“Tomorrowland” Interview with George Clooney – Part 2

Here is the last post in our “Tomorrowland” series.

Written by Gayle Turner

Photo Credit Louise Bishop of MomStart.com
Photo Credit Louise Bishop of MomStart.com

If you’re like me and the rest of the county, you have spent some time with George Clooney in the last couple weeks seeing Disney’s Tomorrowland. “Tomorrowland” is a place for dreamers, the people that truly believe the impossible is actually possible and that we all have the power to fix it. No one believes that more than Mr. Clooney himself. But while he may play disillusioned dreamer Frank Walker in this thought provoking sci-fi action adventure fable for the entire family, nothing could be further from the truth. Last week I shared Part 1 of my interview with the man with the boyish good looks, who exudes charm and makes you feel like he’s that best friend that you’ve had forever, who does believe that every person, including himself does indeed have the power to change the future but this week it’s time to share the funny side of Clooney, the joker and prankster that you’ve heard about, with some of the insider fun that went on during the filming of Tomorrowland.

Photo Credit Louise Bishop of MomStart.com
Photo Credit Louise Bishop of MomStart.com

And now here’s a look at George Clooney-unscripted and uncensored:

So just what was Clooney’s favorite scene to film?

“Yeah, that’s a good question. It’s fun because, look, first let me start off by explaining to you how I came to this part, right? Brad and Damon called me and said we’ve written a part for you in a movie. And I’d been trying to work with Brad for a long time. I was like ‘Wow, that’s amazing’. And they send me the script and I open it up and the description of me is ‘A 55 year old angry, bitter, guy.’ I’m like ‘Thanks guys. Thank you so much’ But what I loved about it was that the entire film, he’s just a grump, you know. He’s just a grump through the whole thing. I loved when Britt first comes to the house. It’s really fun where it’s like ‘Shut up and who are you?’ We really had fun shooting all that stuff in the farmhouse. That was fun because all the robot guys were really sweet and nice, and not really robots, you know. And, so I think that might have been the most fun scene to shoot, all the farm house stuff.”

Disney's TOMORROWLAND..Frank Walker (George Clooney)..Ph: Kimberley French..©Disney 2015

One of the first things you come away with from Tomorrowland is the heart-warming interaction between Clooney and Britt Robertson and Raffey Cassidy. So just how did he feel about working with these young and talented actors?

Disney's TOMORROWLAND..L to R: Frank (George Clooney) & Casey (Britt Robertson) ..Ph: Kimberley French..?Disney 2015

“I didn’t like them. I’ll say that… Now, we can say nice things now, but the truth is I don’t care for them (as he tried to hold in the laughter as he was making the comments) Well, first of all Britt is fantastic and her career is just at the very beginning and is going to be really fun. Raffey is spectacular and she was just 12 at the time and way too talented for her age, and sweet and funny. It was a fun part for me because I, as you well know, if you’d seen me speaking to a 12 year old the way I speak to her at say the grocery store, you’d call child services. I’m thinking ‘Who gets to yell at a 12 year old?’ But in the movies it’s so much fun because she’s not really a 12 year old. It’s fun the way they sort of set it up to where, we’re a little family of three, but she’s the adult. She’s driving the car and Britt and I are the two kids, arguing and bickering all the time.They were fantastic, and they were really sweet and I think they’re having a really fun time with this, which is, you know, that’s how it’s supposed to be. You know when I work with younger actors, I always have to try to remind them that this is the fun kind of job that most people don’t get to do. And if you get to be an actor and work, and somebody pays you for it, you’ve caught the brass ring and it’s just fun. So, that’s part of, the thing is, they really do dig it and they’re having fun, which is really a good time.”Raffey Cassidy Thomas Robinson Tomorrowland

And what of Thomas Robinson, who portrays the young Frank Walker- did Clooney have any say so who it would be? He looks so much like him, especially his facial expressions, what was the process that went into casting him?

No, they just went around, actually they did a little plastic surgery on him… Which seems, ah, a little rough, but yeah it’s show biz. You want to be in show biz, we’re gonna have to reduce that nose. We’re gonna have to pin those ears… but seriously, he was funny. I actually would come to the set and watch him work because I never got to work with him obviously, because we were in different worlds as you know, completely different worlds, but he would walk by, I’d come over and I’d go ‘So you’re, ah, you’re me, right?’ He’s like, ‘Yup’ Alright- Don’t screw it up. He was really sweet though. A really funny kid.”

With that in mind, were there any specific scenes or memories of working with Robertson and Cassidy that stood out to Clooney?

Ever the jokester-“I don’t remember much of it. I was drunk most of the time. You know, I will tell you, there were a lot of moments, because you know, it wasn’t all done to green screen. They were nice enough to build a lot of these sets where you actually got to play in them. The most fun we had was the driving sequences, believe it or not, because, you know, we’re being towed but Raffey is actually driving and I had to teach things like you’ve got to keep looking at the road, And she’d be like (as he imitated Raffey to perfection) ‘What is the deal?’ My mother actually drives that same way, but it was fun because there was no technology. There was nothing. It was just old fashioned, three people sitting in a truck for five days, arguing and doing fun stuff. And that’s really fun for actors; because you don’t have to do any make believe. It’s all just right there and I really enjoyed that. It was also fun doing the stuff like shoving all the packs of powder down their throat because we must have done, I don’t know, 30 takes, and every time I’d say, ‘Here you go.’ (as he was laughed and demonstrated for us) and she’d be like ‘Not the whole pack’. And I was like ‘Yeah’ so much sugar in it, so much fun.

Photo Credit Louise Bishop of MomStart.com
Photo Credit Louise Bishop of MomStart.com

And did Britt Robertson actually drink all those bottles of Coke?

“Yeah, now in fairness, Brad was kind enough to only do it, I think, three times. But she does down two cokes in the take and I was thinking she’s gonna explode, but she did it. Because you learn with young actors they just go for it. I remember when I was doing Descendants we had this little girl who played my youngest daughter in the film, and we did a scene where she gets to eat ice cream, and she never acted in a movie before and she just starts pounding the table. And they’re just sitting there watching her going, you can see her, take 9 and she literally was like Uuugh.”

In Part 1 of my interview, Clooney spoke about how much fun it was to be 54 and still getting to play make-believe. Was there any contraption from the future, he wished he really could have?

Disney's TOMORROWLAND..Young Frank Walker (Thomas Robinson) ..Ph: Film Frame..©Disney 2015

“I just wish the jet pack really worked. When I was growing up, it was the space race and you were eating space food sticks and drinking Tang and I really thought by now we’d be riding around in Jetson cars…well, that’s what the Jetsons told us. Well, they did tell us and I believed them, so when I saw the jet pack, I’m like I want that thing to work by now but no such luck. But that is one of the futuristic items or things that would be awesome to have. Let me put it to you this way. So you’re at LAX. You get your bags. I’ve got to get to Studio City. It’s 4:30 on a Friday. It would be the greatest moment ever, just blasting right over all the traffic. I think it would be fantastic, although, you know, I don’t know that I want everybody to have one ’cause they’d just be circling my house hovering over shouting ‘What’s Amal gonna wear to the MET Ball?’ I don’t know, I don’t know if I want everybody to have a jet pack.”

So was he able to keep any of the memorabilia from the film?

Disney's TOMORROWLAND..Frank Walker George Clooney)

“Now here’s the thing -Disney is very, ah, they’ve got like armed guards around all that stuff. And Brad is very, possessive of all those things as well and so I will not answer what I stole because they will come take it away from me, but it shoots rays and it’s a gun.”

All kidding aside, the film does have some very emotional scenes. Were there any of them that were emotionally hard for George to film?Tomorrowland Raffey Cassidy Athena

“Emotionally hard, no. Because I find, movies in general aren’t emotional in a sense because you’re involved in them but and you know it’s not really something honestly terrible that has happened. It is still make believe but I did find that, it was a tricky scene. There’s a moment where I have to let, Raffey’s character, the robot go, and it was a really weird scene. We’d shot it once and she kind of clicks out, but her eyes are open still and we drop her out, and it literally feels like I’m murdering her. It really does. It was odd. And you’re watching it, it’s so disturbing and it was really awful, so we went back and re-did it where she sort of completely goes out, because otherwise it really felt horrible. There are all kinds of weird balances in this film. My relationship with her is very, well we’re walking a very thin line here. And it’s a constant thing of ‘Let’s walk very carefully through these things.’ And thankfully, Brad is really good at what he does. He makes it, made it much simpler.”

What’s one of the messages that Clooney hopes people will come away with from Tomorrowland?

Disney's TOMORROWLAND..Tomorrowland pin ..Ph: Kimberley French..©Disney 2015

“Every time we turn on the news and see how bleak it is, we need to take a step back and remind ourselves it doesn’t have to end that way; there’s a future out there if you get involved and become a participant. I think that maybe along the way, it would be nice to remind ourselves that there’s an awful lot of good that’s being done. The future is yours to decide what it will be.”

Thank you George Clooney for making us all believe that we can indeed change the future.Tomorrowland George Clooney

Want to learn more about Tomorrowland?

Visit the interactive Take Me To Tomorrowland Site

Like TOMORROWLAND Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/DisneyTomorrowland

Follow Disney Pictures on Twitter: https://twitter.com/DisneyPictures

Visit the official TOMORROWLAND website: www.Disney.com/Tomorrowland

Don’t forget to follow #TomorrowlandEvent to stay find out all the latest

What if there was a place, a secret place where nothing was impossible? A miraculous place where you could actually change the world- wanna go?”Tomorrowland Movie Character Posters

Tomorrowland is now playing in theaters everywhere!

I have been invited by Disney to cover the Tomorrowland Event. All expenses have been paid for by Disney but all opinions my own.

Gayle is a lifelong educator by day and avid freelance writer by night Mom to 5, Grammy to 4 she is blessed to share her life with amazing family and friends who encourage her to chase her dreams no matter where they may lead. When not in the classroom, she can be found following her son as he dances his way through life, or working with young performers in free nationally recognized after school children’s theater program that she founded 13 years ago.

Other posts by this author:

Disneyland’s Diamond Celebration is Just Around the Corner
Tomorrowland Event Awaits MouseQuester Gayle
Disney VoluntEARS Celebrate the Teaching Garden’s First Harvest
Behind the Scenes of Disney/Pixar’s “Lava”
Behind the Scenes of Disney/Pixar’s “Inside Out”
Movie Review – “McFarland, USA”

“Tomorrowland” Interview with Raffey Cassidy

Here is the next post in our “Tomorrowland” series. This time Gayle chats with Audrey Hepburn look-a-like Raffey Cassidy who plays the part of Athena. Make sure to also check out Gayle’s interviews with George Clooney and Britt Robertson. Tomorrow we will post the last update in the series which will be Part 2 of Gayle’s interview with George Clooney.

Written by Gayle Turner

“I’d say the future isn’t a place we’re going. It’s something we’re making, so it can be anything that they want it to be.” –Raffey Cassidy

Photo Credit Louise Bishop of MomStart.com
Photo Credit Louise Bishop of MomStart.com

If for some reason you haven’t heard of Raffey Cassidy, who plays Athena in Disney’s box office hit Tomorrowland, then get ready because this young lady is not just portraying the future-she is the future. Bright and giggly with all the charm one would expect but the poise and insight that usually only comes with people who have lived lifetimes and more. To meet Miss Cassidy and talk to her in person lets you know that the world, and the future are indeed in great hands.

Several weeks ago I had the chance to sit down and talk to her about life, her family and what it was like to star alongside the likes of George Clooney, Hugh Laurie and Britt Robertson in the retro-futuristic fun adventure Tomorrowland, the must-see film of the summer and a movie that will cause every family to come away believing that we do have the power to affect the future.

Disney's TOMORROWLAND..Athena (Raffey Cassidy)..Ph: Kimberley French..©Disney 2015Twelve-year old Raffey, who found her way to acting quite accidently, is a pupil at Moorside High School in Swinton and has been acting since she was seven. She has co-starred in the hit TV show Mr. Selfridge alongside Jeremy Piven and as the young Snow White opposite Charlize Theron, Kristen Stewart and Chris Hemsworth in Snow White and the Huntsman. Up next after Disney’s Tomorrowland, you will be able to see her as the title character in new film Molly Moon: The Incredible Hypnotist with Emily Watson and Dominic Monaghan. To give you an insight as to her talents, Raffey was the youngest-ever actor to be featured in Screen’s International Stars of Tomorrow. She can do serious acting and comedy. She does a brilliant Southern accent, which is remarkable for a 12-year-old, especially one from Great Britain, and she can do a great imitation of Beyoncé. Not bad for someone who is only twelve years old and yet she is as humble, unassuming and genuine as they come.

Photo Credit Louise Bishop of MomStart.com
Photo Credit Louise Bishop of MomStart.com

So how did it all start for this amazing young lady from England?

“‘My brother went into an audition. I was sitting outside and they said, ‘We need a little girl, can we see you?’ And then they kind of asked me if I wanted to have a go at that. So I had a go of it and then it started from there. It’s really good when you’re on set – you learn more than you would at school as your tutor is one-to-one, but sometimes you miss going to school. I want to carry on being an actor, but I want to do gymnastics and dancing as well.”

And just how did she find her way from there to Tomorrowland?

“I just went up for an audition, but it was a self-tape at home and then I went to London to do another screen test. From there I went to America to do another screen test and then I found out that I got the part.” Raffey Cassidy Thomas Robinson Tomorrowland

Although her very first scene to shoot was the 1964 World’s Fair and watching young Frank Walker, actor Thomas Robinson, get off to the bus, we talked about what her favorite scene to film was.

“My favorite scene to shoot was probably the Blast from the Past sequence. I really liked that because it was a lot of action in it. I trained for two months in gymnastics and martial arts, and then I went to Canada and did another month of martial arts and a bit of gymnastics. And then I did even more training throughout the many months of filming doing another couple of days every week or so throughout the shoot.”Tomorrowland Raffey Cassidy Athena

George Clooney, who plays disillusioned dreamer Frank Walker, had already shared in part about the truck driving sequences in the film but what was her take on actually learning to drive and work with someone like Clooney.

“It was so fun because they actually taught me how to drive. There was a scene where I had to like go down a ramp and then stop. I think really I started to get a little too confident, and I got too close. Um, Britt just went ‘STOP’, because it got so close. As for George, Um, well I’d seen the Descendants and I really, really liked it. And George is so, just so wonderful and funny. I learned so much from him. And he’s so professional but really fun at the same time.”

Disney's TOMORROWLAND..Frank Walker (George Clooney)..Ph: Film Frame..©Disney 2015

What was it like when Raffey first saw the entire movie for the first time and what traits does she feel she shares with her character Athena?

“I was just so shocked. It was like “WOW’. They did such a good job of how well they put it together and there was never a scene when I was thinking ‘Wow, this was dragging on a bit.’ By the end of the film, it was like it can’t be over yet. Well, if I had to choose something on what Athena and I share it would probably be optimism, because I think that I feel that I’m quite optimistic and always look on the bright side of a bad situation.”

Photo Credit Louise Bishop of MomStart.com
Photo Credit Louise Bishop of MomStart.com

Because of her age, Cassidy is indeed the future but was there ever a point during the filming that made her think that this is what the future’s going to be, or aspects of it and if there was one thing from the future that she could use right now, what would it be?Tomorrowland Poster Space Mountain

“There was so much technology in the actual Tomorrowland and I think that that’s how it’s going to be in, I don’t know, 60 years time or something. So, I think that will be what the future is but I’d really like to have the jetpacks though right now.”

Raffey shared what it was like to prepare to take on the persona of a robot and what the hardest scene for her to film was.Tomorrowland Athena Poster

“Well Athena has so many different qualities. She’s optimistic. She’s intelligent. She’s wise, and I just kind of put all of those together, and I always had an image in my head for a scene so it was never just go in cold. I always had an image that would just help me and I’d always be able to think of it to get me through this. My hardest scene would probably be my end scene in the movie. There were a lot of lines, but once I’d learned them, it just flowed. George had a lot of eye contact with me, so it’s so easy to perform and it would have been hard if George wasn’t so good. But in the end, it was easy because he is just so professional and kept eye contact the whole time.”Disney's Tomorrowland

It is so hard to keep in mind that this poised, confident young lady is still only twelve years old. So did playing such an optimistic character in turn make Raffey even more optimistic?tomorrowland_athena

“Yes, for sure I am even more optimistic than I already was. Even talking about it now makes me think about the future now and how optimistic we can all be and how we can make it what we want. I definitely think it gave me personally more of a voice to want to stand up and try and make a change. It makes you think maybe I can make a difference in the world.”

What keeps Cassidy so grounded when working on such an enormous project such as Tomorrowland and what is her favorite part of the world of filmmaking?Athena Casey Tomorrowland

“I have three brothers and one sister and all of them act. My whole family travels with me because we’re all so close and we’re just one big family together and it’s strange if one of us is away, so we all just travel together wherever we go. When they all first saw the film they really liked it because they didn’t know anything. They went to Canada while I filmed it, but they hadn’t a clue what, what I was doing each day, so when they saw it, they were like ‘Wow, that’s so cool.’ And sometimes they’d come to sit in and watch, and they would remember seeing me in that scene, but they just didn’t know where it fit in. At the moment I’m so grateful for what I’ve had the chance to do and everything, and maybe I’ll carry on doing this. At the moment, I want to go into it. I might change my mind, but for now I love it. My favorite part of being a part of this, or any project is how close the set becomes, like the cast and crew, everybody, becomes so close. It’s like a family. Everybody helps each other out. The first day when you walk onto the set you’re struck by the fact that everybody’s doing such different jobs and yet it’s one whole thing making one whole thing, but everybody’s doing such different jobs and it just all comes together in the end. I think that was cool. “

What’s the one message Raffey Cassidy took away from Tomorrowland and hopes others, especially young people take away from the movie?

Photo Credit Louise Bishop of MomStart.com
Photo Credit Louise Bishop of MomStart.com

“I’d say the future isn’t a place we’re going. It’s something we’re making, so it can be anything that they want it to be. I hope I’m a dreamer I mean, yeah, I hope so.”

If Raffey Cassidy is any example of what is to come in the future, and what dreamers can do, nothing is impossible. Thank you Raffey, for showing us all how to dream and how to believe.

Want to learn more about Tomorrowland?

Visit the interactive Take Me To Tomorrowland Site

Like TOMORROWLAND Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/DisneyTomorrowland

Follow Disney Pictures on Twitter: https://twitter.com/DisneyPictures

Visit the official TOMORROWLAND website: www.Disney.com/Tomorrowland

Don’t forget to follow #TomorrowlandEvent to stay find out all the latest

What if there was a place, a secret place where nothing was impossible? A miraculous place where you could actually change the world- wanna go?”

Tomorrowland Poster
I have been invited by Disney to cover the Tomorrowland Event. All expenses have been paid for by Disney but all opinions my own.

Gayle is a lifelong educator by day and avid freelance writer by night Mom to 5, Grammy to 4 she is blessed to share her life with amazing family and friends who encourage her to chase her dreams no matter where they may lead. When not in the classroom, she can be found following her son as he dances his way through life, or working with young performers in free nationally recognized after school children’s theater program that she founded 13 years ago.

Other posts by this author:

Disneyland’s Diamond Celebration is Just Around the Corner
Tomorrowland Event Awaits MouseQuester Gayle
Disney VoluntEARS Celebrate the Teaching Garden’s First Harvest
Behind the Scenes of Disney/Pixar’s “Lava”
Behind the Scenes of Disney/Pixar’s “Inside Out”
Movie Review – “McFarland, USA”

“Tomorrowland” Interview With Britt Robertson

As promised, here is the second follow-up to the MouseQuest movie review of “Tomorrowland”. This is Gayle Turner’s interview with Britt Robertson from the Tomorrowland Event. And don’t forget to read Part 1 of Gayle’s interview with George Clooney.

Written by Gayle Turner

I remember the moment that I realized that I was going to get the opportunity to be in my dream role, and I said, “I just don’t think life gets any better!” You have to take that moment and expand it for as long as possible because it’s such a cool feeling. I just wish it would last forever, and it does, if you let it .“ – Britt Robertson

When you meet Britt Robertson, the 25-year-old actress who stars along side George Clooney in Disney’s “Tomorrowland”, you’re first struck by her bright, bubbly personality whose positivity literally fills up the room. Warm, giggly and humble with absolutely no Hollywood pretense about her, you’d never know from her demeanor or attitude that you were in the presence of what everyone has declared to be “Hollywood’s next big thing.” So just how did the oldest of 7 children from Charlotte, North Carolina come to find herself in the acting profession?

Photo Credit Louise Bishop of MomStart.com
Photo Credit Louise Bishop of MomStart.com

Britt said that she first got involved in acting at the age of 10 when she was home-schooled and started doing local theater as a way for her mom to socialize her. Even though she never got any of the main parts, she fell in love with acting. When she was 14 years old, Robertson moved from North Carolina to Los Angeles to audition for TV pilots. Her grandmother, who she calls “Mama Shue,” came with her as she pursued her dreams. After about a year or so, Mama Shue returned home and Robertson stayed out west and has lived on her own in Los Angeles since the age of 16. It was a brave move that paid off and gradually she racked up an impressive roster of TV credits, before progressing on to the film world and her life is changing again since “Tomorrowland” blasted off into theaters on May 22.

 

Her journey to “Tomorrowland” was definitely a long and lengthy one:

Tomorrowland“I started auditioning for the movie three years ago in November of 2012. I had multiple auditions from November to July. It all started when I first sent in a tape from New York and then I went in to audition for Brad Bird a few times and for the casting people and then right around May they brought me in to do a full read with Brad. After that they flew me to Vancouver to actually do a screen test with Raffey Cassidy who plays Athena but it wasn’t until a week later they told me that I got the part.”

So what was it like for Robertson when she finally knew that after several years and multiple auditions later, that she would indeed be playing Casey Newton, a bright, optimistic teen bursting with scientific curiosity:

“When they told me that I was Casey, to be honest with you, it was such an overwhelming moment. It’s something that I still remember in my mind as being the most euphoric feeling that I’ve ever had. I was happy and I was elated and I was crying and I was just so excited. It was such a cool movie to be a part of and I loved the story so much and also just the people attached to it. I just knew that it was going to be a changing point for me in terms of career.”

She went on to explain just what it was about the story behind “Tomorrowland” that made her so passionate about being a part of it:

“There was just something there that when you read the script and the story that stayed with me and I knew I had to be a part of it. First, the story itself is really sweet. It’s an original idea and it’s something that I had never thought about because the themes of the movie cover the future in a new and different way and how we look at our own future. It’s about how we as a society can actually influence our future and make it the world that we want to live in. I thought this was such a powerful message, especially for a young woman to be the lead in a movie like this was really cool for me.”

Just what was it like for this 25-year-old to find herself as the hero of one of the most talked about upcoming summer blockbusters and just who is Casey?

“Casey Newton is a really smart young woman who has always wanted to be an astronaut. It’s her passion and what she and her father have bonded over. Casey has this drive to do big things and change the world; she wants the world to be a place that’s full of hope and inspiration, but she doesn’t know how to make it so. It’s such a great thing to not only get to play the hero of not just a movie like this, but also a Disney film. To be a young woman and having the enormous responsibility to carry a film of this magnitude was really intimidating but luckily Brad Bird is such a wonderful human being. He’s a family man but more importantly, he understands people on a very real level. He gave me the encouragement to be brave and just take it one day at a time, so that was I wasn’t too overwhelmed by being the hero”.

So just how much of Britt Robertson is there in the character of Casey?

Britt Robertson Tomorrowland“I think her mindset is very different from mine. Maybe not so much anymore because I’ve now adopted a lot of her traits and characteristics because I like her and I just think that Casey is a really cool chick.”

As Robertson shared what it was like to work with George Clooney, Hugh Laurie, Tim McGraw and Raffey Cassidy, her costars in “Tomorrowland”, her respect and admiration for each was obvious:

Disney's TOMORROWLAND..L to R: Frank (George Clooney) & Casey (Britt Robertson) ..Ph: Kimberley French..?Disney 2015“Working with George going into it, you have all the expectations of a movie star and what that means and if I was George Clooney I don’t know that I would be able to handle it as well as he has. That was one of the things that was so surprising to me is that in spite of being George Clooney he’s just completely himself and he hasn’t been lost in the process of becoming George Clooney. He’s still the person that he wants to be and working with him made me realize you can still be who you want to be in this industry. You don’t have to be tainted by the process or the people. He’s so professional and I just learned a lot from him.”

 

Hugh Laurie Tomorrowland“Hugh Laurie is just such a gem. I remember being in the makeup trailer with him because I was often there when he was going through his own hair, makeup and wardrobe and every day it was just like a new fun fact about life, but not even a fun fact. He would give you like stories and theories on life. He’s so informed on everything that’s going on and I looked at him like a book of knowledge. He’s very talented, musically, and just incredible in every way.”

 

Tim McGraw Tomorrowland“I love Tim McGraw like nobody’s business. I’m a huge country fan. In fact, when I first met him, I think I may have ‘attacked him’. I was like ‘You have no idea how much I love you. I love your music, I love your wife, and I think you‘re the coolest!’ Tim is such a sweet man but more importantly, he’s like a family man. When he would talk about his three daughters, just hearing his stories about them was really sweet. I got to pretend I was his daughter for a second and it was so incredible.”

However, it was when she began to talk about her younger co-star Raffey Cassidy, that Robertson became very reflective. It was obvious to see that it was Raffey who had the deepest impact on Robertson, especially after she learned that Raffey had just shared that Britt was her biggest role model.

Raffey Cassidy Tomorrowland“Raffey just gives me the chills. To see her professionalism and her spirit throughout the entire film no matter how long the day was, no matter what they were asking of her, physically, emotionally, she just did it and she always did it to the best of her ability each and every time. I think that’s a huge lesson for me.”

For Britt, like so many of the others in the cast, the opportunity to work with Brad Bird was one of the biggest reasons for wanting to be a part of Disney’s “Tomorrowland”.

“Originally, even before I read the script it was Brad Bird who made me want to be a part of this project. I think he’s a genius of a man and he’s a really original writer and creator and is just awesome in every way possible. He is a really great director and unlike anyone else I’ve ever worked for. He comes from animation so his vision on story is unlike anyone I’ve ever met before. It’s incredible to be in his presence on a daily basis, to hear what he has to say and collaborate with him. I just completely trusted Brad and I knew that his vision is the vision that we were going to bring to life.”

What does Robertson hope that audiences will experience from this movie?

TomorrowlandI hope that audiences will have a really fun ride and that it’s an adventure for them. But more importantly, I hope that they will come out of the theatre thinking, Yes! Let’s make a change! Let’s dream of a difference. Let’s come up with something good that’s going to influence the world and make people feel good about the future.”

I know for me personally, after meeting and talking to Britt Robertson there is no doubt that the future is going to be just fine. And after you see Disney’s “Tomorrowland” I know each one of us will start our own journey to change the world. Disney's Tomorrowland

Want to learn more about Tomorrowland?

Visit the interactive Take Me To Tomorrowland Site

Like TOMORROWLAND Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/DisneyTomorrowland

Follow Disney Pictures on Twitter: https://twitter.com/DisneyPictures

Visit the official TOMORROWLAND website: www.Disney.com/Tomorrowland

Don’t forget to follow #TomorrowlandEvent to stay find out all the latest

Photo Credit Louise Bishop of MomStart.com
Photo Credit Louise Bishop of MomStart.com

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What if there was a place, a secret place where nothing was impossible? A miraculous place where you could actually change the world- wanna go?”

Tomorrowland New Poster

“Tomorrowland” begins to change the world May 22.

I have been invited by Disney to cover the Tomorrowland Event. All expenses have been paid for by Disney but all opinions my own.

Gayle is a lifelong educator by day and avid freelance writer by night Mom to 5, Grammy to 4 she is blessed to share her life with amazing family and friends who encourage her to chase her dreams no matter where they may lead. When not in the classroom, she can be found following her son as he dances his way through life, or working with young performers in free nationally recognized after school children’s theater program that she founded 13 years ago.

Other posts by this author:
Disneyland’s Diamond Celebration is Just Around the Corner
Tomorrowland Event Awaits MouseQuester Gayle
Disney VoluntEARS Celebrate the Teaching Garden’s First Harvest
Behind the Scenes of Disney/Pixar’s “Lava”
Behind the Scenes of Disney/Pixar’s “Inside Out”
Movie Review – “McFarland, USA”

“Tomorrowland” Interview of George Clooney

Written by Gayle Turner

“I was taught at a very young age that your voice has to matter and you have to participate. Every time we turn on the news and see how bleak it is, that it doesn’t have to end that way; there’s a future out there if you get involved. The future is yours to decide what it will be.” George Clooney

Photo Credit Louise Bishop of MomStart.com
Photo Credit Louise Bishop of MomStart.com

The anticipation of knowing that in just a few moments, THE George Clooney would be walking through the doors and sitting down literally right next to me, well let’s just say I think I remembered to breathe, but I couldn’t say for certain. But the moment he walked into the room, it was no longer about interviewing Mr. George Clooney, but rather just talking to George-the long time friend that everyone has, that immediately puts you at ease, that has you laughing, listening and thinking all at the same time but more importantly, he is listening to you as well.

#TomorrrowlandEvent Geoge Clooney 2
Photo Credit Louise Bishop of MomStart.com

Last week I had the chance to sit down and talk to George about his role as disillusioned dreamer Frank Walker in Disney’s riveting retro futuristic adventure “Tomorrowland”.

So just how does an actor that we’ve come to love as a doctor and as a thief or even a superhero in everything from action, comedy and romance find themselves finally working with Disney again after all of these years?

“My first Disney movie was a Miramax film, called From Dusk Till Dawn. At first I wanted to work with Brad Bird. I think he doesn’t make bad films, and I just love the kind of films he makes. I know that Brad is an optimist and he wanted to write a film that said that every time we turn on the news as we do and see how bleak it is, that it doesn’t have to end that way; there’s a future out there if you get involved, and I like the idea of it. I loved the idea of the story. I liked the ending, I like the way they talked about those subject matters.”

As he continued to explain what first drew him to the project, Clooney went on to share some of his own personal views on life and living in the world we have today.

Disney's TOMORROWLAND..Frank Walker (George Clooney)..Ph: Film Frame..©Disney 2015“I think that what I liked about the film was that it was a really optimistic way to tell a story and the thought that the bad part isn’t inevitable and if you participate in some way it doesn’t have to be that way. I’m always an optimist I think things are going to work out. I know that when you turn on the news that it’s always pretty bad and pretty bleak but I grew up around a lot of really bad, really bleak times. The late 60’s were pretty rough too but yet I always thought that we would figure it all out along the way. Your future doesn’t have to be this- you have the ability to be involved and make a difference. I saw that in the script and I thought that was a really good thing.”

Clooney went on to share how growing up in the sixties shaped his own outlook on life, and how it made him even more connected to the ideas and possibilities that Tomorrowland brings to the forefront.

Disney's TOMORROWLAND..Young Frank Walker “When I was growing up I was a part of the space race era-it was all we could think of. We were eating space food sticks and drinking Tang. Everything had to do with rockets and the Jetsons and everything that went with it. Science fairs were the biggest things in the world to be a part of and I did all of that. I grew up in the era where an individual actually had an effect whether it was as part of the civil rights movement, or the Vietnam movement, or the women’s rights moments and all the other things where people showed that change could indeed occur. If you turn on the television there’s an awful lot of doom and gloom out there It feels like that’s what the world really is but your future doesn’t have to be this. Just as in the movie, you have the ability to make a difference but it’s up to you to become a participant in your own future.

You could see the pure, unbridled delight when George talked about the opportunity to work with the special effects involved in bringing the vision of this futuristic world to life.

Disney's TOMORROWLAND..Frank Walker George Clooney)Over the years, I’ve had the opportunity to work with harnesses and other things that bring the special effects to life. Green screen is tricky because you just have to sort of make things up. But, the thing about being an actor is you really don’t ever have to grow up, right? We’re still playing make believe. I’m 54 and I’m playing make-believe. So when they put you in a contraption, and they say “Now you’re gonna fly” I mean, you’re still a 12 year old and you go “Really? Am I going to fly from here to there? Oh yeah, let’s go!” Who wouldn’t want to do that? I’ve always found that part to be magical.”

The admiration and respect Clooney felt for Britt Robertson, Raffey Cassidy, and Thomas Robinson were apparent when he talked about his younger co-stars.

Disney's TOMORROWLAND..Frank George Clooney & Casey -Britt Robertson“They were fantastic, and they were really sweet and I think they’re having a really fun time with this, which is how it’s supposed to be. You know when I work with younger actors, I always have to try to remind them that this is the fun kind of job that most people don’t get to do. And if you get to be an actor and work, and somebody pays you for it, you’ve caught the brass ring. Britt is fantastic and her career is just at the very beginning and is going to be really fun. Raffey is spectacular and way too talented for her age, and Thomas is just a really sweet and really funny kid. They all really do not only love what they’re doing, they’re having fun.”

What is the one message that Clooney hopes people will come away with from Tomorrowland?

“Every time we turn on the news and see how bleak it is, we need to take a step back and remind ourselves it doesn’t have to end that way; there’s a future out there if you get involved and become a participant. I think that maybe along the way, it would be nice to remind ourselves that there’s an awful lot of good that’s being done be. The future is yours to decide what it will be.”

Want to know more from my conversation with George Clooney and just what did go on behind the scenes during the filming of “Tomorrowland”? What was the most difficult scene to film? What was the most fun and what, if any pranks were played on his unsuspecting cast mates? Stay tuned next week for part 2 of my interview with the one and only, George Clooney.

Tomorrowland Poster Space Mountain

Want to learn more about Tomorrowland ?

Visit the interactive Take Me To Tomorrowland Site

Like TOMORROWLAND Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/DisneyTomorrowland

Follow Disney Pictures on Twitter: https://twitter.com/DisneyPictures

Visit the official TOMORROWLAND website: www.Disney.com/Tomorrowland

Tomorrowland New Poster

What if there was a place, a secret place where nothing was impossible? A miraculous place where you could actually change the world- wanna go?”

TOMORROWLAND opened nation-wide May 22nd!

I have been invited by Disney to cover the #TomorrowlandEvent. All expenses have been paid for by Disney but all opinions my own.

Gayle is a lifelong educator by day and avid freelance writer by night Mom to 5, Grammy to 4 she is blessed to share her life with amazing family and friends who encourage her to chase her dreams no matter where they may lead. When not in the classroom, she can be found following her son as he dances his way through life, or working with young performers in free nationally recognized after school children’s theater program that she founded 13 years ago.

Other posts by this author:
Disneyland’s Diamond Celebration is Just Around the Corner
Tomorrowland Event Awaits MouseQuester Gayle
Disney VoluntEARS Celebrate the Teaching Garden’s First Harvest
Behind the Scenes of Disney/Pixar’s “Lava”
Behind the Scenes of Disney/Pixar’s “Inside Out”
Movie Review – “McFarland, USA”

Disneyland’s Diamond Celebration is Just Around the Corner

Disneyland60 Sleeping Beauty CastleGet ready to be dazzled! It is less than one month before the Disneyland® Resort gets ready to kick off the biggest party since 1955 as they usher you into the #Disneyland60 Diamond Celebration. If you’re making plans to celebrate the day and night away, here’s the latest of what’s in store for this magical weekend event. With the Park opening at 6:00 AM on May 22 and staying open round the clock until 6:00 AM there is enough magic that awaits everyone.

Tinker-Bell-in-Paint-the-Night-1_15_DLR_9505-742x495This dynamic 24-hour party will kick off the summer and launch the Disneyland Resort Diamond Celebration May 22-23, as guests enjoy the thrilling premieres of three, new nighttime spectaculars: the glittering “Paint the Night” parade and the groundbreaking “Disneyland Forever” fireworks show at Disneyland Park, plus the new presentation, “World of Color – Celebrate! The Wonderful World of Walt Disney,” at Disney California Adventure Park. The all-day/all-night celebration will begin at 6 a.m. Friday, May 22, and will conclude 24 hours* later at 6 a.m. Saturday, May 23, 2015 local time. The revelry will include dancing and special character encounters at locations in Disneyland and Disney California Adventure parks, along with enchanting Diamond décor throughout the resort and the exciting shows and attractions that bring guests back year after year. The Disneyland Resort invites guests of all ages to kick off the summer travel season in Southern California, celebrating 60 years of magic at a resort that remains forever young.

Here’s what’s been announced to date from the Disneyland Resort website. Please note that times are subject to change.

Disneyland Park:

  • Disneyland Forever – 9:30 PM
  • Fantasmic! – 9:00 PM, 10:45 PM
  • Fireworks at Disneyland Park – 9:30 PM
  • Jedi Training Academy – 10:30 AM,
  • Mickey and the Magical Map – 1:30 PM,
  • Paint the Night – 8:50 PM
  • Storytelling at Royal Theatre – 10:45 AM, 12:00 PM, 1:15 PM, 2:45 PM, 4:00 PM, 5:15 PM
  • The Laughing Stock Co. – 12:00 PM, 1:00 PM, 2:00 PM, 3:40 PM, 4:40 PM, 5:40 PM
  • Tomorrowland Terrace Presents Tomasina – 7:00 PM, 7:45 PM, 8:35 PM, 10:00 PM, 11:00 PM

Disney California Adventure Park:

  • DJ’s Dance ‘n Drive – 3:30 PM, 4:30 PM, 5:30 PM, 7:00 PM, 8:00 PM, 9:00 PM
  • Diamond Mad T Party – 6:00 PM
  • Diamond Mad T Party Band – 6:05 PM, 7:00 PM, 8:00 PM, 9:00 PM
  • Disney Junior – Live on Stage! – 9:30 AM,
  • Disney’s Aladdin – A Musical Spectacular – 12:55 PM,
  • Five & Dime – 9:05 AM, 10:05 AM, 11:05 AM, 12:20 PM, 1:25 PM, 3:00 PM, 4:05 PM, 5:50 PM, 7:00 PM, 8:15 PM
  • For the First Time in Forever: A Frozen Sing-Along Celebration – 9:00 AM,
  • Fun Wheel Challenge – 8:30 PM, 10:00 PM
  • Pixar Play Parade – 5:15 PM
  • Red Car Trolley News Boys – 7:00 AM,
  • World of Color – 9:00 PM, 10:15 PM, 3:00 AM

Disneyland Diamond Celebration 60

Here’s a look at just some of the newest things coming to Disneyland® as part of the Disneyland Resort Diamond Celebration so you can start planning your 24 adventure. We know you won’t want to miss a thing!

Disneyland-Forever-Lights-Up-Main-Street-U.S.AAt Disneyland:

        • “Paint the Night” Parade” – After dark along the Disneyland parade route, 24-hour guests will be among the first to see the “Paint the Night” parade, showcasing beloved Disney characters in dazzling parade scenes illuminated with more than 1.5 million individually controlled lights – the first all-LED parade in Disneyland Resort history. The luminescent parade introduces a new era of magical entertainment, as Mickey Mouse uses his imagination to harness the power of Tinker Bell’s pixie dust to “Paint the Night” in dazzling Disney dreams. Those dreams include special appearances by Mickey’s pals and beloved characters from tales such as “Monsters, Inc.,” “Cars,” “The Little Mermaid,” “Beauty and the Beast,” “Toy Story” and “Frozen.” The parade features some of the most spectacular floats, unforgettable music and special effects ever presented at the Disneyland Resort, along with energetic performers who add to the brilliance with colorful costumes that light up, too.

      • “Disneyland Forever” Fireworks Show” – Disneyland Park itself plays a starring role in the “Disneyland Forever” fireworks spectacular, also premiering during the 24-hour event. Breathtaking fireworks shows have long been a Disneyland Resort tradition and “Disneyland Forever” soars to new levels, immersing guests from the tips of their toes to the brilliant pyrotechnic bursts above, thanks to special effects that turn the storefronts of Main Street, U.S.A., the Matterhorn mountain, the “Fantasmic!” water screens and the façade of “it’s a small world” into gigantic projections screens filled with color, characters and surprises. “Disneyland Forever” transports guests into the worlds of beloved Disney and DisneyPixar films, including a dance with King Louie from the “The Jungle Book” and a flight over London with characters from “Peter Pan.” Two original songs also energize the show: the theme “Live the Magic,” and the inspiring closing song “Kiss Goodnight,” written by Disney Legend Richard M. Sherman. “Disneyland Forever” will be visible from Main Street, U.S.A., and several Disneyland locations.

At Disney California Adventure:

World-of-Color-Diamond Celebration“World of Color – Celebrate! The Wonderful World of Walt Disney” Award-winning actor Neil Patrick Harris and Mickey Mouse will appear in film sequences and animated imagery of the all-new “World of Color” show, premiering May 22 during the 24-hour party. “World of Color – Celebrate!” illuminates the night in a fun-filled and inspirational journey exploring Walt Disney’s decades-long legacy of memorable animated moments and his dream of Disneyland park. It culminates in a madcap musical tour of Disneyland Resort attractions as you’ve never seen them before. Both epic and intimate in scope, “World of Color – Celebrate!” comes to life with animation, live-action film, fountains, lasers, special effects and a stirring musical score, all on the magical water canvas of “World of Color.”

Sleeping-Beauty-Castle-Decor-Just the Beginning

At Disneyland, in addition to the spectacular nighttime parade and fireworks, guest will enjoy the daytime “Mickey’s Soundsational Parade” and the classic after-dark “Fantasmic!” show on the Rivers of America in Frontierland and New Orleans Square. Glistening diamond-themed décor adds extra sparkle to Sleeping Beauty Castle, while Anna and Elsa from the hit Disney animated feature “Frozen” appear in a playfully comic retelling of their story on the Fantasy Faire stage. Disneyland also features more than 60 rides and attractions, including Space Mountain, Pirates of the Caribbean and “it’s a small world,” to delight guests of all ages.

Mack-Truck-in-Paint-the-Night-At Disney California Adventure, the new “World of Color – Celebrate!” show continues nightly throughout the summer along with the new “Mad T Party Diamond Celebration,” plus “Pixar Play Parade,” “Disney’s Aladdin – A Musical Spectacular” and all the favorite attractions throughout the park, including Radiator Springs Racers in Cars Land, the Twilight Zone Tower of Terror™** in Hollywood Land and the California Screamin’ roller coaster in Paradise Pier. The “Frozen” fun is extended at Anna & Elsa’s Royal Welcome, where guests have a chance to meet the sisters, who also make appearances in the “For the First Time in Forever” sing-along.

The “Diamond Celebration” stretches outside the gates of the theme parks, adding sparkle throughout the Downtown Disney District and the Disneyland Resort hotels. Creative Diamond Celebration merchandise and food items will complement the celebration, while surrounding streets in the Anaheim Resort Area will glisten with Diamond Celebration décor and festive banners in shades of Disneyland blue.

Stay tuned right here for all of the latest as we bring you the Disneyland Diamond Celebration all leading up to the 60th Anniversary on July 17. Isn’t it time you went to Disneyland-or back to Disneyland?All Started By A Mouse

Gayle is a lifelong educator by day and avid freelance writer by night Mom to 5, Grammy to 4 she is blessed to share her life with amazing family and friends who encourage her to chase her dreams no matter where they may lead. When not in the classroom, she can be found following her son as he dances his way through life, or working with young performers in free nationally recognized after school children’s theater program that she founded 13 years ago.

“Tomorrowland” Event Awaits MouseQuester Gayle

Written by Gayle Turner

“We would like to invite you to a very special Disney hosted event in May…”

#TomorrowlandEvent Button

Last week I opened my email and the shrieks could be heard around the world-Disney is hosting an exclusive event in May…and I am one of 25 lucky bloggers who will be heading to Los Angeles to take part in it. And the reason for the screams, (although truth be told any email that starts with “Disney would like to invite you” is immediate cause for tears, screams, and then followed by being at a complete and total loss for words, and I am never at a loss for words) –as part of the trip we will be attending a special screening of Tomorrowland, which opens in theaters everywhere May 22 and which stars, wait for it, George Clooney and Hugh Laurie and directed by Brad Bird. Did I mention that this movie stars George Clooney? (Insert more screaming).George Clooney Tomorrowland

While we’re in town, we’ll be visiting the Disney Archives to learn about Walt’s vision of “Tomorrowland” and what trip would be complete to Los Angeles without a visit to Disneyland!

Disney's TOMORROWLANDCasey (Britt Robertson) Ph: Film Frame©Disney 2015

“Tomorrowland”

Take a look at the latest trailer from “Tomorrowland” Disney’s riveting mystery adventure, where a teen bursting with scientific curiosity and a former boy-genius inventor bound by a shared destiny embark on a mission to unearth the secrets of a place somewhere in time and space that exists in their collective memory.

Walt Disney Archives

04-17-2015 TomorrowlandPreserving our legacy is something taken very seriously at The Walt Disney Company. In fact, for more than four decades, the Walt Disney Archives has carefully safeguarded the most treasured items from Disney’s fabled history.

The Walt Disney Archives had its beginning in 1970 — while Disney was still reeling over the passing of its founder, Walt Disney. At the time, Walt’s brother and the Chairman of Board Roy O. Disney, wanted to ensure that as key imagineers and animators began to retire, their vast knowledge of Disney history was not forgotten.

Disneyland-The Happiest Place on Earthwith, of course, a visit to Tomorrowland.

TomorrowlandAlways curious and thinking about progress, Walt Disney created Tomorrowland as a window to the future, a place to educate and inspire guests. Tomorrowland opened as one of five original lands at Disneyland Park on July 17, 1955, and has had more attractions than any other area in the park. Today, Tomorrowland is home to attractions such as Space Mountain, a thrilling high-speed journey through outer space; Star Tours: The Adventures Continue, a 3-D motion simulated space flight with more than 50 different story combinations, and Buzz Lightyear Astro Blasters, an interactive adventure through the world of Buzz Lightyear. Tomorrowland Theater occasionally offers movie previews where right now guests can get a special sneak peek of “Tomorrowland” with special in-theater effects.Tomorrowland At Disneyland

Disney California Adventure Park will offer us a little #FrozenFun

Tomorrowland“Frozen Fun” is a big hit at Disney California Adventure park, bringing guests into the story of Disney’s animated blockbuster film, “Frozen.” Anna and Elsa are receiving visitors in their elegant greeting location, “Anna and Elsa’s Royal Welcome.” Guests can sing-along at “For the First time in Forever – A Frozen Sing-Along Celebration,” where Anna, Elsa and Kristoff take part in a lively retelling of their story with popular songs from the movie. Everyone’s favorite snowman, Olaf, is ready to give a warm hug to guests of all ages. There’s a lot of “Frozen Fun” to be had, now through May 15. And Southern California residents can purchase tickets at special prices through May 20.

Tomorrowland

Don’t forget that Disneyland is about to celebrate 60 years of magic beginning May 22, 2015, make way to the; Disneyland Resort Diamond Celebration, where Guests of every age can salute 60 years of Disney magic with dazzling entertainment and sparkling surprises, including 3 new nighttime spectaculars making their in-park debuts!

Stay tuned right here as more details come in and be sure to follow our special #TomorrowlandEvent on as we take you to “Tomorrowland” and get social by following:

Like TOMORROWLAND Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/DisneyTomorrowland;

Follow Disney Pictures on Twitter: https://twitter.com/DisneyPictures;

Visit the official TOMORROWLAND website: www.Disney.com/Tomorrowland;

Tomorrowland Poster Field City

Don’t forget to follow #TomorrowlandEvent to stay find out all the latest.

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                                         Google+ Gayle Turner

What if there was a place, a secret place where nothing was impossible? A miraculous place where you could actually change the world- wanna go?”

TOMORROWLAND opens in theaters everywhere on May 22nd!

Gayle is a lifelong educator by day and avid freelance writer by night Mom to 5, Grammy to 4 she is blessed to share her life with amazing family and friends who encourage her to chase her dreams no matter where they may lead. When not in the classroom, she can be found following her son as he dances his way through life, or working with young performers in free nationally recognized after school children’s theater program that she founded 13 years ago.

**Disney has invited me to Los Angeles to attend a screening Tomorrowland. All expenses have been paid for by Disney but all opinions are always 100% my own.**

Other posts by this author:
Disneyland’s Diamond Celebration is Just Around the Corner
Disney VoluntEARS Celebrate the Teaching Garden’s First Harvest
Behind the Scenes of Disney/Pixar’s “Lava”
Behind the Scenes of Disney/Pixar’s “Inside Out”
Movie Review – “McFarland, USA”

Disney VoluntEARS Celebrate the Teaching Garden’s first Harvest

Written by Gayle Turner

Last October I had the unique opportunity to travel to Anaheim and join the Disney VoluntEARS and representatives from the American Heart Association as they all came together with the Walt Disney Elementary School teachers, students and parents to create a most magical event- the first Teaching Garden in Anaheim.

Walt Disney Elementary School  Teaching Garden
Walt Disney Elementary School Teaching Garden

The Teaching Garden program is part of a larger American Heart Association “My Heart. My Life” healthy living initiative, designed to help Americans understand what it means to be healthy, and to take action. Teaching Gardens have flourished throughout California, and are part of an effort to fight childhood obesity and encourage healthier schools, families and communities in Orange County. These hands-on learning opportunities were developed using the American Heart Association science and nutrition guidelines, as well as information shared by gardening and education experts. Growing-the-Teaching-GardenMore than just a garden, it is a learning laboratory where students plant seeds, nurture growing plants, harvest produce, and in the process learn the value of good eating habits.

By giving the students, families and the community the opportunity to be a part of the planning and be an integral part in bringing the garden to fruition, every person there felt as though they had ownership in the project. Last October, in just a few hours, an incredible new space was created where parents have continued to work alongside teachers and students to sustain their Teaching Garden.

Photo Credit Disney Parks Blog
Photo Credit Disney Parks Blog

Now, less than six months later, more than 700 students of Walt Disney Elementary school saw the fruits of their labors come to life as the school and community once again joined together in the garden’s first Heart Healthy Harvest Day.

Since the initial planting, the garden, funded by the Disneyland Resort, has continued to serve as a learning laboratory where students nurture growing plants, harvest produce and, in the process, learn the value of healthy eating. Along with harvesting garden boxes during the event, students tasted new fruits and vegetables and learned about a unique form of composting that uses worms to recycle organic materials into soil. Each class also planted new vegetables for harvesting later this spring.

“The Walt Disney Elementary Teaching Garden is a unique and natural learning environment that has given our students a first-hand experience of the seed-to-table process, while providing them with invaluable insight into the importance and appreciation of nutritious and healthy eating,” said Principal Teali Fielder.

Disney-VoluntEARS-Teaching-Garden

For more information about the Teaching Gardens program and how bring it to your own school community, contact or for more information about the Teaching Gardens program and how to join visit www.heart.org/teachinggardens.

Congratulations to all that came together to show the students, families, staff and community of Walt Disney Elementary School and of course Disney VoluntEARS joined representatives from the American Heart Association for once again making dreams come true. We can’t wait to see how your dreams and gardens grow.

Gayle is a lifelong educator by day and avid freelance writer by night Mom to 5, Grammy to 4 she is blessed to share her life with amazing family and friends who encourage her to chase her dreams no matter where they may lead. When not in the classroom, she can be found following her son as he dances his way through life, or working with young performers in free nationally recognized after school children’s theater program that she founded 13 years ago.

Behind the Scenes of Disney/Pixar’s “Lava”

Written by: Gayle Turner

“I have a dream I hope will come true that you’re here with me and I’m here with you. I hope that the Earth, Sea, and Sky up above will send me someone to love.”- Lava

Pixar Studios #PixarInsideOut

After years and years of dreaming what it would be like to visit Pixar Animation Studios last January my wish was granted and suddenly I found myself whisked away on the trip of a lifetime to learn more about Pixar’s upcoming Inside Out and the animated musical short that will play right before the feature, Lava. From the moment you walk through the Pixar gates and into the Steve Jobs Animation Building, you can feel yourself surrounded by the magic that is synonymous with the Pixar name.

Pixar Studios Tour #PixarInsideOutEvent

Where else would Buzz and Woody greet you along side Luigi and Guido and of course Mike?

Awards Pixar Studios

Cafe Luxo Pixar

 

 

 

 

 

 

And a few steps away, a case full of Oscars and various other awards and achievements. Dinner, of course, was at the Cafe Luxo-because where else would one eat when at Pixar?

pete-docter-inside-out
Then it was off to go inside the minds of director Pete Docter and producer Jonas Rivera, the creative team behind the sure blockbuster hit of the summer Inside Out and if that weren’t enough, we were treated to our own private screening of the musical short that will play before, Lava.

Lava
How did the enchanting love story of Lava come to fruition? We were lucky enough to have both director James Ford Murphy and producer Andrea Warren share their tale with us all.

Lava Through Time

Ever since I was a kid, I’ve had this tremendous fascination with Hawaii and Volcanoes as I think most kids do. I was a huge Elvis Presley Fan and I think Elvis had a fascination with Hawaii. I was exposed to that but it wasn’t until my wife and I got married and we went to the big island for our Honeymoon that I really fell in love with Hawaii, Volcanoes, and particularly Hawaiian Music.

About 15 years ago, my wife and I were watching an episode of “ER” that featured a very recognizable song that I had heard and knew from the “Wizard of Oz” but I’d never heard a more hauntingly beautiful rendition of this song, it literally floored me. And I’d go, who – who is this? It just blew my mind and the more – the more I uncovered it, I could believe the power and the beauty of that song. When it came time for me to come up with an idea for a Short Film I thought, well I have this love of Volcanoes and this love of Hawaii and Hawaiian Music, what if I could write a song that makes me feel the way that that song did when I first heard it and feature it in a Pixar Short.Lava

So that’s what I set out to do. As I developed the idea, the story, and the pitch for Lava, I also wrote this song that you’ll see featured In the Film and every single time I pitched, I would sing and play the Ukulele.

And before we knew it, there stood James Ford Murphy, Ukulele in hand, serenading us with the hauntingly beautiful melodies and lyrics that tell the story of Lava, a volcano in love.

“A long, long time ago, there was a Volcano living all alone, I never did see. He sat high above his bay watching all the couples play and wishing that he had someone too. And from his lava came this song of hope that he sang out loud every day for years and years.

I have a dream I hope will come true that you’re here with me and I’m here with you. I hope that the Earth, Sea, and Sky up above will send me someone to love.”

#PixarInsideOutEvent Bloggers

The James sharing with us his song filled our hearts with joy and emotion and by the end, there wasn’t a dry eye in the house. In the way that an old man, balloons and a house could be used to tell the greatest love story ever told, Lava will melt your heart.

#PixarInsideOutEvent

Mark your calendars and save the date-both Inside Out and Lava open in theaters everywhere June 19!

In the meantime, don’t miss any of the latest news leading up to these two great summertime spectaculars

Like INSIDE OUT on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/PixarInsideOut

Follow INSIDE OUT on Twitter: https://twitter.com/PixarInsideOut

Follow INSIDE OUT on Instagram: @PixarInsideOut

INSIDE OUT opens in theaters everywhere on June 19th.

***Disney invited me to San Francisco to attend a media event for Strange Magic and Pixar Inside Out. All expenses have been paid by Disney, but all opinions are always 100% my own.***

Gayle is a lifelong educator by day and avid freelance writer by night Mom to 5, Grammy to 4 she is blessed to share her life with amazing family and friends who encourage her to chase her dreams no matter where they may lead. When not in the classroom, she can be found following her son as he dances his way through life, or working with young performers in free nationally recognized after school children’s theater program that she founded 13 years ago.

Behind the scenes of Disney/Pixar’s new “Inside Out”

Editor’s Note: The MouseQuest blog is lucky enough to have our very own “Siskel & Ebert” in Gayle Turner and Rich Grady (I will let them figure out who is who:-). Throughout 2015 Gayle and Rich will provide insight and reviews of the great line-up of Disney, Marvel and Pixar films which will be coming out. So grab a bucket of popcorn and enjoy!

Written by Gayle Turner

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So just what goes on inside the minds of a creative team that make the transition from the greatest love story ever told, Pixar’s award winning movie Up, to the journey inside the mind of 11-year-old Riley? Last January I traveled to Pixar Animation Studios in Emeryville, California for a special sneak peek at this sure to be blockbuster from the studio that not only gave us Up, but such classics as Toy Story, Finding Nemo, The Incredibles and Monster’s Inc. to sit down and talk to director Pete Docter and producer Jonas Rivera who have taken on the monumental task of going from the adventurous, famously tear-jerking tale of an old man, a house and a lot of balloons in Up to switching the age focus the other way, chronicling the world of an 11-year-old girl named Riley who, by the way, did I mention, is not the main character- she’s the setting of the movie.

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Inside Out takes place within Riley’s mind, exploring how her emotions Joy, Sadness, Disgust, Anger and Fear deal with a traumatic move from the Midwest to San Francisco when Riley’s family is uprooted by her father’s job. Docter and Rivera immediately put you at ease from the moment they enter the room- it’s like being with the friends from the neighborhood that you grew up with and shared all of life’s moments with-from the biggest down to the smallest.

Docter started the ball rolling by sharing “We both have kids. My daughter was the voice of young Ellie in Up She was nine when we recorded that and was actually a lot like that character. She would walk up to strangers and go, “Hello,” talk to people, and was spunky and bubbly. Then she turned 11 and 12 and things changed a little bit-she got quiet. We talked to her teachers who’d say, “Ellie’s a quiet girl.” And we’d ask, “Who are you talking about?” Sometimes you go through a very difficult time in life from both from the kid’s point of view, and the parent’s point of view.

From those moments in his life, the movie Inside Out was born. It is the story about figuring out just what is going on inside the place known as the mind.

Inside Out, which will be released June 19, 2015, will break new stylistic ground. While previous Pixar movies have aimed for realism, Inside Out came with new challenges and uncharted territory.

“We’re doing stretchy, squashy stuff we’ve never been able to do before,” as it is literally a story coming directly from the inside of the mind of 11-year-old, Riley. It features the central characters that make up her emotions -Joy (voiced by Amy Poehler), Fear (Bill Hader), Anger (Lewis Black), Disgust (Mindy Kaling) and Sadness (Phyllis Smith), all of whom vie for control of Riley’s decisions when her family relocates from small-town Minnesota to San Francisco. Riley is struggling to cope with the new situation as she hits the age when kids start to lose their childlike sense of happiness and head towards the grumpier tween / teen years. Joy and Sadness find themselves trapped elsewhere in her mind, and must make their way back to “headquarters” even as their colleagues try to hold things together.

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We had this idea of using emotions as our main character- Anger, Fear, Sadness, Disgust and Joy. It was this concept that lead to this great research that we got to do talking to psychologists and neurologists, and really deep dive into the how and why we think and feel. A lot of that research has shown up in the film, and then of course we made some stuff up too because after all, we wanted to create something that not only told a story that hadn’t been told before, but that was fun to watch as well.

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Rivera shared that the film’s greatest challenge was its multilayered narrative. Docter expanded by explaining “It’s two stories at the same time, and they have to relate to each other,”

So just how difficult was it to bring to life a story that personified the emotions of a tween, especially coming off of the success of Up?

Like all the films we do, it’s built on many iterations of the same thing. It was a concept that was pitched to John Lasseter in June of 2009 and then other projects such as Monsters University came along so it had been tumbling around in the background for a little while. The way we tend to work here is that we’ve been asked to pitch three ideas, and that way we can kind of play around and use them to play off of one another. We knew it was a little unorthodox, but here there are no rules.

Both Docter and Rivera had worked at Pixar since Toy Story changed animation in 1995, and they wanted their new film to push the genre’s limits again without alienating audiences.

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The puzzler was, how could we take audiences somewhere that they could relate to, but they’d never been before?

They responded with Inside Out’s animation as well as its story.

The emotions are not rendered as solid—they are composed of tiny particles of light. We wanted them to look like emotions feel, Their unusual texture presented us the opportunity to reject the realism previous Pixar animations had pursued.

Even from the small portions of the film we were treated to, it was clear that the results of their collaboration will take you on a journey in animation unlike any other and will touch something inside of you no matter what your age.

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Like asking you which one of your children is your favorite child, it’s hard to say which Pixar movie is your favorite. Each one of them strikes a chord with you and pulls on your heartstrings in their own unique way. They all make you laugh, they all make you cry and they all touch your soul and stay with you long after the lights come back on, but from what I’ve seen of Inside Out, and hearing first hand how the idea became a reality, I may just have a new favorite-by a little bit at least.

In my next post, I share with you some of my behind the scenes glimpses of the Pixar Animation Studios as well as my interview with director James Ford Murphy and producer by Andrea Warren, the team that brings Lava, animated musical short film that will open in front of Inside Out when both come to life in theaters everywhere on June 19, 2015.

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Find out all of the latest from inside Riley’s mind!

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INSIDE OUT opens in theaters everywhere on June 19th!

Gayle is a lifelong educator by day and avid freelance writer by night Mom to 5, Grammy to 4 she is blessed to share her life with amazing family and friends who encourage her to chase her dreams no matter where they may lead. When not in the classroom, she can be found following her son as he dances his way through life, or working with young performers in free nationally recognized after school children’s theater program that she founded 13 years ago.

Movie Review – “McFarland, USA”

Written by Gayle Turner

“Welcome to McFarland. This is a farming town-these kids working here are invisible. They come from the fields and they go back to the fields. Mr. White, if we’re going to reach them now is the time… Champions can come from anywhere.”

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Think back to the great sports movies that you’ve seen-what made them great? They brought to life people that came together in unexpected ways and they were able to accomplish things that they never could have imagined. Even though you knew going in what the outcome would be-it didn’t matter-you still sat on the edge of your seat, holding your breath, waiting and wondering would Rudy finally make the team, would Team USA be able to stand up to the powerhouse Russian hockey team, or could the little high school basketball team from Indiana possibly have a chance to go all the way. Every once in a rare while, a film has you coming out of the theater filled with hope and promise. It leaves you feeling hopeful and inspired and for a brief period of time, life is good. Welcome to McFarland, USA.McFARLAND

Let’s face it-if you say “sports movie” you have definitely peeked my interest and on top of that, if you happen to throw Kevin Costner into the mix, you have my full and undivided attention. But this isn’t just another one of “those” sports movies. This is a film told in a remarkable way. It looks like a sports film, but it’s really a movie about people and how relationships can transform us. Costner’s performance is straight from the heart-you can see it in his eyes that something special is going on here. Combine that with a supporting cast that is first rate and realize that this is not just a movie, but a story that people actually lived, and you have all the makings of a film that will stay with you long after the lights come back up and the popcorn is gone. Director Niki Caro does such an amazing job revealing the character of the people and the town that you feel as though you had grown up in McFarland and known these people all of your life.

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“Champions can come from anywhere.” Inspired by the 1987 true story, “McFarland, USA” follows novice runners from McFarland, an economically challenged town in California’s farm-rich Central Valley, as they give their all to build a cross-country team under the direction of Coach Jim White (Kevin Costner), a newcomer to their predominantly Latino high school. Coach White and the McFarland students have a lot to learn about each other but when White starts to realize the boys’ exceptional running ability, things begin to change. Soon something beyond their physical gifts becomes apparent—the power of family relationships, their unwavering commitment to one another and their incredible work ethic. With grit and determination, the unlikely band of runners eventually overcomes the odds to forge not only a championship cross-country team but an enduring legacy as well. Along the way, Coach White realizes that his family finally found a place to call home and both he and his team achieve their own kind of American dream.

Disney’s “McFarland, USA” stars Kevin Costner, Maria Bello, Morgan Saylor, Martha Higareda, Michael Aguero, Sergio Avelar, Hector Duran, Rafael Martinez, Johnny Ortiz, Carlos Pratts, Ramiro Rodriguez, Danny Mora, Valente Rodriguez, Vanessa Martinez and Chris Ellis and is directed by Niki Caro with screenplay by Christopher Cleveland & Bettina Gilois and Grant Thompson, and story by Cleveland & Gilois. Gordon Gray and Mark Ciardi are producing, with Mario Iscovich and Mary Martin serving as executive producers.McFARLAND

McFarland, USA could so easily have been yet another feel-good, “formula” sports underdog movie. But soon, thanks to the genuine heart in its story and a beautiful heart felt performance by Kevin Costner, it will likely win you over. So go ahead, surrender. Cry a little. This is one feel-good movie that won’t make you feel bad about feeling good.

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Champions come from anywhere”

McFarland, USA, is open theaters everywhere.

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McFARLAND

Gayle is a lifelong educator by day and avid freelance writer by night Mom to 5, Grammy to 4 she is blessed to share her life with amazing family and friends who encourage her to chase her dreams no matter where they may lead.  When not in the classroom, she can be found following her son as he dances his way through life, or working with young performers in free nationally recognized after school children’s theater program that she founded 13 years ago.