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Thursday, April 03 2014 23:59

Special Feature: The Direction, Development (and ROCK?) of Disney's THE PIRATE FAIRY #PirateFairyBloggers

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Sitting down with Producer Jenni Magee-Cook and Director Peggy Holmes at DisneyToon Studios in Glendale, California back in February, there was an overwhelming sense of joy and enthusiasm as they begun discussing the creation of THE PIRATE FAIRY, the latest installment of the Disney Fairies franchise, which hit Blu-ray and DVD this week. "I wanted to tell a story about a girl that makes a mistake," explains Holmes in discussing Zarina, the "Pirate Fairy" herself (voiced by MAD MEN's Christina Hendricks), and a new resident of Pixie Hollow that leads Tinker Bell and friends to a world not previously-explored in the series: Never Land.

"Everyone makes mistakes, and ultimately, your friends will be by your side," she continues, about the message present in what is a very different kind of adventure for the Fairies, and one that serves as both a sequel to the recent series, and a prequel to 1953's PETER PAN.

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Feature: A Look Inside the Animation and Design of THE PIRATE FAIRY

THE ROCK FATHER visits DisneyToon StudiosHaving just viewed THE PIRATE FAIRY in the very screening room where Disney Animation Chief John Lasseter and the crew gather to brainstorm and give notes, the message rings true, and stands as something I can relate to my own daughters, in teaching them right, wrong, and how to rectify those situations that might go differently than intended. While the message is an important narrative, the historical ties to Disney past is also key, such as the development of a familiar... yet, much younger crocodile that eventually grows up to cause a certain Captain to require the use of a shining, silver... hook.

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Feature: Inside The Walt Disney Animation Research Library
Feature: A Look at the 2014 Disney Fairies and PIRATE FAIRY Merchandise Line

Among the many aspects of THE PIRATE FAIRY that stands-out is the musical element, bringing into the film a pair of songs by Natasha Bedingfield, and an impressive, Pirate-themed song-and-dance performed by actor Tom Hiddleston (THE AVENGERS' Loki). "If it wouldn't have been Peggy who directed this, we would've made her come on to do that song," quips Magee-Cook, referring to "The Frigate that Flies" and the ability of Holmes to "choreograph things without making them look choreographed." You see, there's a ROCK connection in Holmes past, as she's a noted choreographer whose body of work includes the 2001 Mark Wahlberg film, ROCK STAR, along with WAYNE'S WORLD and FAME L.A., among others. 

As noted in my formal review of THE PIRATE FAIRY, this is a film that will appeal to girls and boys alike, and a story that's already been enjoyed by my little ones here at HQ. 

Big thanks to The Walt Disney Company for inviting me to pay their studios a visit funded by Scrooge McDuck himself. In fact, THE PIRATE FAIRY is now close by at all times, as a signed piece of production art now hangs in my office, alongside a collection of artifacts and photos brought back from my recent adventures...

Disney's THE PIRATE FAIRY is available on Blu-ray and DVD via (my affiliate) Amazon:
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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