of Goofy).

    1935:
    Donald Duck makes his first appearance in the Mickey Mouse Sunday edition comic strip.

    1949:
    Disney's "Mickey and the Seal," "Tea for Two Hundred," and "Seal Island" are all nominated for Academy Awards.

    1960:
    Disneyland's Stagecoach Line attraction is retired. A guest could ride shotgun up top or inside the coach to view such Frontierland sights as Elephant Rock, Horse Thief Canyon, Dead Man's Spring and the Rivers of America.

    1978:
    Disney releases the live-action Candleshoe (starring Helen Hayes and Jodie Foster) in theaters.

    2005:
    Dream On Silly Dreamer, a live action/animated documentary, screens for free in Minneapolis one day prior to the Walt Disney Company Annual Meeting. The film, about the creative forces behind the classic hand-drawn animated films of Walt Disney Feature Animation's modern era, is shown at the Crown Theater (about 6 blocks from where Disney will hold its meeting).
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    February 11

    1932:
    The Mickey Mouse short The Grocery Boy is released.

    1938:
    Disney's Donald Duck cartoon Self Control is released. Clarence Nash provides the voice for Donald.

    1949:
    The Disney Donald Duck short Donald's Happy Birthday is released.

    1952:
    Disney's Alice in Wonderland is nominated for an Academy Award.


    1970:
    Variety reports that Walt Disney had secretly taken its movie, Song of the South out of circulation back in 1958. The publication claims the movie was pulled because of racist attitudes in the film.

    1999:
    Disney's live-action feature film My Favorite Martian premieres at the Famous Players Colossus Center in Toronto, Canada.

    2000:
    Disney's The Tigger Movie (narrated by John Hurt and featuring five new songs by the team of Richard M. Sherman and Robert B. Sherman) is released.

    2002:
    Twelve "Outstanding Airmen of the Year" are honored as grand marshals in a parade at Disney's Animal Kingdom. The airmen, men and women representing airbases from all over the world, spend the afternoon high atop the parade floats while hundreds of park guests cheer them on.

    The Walt Disney Company agrees to let Travelocity.com sell hotel reservations and theme-park tickets online. By allowing the discount-travel giant to do this, Disney hopes to expand its marketing efforts on the Internet.

    2003:
    The Walt Disney Company receives an industry- leading 44 Oscar nominations from the Academy of Motion Picture Arts & Sciences, including 13 nominations for Miramax's Chicago, 10 for Gangs of New York and 9 for The Hours, a co-production with Paramount Pictures. Buena Vista Motion Pictures Group get 3 nominations for Best Animated Feature Film for Walt Disney Pictures Lilo & Stitch, Treasure Planet and Spirited Away.

    2004:
    Al Weiss, president of Disney World, speaks to the Institutional Investors at Walt Disney World during a 2-day conference.

    Comcast announces its hostile bid for Disney as stock prices jump nearly 15%.

    2005:
    The Walt Disney Annual Shareholder Meeting takes place at the Minneapolis Convention Center.
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    February 12

    1934:
    Walt Disney Productions files an application for a trademark of "Mickey Mouse" for use in books and newspaper comic strips.

    1951:
    Disney's Cinderella is nominated for 3 Academy Awards and
    the short In Beaver Valley is nominated for 1.

    1999:
    Disney's My Favorite Martian starring Christopher Lloyd, Jeff Daniels, Elizabeth Hurley, Darryl Hannah, and Ray Walston is generally released. Based on the popular 60's TV show (also starring Walston) the film is directed by Donald Petrie (of Grumpy Old Men fame).


    2000:
    Disney fans dress up in tuxedos and formal gowns to attend the Royal Ball held at the Disneyland Hotel in California for Cinderella's 50th anniversary. The night includes stories from the Disney legends that created Cinderella including the voice talents who brought Anastasia, Drizella and Cinderella to life.

    2002:
    Disney's 1953 Peter Pan; Special Edition is released on DVD. It includes commentary by Walt Disney and veteran animators Frank Thomas, Ollie Johnston, and Marc Davis.

    2004:
    The SaveDisney website announces a rally in Philadelphia that will take place March 2 ... one day prior to Disney's Annual Shareholder Meeting.
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    February 13

    1965:
    Disney's combination live-action and animated "Freewayphobia," featuring Goofy, is released.

    1985:
    Mickey Mouse, accompanied by Disneyland's Ambassador, Melissa Taylor, begin a 30-day flight around the world, celebrating Disneyland's 30th anniversary.

    1988:
    Expo Robotics debuts at EPCOT's Future World.

    2000:
    As part of the 45th anniversary celebration, The Disneyland Resort introduces a new Pin Trading Program. Also, the "45 Years of Magic Parade" has its first public preview at Disneyland. Two shows, one during the day and one at
    night, are performed. (The parade will make its official debut on February 18.)

    2002:
    It is announced at the Chandler Mansion set from "All My Children: in ABC Soap Opera Bistro" at Disney's California Adventure, that ABC Super Soap Weekends will take place in April 2002. There will be 3 weekends (much like the ones that for several years have taken place at the Disney-MGM Studios in Florida) devoted to popular daytime dramas aired on ABC-TV. Actor Walt Willey (who plays Jackson McGomery on "All My Children"), actresses Linda Dano (who portrays Ray Cummings on "One Life To Live") and Nancy Lee Grahn (who plays Alexis Davis on "General Hospital") all take part in the morning announcement.

    2004:
    Disneyland hosts a Friday the 13th ceremony to light up the Tower of Terror's marque. The event, which includes a screaming contest, is hosted by comedian Gallagher. (The new attraction will open in May.)
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    February 14

    1929
    The original Hollywood Brown Derby restaurant opens at 1624 Vine Street. The Brown Derby restaurants began as the brainchild of Herb Somborn, Wilson Mizner, and Sid Grauman. Somborn will ask Bob Cobb, creator of the famous Cobb Salad, to manage the Vine Street establishment. Eventually Cobb will take over all the restaurants after the deaths of the original owners. The Hollywood Brown Derby will serve as the inspiration for the Disney/MGM restaurant.

    1995:
    A couple gets married at Disney World's "Tower of Terror" attraction in Florida, as part of a Disney promotion featuring Valentine's Day weddings.

    1998:
    The Ghirardelli Soda Fountain & Chocolate Shop has its grand opening at the Downtown Disney Marketplace in Florida.

    2001:
    **** Cook, chairman of the Walt Disney Motion Pictures Group, announces that its Academy Award-winning animated motion picture "Beauty and the Beast" will be released in IMAX and other large-format venues around the world in March 2002. Walt Disney Feature Animation has spent a year in production on the film, enhancing the image and refining character faces, backgrounds, and special effects, in order to let the film shine brightly on the giant screen. In addition, the filmmakers have added an extraordinary, never-before-seen musical sequence.

    2002:
    The acclaimed Napa Rose restaurant (located in the Disneyland Resort) offers a tempting special four-course Valentine feast.

    2003:
    Disney's The Jungle Book 2 (featuring the voices of John Goodman and Haley Joel Osment) opens.

    The Magic Kingdom's Liberty Belle (an old-fashionedpaddle-wheelcruiser) is re-launched. The Belle and Tom Sawyer's Island (the attraction's main dock) have been refurbished.

    2004:
    Sleeping Beauty's Royal Ball takes place at Disneyland.

    Filmmaker John Lasseter, the director of Toy Story, A Bug's Life and Toy Story 2, and the executive producer of Monsters, Inc. and Finding Nemo, is given the Art Directors Guild's coveted honorary Contribution to Cinematic Imagery Award.

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    February 15

    1899:
    Lillian Marie Bounds (the wife of Walt Disney for 41 years) is born.

    1925:
    Disney's Alice Comedy Alice Solves the Puzzle, featuring Margie Gay as Alice, is released.

    1926:
    The Alice Comedy Alice's Mysterious Mystery is released.

    1930:
    Disney's Silly Symphony black-and-white cartoon "Autumn" (directed by Ub Iwerks) is released.


    1936:
    Mikijeve Novine (which means Mickey's Journal) is published
    by D. Dragicevic. It is the second Serbian publication having
    to do with Disney's character.

    1950:
    Disney's 12th animated feature film Cinderella is released. Ilene Woods supplies the voice for Cinderella and Eleanor Audley ,voice of Madame Leota for the Haunted Mansion attractions, is the voice of Lady Tremaine. Mike Douglas, former talk show host, is the un-credited singing voice of Prince Charming.

    1995:
    The Disneyana Convention 1995 - "40 Years of Adventure" kicks off at the Disneyland Hotel for 4 days.

    2001:
    Someone burning debris without authorization starts a fire that races through tinder-dry swampland in central Florida about 15 miles from Disney World. (It will go on to burn over 11,000 acres.)

    2002:
    Return to Never Land, Disney's animated Peter Pan sequel, is released. (Critic Roger Ebert will give the film a 3 star rating.)
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    February 16

    1960:
    Annette Funicello performs "O Dio Mio" on TV's American Bandstand.

    1966:
    Disney's live-action feature film "The Ugly Dachshund" (starring Dean Jones and Suzanne Pleshette) is generally released.

    1984:
    Disney's "Mickey's Christmas Carol" is nominated for an Academy Award (Short Film, Animated).

    1993:
    Sharon Disney Lund, the second daughter of the late Walt Disney, dies of complications from cancer at age 56. (She had been a director of The Walt Disney Company since 1984.)


    1994:
    Disney commits $500,000 to create Disney GOALS, a program designed to offer organized athletics, supplementary education and community service to local underprivileged youths.

    2000:
    Under a drizzly afternoon sky, Mickey Mouse, President of the Disneyland Resort Cynthia Harriss, the Disneyland Resort Millennium Ambassador Team of Dorell Mitter and Jennifer Simis, over 600 school children and Disneyland cast members all gather in front of the Disneyland Main Street Train Station to begin Disneyland's 45th Anniversary celebration. As part of the festivities inaugurating a yearlong celebration of "45 Years of Magic" at Disneyland, singer-songwriter Kenny Logins makes a special appearance performing his new song "Your Heart Will Lead You Home" from The Tigger Movie.


    2001:
    Disney's "Recess: School's Out" (based on the TV cartoon) is released in theaters.

    2003:
    The Wonderful World of Disney airs "Meredith Wilson's The Music Man" starring Matthew Broderick (a 3-hour new presentation of the classic musical).
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