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Al Lutz
Light Magic, the second year...
(Originally posted on 6/24/97)

OK, we've all heard the Light Magic [LM] rumors.

LM will come back next year a different show. It won't be performed on Main St. anymore. It will be more like a parade. No, it won't move anymore, it will be turned into a show and be placed on the Fantasyland Stage. It may go to another park. Yada, yada, yada, the list is endless.

The only thing we know is that most probably what you see this year will be changed in some way shape or form for next year.

BUT - imagine the following scenario if you please... how this $25 mil show that couldn't -- could be transformed into the spectacle that pulls 'em in by the gazillions night after night!

[Cut to a meeting being held deep within the bowels of the Team Disney building behind the park. Attendees include DL President Paul Pressler (still trying to figure out deeper meanings in that Walt Disney quote book he carries around) and Ann Dale (idly swooping around her platinum glow sword presented as a thank you by the People's Republic of China). Also included is Entertainment honcho Michael Maines (with a damp forehead and seated in a chair that is rumored to be electrified) as they await Michael Eisner's arrival.]

Paul: [baffled] "You know, I keep looking it up over and over again, but I can never find out what the word 'Imagineering' means. I keep looking in this purple book and nowhere is it explained."

Ann: "Aren't those the guys that paint all the trashcans?"

Maines: [nervously] "So do you think, like, Michael will like, um, pull the show?"

Ann: [snippily] "He should, do you have any idea how much damn LM stuff I have sitting in that warehouse back there?"

Paul: [calmly] "Now be nice Ann - Mike was going for something new and different... "

Ann: [sharply] "Yeah, something new and different that the DL visitor has never seen before... like a BAD show. Good one Mike, I can't even give away the LM light up pens. Do you have any idea how many damn confetti wands I'm sitting on, DO YOU??? Thank God for my glow swords and roses. I have personally saved the day here thank-you-very-much. You guys would all be out there starving to death if it weren't for me..."

Paul: [admonishing] "Back off Ann - you're sitting on a lot of other junk too. Don't forget that little discount shop of yours that you've saddled me with at the Hotel, sheesh, what were you thinking with Poca and then Hunch? If you want to expand into discounting go work for the 99 cent store for goodness sakes."

[Intercom buzzes, Paul picks up]

Assistant: [efficiently] "Paul, M.E. is on the way in, the BMW just pulled into the lot."

Paul: "Thanks. [then speaking to the group] Now everyone look neat and pretty!"

Ann: [disgusted] "Oh shut up Paul, you've been reading that damn book too long."

Maines: [now calmer as the sedation kicks in, begins mumbling to himself] "What if like, um, they send me to DL Paris? That might not be so bad you know... they love Jerry Lewis, they'll swoon over Light Magic..."

Ann: [sarcastically] "Where they should send you is brilliantly depicted at the end of Mr. Toad's Wild Ride..."

Paul: [pointing finger] "How would you know Ann, you've never even set foot in the park."

Ann: [snootily] "I read it in some e-mail from an Internet idiot. Why would I ever want to go into the park anyway - there are too many damn rides and attractions getting in the way of my glow sword carts."

[Door with MM shaped handles bursts open, Eisner walks in and sits on table edge]

Paul: [humbly] "Hiya Michael, we're all here like you asked, whassup?"

Michael: [casually] "I had an idea last night..."

Maines: [almost without realizing what he's saying] "This isn't like that idea you had when you came home from Riverdance is it? My butt is still chapped on that one..."

Michael: [pained] "I told you I was sorry about that - hell, where's Frank Wells when you need an ear to bounce this kind of junk off of."

[Michael's cell phone rings, he picks up]

Michael: [face turning blood red] "Tarses did WHAT? I told her I didn't want her monkeying around with my Baretta Reunion at Disney World movie. I'll call you back, I've got Light Magic problems [pauses] yeah, it's bad, but I got this great idea [pauses again] no, no more Riverdance, that must have just been the indigestion from that burrito the doc told me not to eat. [hangs up cell phone] Sorry about the interruption..."

Paul: [enraptured] "So Michael tell us about your new idea."

Ann: [glaring at Mike] "Yeah, I need to know what kind of stickers I need to order to put over the LM logos on all that junk I have in the park."

Michael: [misty-eyed] "By the way Ann, with all those glow roses out there you've brought back so many of my youthful NY memories, I remember all the Puerto Rican kids in the subway coming home from the prom." [audible sigh...]

Paul: [dreamily] "What if Mr. Lincoln held a glow rose in his hand during the speech he gives..."

Ann: [testily] "Who the hell would even see it, no one ever goes in there except those damn passholders and probably Baptists."

Paul: [more dreamily] "Maybe if he fought slavery with a glow sword..."

Ann: [business-like] "Maybe if you just focus back on how many more carts I can get placed out in the park to sell them..."

Michael: [almost focused] "Back on track here... [cel phone rings again] Yes? No, tell the director I want some more pee jokes in that Brendan Fraser movie, I told Mattel we can skin those Wetten Whizzers and replush them into Wee-Wee Chimps" [hangs up cel phone] Sorry about that... anyway I got this great idea..."

[Suddenly lights in room dim, and faintly you hear When you Wish Upon A Star while keylights softly glow on Michael, even providing a halo type of effect caused by the toupee fringe standing out a wee bit]

Michael: "Here's the concept: Fantasmic vs. Light Magic"

Paul: [eyes widening] "Wow..."

Ann: [quivering with delight] "Goodness, this would make my job easier, now I can make totally generic nighttime show merchandise and limit it to one type."

Maines: [snapping out of stupor] "Hey... I get it, an epic battle of good vs. BAD!"

Michael: [eyes narrowing] "Imagine this - we outfit those damn LM stages with pontoons and launch them into the river in place of the princesses. They do their jigs or whatever the heck they call that dancing rabbit stuff."

Paul: [gushing] "You're so brilliant Michael, gosh it just makes me want to close another full service restaurant or favorite attraction to cap it all with!"

Michael: [tsk, tsk-ing] "I told you to wait a little longer on the subs now didn't I? Anyway, once the LM barges roll across the water Ursula and Maleficent and heck, throw in Cruella, commandeer them just like Sandra Bullock does in Speed 2..."

Paul: "You saw that movie? I didn't know anyone went..."

Ann: "NO one saw it."

Maines: "I did, it seemed like an epic just waiting to happen to me..."

Michael: "...shut up, I'm musing here... ...and once they commandeer them Mickey straddles the Reluctant Dragon..."

Paul: "Is that Pete's Dragon?"

Ann: "No, it's Eddie Murphy as the Dragon in Mulan..."

Maines: "Transvestite dragons?"

Michael: "NO the Reluctant Dragon, rent the video, idiots! He'll rear up and get this - boil the [now evil] pixies to death in the flaming waters while the fiber optics pulsate."

Paul: "This is brilliant Michael! You think if they cheer now, just think of the whoops, hollers and yelps that we'll get from the audience when they BBQ those pixies!"

Ann: "Wow, I might even break my rule about no attraction merchandise and create a combination snow globe / lighter that incinerates pixies when lit!"

Maines: "And it will be so great that we can copy it for D/MGM and their new stadium water show!"

[All meeting attendees start chanting "Boil those pixies, Boil those pixies!" just like all the characters wanted to "boil that dust-speck" in "Horton Hears a Who."]

Michael: "I knew we'd solve this mess somehow, get a turkey, make a turkey sandwich I say."

Paul: "Now about the new park and that X-treme Mickey water show you wanted..."

This is where the notes for that meeting end... ;)



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