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Annie Leibovitz returns with more photos for Disney

Update: Four more photos added to series 1/24/08. One more added 4/25/08.

Roger Federer by Annie LeibovitzAnnie Leibovitz returns with more photos from her Disney Dream Portrait Series. Tennis ace Roger Federer, who has been the #1 ranked men’s tennis player in the world for four consecutive years, portrays King Arthur and pulls a sword from the anvil that holds a magical grip upon it. The gallant scene is reminiscent of Disney’s animated film ‘The Sword in the Stone,’ in which a young King Arthur follows the wizardly teachings of Merlin.

Rachel Weisz by Annie LeibovitzThe regal image is one of three unveiled today to celebrate Disney Parks’ ‘Year of a Million Dreams.’ Disneyland Resort in California and Walt Disney World Resort in Florida commissioned Leibovitz to create images featuring international celebrities in fairy tale settings. Two more Leibovitz images that Disney Parks released today feature actress Rachel Weisz as ‘Snow White,’ and actress Julie Andrews portraying the Blue Fairy from Disney’s ‘Pinocchio’ with her ‘apprentice’ fairy, portrayed by starlet Abigail Breslin.

julie andrews by Annie LeibovitzThe first three images that Leibovitz created for Disney Parks were released in January 2007. Those images featured actress Scarlett Johansson as Cinderella, singer/actress Beyonce as ‘Alice in Wonderland,’ and international soccer star David Beckham portraying Prince Phillip from Disney’s ‘Sleeping Beauty.’

Update: Find High-Resolution versions of all “Disney Dream Portrait Series” on The Disney Blog Dream Photo Annex.

A few backstage photos and the full Press Release is below the cut:

New Series of Photography from Annie Leibovitz Puts More Stars in More
Fantasies as Disney Parks Extends ‘Year of a Million Dreams’

LAKE BUENA VISTA, Fla. — Framed through the lens of renowned photographer Annie Leibovitz, more stars are playing out their fantasies, living out their Disney dreams.

Roger Federer with Annie LeibovitzActress Rachel Weisz is Snow White, tennis star Roger Federer is King Arthur from “The Sword in the Stone” and actress Julie Andrews is the Blue Fairy from “Pinocchio” with actress Abigail Breslin as Fira from “Disney Fairies” in a new wave of celebrity images celebrating “The Year of a Million Dreams” at Disney Parks.

They join Scarlett Johansson as Cinderella, Beyoncé as “Alice in
Wonderland” twirling in a teacup and David Beckham atop a steed as Prince Phillip from “Sleeping Beauty” in a 14-page insert appearing later this year in several Condé Nast publications. Johansson, Beyoncé and Beckham also starred in the first flight of Leibovitz images last January.

rachel weiszThe new photographs, placing stars in classic Disney fairy tale settings, continue the “Disney Dream Portrait Series” of celebrity images produced by Leibovitz as Disney Parks announces an extension,
through 2008, of its “Year of a Million Dreams” celebration.

Elaborate sets and costuming went into the transformation of Weisz, Andrews, Breslin and Federer. Soundstages morphed into pixie-dusted spectacles as Leibovitz clicked away.

“It’s thrilling to have an opportunity to re-create the characters we all loved as children,” Leibovitz says. “The stories are real to my own children now, and their belief inspires me.”

Dreamlike images in a year of dreams was a natural, added Jay Rasulo, chairman of Walt Disney Parks and Resorts.

rachel weisz behind the scenes“Putting celebrities right inside their fantasies reinforces the power of dreams, where anything is possible,” he said. “Disney’s ‘Year of a Million Dreams’ is about the imaginations and dreams that are inside us
all. Through the lens of Annie Leibovitz, these dreams and fantasies come alive. It’s the perfect fit.”

For Weisz, slipping on the familiar hair band and dress of Snow White was a dream come true. Her finished image, “Where You’re the Fairest of Them All,” is a soft, sylvan scene in which she is surrounded by forest

“I think you always want to be Snow White, it’s every little girl’s dream,” Weisz said.

Federer traded his tennis racket for a regal sword, posing on a rock as the gallant King Arthur.

The finished photo, entitled “Where You’re Always King of the Court,” shows Federer, red cape flowing, beside a roiling sea.

In another photo, Breslin as Fira (from the “Disney Fairies” series) reposes on a giant leaf while the wand-waving Julie Andrews as the Blue Fairy of “Pinocchio” showers her with pixie dust. “Where the Magic
Begins,” reads the photo.

The special insert will be unveiled in the December editions of Cookie, Condé Nast Traveler, Details, Glamour, GQ, Men’s Vogue, New Yorker, Self, Vanity Fair, Vogue and W.

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