Category Archives: Disney Interviews

Interview: X Atencio (Animation and writing for Disney parks)

X Atencio with a replica of the Jolly Roger that he provides the voice for and wrote the dialogue for
X Atencio with a replica of the Jolly Roger that he provides the voice for and wrote the dialogue for

I just posted my interview with X Atencio on my Mouse Clubhouse website.  In this conversation, X discusses  his work for Disneyland and Walt Disney World, writing scripts and songs for attractions such Haunted Mansion, Pirates of the Caribbean and other attractions.  CLICK HERE for the interview and more photos

 

Interview: Stan Jolley (Art director of Disneyland, Disney films and TV)

Stan Jolley at his "Ichpa-Mayapan," which means "exclusive estate"
Stan Jolley at his “Ichpa-Mayapan,” which means “exclusive estate”

Stan Jolley was a Hollywood producer, director, art director, production designer who had a lot to do not only with Disney, but with the very beginnings of Disneyland! His Disney film work included everything from “Zorro” to “Old Yeller” to “Elfego Baco” and “Toby Tyler.” He was the art director of the Academy-Award nominated animated featurette “Donald in Mathmagic Land.”

His large list of non-Disney movie credits include “Caddyshack,” “Witness” and “Superman” and television credits include “Mr. Ed,” “MacGyver” and “Voyage to the Bottom of the Sea.” As the art director for the pilot episode of “Get Smart,” Stan designed the classic title sequence with the doors and phone booth, as well as iconic props such as the “cone of silence.”

In 2009, for my Mouse Clubhouse, Stan invited me to photograph his 22,000 square foot estate. It is part home, part museum. Beyond every corner was not only a part of either Hollywood or Disney history, but with remarkable views in every room. In fact most rooms had at least one mirror in it so that you’d be able to see the gorgeous surrounding scenery no matter what direction you are facing.

Please enjoy the photographic tour below of the home of Stan Jolley and be sure to listen to the audio of that is beneath some of the photos.

This clapboard is from one of the films that Stan directed, "Today's FBI"
This clapboard is from one of the films that Stan directed, “Today’s FBI”
The 7.7 million dollar estate was built and designed in the early '70s by Modernist Howard Lapham for socialite-sportswoman Maxine Cook. An admirer of Frank Lloyd Wright, Lapham focused on blending ancient Maya and modern design.
The 7.7 million dollar estate was built and designed in the early ’70s by Modernist Howard Lapham for socialite-sportswoman Maxine Cook. An admirer of Frank Lloyd Wright, Lapham focused on blending ancient Maya and modern design.

 

This view is the entrance of Stan's house
This view is the entrance of Stan’s house
This pathway which leads to the front door features beautifully aligned stonework columns. From this angle, it seemed like a perfect residence for the man who was the art director of Donald in Mathmagic Land. Just look at all the geometric shapes that can be recognized from this one angle! At the left, on the other side of the greenery is a tennis court nestled into the surrounding mountain scenery.
This pathway which leads to the front door features beautifully aligned stonework columns. From this angle, it seemed like a perfect residence for the man who was the art director of Donald in Mathmagic Land. Just look at all the geometric shapes that can be recognized from this one angle! At the left, on the other side of the greenery is a tennis court nestled into the surrounding mountain scenery.
Mayan calendar carved out of redwood
Mayan calendar carved out of redwood. Be sure to listen to the audio of Stan describing this artwork and the front doors to his house as pictured below.
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The front doors are 14 feet high, four inches thick, weigh 400 pounds apiece and are carved out of redwood
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The arrowhead-shaped pool offers a stunning view overlooking the Coachella Valley
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Stan sits on his couch, surrounded by the mountains. He would often bring a blanket outside and sleep on the couch to enjoy all the natural beauty
Stan stands beside a beautiful portrait of Natalie Wood as she appeared in the movie "Gypsy." Listen to the audio below for a fun story about it.
Stan stands beside a beautiful portrait of Natalie Wood as she appeared in the movie “Gypsy.” Listen to the audio below for a fun story about it.

 

Stan admires artwork from his friend, legendary Disney artist Herb Ryman. Be sure to listen to the audio below of Stan's start with Disney, thanks to Herb.
Stan admires artwork from his friend, legendary Disney artist Herb Ryman. Be sure to listen to the audio below of Stan’s start with Disney, thanks to Herb.
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Concept art of Tomorrowland for the opening of Disneyland
artwork reads "Restaurant between Main Street & True Life Adventure Land"
Concept art for what would become the Plaza Pavilion for the opening of Disneyland. Note the artwork reads “Restaurant between Main Street & True Life Adventure Land”
Concept art of Frontierland for the opening of Disneyland shows the "World's Longest Little Bar" next to the Golden Horseshoe. The Mile Long Bar would open in Bear Country in Disneyland in 1972, with mirrors on each side of the bar interior for the illusion of length
Concept art of Frontierland for the opening of Disneyland shows the “World’s Longest Little Bar” next to the Golden Horseshoe. The Mile Long Bar would open in Bear Country in Disneyland in 1972, with mirrors on each side of the bar interior for the illusion of length
Concept art of a South Western Street in Frontierland for the opening of Disneyland
Concept art of a South Western Street in Frontierland for the opening of Disneyland
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Stan had this and the following two images created to potentially adorn Donald Duck’s “office” in an episode of Walt Disney’s Wonderful of Color. Stan added various captions to each just for fun.

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Photos of Stan on the sets of various movies he worked on decorated one of his rooms, including this image. Henry Fonda (left), Stan Jolley (middle), and Fred MacMurray (right) on the set of the “The Swarm,” 1978
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This piece of original concept art for Disney’s “Elfego Baca” was created under the guidance of Stan, who was the art director.
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Construction on the $125,000 permanent Western Street took over three months to complete, and was the combined plans of three of Disney’s art directors, Stan Jolley, Marvin Davis, and Carroll Clark.
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As Stan’s caption reads, this was the “first shot of filming the new Western Street built for Elfego Baca.” Since Stan was the art director for the show, he was there on the set, seen at the bottom left of the photo. Later, when he was the art director of the feature film Toby Tyler, he was the first one to modify the street.
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Stan converted his six garages at the house into art galleries!
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This former garage featured props and artwork with a western theme, and images of Stan’s father, I. Stanford Jolley, who was a character actor, primarily in westerns, for over 43 years.
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This collage features Stan’s dad in many of his film roles. In 1948, the Milwaukee Journal wrote that “I. Stanford Jolley, veteran villain, has died 77 times in 109 movies by 40 different and ingenious methods.” He went on to appear in nearly 400 different films and television shows.
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This artwork was given to Stan for his birthday. It was drawn by legendary Disney artist T. Hee, accompanied by the signatures of many of Disney’s artists (image below). Marc Davis, Dick Humer, Ward Kimball, Bill Peet and Ken Anderson were amongst the group. Yes, the happy names T.Hee, Huemer and Jolley were all working together.

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Stan’s 1955 “Disneyland, Inc.” ID
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Cast & crew party for Zorro with art director Marvin Davis, actor Henry Calvin, Stan and actor Armor Goetten
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Stan with Robert Loggia, star of Elfego Baca
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Here is a Martian Wheat Field concept for Tomorrowland in Disneyland
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Concept art for Tomorrowland in Disneyland, this Metallic Screen Mural would feature fused colored plastic and special night lighting effects.
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Concept for the entrance to Tomorrowland in Disneyland, the rocket would actually be a giant sundial!
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Interestingly, this Disneyland Tomorrowland Entrance concept art is quite similar to Innoventions in the “new Tomorrowland” of 1998.
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This Disneyland concept artwork features the Tomorrowland entrance as it would appear with the iconic “Clock of the World.”
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Stan worked with Fred Joerger and Wathel Rogers of the Disney model shop, to develop the Storybook Land canal attraction. When the attraction first opened, there was no miniature scenery or buildings as there is now. In this image, they are determining the best scale and location for the new scenes.
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Stan stands with a cut out of Snow White’s cottage to determine the best scaling for the miniature building that still appears in the Storybook Land attraction.
Stan's ticket to the opening of Disneyland on July 17, 1955. Click below to hear why Stan did not attend the grand opening
Stan’s ticket to the opening of Disneyland on July 17, 1955. Click below to hear why Stan did not attend the grand opening
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This is the only photo Stan had on display of him with Walt Disney. Stan added his caption of what the conversation might have sounded like.

Interview: Lee Fugal (Disneyland’s “Golden Horseshoe Revue” entertainer)

Lee Fugal in the same 1965 Mustang he drove each day to Disneyland
Lee Fugal in the same 1965 Mustang he drove each day to Disneyland

I just posted my interview with Lee Fugal on my Mouse Clubhouse website.  In this conversation, Lee discusses his time as the pre-show entertainer for Disneyland’s famed Golden Horseshoe Revue, and how he ended up in an episode of Walt Disney’s Wonderful World of Color.  CLICK HERE for the interview and more photos

 

 

Jack Lindquist, Disneyland/Disney World marketing genius has passed away

During the Disney employee Christmas parties, you never knew who might be working or where they'd be. I took this photo in 1993 when Jack Lindquist was driving passengers on a Main Street vehicle. The party hadn't started and Jack was just sitting in the vehicle waiting. I was in, since I was also going to work on an attraction and I asked him for a ride. This was the first time I got to talk with Jack, being driven by him up and down Main Street in Disneyland.
During the Disney employee Christmas parties which were held at Disneyland, you never knew who might be working or where they’d be. I took this photo in 1993 when Jack Lindquist was driving passengers on a Main Street vehicle. The party hadn’t started and Jack was just sitting in the vehicle waiting. I was in, since I was also going to work on an attraction and I asked him for a ride. This was the first time I got to talk with Jack, being driven by him up and down Main Street in Disneyland.
Jack Lindquist and Scott Wolf, with some pretty snazzy shirts on!
Jack Lindquist and Scott Wolf, with some pretty snazzy shirts on!

We’re so sorry to hear about the passing of our friend Jack Lindquist. We’ll sure miss getting together with him and hearing his wonderful stories, but we’re pleased to share some of them with you below! He was truly Disney royalty!

Jack Lindquist was Disneyland’s first advertising manager, beginning in 1955. He continued with the company in marketing for Disneyland. Walt Disney World and international Disney resorts. His many accomplishments include the creation of the Disneyland Ambassador program, the creation of the Walt Disney Travel Company, the international waters ceremony for the opening of the it’s a small world attraction, Disney Dollars, and in 1990 Jack became the first president of Disneyland.

Below are links to four conversations I had with Jack, that I think you’ll really enjoy!

LISTEN: Jack’s pre-Disney days in Hollywood
LISTEN: The opening ceremony for the class it’s a small world attraction
LISTEN: Creating the Walt Disney Travel Company
LISTEN: The opening of Walt Disney World; World Showcase; Jack’s work philosophy

Also, LISTEN to Jack and others talk about their experiences at Disneyland on opening day

Interview: Jack Lindquist (Creation of the Walt Disney Travel Company)

During the Disney employee Christmas parties, you never knew who might be working or where they'd be. I took this photo in 1993 when Jack Lindquist was driving passengers on a Main Street vehicle. The party hadn't started and Jack was just sitting in the vehicle waiting. I was in, since I was also going to work on an attraction and I asked him for a ride. This was the first time I got to talk with Jack, being driven by him up and down Main Street in Disneyland.
During the Disney employee Christmas parties which were held at Disneyland, you never knew who might be working or where they’d be. I took this photo in 1993 when Jack Lindquist was driving passengers on a Main Street vehicle. The party hadn’t started and Jack was just sitting in the vehicle waiting. I was in, since I was also going to work on an attraction and I asked him for a ride. This was the first time I got to talk with Jack, being driven by him up and down Main Street in Disneyland.

I just posted my interview with Jack Lindquist on my Mouse Clubhouse website.  In this conversation, JJack discusses the history of the Walt Disney Travel Company from its inception.  CLICK HERE for the interview and more photos

 

 

Interview: Jack Lindquist (The opening ceremony for “it’s a small world”)

(Jack Lindquist on telephone at left) Grand opening of "it's a small world," as children pour water from their native lands, Walt Disney prepares to pour American water from Davy Crockett's canteen into the moat
(Jack Lindquist on telephone at left) Grand opening of “it’s a small world,” as children pour water from their native lands, Walt Disney prepares to pour American water from Davy Crockett’s canteen into the moat. Chuck Corson, whose interviews you can also hear on here, is in the background with the walkie-talkie.

I just posted my interview with Jack Lindquist on my Mouse Clubhouse website.  In this conversation, Jack discusses how he came up with the idea for the very unique grand opening of the classic it’s a small world attraction at Disneyland.  CLICK HERE for the interview and more photos

 

Interview: Jack Lindquist (His pre-Disney Hollywood days)

Jack in the 1943 film "Best Foot Forward"
Jack in the 1943 film “Best Foot Forward”

I just posted my interview with Jack Lindquist on my Mouse Clubhouse website.  In this conversation, Jack discusses his days as a child actor, appearing in “Our Gang” comedies and in movies such as “Best Foot Forward,” before becoming the first advertising manager for Disneyland, and later the park’s president. CLICK HERE for the interview

 

Interview: Sonny Anderson (His career as Disney’s talent booker)

Disneyland/Disney world talent booker Sonny Anderson on Main Street
Disneyland/Disney world talent booker Sonny Anderson on Main Street

I just posted my interview with Sonny Anderson on my Mouse Clubhouse website.  In this conversation Sonny discusses his Disney career starting as a drummer in the Disneyland Band in 1956 and becoming a legendary talent booker for Disneyland and Walt Disney World. Disneyland’s director of talent booking Stan Freese joins me for additional insight.  CLICK HERE for the interview and more photos