A Surprise on the Pooh Attraction

public.jpeg

For this blog post I wanted to share one of my hidden-ish gems at Disneyland. Seeing as its anniversary is coming up on the 9th, I’d like to share this little tid-bit with you all.

I love going to the parks with friends and asking them their favorite things to do; never know when someone will share something new. A while ago I had asked a friend what was something interesting they liked to see in Disneyland.

“I like to see the mounted heads on the Pooh ride.” Before correcting him that he meant the Pooh attraction, I realized what he’d said and asked for an explanation.

Before the Winnie the Pooh attraction in Critter Country it was the Country Bear Jamboree, essentially being a bear country band. Animatronics of the animals were used on the attraction in which they played instruments.

After the attraction closed on Sept. 9, 2001 and reopened two years later with a new theme, the animatronic heads can be found hidden, mounted on a wall inside the Pooh attraction. The heads are lifelike in size and cartoonish in expression but CREEPY when seeing hanging over you.

I recommend everyone stopping by and having a look for yourself. To see them you’ll have to look back at above the opening of the wall as you exit Pooh nightmare-dream show room.

Ub Iwerks

 

Ub Iwerks’ career was tied closely to Walt Disney’s almost as much as Roy Disney. Iwerks and Disney worked alongside creating the company’s most iconic material and characters including Mickey Mouse. Iwerks began as an animator and after having left and returned he worked for Disney as a special effects engineer.

Born 1901 in Missouri and past on 1971 in California, Iwerks list of accomplishments are mostly for the Disney company — Iwerks touched both the filmography and Disneyland. With Iwerks help, Disney’s animation company help take off and standout during its time. He also helped engineer well-known animatronics throughout Disneyland.

Ub Iwerks, born Ubbe Ert Iwwerks, met Disney in their early adult life. Iwerks was known to be a fast cartoonist, allegedly able to produce 700 sketches DAILY. Together, Iwerks and Disney created the first successful sound synchronized and the most popular cartoon in its time, Steamboat Willie (1928), officially debuting Mickey and Minnie Mouse. After Charles Mintz took the rights of Oswald the Lucky Rabbit, co-created by Disney and Iwerks, the two began works on creating new characters.

Disney drew preliminary sketches in which Iwerks solidified, bringing to life one of the most recognized cartoon character ever — Mortimer…err, Mickey Mouse. The rest of that story can be a post on it’s own, but after Steamboat Willie brought financial success and a distributer, the two began to really crank out amazing work.

Iwerks left the Disney company but returned, not as an animator but an engineer in the special effects department. Walt had Iwerks work on perfecting the combination method of live-action and animation as seen on Mary Poppins (1964). Iwerks also had a hand in the animatronics in Disneyland having worked on “it’s a small world” and the Mr. Lincoln animatronic in the Opera House on Main Street. AND, Iwerks helped design some stuff for Disney World, although he didn’t live to see its grand opening.

Overall Ub Iwerks contributed so much to Disney and his company and, ultimately, to the history of the company we admire so much. So thank you, Iwerks, for your hard work, we love it.