Tuesday, February 04 2014 13:38

Goin' Back to Cali: Blogging from Walt Disney Animation Studios! #RockFatherTour #PirateFairyBloggers #FrozenBluray

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Last week, as I began taking a real look at my calendar for the next year, I started to realize something... that my adventures were shaping up a bit like routing for a band. With "The Rock Father" as my handle here in this world of cyberspace and virtual ink, it became both crystal clear and very appropriate that that I needed to call this something: THE ROCK FATHER - 2014 U.S. Tour. But, instead of playing music (as I've been known to do in the distant past), I'll be blogging... bringing all of YOU the best in pop culture and entertainment for the whole family, from different cities around the country. The kick-off is a big one, as next week I will return to Los Angeles, this time as a guest of The Walt Disney Company, who so graciously invited me to join some other fantastic bloggers and writers in promotion of two hotly-anticipated home video releases: THE PIRATE FAIRY, and the massive hit, FROZEN. As I journey inside WALT DISNEY ANIMATION STUDIOS for a series of adventures, I'm asking YOU to join me as I document the experience, and meet with the filmmakers behind the magic.

My Mickey Mouse thumbprint...This is a special trip for me for several reasons, but the biggest is that it happened because of my girls. Without them, "The Rock Father" would have never existed, and because I now do what I do, I've been presented with an opportunity to visit one of the places directly responsible for shaping my path in life (some of you may not know that I've done things like comic books and work in "the pictures"). Spin back 30+ years, and "James" was "Jimmy," a little boy completely enamored by Mickey Mouse and Friends. In fact, it's my glass Mickey bank that now collects change in Addie's room, and it's the love of those characters that has been rekindled as I see little Finley completely enthralled with Minnie.

I had to do some digging today, but I've located these...

My Disney Past...

FROZEN-Box-ArtSo much of my childhood is now under one roof, with Disney nurturing THE MUPPETS, STAR WARS and the MARVEL Universe, too. As I enter the studios next week, I will be thinking not only of the history that's been made there, but the history yet to be made.

As part of my visit, I will be taking part in a Q&A with FROZEN Director Chris Buck, and Producers, Jennifer Lee and Peter Del Vecho, after which I will take part in a hands-on demonstration of the Rigging process lead by Character TC Supervisor, Gregory Smith, and a Voice-over recording session with FROZEN'S Audio Engineer, Gabe Guy. Yes - it seems that one of the FROZEN characters will be borrowing my voice!

The following day, I'll drop by DisneyToon Studios for an advance screening of the THE PIRATE FAIRY, after which I'll sit down with Director Peggy Holmes and Producer Jennifer Magee-Cook, followed by a walk through the creation of "Zarina", The Pirate Fairy from story to character design to animation.



The adventure begins on Monday, February 10, and wraps when I return to FROZEN Chicagoland on Thursday the 13th. Please join me, and follow along on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram, with full reports right here on THE ROCK FATHER.

And, while THE PIRATE FAIRY and FROZEN are taking the focus right now, there's something else that's going down while I'm at the studios next week. As a little green man once said, "There is another..." 

Stay tuned... but if you're in a Disney kinda mood right now, Pre-order FROZEN, THE PIRATE FAIRY, and other great titles via (my affiliate) Amazon, below:

Further Disclosure: Yes, as an invited guest of The Walt Disney Company, this trip is paid for on Mickey's dime. Ooh, maybe I can go find where Scrooge McDuck lives and go diving into that big pool of coins that I saw on DuckTales!


James Zahn

James Zahn is best-known as The Rock Father™, a media personality, commentator, adventurer and raconteur. He is the Owner, Publisher, and Editor-in-Chief of THE ROCK FATHER™ Magazine. In January, 2019, after nearly a decade of publishing The Rock Father™ Magazine, he joined Adventure Media and Events as Senior Editor of The Toy Book—the leading trade publication for the toy industry since 1984, as well as The Pop Insider — a destination for all things pop culture, and The Toy Insider — the leading consumer guide for toys and games. He is also editor of The Toy Report, a weekly newsletter published by The Toy Book each Thursday. Zahn has over 27 years of experience in the entertainment, retail and publishing industries.

He regularly serves as a Brand Ambassador and spokesperson for several Globally-recognized pop culture and lifestyle brands in addition to consulting for a number of toy manufacturers. 

Creatively, James has directed/edited music videos, lyric videos, and album trailers for bands such as FEAR FACTORY, has appeared as an actor in feature films and commercials, written comic books, and performed in bands. He currently serves as an artist manager and video director for PRODUCT OF HATE, whose debut album was released by Napalm Records in 2016, distributed by ADA/Warner Music in the U.S. with Universal Music handling global. A new album has been completed and is set for release this year.

Zahn and/or his work have been featured in/on CNN, NBC, ABC, WGN, CBS, GCTN, G4, The Chicago Tribune, Forbes, MarketWatch, Reuters, BusinessWire, Fangoria, Starlog and more. He's appeared as a music expert on CNN's AC360 alongside Anderson Cooper, and has been interviewed by Larry King. In the past he served as a writer for the Netflix Stream Team,  Fandango Family and PBS KIDS, penned articles for Sprout and PopSugar, and was a contributor to Chicago Parent.

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