Top 5 Underrated Disney California Adventure Attractions

Top 5 Underrated Disney California Adventure Attractions

Top 5 Underrated Disney California Adventure Attractions

While not as beloved as its much older sibling across the street, Disney California Adventure (DCA) is still a great theme park. And with the 2012 rededication, it now truly feels like a Disney Park. However, even with all the great changes it’s gone through, DCA still has some offerings that get pushed under the rug. Here’s our list of the Top 5 Underrated Disney California Adventure Attractions. Please note that, with so many attractions, we had to limit the list to keep it economical. Every effort was made to be as inclusive as possible!

(Note: want to see our lists for the Top Underrated Disneyland Attractions? Check out Part 1 HERE, and Part 2 HERE)

Animation Building

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Beast’s Library changes from cursed to restored before your very eyes!

 

 

 

From the exterior look of this attraction, one wouldn’t expect it to be anything more than a sideshow or passing fancy, but there is so much more to this magnificent building than meets the eye. Not only does this building host the more well-known attraction Turtle Talk with Crush, but it also features three other distinct experiences that are well worth checking out! Branching out from a gorgeous high-vaulted room which surrounds you with videos of Disney development art, as well as animations-in-progress, synchronized to classic Disney tunes, these experiences are not to be missed. Perhaps you want to learn to draw Disney style? Maybe you want to say hi to Elsa? You can! In the Sorcerer’s Workshop, you can make your own animations while listening to the real Magic Mirror. Or you could take the cute character quizzes of the Beast’s Library while the space periodically changes as the Enchanted Rose wilts before your very eyes!

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Both Sorcerer’s Workshop and Beast’s Library are stunning examples of Imagineering craftsmanship, set-dressing, and design!

Goofy’s Sky School

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This poster captures the whimsical wonder of Goofy’s lovable clumsiness.

Replacing the cheesey Mulholland Madness Attraction, Goofy’s Sky School is a very welcome addition to the post-2012 update. Loosely inspired by Goofy’s Barnstormers at Walt Disney World, this cute coaster is a great start for small kids who are just starting to get into thrill rides. The ride, based on the famous Goofy ‘How To’ shorts, takes us on a fun and mayhem filled adventure through Goofy’s lesson’s on ‘how to fly a plane’. Obviously, with Goofy being such a lovable klutz, the lessons don’t really go as planned and result in a whimsical roller coaster of cartoon mayhem!

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Goofy’s Sky School is loosely based on The Barnstormer at Walt Disney World as evidenced by this poster showing the similar concept. Even though WDW’s version is considered by most to be the best of the two, Goofy’s Sky School is still fun!

 

Monsters, Inc. Mike and Sully to the Rescue

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Seriously…this ride is adorable!

While not one the most popular attractions in DCA by a long shot, Monsters, Inc. is much better than most people say. If you compare it to most of the similar movie themed ‘dark-rides’ of Disneyland, you will realize that the production values of this ride are quite high, even if they aren’t the best. And since it thankfully replaced the unwanted Superstar Limo attraction, Monsters, Inc definitely improves the space it’s in! The characters are adorable, the sets are well crafted, especially regarding the limited space they’re built in. Also, most people don’t realize that the eerie wisecracking Roz Audio-Animatronic which interacts with guest in real time was a huge technological breakthrough at the time and paved the way for the likes of Mr. Potato Head at Toy Story Midway Mania. The Marvel Land that everyone is excited about is going to be amazing, but it’s sad that most people don’t care that this attraction might get razed to make way for those new offerings.

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It may not be the best ride, but it sure is cute!

Mickey’s Fun Wheel

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This vintage-looking poster captures the feeling of DCA’s massive 2012 remodel.

For the record, every change made in Paradise Pier has been for the better and all the rides in that refurbished land are a bit underrated. We highly recommend riding California Screamin’, The Golden Zephyr, Silly Symphony Swings, Toy Story Midway Mania, etc., and attending the jaw dropping World of Color. However, we wanted to take time to emphasize the beauty and majesty of this oft-overlooked attraction. Most people view it simply as a backdrop and show-piece for World of Color, but the ride itself is quite breathtaking. Replacing the gaudy and cheap looking Sun Wheel, Mickey’s face is a welcome addition of beauty and charm in the landscape. Taking you to a height from which you can see almost the entire park, and letting you view it at a much more leisurely pace than Guardians of The Galaxy: Mission Breakout, Mickey’s Fun Wheel will steal your breath away. It is a high-flying experience that we guarantee you will not want to miss! With its sparkling technicolor show that lights up the night like a rainbow dream, how can anyone resist this gorgeous experience?

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Mickey’s Fun Wheel at night, now a central icon for the newer DCA, is literally one of the most breathtaking things you will ever see at a Disney Park…especially during World of Color!

 

 

The Little Mermaid-Ariel’s Undersea Adventure

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This poster gives us the feels!

This adorable dark-ride was made with love for you and your little Princesses and Princes; granting your wish to join Ariel and her friends under the sea! Far more advanced than similar film ‘Dark-Rides’ at Disneyland, and yet before the advantages of Walt Disney World’s Frozen Ever After ‘projection mapping’ Audio-Animatronics faces, the ride has highly sophisticated Audio-Animatronics that literally appear as if they are the actual drawings simply transplanted into real life. Because they were forced to use ‘old-school’ mechanical Animatronics, we believe it caused them to be more artistic and creative with the character’s facial movements. Following the same events of the film, Ariel’s Undersea Adventure takes you into a nostalgia fueled trip through brilliantly crafted scenes and gorgeous visuals. Sadly, due to the more popular attractions nearby, Ariel’s Undersea Adventure rarely exceeds a 5-minute wait and is usually passed by.

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Under the Sea!

 

Enjoy our list? Like and share! Let us know your favorite DCA attractions in the comments!

Top 10 Underrated Disneyland Attractions Part 2

Top 10 Underrated Disneyland Attractions Part 2

Top 10 Underrated Disneyland Attractions Part 2

Welcome to Part 2 of the Top 10 Underrated Disneyland Attractions! If you haven’t already, make sure to check out the first part to this list HERE. This list honors the overlooked rides and experiences of Walt Disney’s original Magic Kingdom in historical order; specifically geared towards returning Disneyland fans. With a whopping 48 total attractions, some favorites are bound to be left out to keep this list short. Please be aware that EVERY EFFORT was made to be as inclusive possible.

Note: Keep in mind that this is Part 2 of 2!  Underrated Disney California Adventure attractions have their own list (HERE) and they will not be included in this post!

 

So, without further ado…

 

Alice in Wonderland (1958)

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This whimsical journey through Wonderland is quite popular with returning Disneyland guests, but is often overlooked by Disney merchandising and marketing. Its thematic sibling and counterpart, the Mad Tea Party, seems to get all the media coverage and attention. The spinning cups have always been a perennial favorite among park goers, but the far more elaborate dark-ride which sits adjacent to it deserves some praise as well. Alice in Wonderland is a little longer than Peter Pan’s flight and just as magical. With extremely effective, but surprisingly simple special effects, bright and happy colors, memorable music, and a madcap style that dazzles the eye, it is worth the wait in line. And now, with the relatively recent updates such as projection mapping technology, this ride is more engaging than ever! Let yourself be drawn into the crazy world of Alice’s Wonderland and feel the child in you shout for joy.

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The ride is lovely and takes you into one of The Sleeping Beauty Castle’s walls!

Matterhorn Bobsleds (1959)

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In 1959, the Matterhorn Bobsleds made history as the world’s first tubular steel roller-coaster in a world dominated by rickety wooden thrills. The iconic mountain which towers above everything in sight was a personal favorite for Walt. Inspired by Walt’s own trips to the real-life Matterhorn Mountain, the Matterhorn Bobsleds was an attempt to recreate the feeling of exhilaration one would get from careening down a snowy mountain in a sleek sled; including the danger! It’s a badly kept secret that Expedition Everest and its famous Yeti were directly inspired by this Disneyland original, and although the Walt Disney World masterpiece is far more famous, Matterhorn Mountain is not to be ignored. Space Mountain, Splash Mountain, and Big Thunder Mountain may get the most love, but Matterhorn Mountain lives in the hearts of millions of hardcore fans worldwide. And with the relatively recent addition of the Yeti stalking you in the tunnels alongside your bobsled as you ascend the mountain, the thrill has never felt so real!

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Concept art for the Matterhorn Updates. It literally feels like the Yeti is stalking you and roaring in your face!

Walt Disney’s Enchanted Tiki Room (1963)

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A pioneer for the Audio-Animatronics that would one day populate Pirates of the Caribbean and so many other Disney Masterpieces, Walt Disney’s Enchanted Tiki Room is a nostalgic classic that is as endearing as it is colorful. The Enchanted Tiki Room is a blast from the past and is one of the attractions that was extremely close to Walt’s heart. He poured his creative imagination and whimsical sense of innocent fun into a beautifully realized show filled with singing plants, animals, and Tikis! Grab a world-famous Dole-Whip treat and watch as Jose the macaw and all his friends serenade you with tropical fun! Often passed up as old and outdated, much like its neighbor The Jungle Cruise, Tiki Room still commands a deep respect from Disneyland fans from around the globe. In a world populated by adrenaline junkies and savvy smartphone users, some old fashioned wholesome entertainment can be a good thing.

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The Tiki Room may not be the first attraction on everyone’s bucket list, but it certainly was one of Walt’s favorites!

Great Moments with Mr. Lincoln (1965)

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Many guests pass this gem without even realizing its there in the first place. Situated amidst the shops and eateries of Main Street, U.S.A, The Main Street Opera House is home to one of Walt’s greatest accomplishments; the advent of the fully-realized Audio-Animatronic. Without Abe Lincoln, Pirates of the Caribbean and other rides like it would never have existed the way they are today. This show may be a bit outdated, and more educational than most park offerings, but it was one of the last shows that Walt personally directed and supervised completely. It is an inspirational show about Walt Disney’s love for America and its values of equality and opportunity, and his unending respect for a man who shared his beliefs. Centering around one of the most sophisticated Audio-Animatronic characters ever, Great Moments with Mr. Lincoln is probably as close as any of us will get to the real Abraham Lincoln in our lives, and the result is uncannily realistic. Because of its nature, and its age, the show is not necessarily for everyone, but for those who do love it, it remains a deeply poignant performance that still brings tears of pride to the eyes of many.

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The Many Adventures of Winnie the Pooh (2003)

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Literally and figuratively overshadowed by its infinitely more popular neighbor Splash Mountain, The Many Adventures of Winnie the Pooh deserves a bit more love. Due to the fact that it replaced the much-loved Country Bear Jamboree, this ride has gotten some bad press from longtime Disney fans. However, It’s actually a very good ride! For an attraction geared towards children, Winnie the Pooh offers an extremely cute journey that is not to be missed. With the beloved characters, song, and story from the animated Disney classic, the story enchants millions who ride through it. Featuring simple and yet extremely ingenious special effects, and eye-popping colors, the ride really does bring you back to your childhood days and makes you feel like you’re having a very happy winds-day with Tigger, Pooh, and Piglet! Especially if you have young children, this ride is not to be missed!

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Like our list? Check out Part 1 if you haven’t already! Like and share; let us know in the comments what your favorite Disneyland attractions are!

Top 10 Underrated Disneyland Attractions Part 1

Top 10 Underrated Disneyland Attractions Part 1

Top 10 Underrated Disney Attractions Part 1

 

With stories and experiences unlike any other, Disneyland is known for its world-famous attractions. However, some of these amazing attractions still seem to get overlooked when compared with the E-ticket thrills. This list honors those overlooked rides and experiences in historical order; specifically geared towards returning Disneyland fans. With a whopping 48 total attractions, some favorites are bound to be left out to keep this list a reasonable length. Please be aware that EVERY EFFORT was made to be as inclusive possible.

Note: Keep in mind that this is Part 1 of 2! You can find Part 2 here now that it’s up! Underrated Disney California Adventure attractions have their own list (HERE) and they will not be included in this post!

 

So, without further ado…

 

Disneyland Railroad (Opening Day, 1955)

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Now loading on Track No. 1 for a trip around Walt Disney’s Magic Kingdom!

Most people see the Disneyland Railroad and assume that it’s just a fancy mode of transportation which guests can use to travel around the park. However, there is so much more to this attraction than meets the eye. Believe it or not, the average guest is completely unaware that the Disneyland Railroad travels through a living-breathing Grand Canyon, and then travels back in time to when dinosaurs ruled the Earth! It’s one of the park’s most delightful hidden gems. The Disneyland Railroad was also extremely important to Walt, and was the one thing he insisted on his theme park having, even during the earliest stage of its development. With the recent 2017 update, this attraction is even more magical than ever!

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All aboard!

Jungle Cruise (Opening Day, 1955)

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Absolutely breathtaking!

Considering the roller-coasters of today’s world, it is hard to believe that the Jungle Cruise was considered the park’s first ‘thrill-ride!’ It seems extremely tame by today’s standards, but at the time, it was extremely exciting. No one had seen anything like the Jungle Cruise before, and the mechanical animals were a huge technological innovation at the time. Because of its age, the Jungle Cruise often gets ignored in favor of its younger sibling; Indiana Jones Adventure: Temple of the Forbidden Eye. However, the cute animal dioramas, corny wisecracking skippers, and complete immersion into a man-made jungle, continues to fuel an enormous fanbase today.

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The infamous Trader Sam. The deals he offers will put him ahead of the competition!

Mr. Toad’s Wild Ride (Opening Day, 1955)

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This stately manor acts as a beacon for all Disneyland fans.

Ask any Disneyland fan; they will all swear by quality of this Fantasyland Dark-Ride! For some reason, millions of zealous Disney fans are obsessed over this quirky ride through the eccentric Mr. Toad’s wild adventures. Usually overlooked in favor of its more famous next-door neighbor, Peter Pan’s flight, Mr. Toad’s Wild Ride does not disappoint. With a zany trip in a motorcar mishap, a courtroom, and bad dreams of punishment in the Underworld, Mr. Toad lets us climb into his own shoes for a day. Unlike Peter Pan, this attraction has proven too much for some very young children to handle, but for more mature audiences it proves to be a blast.

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After the ride was closed at Walt Disney World, fans of the Disneyland version rallied together to stop the same fate from befalling their version. The effort was a great success!

Snow White’s Scary Adventures (Opening Day, 1955)

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If you look closely, you might just see the Evil Queen pull back the curtains of her lofty tower and gaze down the guests waiting to go inside!

When most Disneyland newcomers first visit Fantasyland, a trip to It’s a Small World, Dumbo the Flying Elephant, The Mad Tea Party, and Peter Pan’s Flight are always on the itinerary, but rarely do you hear them even mention Snow White’s Scary Adventures. The reason for this is in the name of the attraction. Most people visiting Fantasyland are visiting with their young children; and Snow White’s Scary Adventures has been reported by some to be too scary for some of those same children. However, if you have older kids, or love the Disney classic, we highly recommend this Disneyland classic. It’s well made, atmospheric, and very cute.

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Some scenes, like this one, have been deemed by some as too scary for small children.

Sleeping Beauty Castle Walkthrough (1957)

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The Sleeping Beauty castle, While not as ornate as the Cinderella Castle at Walt Disney World, is the original Disney Park icon. it is even now the entire Walt Disney Company’s official logo!

The Sleeping Beauty Castle is without the question the central icon of entire Disneyland Resort. The original fantasy castle has been awe-inspiring since the opening day of Disneyland and has touched the hearts of millions since then. As a result, it’s hard to imagine that you couldn’t go inside the castle itself until several years after its opening.  The charming interior of the castle tells the timeless story of Sleeping Beauty in kinetic, special-effects laden, dioramas like the famous Main Street store windows and is quite well done considering the extremely limited space inside.  Due to a seven-year hiatus, most people didn’t even realize that it has since reopened. Considering that very few newcomers, and even a great deal of returning guests, know this self-guided attraction even exists, it deserves more attention than it has been receiving. Your dreams of traveling inside a real fairy tale castle can come true!

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Most people pass right by the entrance which is tucked away to the side after you enter the castle.

Like our list? Stay tuned for Part 2 next week! Like and share; let us know in the comments what your favorite Disneyland attractions are!

Top 5 Underrated Disney Movies

Top 5 Underrated Disney Movies

Top 5 Underrated Disney Movies

With so many good films to remember in the Disney animated canon, it can sometimes be easy to overlook a few of the lesser-known masterpieces. That’s why we’ve compiled a list of what we think are the ‘Top 5 Underrated Disney Animated Films’, so that these great movies can finally receive their due. For this list, we will stick to 56 films that are  presently part of Disney’s official ‘Animated Canon’. It’s very hard to narrow this list down to an economical number, so if your favorite movie isn’t featured, please let us know in the comments and please understand that we did our best to include what we could. Perhaps we’ll compile a Part 2 with your picks if enough people want it!

Now without further ado, here we go…

#5: Fantasia 2000

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Fantasia has experienced a great deal of resurgence in popularity since its debut in the 40’s, but its sequel is still vastly overlooked even by Disney fans at large. The same concept of the original Fantasia, a showcase of music synchronized to gorgeous animation, remains; but it is enhanced by valuable lessons learned from the original. With a Rotten Tomatoes score of 82%, Its hard to believe that Fantasia 2000 only broke even at the box-office. However, its breathtaking scenes of melody and imagery have spoken to the hearts of many viewers who have seen it since. But the coup de grace of the film is the final sequence; the beautiful music of Igor Stravinsky’s Firebird Suite synchronized to one of the most beautiful pieces of animation ever created. The breathtakingly beautiful scene of the Forest Sprite and the primeval destructive forces of the world must be seen to believe!

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#4: Tarzan

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This is by far one of the more well-known films of this list, but we at Disney Magic Fanatic believe it is still vastly underrated. The gorgeous film is listed among many people’s favorite Disney films, but due to licensing issues (The estate of Edgar Rice Boroughs limited what Disney could do with the property), Disney was never able to capitalize on its initial popularity. However, due to its Oscar winning music by Phil Collins, gorgeous backgrounds, animation (Tree Surfing rocks!), and an intense attention to anatomy and detail, this film rises above the rest and deserves more attention than it seems to have been receiving.

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The amount of detail in the animation and anatomy of the characters is breathtaking. Tarzan is animated by Glen Keane; the mastermind behind Tangled and the animator of dozens of gorgeous sequences of animation (such as the Beast’s transformation). Not a single frame is wasted with his work!

#3: Winnie the Pooh (2011)

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For some reason, no one we ask seems to know that this sequel to the adorable Disney classic even exists. Perhaps it’s the fact that it was released the same weekend as a super-popular Harry Potter film (how could it hope to compete at the box-office!), but regardless of the reason, there is no denying that this film is amazing. Imagine all your childhood nostalgia being fulfilled in an innocent tale of beauty and fun in The Hundred Acre Wood; that’s what this film does. With a Rotten Tomatoes score of 90% and a devoted fan following, there is no denying how well-made this film was. In fact, here at Disney Magic Fanatic, Winnie the Pooh is one of our favorite Disney films since the Renaissance of Animation. Just trust us…GO SEE IT!

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The canonical sequel is absolutely adorable and faithful to the original.

#2: The Emperor’s New Groove

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Sure, it’s no Lion King, but The Emperor’s New Groove is hilarious! Everyone we ask seems to love this film and we certainly understand why. What can go wrong with a selfish Emperor being turned into a talking Llama? What’s not to like about a villain who’s scary beyond all reason and proof that Dinosaurs once roamed the earth? Nothing; except for the full comedy of ridiculous events and crazy meta-commentary in which those things are found! Plus…who doesn’t love Kronk and his shoulder devil and angel? Spinach Puffs for everyone!

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Kronk is our favorite! He makes the film into a real hoot!

#1: Treasure Planet

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In our opinion (note the keyword: OPINION), Treasure Planet is the most underrated Disney film of all time. It seems to grow on you every viewing more and more, until it’s firmly planted in your mind. Directed by Disney luminaries John Musker and Ron Clements (The Little Mermaid, Aladdin, Moana, etc.), Treasure Planet is a breathtaking display of gorgeous animation, brilliant world-building design, and lovable characters. Sure, it lacks a little on the plot side, and has a few bugs with its logic, but it’s all worth it for the sumptuous visuals and unique blend of 18th century design and high-tech cyberpunk. Featuring a brilliant voice cast, including a now-superstar Joseph Gordon-Levitt, the great Emma Thompson, and the ever-entertaining Martin Short to name a few; this film has an immense imagination and deserves a little more credit!

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The film’s visuals are the stuff of dreams; taking years to painstakingly animate.

 

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There is absolutely no shortage of imagination in this film!

 

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The stylistic design is unique and fresh; always catching the eye with its intricate detail.

Like our list? Please Like and share and also stay tuned for weekly Disney joy!

 

Top 5 Most Successful Disney Villains

Top 5 Most Successful Disney Villains

The Top 5 Most Successful Disney Villains

In some cases, Disney’s villains are just as memorable as the heroes they face off against. However, there are a few fiendish felons that rise above the rest in their craftiness. So, to be fair to these guys, we’ve compiled a list of who we think are the most successful Disney animated villains; regardless of how good of a villain they are or their actual level of popularity. This list is based solely upon the villain’s individual level of success in a film’s plot; even if they remain unmemorable for the audience!

Warning: ‘Be prepared’ for a spoiler alert (but you already knew that!)

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#5: Doris the Evil Bowler Hat

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Creepy! Doris gives us the shivers!

 

Meet the Robinsons is a lesser known Disney movie and the villains are therefore often overlooked by Disney fans at large. However, there is still no denying the success which that film’s villain obtained. Doris, a multitasking super-hat that somehow controls minds (don’t ask), was invented by the film’s hero, named Lewis, in the future. Doris subsequently became self-aware, turned evil (again, don’t ask), and manipulated Lewis’s childhood friend Michael ‘Goob’ Yagoobian into attacking Lewis’s legacy. By stealing a time-machine, Goob allows Doris to go back in time and sell herself as Goob’s invention before she had been invented by Lewis so that she can be massed-produced and have the numbers to mind-control all of humanity (it’s very complicated). She succeeded in doing all of this, but thankfully all of her evil machinations were easily undone when the young version of Lewis decided to overcome his fears and never event Doris in the first place (confusing timey-wimey stuff). At least the endearing unicorn-loving Goob wasn’t such a bad guy after all!

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We’re glad Bowler Hat Guy (Goob) isn’t a bad guy after all!

 

#4: Prince Hans

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We love to hate Prince Hans! Shame on him!

No villain makes us cringe more than the chief slime-ball of all Disney villains; the wicked Prince Hans from Frozen. Even Gaston seems a gentleman when compared to how Prince Hans treated the women in his life! Prince Hans set out to marry into the royal house of Arendale and thus inherit the kingdom himself. He manipulated poor Anna into thinking he was in love with her, forced Elsa to retreat from fear, and then dumped Anna and left her to the effects of a frozen heart! He tricked the whole kingdom into thinking he was some dashing hero. He succeeded with all his plans, but in the end, he had not counted on true love to thaw the frozen heart!

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EEEVIL!!!!!

#3: Ursula

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Who knew such a deep voice could get any deeper…..or that such a big octopus lady could get bigger!

Besides having one of the best villain songs in all cinematic history, Ursula also stands as one of the most successful schemers in the Disney canon. It’s amazing how fast she accomplishes her goals; considering she made up her plan from scratch only after she had discovered Ariel’s rebelliousness! Ursula managed to trick a distraught Ariel into selling her soul and her voice in return for human legs so that she could get prince Eric to fall in love with her. It was not a fair deal! Despite awesome relationship advice from Sebastian, Ursula uses Ariel’s stolen voice to make certain that poor Ariel would never reach that already-difficult goal. Because of the loving father he is, King Triton takes Ariel’s place as Ursula’s slave (talk about a different kind of Disney ‘true love’!) Ursula becomes the master of wind and tide just as she had always wanted….at least for a few minutes. Even if he isn’t good at guessing names, Prince Eric still makes a great hero!

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*Shivers*….That’s one bad octopus lady!

#2: Jafar

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Just look at that Monkey-faced malice!

This slimy Sultan’s Vizier manages to sneak his way into the Sultan’s highest confidence with snake-like craftiness. Not only does Jafar manage to remain the Sultan’s most trusted adviser for most of the movie, but he also pulls off a pretty convincing old man disguise! This schemer even seems to have backup plans to achieve his goals if the original plans fail (like marrying Princess Jasmine…He’s so old; YUCK!). Through carefully laid schemes and tempered patience, Jafar not only reaches his life’s goal of becoming Sultan, but even goes a step further; becoming a powerful sorcerer and then an all-powerful genie! Pulling off ‘phenomenal cosmic power’ is an astonishing feat to be sure, but it’s too bad some major strings came attached to the whole genie thing…

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So glad this didn’t last!

#1: Scar

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What a showman! If he wasn’t so evil, he might be a pretty good actor!

Scar certainly did exactly what he had set out to do (except for catching that mouse for lunch…). Not only did his years of patience and planning pay off with his rise to King of The Pride Lands, but he met every single goal on the way to get there; all of it working perfectly to his design. He engineered the demise of his own brother, managed to convince his own nephew that it was somehow his fault, and even fulfilled his promise to some rather crazy Hyenas. Also, he has the longest period of success out of any Disney villain in history! Scar managed to rule as King long enough for Simba to be raised to adulthood by a lovable Meercat and Warthog; all while enjoying a rousing chorus of Hakuna Matata! Even though the Pride Lands went to waste under Scar’s lethargic rule, he still proved himself to be an extremely successful schemer!

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What follows this still brings tears to our eyes…

Like our list? Was your favorite foe included? Let us know in the comments below! Tell us who YOUR picks would be, and we may make another list with your picks later! If you like our content, please like our post and share!

5 Things You Didn’t Know About Winnie the Pooh (1977)

5 Things You Didn’t Know About Winnie the Pooh (1977)

5 Things You May Not Know About Disney’s ‘The Many Adventures of Winnie the Pooh’!

The original Winnie the Pooh film’s 40th anniversary is this year, and we thought we might celebrate in our own nerdy way! Here’s our list of 5 Things You May Not Know About ‘The Many Adventures of Winnie the Pooh’!

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The El Capitan Theater’s advertisement for a throwback showing of The Many Adventures of Winnie the Pooh.

#1: It is Actually 3 Separate Films

The Many Adventures of Winnie the Pooh might feel like several separate adventures stitched together instead of one cohesive film. The reason for this feeling is because this was indeed the case! Most kids who grew up in the 60’s and 70’s already know this, but The Many Adventures of Winnie the Pooh is an amalgamation of three separate short films edited together; with new sequences added to weave the segments together naturally. The three short films were originally released in theatres in double-bills with live-action Disney features; Winnie the Pooh and the Honey Tree (released with The Ugly Dachshund in 1966), Winnie the Pooh and the Blustery Day (released with The Horse in the Gray Flannel Suit in 1968), and Winnie the Pooh and Tigger Too (released with The Island at the Top of the World in 1974). Therefore, even though the final product wasn’t released until 11 years after Walt Disney’s death in 1966, he personally worked on two out of three in this collection.

#2: It was Responsible for Disney’s Last Oscar

Winnie the Pooh and the Blustery Day (1968) is responsible for the last of Walt Disney’s Acedemy Awards. The award, given posthumously to Walt in 1969 and accepted on his behalf by animator/director Wolfgang ‘Woolie’ Reitherman, was for ‘Best Short Subject’. It was a shame that Walt Disney had passed away before the film was finally released theatrically, but the honor was deeply felt for him; especially since it officially capped off Walt Disney’s record of Academy Awards won at a whopping 26! Walt Disney still holds the world record for most academy awards won by a single individual; as well as the world record for most academy awards nominations at 59 total nominations!

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Winnie the Pooh’s innocence was something that Walt Disney was especially fond of and he said so several times while making the film.

#3: It Made Winnie the Pooh an American Icon

A.A. Milne’s classic books had been quite popular in England for a long time before Disney purchased the rights to make their films. However, Pooh was comparatively unknown in the U.S. It may be hard to think of a time when kids didn’t know who Pooh was, but his obscurity was very real in the new-era sixties of the United States. Walt Disney was worried that the obscurity would be enough to majorly hinder a full-length feature film. He felt like he needed to start off Pooh in a series of short films, to introduce him to the average American audience and establish his character, then it might have been possible to move on to a full-length film. Sadly, Walt did not live to see his vision of a feature film realized, but he did succeed in making Winnie the Pooh a Very recognizable character in the U.S.

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When making their Disney themed paintings, the Thomas Kinkade Estate could not ignore the vastly popular Winnie the Pooh stories. Go buy the paintings on the Thomas Kinkade website if you can; they’re fantastic!

#4: It Was the Last Chapter for Several People

As mentioned above, Walt Disney passed away during the production of these iconic shorts and was not able to see all his dreams about it to come true. The Many Adventures of Winnie the Pooh was the last film project to be released which Walt ever worked on. However, Winnie the Pooh didn’t just mark the last chapter for Walt. It also sadly marked the very last screen performance of the well-respected thespian Sebastian Cabot (the Narrator) as the actor passed away five months later. Interestingly, Winnie the Pooh also marked veteran actor Sterling Holloway’s final theatrical performance to be released before his retirement in film. Sterling was the voice of Pooh, the Cheshire Cat, Kaa, and many other iconic Disney characters.

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Sterling Holloway holding, arguably, his most famous character.
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Sterling Holloway had a long and illustrious Disney career as a voice artist before retiring.

#5: It Spawned one of Disney’s Greatest Franchises

When Walt set out to adapt A.A. Milne’s classic tales into a dream-fulfilling feature film, he had no idea what it would one day become. It spawned dozens of direct-to-video sequels, tv-films, several television shows, thousands of items of merchandise, theme-park attractions, and many more appearances which we do not have room to list here. Pooh’s influence is even acknowledged by a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame. Also, if you want to relive the nostalgia of the Hundred-acre Wood, Winnie the Pooh is one of only 3 Disney films to have a canonical full-budget theatrical sequel. Winnie the Pooh (2011) is a critically acclaimed film which does justice to the original tale. If you haven’t seen it, we would highly recommend it!

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The Many Adventures of Winnie the Pooh attraction at Disneyland takes its namesake directly from the original film and follows the same events. There is a variation on this ride at many Disney Parks; including the extremely popular version at Tokyo Disneyland!

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5 Things You Didn’t Know About Disney’s Sleeping Beauty!

5 Things You Didn’t Know About Disney’s Sleeping Beauty!

5 Things You Didn’t Know About Sleeping Beauty

Revered as one of Disney’s Greatest films, Sleeping Beauty has stood the test of time. Almost 60 years later, it has become a major pop-culture icon. To honor this masterpiece, here is our list of 5 Things You May Not Know about Sleeping Beauty!

#1: Sleeping Beauty Was a Technological Triumph

Walt Disney insisted that Sleeping Beauty must be the most beautiful film the studio had ever made. He famously said that the film should look like ‘a moving illustration’. He did not care how long it took, or how much money it would cost to get it there. Walt wound up spending twice as much on Sleeping Beauty than any other Disney animated feature before. Over an arduous 8 years of production, Walt made sure the film was refined to a level of quality which stunned critics of the day. The animation was specifically altered from Disney’s typical style to make it feel more Gothic and intricate. The format which it was intended to be released in (Super Technirama 70) was specifically chosen because of its depth of sound and widescreen picture; making it one of only two animated films in history at the time to be produced in anamorphic widescreen (the first was Lady and the Tramp).

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The climactic scene between Prince Phillip and Maleficent is a fantastic example of the entire film’s epic artistry and technical innovations.

#2: The Score Was Not a Disney Original

Walt Disney had always worked hard to produce the best original scores that he could muster; making his animated films famous as lavish musicals. However, Disney took a very rare approach to the scoring of Sleeping Beauty. To produce the sophisticated feeling he was looking for, Walt insisted that the score be adapted directly from Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky’s famous Sleeping Beauty Ballet; the lyrics of Once Upon a Dream are the only new addition to the score. The score was adapted and revised by George Bruns and the adapted score was nominated for an Academy Award, but it was turned down in favor of a completely original score.vnlLPbCazLIl

#3: Maleficent’s Voice Should Sound Very Familiar

Although Maleficent is arguably the most popular of the Disney villains, and was Eleanor Audley’s most well-known performance, it was not the first Disney villain the radio veteran portrayed…nor the last of her dark Disney roles. Nine years prior, in 1950, Eleanor had made her Disney debut by portraying Lady Tremaine, the cruel stepmother in Cinderella. Disney Parks veterans will also recognize her as the voice of Madame Leota at The Haunted Mansion! If you already knew that, then you may still be surprised to learn that Eleanor was one of the few actors in sleeping beauty who also portrayed her character for live-action reference footage. this live-action performance was studied by Angelina Jolie for her role as the same character in Maleficent (2014).

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Eleanor Audley erupts in rage at her goons in this still from the live-action reference used by animators as inspiration.

#4: It Is One of the most Revered Animated Films of All Time

Today, many film critics and historians agree that Sleeping Beauty is one of the best animated films of all time. With a Rotten Tomatoes Score of 92%, and numerous praise from filmmakers and critics allike, it stands the test of time. Sleeping Beauty is also notable as the “33rd highest Grossing Film in History” with a total value of $642,456,300 in today’s currency when adjusted for inflation. The film is also the “5th Highest Grossing animated film of all time” when adjusted for inflation. In addition, The Sleeping Beauty Castle at Disneyland is now the spiritual icon of the entire Walt Disney Studios; replacing the previous generic castle as the company’s logo (despite popular belief, it is not Walt Disney World’s Cinderella castle).

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Although much more elaborate than the version at Disneyland, this logo is confirmed by the company to be an updated Sleeping Beauty castle. It was commissioned by the Walt Disney Studios from special effects house ‘WETA DIGITAL’ (known for The Lord of the Rings).

#5: It Was the Last of Its Kind

After 16 animated features, Walt Disney’s films were getting better and better, but they were also getting more and more expensive as a result. The price it was costing to improve upon their films, and make them at such a high quality, was quickly outweighing the profits the studio made. Sleeping Beauty was the last-ditch effort by the Walt Disney Studios to keep animation improving, and it is considered by many as the pinnacle of animation as a result. However, even though it was a huge hit, the film had cost so much money to make that it ended up with only a small profit; that’s how expensive it was to produce! With a sad heart Sleeping Beauty became the last film Walt Disney Produced at such a caliber. The Golden Age was over, and although Disney’s next film (101 Dalmatians-1961) was a success, the art of the animation was greatly reduced….until a certain mermaid!prince-philip-slleping-beauty-annie-leibovitz-s-disney-dream-portrait-series-disney-1361380-2000-1300Enjoy these facts? Interested in more? Like, share, and follow us on Facebook or Twitter by following the links on our menu page in order to receive updates and let us know in the comments what films you want us to cover next!

5 Things You Didn’t Know About Disney’s Snow White!

5 Things You Didn’t Know About Disney’s Snow White!

This year, Disney’s Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs celebrates its 80th anniversary! To honor this classic, we have put together a list of 5 things you may not have known about Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs.

#1: The First Film of Its kind

Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs was unlike anything that the world had ever seen before. It was the first ever full-length animated feature film and it started an entirely new genre called the Animated Film for which Disney has become synonymous. Cartoons were no longer just shorts to tack onto big-ticket movies; they had become the main event themselves. Many critics called Snow White “Disney’s folly”. They all thought it was a foolish idea and that no audience would want to sit through a cartoon of that length. Boy, did Uncle Walt show them! Not only did Walt get an audience to sit through almost an-hour-and-a-half of cartoon joy, but he got them to love it. It is now a pop-culture icon which has lasted for 80 years. Many film historians consider Snow White to be the most important animated film in history; and even one of the most important films in general!wMiOUsW

#2 It Put Walt Disney on the Map

It was true that Walt Disney had already become famous for his creation of Mickey Mouse and the extremely refined quality of his animated shorts, but it wasn’t until the humongous success of Snow White that he became a true icon. Considering that Walt Disney had to mortgage his own house to keep the film financed, all while enduring the mocking of most critics, I would say that the fame the studio gained from it was well earned! Every dime of money earned at the Box office for Snow White was poured back into the studio’s future. With the profits from Snow White, the old Hyperion studios from which the film was born got traded out for the brand-new Walt Disney Studios in Burbank CA; the very same studio that the company still inhabits today. Without Snow White, Disney would not be the entertainment empire it is today.

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Even with its updates, the Walt Disney Studios still occupies the same land bought with the profits of Snow white. The film’s significance to the studio’s history is displayed by the dwarf statues on the outside.

#3 There Used to Be A LOT More Dwarfs

One of the many things that Walt emphasized was the transition of the original nameless dwarfs from the fairy tale into fully-fleshed characters with individual personalities. However, this caused a great deal of trouble for Walt’s team because they couldn’t figure out what names to use! In fact, the studio considered over 60 Dwarf names before finally narrowing it down to seven. These names include, but are not limited to, Silly, Sappy, Scrappy, Snappy, Snoopy, Goopy, Gloomy, Gaspy, Gatsby, Gabby, Blabby, Flabby, Crabby, Cranky, Lazy, Dizzy, Dumpy, Snurfles, Dirty, Daffy, Doleful, Woeful, Wistful, Soulful, Helpful, Awful, Graceful, Tearful, Tubby, Weepy, Wheezy, Sneezy-Wheezy, Sniffy, Puffy, Stuffy, Shorty, Shifty, Thrifty, Nifty, Neurtsy, Hotsy, Hungry, Hoppy, Jaunty, Jazzy, Busy, Burpy, Baldy, Biggy-Wiggy, and Biggy-Ego! Whew…That is a lot!!!!!

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preliminary dwarf concept art

#4 It Received an Extremely Unique Oscar

Snow White’s greatest achievement in critical circles was won at the 11th Academy Awards in 1939. Walt Disney was gifted with the Academy’s most prestigious award; the ‘Honorary Award’. This award is one of the highest honors at the Academy Awards and signifies extreme respect by one’s peers; given only to those who have made a significant contribution to the film industry. It was presented to Walt by child star Shirley Temple as one normal sized Oscar along with seven miniature Oscars. The honor was addressed; “For Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs, recognized as a significant screen innovation which has charmed millions and pioneered a great new entertainment field”.1939_disneytemple

 

#5 It’s One of the Greatest Box Office Juggernauts in History

We talk a lot about the Avatar, Star Wars VII, and Avengers regarding their power at the Box Office. These films have grossed millions in the theaters upon their release in today’s money. But let’s face it, a dollar is not worth what it once was. Adjusted for inflation, Snow White’s true value dwarfs most modern ‘Box-office hits’ at a whopping theatrical gross of $963,560,000!!!  Adjusted for inflation, Snow White ranks as the ‘10th Highest Grossing Film of All Time’. Avatar comes in at 15, which is still extremely high, but Snow White beats it by over a hundred million dollars!snow-white-sister-movie-disney-red-rose