Ordinarily, this would be posted when LEGO sends information, but this will be exception, as this is a good opportunity to look at some the things that make these (and Walt) important to animated motion pictures…
811 parts and coming out September 1, this set is expected to be $99.99/99.99 Euro. A little high on the price per part, but there’s some unique items that make the set worth looking at, especially if you are a Disney fan.
In terms of looking at parts, the most striking element is the film. It’ll be printed plastic, but take a look at what is printed on it – frames from classic Disney films! While a couple of frames are hard to recognize, the frames seen are from Frozen, Princess and the Frog, Mulan, The Lion King, Beauty and the Beast, the Little Mermaid, The Rescuers, Robin Hood, Jungle Book, Sword in the Stone, Sleeping Beauty, Alice in Wonderland, Cinderella and Dumboi.
The other group of unique items are the figures. Walt Disney is a minifigure! Mickey and Minnie are also included, but Minnie seems a bit spare – while she was in the early short films shirtless, there were a few early films where she wore a bra! The other figures are of Bambi and Dumbo, were movies made by Disney.
The figures are on vignette that is a clapperboard (nice touch) with a multiplane camera in the back (even nicer touch). You can see it below on the third photo in the set.
We’ll get to the rest of the pics in a bit. The multiplane camera is a Disney innovation (not invention, as other multiples have been developed – Disney made the first one of this type, and this was actually built by Ub Iwerks). One of these can be seen on display at the Walt Disney Studios:
There’s only three of these left. And the LEGO build is pretty close, considering the scale. It really is huge, and has to be. The black edged levels needed to be far enough apart to so one level would be focused while the others were not – creating an illusion of depth. If you look at the color photos of the set above, the second photo shows a black frame with a scene – that is what the viewer would see from the top of the multiplane. The camera could be positioned within the area and take a photo a frame at a time. The first Disney short to use the multiplane was The Old Mill (and got an Academy Award for it!)
The first photo of that color block is Walt Disney working at his animation desk. When he was starting out, there wasn’t animation desks or cameras – he was one of the pioneers of the field. He had a drafting or drawing board when he worked.
The camera itself is based on the typical movie camera of the day, which was used by Walt when he started out.
Here’s a video from Disney showing the multiplane camera. You can see the initial animation cameras in the beginning of the clip:
As a set, A Homage to Walt Disney looks pretty good – it’s got my interest as a Disney fan. It’s not only a decent looking build, it also has some value in showing some film history.
Official information will be coming soon, so there will be more to see.