Disney Documentary Hour – People and Places: Disneyland, U.S.A.

By Keith Mahne

In 1956, Walt Disney Productions released a featurette called Disneyland, U.S.A. in movie theaters, as part of People And Places, a series of films about geographic places. It’s essentially a 42-minute commercial for Disneyland. Now, a half century later, it’s a fascinating look at what Disneyland was like in 1956. Every single moment in this film is astonishing. The colors pull your eyes in. Seeing everyone dressed up for a day at Disneyland feels comforting. Let’s travel back to Disneyland of 1956 in this edition of Disney Avenue’s Disney Documentary Hour as we watch People and Places: Disneyland, U.S.A

Before we begin our feature presentation, take a look at this wonderful advertisement for the 1956 People and Places: Disneyland, U.S.A. These sheets were created for theater owners as it talks about how to get the trailer for the film and suggestions on placing ads. Check it out…

People and Places: Disneyland, U.S.A. was only Walt’s third CinemaScope movie. Because this film was originally created to look spectacular on a 50-foot-wide movie screen, it still remains astonishing on today’s widescreen HD televisions and computer screens.

Without further delay, Disney Avenue is proud to present People and Places: Disneyland, U.S.A. Enjoy friends…

(Please pause the Disney Avenue Music Player above if you are on a desktop computer prior to watching the video below.)

If you’d like to own your own personal copy of today’s film, make sure to grab the Walt Disney Treasures – Disneyland: Secrets, Stories & Magic DVD set…

Aside from all the other wonderful features on this DVD set, there are three audio options for Disneyland, U.S.A.

The first is the original theatrical soundtrack, enhanced to provide 5.1 surround sound. Winston Hibler is the narrator; his voice is familiar from Walt Disney’s True-Life Adventures nature film series. The musical score by Oliver Wallace is wonderful.

The second option is an audio commentary by Leonard Maltin and Tony Baxter. Don’t miss this commentary (after you’ve first viewed the film with the original soundtrack). Tony Baxter recounts all sorts of stories that he learned over his long (and still active) career with Walt Disney Imagineering.

The third option is music-only. It’s a way to enjoy the widescreen visuals and the 5.1 surround-sound Oliver Wallace score—without anyone talking over that score.

The set can be a bit pricey, but for anyone who cares about the history and development of Disneyland, don’t miss this one. You can grab your own personal copy in the Amazon link below…

 
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Keith Michael Mahne is the owner and editor of Disney Avenue and the host of the Disney Avenue Podcast. He has made countless trips to the Walt Disney World resort since his first trip in 1989 at the age of four.

Keith has a strong passion and respect for Walt Disney, the parks and resorts, and the men and women who help create them. He started Disney Avenue as a way to inform and entertain readers and to repay all those who make dreams come true every day.

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Disney Documentary Hour: A Day at Disneyland – 1982

By Keith Mahne

Welcome back to a very popular segment here on Disney Avenue called Disney Documentary Hour where we have a look at some amazing videos throughout Disney history. Today, we’ll get to see a real favorite called A Day at Disneyland from 1982! This video took viewers on a tour of Disneyland, as they watched their favorite Disney characters experience the many rides, shops, restaurants and attractions in the park. Continue after the page break and have a look…

A Day at Disneyland is a 1982 official Walt Disney Home Video release which has been out for print for many years. It’s a great tour of the park, and includes great footage of several now defunct attractions, including America Sings and the original Bear Country.

And now, A Day at Disneyland….Enjoy!

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Keith Michael Mahne is the owner and editor of Disney Avenue and the host of the Disney Avenue Podcast. He has made countless trips to the Walt Disney World resort since his first trip in 1989 at the age of four.

Keith has a strong passion and respect for Walt Disney, the parks and resorts, and the men and women who help create them. He started Disney Avenue as a way to inform and entertain readers and to repay all those who make dreams come true every day.

 
You can find all of Keith’s articles here.
 



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Disney Documentary Hour: Disneyland’s 25th Anniversary

By Keith Mahne

Welcome back to Disney Avenue’s Disney Documentary Hour segment! This time we’ll travel back to 1980 and celebrate Disneyland’s 25th Anniversary. Filmed throughout the Park, this made-for-TV special hosted by Danny Kaye follows the story of a young boy (Adam Rich) on his first ever trip to The Happiest Place on Earth. While there, he encounters many interesting characters (all played by Danny Kaye) who tell him various tidbits on the park’s history. We’ll see musical numbers by Donny Osmond and Michael Jackson, as well as group sing alongs that include many actual Disneyland cast members and guests! Continue after the page break as we watch Kraft Salutes Disneyland’s 25th Anniversary…

Since the 60th anniversary of Disneyland is around the corner, I thought it would be fun and entertaining to look back on this past television special for Disneyland’s birthday. Kraft Salutes Disneyland’s 25th Anniversary is a television special commemorating the 25th anniversary of Disneyland. It originally aired on CBS on March 6, 1980. We’ll head back to the original Magic Kingdom for this one, as Danny Kaye hosts the show (and is many of the characters you’ll see) celebrating the silver anniversary of Disneyland. While Kaye is the most present celebrity, he’s far from the only one.

Others seen include the Osmonds, whose segment features a flashback of their original appearance the four oldest brothers made on the “Disneyland After Dark” special from 1962, as well as Michael Jackson, Patrick Wayne, the son of the legendary John Wayne, Ruth Buzzi, John Schneider from the “Dukes of Hazzard”, and many other Disney favorites, such as Annette Funicello, Fess Parker, and several others.

During most of the program, you’ll see a young boy (Adam Rich) being bored and wanting to go home, but after dreaming about a fantastic world opened to him by an “F” ticket (Disneyland attractions had tickets going from “A”-“E” in those days that you had to purchase separately), after which he wanted to stay, but is convinced to go home. It’s a real Disney classic and a fun way to look forward to Disneyland’s 60th! Enjoy the show:

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Keith Michael Mahne is the owner and editor of Disney Avenue and the host of the Disney Avenue Podcast. He has made countless trips to the Walt Disney World resort since his first trip in 1989 at the age of four. Keith has a strong passion and respect for Walt Disney, the parks and resorts, and the men and women who help create them. He started Disney Avenue as a way to inform and entertain readers and to repay all those who make dreams come true every day.



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Disney Documentary Hour: Welcome to the "World" – 1975

By Keith Mahne

Welcome back to the popular Disney Documentary Hour here on Disney Avenue. Today’s show is called Welcome to the “World” that originally aired in 1975! If you can make it through the full 54 minutes you’ll come away tap dancing and searching your old boxes of clothes you been meaning to throw out for your favorite pair of polyester paints. This campy spectacular aired as an episode of The Wonderful World of Disney. Host Lucie Arnaz is joined by Lyle Waggoner and Tommy Tune as they introduce viewers to Walt Disney World’s newest attraction, Space Mountain. Continue after the page break and be prepared to be time warped…

Although the film is corny as ever, I adore these old “song and dance” specials Disney would use to show off new attractions and I think you will too. The cast includes:

  • Lucie Arnaz as Herself
  • The Rhodes Kids as Themselves
  • Tommy Tune as Himself
  • Lyle Waggoner as Himself
  • Art Gilmore as Announcer
  • Here now from The Wonderful World of Disney is Welcome to the World that originally aired on March 23, 1975. Enjoy!

     
     
     
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    Keith Michael Mahne is the owner and editor of Disney Avenue and the host of the Disney Avenue Podcast. He has made countless trips to the Walt Disney World resort since his first trip in 1989 at the age of four. Keith has a strong passion and respect for Walt Disney, the parks and resorts, and the men and women who help create them. He started Disney Avenue as a way to inform and entertain readers and to repay all those who make dreams come true everyday.

     

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    Disney Documentary Hour: Kraft Salutes Walt Disney World’s 10th Anniversary

    By Keith Mahne

    Today, we return to our own special segment that everyone really seems to enjoy, Disney Documentary Hour. This one is called Kraft Salutes Walt Disney World’s 10th Anniversary. The show is a 1982 television special that celebrated Walt Disney World’s “Tencennial” anniversary in 1981. The special aired on January 21st, 1982 on CBS. Watch the adventures of Dean Jones and Michele Lee, with their children Ricky Schroder and Dana Plato, as they visit Walt Disney World with their bizarre friend (cowboy Eileen Brennan) and an odd mute Asian child that she seems to have kidnapped. Also, there’s Michael Keaton. And the Gatlin Brothers, and John Schneider. Don’t worry, it’s even weirder than it sounds. Continue after the page break and let’s have a look…

    The show begins with the family departing for Walt Disney World in a musical montage, meets up at the resort, and the Gatlin Brothers perform at Fort Wilderness’s Pioneer Hall.

    Then we get two truly bizarre musical numbers – Dean Jones and Ricky Schroder have a painful duet about familial estrangement, and Dana Plato and Michele Lee go shopping at the Contemporary Resort Hotel. Afterwards, John Schneider sings an odd little number on the lawn of Cinderella Castle. We then get some very rare footage of the Contemporary Resort’s “Top of the World” restaurant, and have a completely unnecessary flashback.

    Yeah, that’s Michael Keaton at the Contemporary Resort…

    As the special wraps up, we’re treated to what might be the single strangest medley in the history of television. After all, it’s Walt Disney World – the place so magical it’ll make your child give up his calculator forever!

    And now, here is Kraft Salutes Walt Disney World’s 10th Anniversary for your viewing pleasure:

     
     
     
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    Keith Michael Mahne is the owner and editor of Disney Avenue and the host of the Disney Avenue Podcast. He has made countless trips to the Walt Disney World resort since his first trip in 1989 at the age of four. Keith has a strong passion and respect for Walt Disney, the parks and resorts, and the men and women who help create them. He started Disney Avenue as a way to inform and entertain readers and to repay all those who make dreams come true everyday.
     
     
    

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    Disney Documentary Hour: Holiday Time at Disneyland (1962)

    By Keith Mahne

    Today we return to the Disney Documentary Hour segment here on Disney Avenue with a wonderful little film that is sure to get you in the holiday spirit. It’s an episode of the beloved Walt Disney’s Wonderful World of Color that was originally broadcast by NBC on December 23, 1962 (Season 9, Episode 13 of the Disney Sunday Show). Grab some popcorn and a nice cup of hot chocolate and continue after the page break as we watch the film “Holiday Time at Disneyland”…

    This episode features a Holiday tour of Disneyland by the avuncular host of the show. Since the main attraction of the Christmas Season at Disneyland was the parade, it was featured heavily in the television show.

    The parade premiered at Disneyland for the Holiday season of 1960 and lasted until 1964, when it then became the “Fantasy On Parade” featuring the marching “wooden” soldiers and those silly reindeer. Unlike today where the Christmas parade will run for upwards of two months, in the early 1960s typically the parade would start about a week before Christmas day.

    And now Disney Avenue presents Walt Disney’s Wonderful World of Color episode “Holiday Time at Disneyland”…Enjoy!

     
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    Keith Michael Mahne is the owner and editor of Disney Avenue and the host of the Disney Avenue Podcast. He has made countless trips to the Walt Disney World resort since his first trip in 1989 at the age of four. Keith has a strong passion and respect for Walt Disney, the parks and resorts, and the men and women who help create them. He started Disney Avenue as a way to inform and entertain readers and to repay all those who make dreams come true everyday.

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    Disney Documentary Hour: The Magic of Walt Disney World

    By Keith Mahne

    Today, we return to our Disney Documentary Hour segment here on Disney Avenue with a wonderful vintage Disney World film I think you’re really going to enjoy. It’s called The Magic of Walt Disney World and it’s a 1972 short film promoting the Walt Disney World resort. It was originally released to theaters by Buena Vista Distribution on December 20, 1972 alongside the film Snowball Express. An expanded and updated version aired on The Wonderful World of Disney in 1974. Continue after the page break and enjoy The Magic of Walt Disney World

    This is my absolute favorite vintage Disney film. It features some AMAZING footage of Walt Disney World in its first year of existence. If you appreciate a good vintage photo of the Parks, you’re going to go absolutely wild over this little beauty!

     
     
     
     
     
    

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    Disney Documentary Hour: A Day at EPCOT Center

    By Keith Mahne

    Today we return to our popular segment called Disney Documentary Hour featuring our favorite videos from Disney history. I think you’re going to love today’s documentary called A Day at Epcot Center. It walks you through a day at the park and was released in the late 1980s because it shows Horizons and Wonders of Life which were later additions. Continue after the page break and have a wonderful look at the heyday of EPCOT Center…

    A Day At EPCOT Center starts us off at Spaceship Earth, going through Communicore where we see the “futuristic” costumes of Mickey, Minnie, Goofy and others, then out to The Living Seas and Seabase Alpha.

    It ventures on to The Land pavilion back when Symbiosis was playing. We’ll take a ride on the main attraction Listen to The Land with it’s on-boat narration. We get a look at the long gone Kitchen Kabaret which stood where Soarin’ is now.

    Next up is Journey Into Imagination with the original and most cherished version of the ride, and then to ImageWorks with the Rainbow Corridor.

    The World of Motion is next with it’s adjoining Transcenter.

    You’ll notice that during this time, Horizons is open and the footage is great and even shows some of the “choose your own future” endings.

    Next up is the Wonders of Life pavilion back when it actually had full attendance. We get to see the The Making of Me which is rare for publicized glimpses into Wonders of Life.

    The Universe of Energy is next, pre-Ellen and Bill Nye but still with dinosaurs.

    They show Surprise in the Skies, an air/water show on the World Showcase Lagoon.

    Then, you work your way starting with Canada, onto the UK, then France, Morocco which was one of the newer pavilions added after the park opened, Japan, Italy, Germany, skipping over to China, then Norway which was also added post-opening and has Maelstrom with brand new audio-animatronics, and on to Mexico with the El Rio De Tiempo boat ride. There is also a lot of the footage of the live entertainment spread throughout the World Showcase and the omnibus that used to drive people around the area. The American Adventure is the last pavilion to be shown, featuring the early version of The Voices of Liberty, back when they were called the Liberty Singers and wore differing costumes ranging from the pilgrims to post-colonial.

    As a fitting ending to the program, we’ll see IllumiNations with it’s heavily synthesized score and lasers.

    So sit back, grab your favorite fanny pack and get ready to be sent back to the 80s as Disney Avenue presents A Day at EPCOT Center….Enjoy:


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