Membership Perks Slashed at Disneyland’s Club 33

The former Trophy Room of Club 33.

The former Trophy Room of Club 33.

Club 33 is the most exclusive address in all of Disneyland. Home to a ‘secret’ club where members can bring guests, dine, and drink away from the hoy polloi. There’s a long wait list just to become a member, and once you’re invited, there’s a yearly membership fee somewhere north of $11,000 that you have to come up with. All this just for the privileged of access to a restaurant that the normal guest does not have access to.

Depending on what level of membership you have, there are other perks too. You get preferential treatment at a few special events (the recent Candlelight Processional being one), free valet parking at the Grand Californian, and the ability to sign in a certain amount of people a year.

If you own a businesses, it’s a great way to impress a prospective client or entertain existing ones. One membership would provide you with 4 cards, so you could share some of these perks with your friends and family as well.

The exclusive club recently underwent a large renovation. They closed the trophy room to expand the kitchen, and added a jazz club room. Plus there are lots of little magical details added throughout. But you’re still basically paying big bucks just for the privilege to pay big bucks to eat and drink inside Disneyland.

Last week, Platinum Members of Club 33 received a letter from the club saying these benefits would be reduced, significantly. I’m paraphrasing, but the tone was something like this:

Disneyland to Club 33 Members: “We have altered the terms of our arrangement, pray we don’t alter them again.”

Club Members: “Yes, Lord Vader.”

Disneyland to member: “Oh yeah, the price is going up too.”

Club Members: “Wonderful.”

Actually, the members aren’t very happy with the situation and have reached out to complain to local media, like the LA Times.

On one hand, it’s hard to feel much sympathy for the fat cats who still get their exclusive access to the newly renovated club. Disney has a long wait list for Club 33 and they won’t miss any members who drop out of the club.

Alternatively, Disney has always taken special care of Club 33 members because they represent a significant portion of the money spent on collectibles and events at the park. Hence a not insignificant portion of the park’s revenue. This does not seem to be an area that that park should be toying with right now.

I’m not a big fan of taking away benefits once given. It would make more sense to grandfather in the existing members and then offer the changed benefits only to new members. That said, Disneyland can do what they want here. If they feel the pain of losing a few members will be minimal, then why shouldn’t they alter benefits?

(Photo courtesy cc by-sa-3.0 Patrick Pelletier )

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Videopolis: Disney Owns Everything

Filmmaker George Lucas meets "Star Wars"-inspired Disney characters at Walt Disney World Resort in Florida

You may have heard people complaining about how since Bob Iger started his buying spree, that The Walt Disney Company now owns pretty much everything. Here’s a smart parody video by YouTuber’s Minhdzuy Khorami & Greg Smith with their take on exactly how bad it could get once Disney owns everything:

This begs the question, what cross-over stories do you think we might see in the future? The Muppets in Star Wars (you know J.J. Abrams wants to), Howard the Duck meets Pixar’s Up? What’s the most bizarre cross-over mashup you can come up with?

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Guardians of the Galaxy Director answers fan questions

Director James Gunn on set

Director James Gunn on set

Recently, Screen Junkies got to sit down with Guardians of the Galaxy director, James Gunn. They polled their fans for questions and asked him everything from his favorite line from Groot to what sort of connection the new Avengers movie will have with his Guardians sequel.

There were no major revelations, but it is a fun interview.

Still haven’t ordered your copy of “Guardians of the Galaxy” on Blu-Ray or DVD? Use this link and you’ll help The Disney Blog.

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First ever Disney Christmas film rediscovered in Norway archive

image

Christmas has come early Disney fans. This last week the very first Disney Christmas film was uncovered in Norway.

“Empy Socks” stars Mickey’s predecessor, Oswald the Rabbit in a Christmas caper. Originally thought to be lost, the 1927 film was rediscovered by The National Library of Norway.

The library has been going through their old document and digitizing them. Other thought to be lost treasures like this film have also been discovered in the process. The film came to library from the Norwegian Film Institute. No one is quite sure where it came before then, but it most likely came from a private owner.

We can only hope that this piece of Disney history will somehow be restored for all to see. Who knows, maybe we’ll see it in 2016 in front of one of the two animated films from Disney. Keep your fingers crossed!

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Learn to Draw Hiro from Disney’s Big Hero 6

hiro-learn-to-draw

Hiro was the emotional core of Disney’s Big Hero 6 and his transformation from an unfocused and grieving brother to the hero of the film makes him one of Disney’s most unique animated characters of late.

Disney is continuing their excellent “Learn to Draw” series with a lesson on how to draw Hiro from Big Hero 6. Here’s character animator Brian James Fichtner from the Animation Academy in Magic of Disney Animation at Disney’s Hollywood Studios with the detailed, but easy to follow, instructions.

Did you break out your own pencil and paper and give it a shot? Who knows, you could have a hidden talent.

Previously: Learn to Draw Baymax from Big Hero 6.

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Posted in Animation, Walt Disney World | Tagged , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment