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The Disney Diary

Shaun Finnie, the man who brought us “This Day In Disney History”, continues to do his masterful research on all things Disney and brings us some of the most insightful articles found on the Internet. Each of Shaun’s articles has been researched in depth to bring you the most factual information on Walt Disney and The Walt Disney Company. Shaun is from the UK and enjoys sharing his deep love of Disney with everyone around the world.

The Sounds Of Disneyland A book Review

April 27, 2008
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The Sounds Of Disneyland A book Review

Shaun Finnie returns with the first of a series of book reviews. The subject this time is an ignored gem which is unavailable as a standalone volume. In 2005 Disney released ‘A Musical history of Disneyland’, a lavish six-CD set issued to celebrate that park’s fiftieth anniversary. It featured a host of rare and...
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Disney’s Theme Park Movies

December 12, 2006
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Disney’s Theme Park Movies

This time around Shaun Finnie looks at Disney’s feature length movies that have been based on theme park rides. A certain non-Disney theme park in the Orlando area advertises itself as a place where its visitors can ‘Ride the Movies’. Now as we all know, Disney’s parks have always allowed their guests to do...
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“Nice Of You To… Drop In” Part 2 – The Future

September 2, 2006
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“Nice Of You To… Drop In” Part 2 – The Future

This time around Shaun Finnie looks at Disney’s future Tower of Terror rides. In an article liberally sprinkled with spoilers, he previews the new Towers that Disney currently has under construction. In my last article I explained how the various ideas for a freefall ride eventually became Walt Disney World’s Twilight Zone Tower of...
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“Nice Of You To… Drop In” Part 1 – The Past and the Present

August 18, 2006
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“Nice Of You To… Drop In” Part 1 – The Past and the Present

In his latest column Shaun Finnie looks at Disney’s Tower of Terror rides. In this first part he uncovers the initial ideas behind the attractions and compares the two current rides. We all know what The Twilight Zone Tower of Terror does, yes? No matter how much they change the sequencing it’s basically a...
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The Disneylands That Never Were

July 24, 2006
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The Disneylands That Never Were

The Disney Diary’s Shaun Finnie hasn’t been providing many columns for this site recently. Today he’s back with an apology, an explanation and an invitation to read his biggest collection of Disney theme park information yet. Firstly I’d like to apologise for not writing as much for MickeyNews as I’d like to have done...
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A Chilling Encounter

June 13, 2006
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A Chilling Encounter

The Disney Diary’s Shaun Finnie has finally had the chance to ride Expedition Everest at Disney’s Animal Kingdom. Was it worth the wait? Does it live up to the hype? Here he takes us for a trip on the latest white-knuckle ride at Walt Disney World. On my last visit to Disney’s Animal Kingdom...
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The Voyage Of The Little Mermaid And Other Cut-Backs

June 5, 2006
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The Voyage Of The Little Mermaid And Other Cut-Backs

The Voyage of the Little Mermaid is one of my favourite attractions at Walt Disney World. I love the way that it combines film, puppetry, lasers, live action and some great theatrical techniques to bring this much-loved movie to life at the Disney-MGM Studios. It’s hugely entertaining and stands up well for a show...
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The Re-Imagineering Of Pleasure Island

May 29, 2006
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The Re-Imagineering Of Pleasure Island

For many adult visitors to Walt Disney World Pleasure Island offers a night-time alternative to the daily assault of childish delights. The mix of live music, comedy and dance clubs – combined with a few cocktails – has provided grown-ups with a place to go after the theme parks have closed. Gated off from...
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Following Fantasia

November 2, 2005
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Following Fantasia

In his second and final column on the abandoned concepts of Fantasia, Shaun Finnie examines some possible expansion pieces for the first film, the making of Fantasia 2000, and the plans for continuing the Fantasia story. Walt Disney imagined that Fantasia would herald a new age of classical cartoons, with film fans welcoming the...
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The Alternative Fantasias

October 26, 2005
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The Alternative Fantasias

After his two-part article on some of the Disney animated movies that were planned but abandoned, the Disney Diary’s Shaun Finnie begins a more in depth look at some original concepts for one particular Disney movie – Fantasia Since the late 1920s, the Silly Symphonies series of short films had been extremely successful for...
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Disney’s Abandoned Full Length Cartoons (part 2)

October 18, 2005
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Disney’s Abandoned Full Length Cartoons  (part 2)

Shaun Finnie continues his look at the Disney animated movies that were planned but never produced, continuing with some more ideas from Walt’s time before bringing the story right up to date. One of Disney’s grandest ideas for a movie that never made it to a public screening was The Tales of Hans Christian...
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Disney’s Abandoned Full Length Cartoons (Part 1)

October 13, 2005
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Disney’s Abandoned Full Length Cartoons  (Part 1)

The Disney Diary’s Shaun Finnie returns with the first in a series of articles examining planned Disney animations that were never completed. The Walt Disney Studios have officially released 44 full-length animated features to date. From Snow White to Home on the Range, these films have delighted generations of fans around the world. But...
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CALIFORNIA DREAMING Part 4 – Death of the Dream

May 17, 2005
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CALIFORNIA DREAMING Part 4 – Death of the Dream

In the early 1990’s Disney announced plans to build massive theme parks in two locations in California. So why were neither Westcot nor Port Disney ever built? Shaun Finnie looks at the reasons. As we’ve seen in the first three articles of this series, in the early 1990’s Disney planned to undertake massive expansion...
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CALIFORNIA DREAMING Part 3 – Port Disney

May 10, 2005
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CALIFORNIA DREAMING Part 3 – Port Disney

After showing what might have been built at Disneyland had the Westcot plans gone through for Anaheim’s second park, in this column Shaun Finnie looks at another proposed California site – Port Disney and the original DisneySea. In his early days as CEO of Disney, Michael Eisner quickly realised that guests could possibly spend...
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CALIFORNIA DREAMING Part 2 –The Rest of WESTCOT

April 29, 2005
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CALIFORNIA DREAMING Part 2 –The Rest of WESTCOT

In his previous articles Shaun Finnie has guided us through the hotels and the World Showcase section of Westcot, the Epcot-style expansion to Disneyland that was planned for the mid-1990’s. This time he examines Westcot’s Future World. In my last article, I looked at what was intended for the World Showcase section of WESTCOT,...
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CALIFORNIA DREAMING Part 1 – WESTCOT’S World Showcase

April 21, 2005
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CALIFORNIA DREAMING Part 1 – WESTCOT’S World Showcase

Most Disney fans agree that they would rather have seen the spectacular Westcot theme park built at Anaheim instead of what was eventually delivered : Disney’s California Adventure. In this article Shaun Finnie starts to examine what the abandoned park would have been like. In 1989 Michael Eisner asked the Disney Imagineers to draw...
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The Hotels That Might Have Been Part 3 – WESTCOT Hotels

April 9, 2005
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The Hotels That Might Have Been Part 3 – WESTCOT Hotels

In the first two parts of this series Shaun Finnie looked at Disney hotels that had been planned but never built. In this third and final part he tells of a Disney theme park where the guest rooms would have been part of the actual attractions – Westcot. In this series so far I’ve...
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The Hotels That Might Have Been Part 1 – Disneyland and Walt Disney World

March 24, 2005
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The Hotels That Might Have Been Part 1 – Disneyland and Walt Disney World

There has been much written over the years about lost Disney attractions at the theme parks; those that have been planned but never delivered to the public. But what rarely get mentioned are the many planned and abandoned hotels and resorts around the globe that the company have intended to build at various times....
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The Hotels That Might Have Been Part 2 – Beyond Disneyland and Walt Disney World

March 21, 2005
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The Hotels That Might Have Been Part 2 – Beyond Disneyland and Walt Disney World

When the EuroDisneyland resort in Paris was in its planning stages, Michael Eisner invited top architects from around the world to submit hotel designs loosely themed around the concepts of America and Americana. This theme was chosen because they felt it would make the resort stand out from the surrounding French architecture and also,...
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Disney Cruise Line Rumours

March 15, 2005
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Disney Cruise Line Rumours

The Disney Cruise Line is now well established and ready for expansion. In his latest article, Shaun Finnie looks at the possible directions that expansion could take. There have been many rumours about a possible expansion of the Disney Cruise Line over the years, but recently they’ve started to get a bit more specific....
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What Might Have Been (And May Yet Be) – Upated!

March 8, 2005
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What Might Have Been (And May Yet Be) – Upated!

Shaun Finnie presents an updated version of his list of planned but abandoned Disney rides and attractions. Last December I wrote up a list of Disney attractions that were rumoured to have at least got to the planning stages but, for one reason or another, have yet to materialise. I’m delighted to say that...
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Disney On Stage – Part Two

February 22, 2005
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Disney On Stage – Part Two

In the final part of his look at Disney’s theatrical productions, Shaun Finnie examines some of the company’s less successful efforts, and looks at their plans for the future. When Sir Elton John and Sir Tim Rice’s Elaborate Lives : The Legend Of Aida had it’s initial trial outing in Atlanta, Georgia it wasn’t...
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Disney On Stage – Part One

February 15, 2005
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Disney On Stage – Part One

Disney Theatrical Productions have probably produced more stage shows than you think. In the first of a two-part article Shaun Finnie looks at the company’s formation and early productions. The recent debut of the Mary Poppins musical at the Prince Edward Theatre, London, is just the latest Disney-created show to grace the boards. I’m...
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Disney At The 1964 / 65 World’s Fair – Part 3

February 2, 2005
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Disney At The 1964 / 65 World’s Fair – Part 3

The Disney Diary’s Shaun Finnie concludes his series of columns detailing Disney’s involvement in the 1964 / 65 New York City World’s Fair with look at the It’s A Small World ride and the rest of the event. Disney had committed to supplying Ford, General Electric and the State of Illinois with attractions for...
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Mary Poppins At The Prince Edward Theatre, London

January 28, 2005
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Mary Poppins At The Prince Edward Theatre, London

The stage musical version of Mary Poppins has recently opened to rave reviews in London’s West End. Shaun Finnie went to see if it was as good as the papers said. Mary Poppins has arrived in London’s West End. After a short trial run in Bristol, the new multimillion-pound show has opened at the...
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Disney At The 1964 / 65 World’s Fair – Part 2

January 26, 2005
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Disney At The 1964 / 65 World’s Fair – Part 2

The Disney Diary’s Shaun Finnie continues his a series of columns looking at Disney’s involvement in the 1964 / 65 New York City World’s Fair, this time concentrating on the two most technologically advanced attractions that Walt and his team provided. In part one of this series we saw how Disney offered its design...
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Disney At The 1964 / 65 World’s Fair – Part 1

January 18, 2005
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Disney At The 1964 / 65 World’s Fair – Part 1

The Disney Diary’s Shaun Finnie begins a series of columns looking at Disney’s involvement in the 1964 / 65 New York City World’s Fair, and the lasting legacy that work has left for us at the Disney theme parks. By the late 1950’s Disneyland had become a runaway success, but ever the perfectionist, Walt...
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The Other Side Of Main Street, USA Part 2 – Edison Square

January 11, 2005
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The Other Side Of Main Street, USA Part 2 – Edison Square

The Disney Diary’s Shaun Finnie continues his look at the first major planned expansion of Disneyland, this time concentration on the cul-de-sac at the end of Residential Street. As we saw in part one, after Disneyland opened Walt and his Imagineers almost immediately planned a second street running parallel to Main Street. This street...
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The Other Side Of Main Street, USA Part 1 – Residential Street

January 4, 2005
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The Other Side Of Main Street, USA Part 1 – Residential Street

The Disney Diary’s Shaun Finnie takes a look at the first major planned expansion of Disneyland, what it would have contained, and why it was never built. In 1955 one of Walt Disney’s greatest dreams came true when he opened Disneyland to the world. It quickly became a huge success and Walt immediately began...
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What Might Have Been (And May Yet Be)

December 17, 2004
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What Might Have Been (And May Yet Be)

Could your favorite Disney park have been a much different place to how you see it today? The Disney Diary’s Shaun Finnie looks at Disney’s planned theme park attractions that haven’t been built… yet. There have been so many Disney park attraction rumors and announced plans over the years that I thought it might...
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