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MouseStation 429 - Willie Ito, E3 Expo, and more

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On today's show, Mike recaps the E3 Expo, Steven Ng interviews Willie Ito, and more.

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Featurette: E3 Expo Recap

Mike closely watched the Electronic Entertainment Expo (E3) a couple of weeks ago, and discussed all of the Disney-related games and announcements from the show. Mike went into E3 not expecting much, but was pleasantly surprised. There will be plenty of mobile and Facebook games, and Disney will be bringing The Incredible Machine to the iPad. Mike didn't pay much attention to the app that Disney is doing with Lady Gaga, but was very impressed by the upcoming Disney Universe. He's intrigued by the potential of the upcoming Wii U. Mike is looking forward for the new Phineas and Ferb game, but is apprehensive about the touted Playstation Move support. Mark wondered whether the title of Phineas and Ferb: Across the Second Dimension is an homage to The Adventures of Buckaroo Banzai: Across the Eighth Dimension. Mike's last comment was about Disney signing on to the OnLive cloud gaming service.

For more info on upcoming releases, check out the Disney Interactive Media Group's E3 press website.

Let us know what you think!

Feature: Willie Ito

Steven Ng spoke with Willie Ito last summer at the Disneyana Show and Sale in Garden Grove, CA.

Willie initially started in the animation business 1954, coming from San Francisco to LA to attend the Chouinard Art Institute (which became the California Institute of the Arts). He was quickly hired into Disney, and the first scene that he worked on was the iconic scene in Lady and the Tramp with Lady sucking on spaghetti. He next moved to Warner Brothers for six years where he worked with Chuck Jones on "What's Opera Doc?", "One Froggy Evening", the Wile E. Coyote/Road Runner series, and so on. He next joined up with Bob Clampett on Beanie & Cecil, then went to Hanna-Barbera and worked on development of The Jetsons, and spent the next 14 years at Hanna Barbera working on Huckleberry Hound, The Flintstones, Yogi Bear, and Hong Kong Phooey. He next moved over to Sanrio (of "Hello Kitty" fame), which wanted to do a movie called Metamorphosis or The Winds of Change. By that time he was burnt out on animation. Willie decided to go back to Disney in the comic strip & publications department (which later spun off into Consumer Products). He worked on merchandise for Disney Stores. With the opening of new parks around the world, Disney Corporate realized that there needed to be character integrity and set up the International Creative group to review all character designs, train artists, and keep characters on model. Willie traveled the world for his last four years before retiring (11 years ago).

He's now working on telling the story of the Japanese-American internment camps, working with his writing partner to come up with a story. Hello Maggie (from a small child's viewpoint) and A Boy of Heart Mountain (from a teen viewpoint) are becoming very popular. The books are available through Heritage Source Books and the Japanese-American Museum site, hasn't set up the website for Yabitoon books yet, though. Willie used to draw on the margins of outdated Sears & Roebuck and Montgomery Ward catalogs while in the internment camps to make flipbooks, and that was his first experience in cartooning.

Mark noted that Willie also worked on Atom Ant, Wacky Races, The Perils of Penelope Pitstop, Inch-High Private Eye, Josie and the Pussycats, among others. Check out Willie's IMDb page to see what else he worked on.

You can find Willie's books on the Heritage Source Books website:
Hello Maggie!
A Boy of Heart Mountain

Magical Moment

This week's Magical Moment comes via voicemail from Vickie from Starksboro, VT, who called in to tell us about her family's private chauffered 40-passenger bus trip. Mark talked about a private chauffered bus ride that he and his wife had back in the early 1990s. Mike mentioned a number of similar experiences that he had when he worked down at Disney.

Listener Feedback

Greg Parr wrote to ask for our help finding someone that he met at Disneyland whose trip reports he had read. The mystery person and his wife take amazing pictures. She usually wears fancy hats and he looks preppy. They've recently gotten married. If you know who Greg is talking about, please let us know!

Scott K wrote to remind us that the bench style seating on Splash Mountain has been replaced and it's now a seris of individual seats. Mike didn't know and Mark had forgotten, but they're still sticking with Walt Disney World as their favorites.

LoveStallion wrote in a show notes discussion thread on MousePad that they think that a comparison that included all parks around the world would be interesting. If Mark or Mike ever hit the lottery and get a chance to travel the world, we'll have that comparison.

LoveStallion also weighed in with their opinion of the comparison between both coasts' versions of Disney Animation, Turtle Talk With Crush, Muppet-Vision 3-D, Tower of Terror, Monsters, Inc., Toy Story Midway Mania, Games, Mulholland Madness/Primeval Whirl, Grizzly River Run vs. Kali River Rapids, Redwood Creek vs. Boneyard, and Soarin'.

jstylzz wrote in a show notes discussion thread on MousePad that they enjoy the podcast, but would like to see the show appear in the Stitcher app on their iPhone. We'll take a look into it.

Joysnote wrote in a show notes discussion thread on MousePad that they regularly go to Disneyland, Walt Disney World, and all of the ships of the Disney Cruise Line. Disneyland is far and away Joysnote's favorite Disney destination.

Sharla Manglass called in from Disney's Animal Kingdom, where it was hot and crowded. She wanted to call in and say hi since we hadn't heard from her in a while. She was tagging along during her husband's work conference even though she was "hot and fat and pregnant", but they were going to celebrate her birthday the next day.

IllusionOfLife wrote in a show notes discussion thread on MousePad that they were impressed that we read all three of their previous responses on the Listener Picks show. They enjoyed the show quite a bit and are now looking forward to listening to more shows. We're glad to have them along, as we are with all of the rest of you!

Kristen L. from the Midnight Matinee Podcast asked if we would give their show a plug for their 200th episode, scheduled to go live yesterday. Give them a listen, and congratulations on your 200th show!

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Wrapping up

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Thanks to our announcer, Andrew Rich, and to Mike, who sat in this week for our regular sound editor and audio engineer, James Granger!

Thank you for listening!

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The MouseStation crew (@MouseStation) currently consists of Mark Goldhaber (@MPMark) and Mike Demopoulos (@MPMike).