Would you believe it takes 9 months to pull of Disney Night on Dancing With The Stars? Executive Producer Rob Wade talks all about it in a new article at the Huffington Post. This is Fascinating stuff. Be sure to read more at the link.
“That’s actually how long we’ve been having meetings about ‘Disney Night,’ which is the theme of this week’s show,” explained Rob Wade, the executive producer of this long-running ABC series. “But you have to understand that — when you’re building an episode of Dancing with the Stars around Disney — you’ve got this huge assortment of characters to chose from. Not to mention decades of popular music to dig through as you look for just the right songs to build dance routines around.”
Ah, but then there’s the other aspect of “Disney Night” on Dancing with the Stars. In order to make Monday night’s proceedings seem genuinely magical, Wade & Co. are going to take memorable pieces of Disney animation and then digitally insert them into this week’s dance routines.
“We did this for the first time with last year’s ‘Disney Night’ and really got a huge reaction from Dancing with the Stars viewers. So this time around, we’re going all out. You’re not only going to see brief bits of Disney animation in Monday night’s dance routines, you’re also going to see it in the show’s bumpers. We’ll have live Disney characters — Mickey, Minnie, Donald & Pluto — performing in the show’s opening number. We’ll even be flying people as part of this week’s dance routines, just like in Aladdin, ” Rob enthused. “Truth be told, you’re going to see Disney characters throughout this week’s show. At one point, you’ll even see an animated Pinocchio clapping at the judge’s table.”
As you might expect, there’s a lot of behind-the-scenes effort that goes into pulling off a 2 hour-long, live television presentation like Dancing with the Stars. But when you add digitally inserted animated footage and live costume characters to that mix, what was once just tough to pull off now verges on impossible.
“That’s why — for the past two weeks — we’ve been getting ready for our ‘Disney Night’ show. This past Saturday, we had a whole extra day onstage where we did just prep,” Wade stated.
“All season long, the celebrities have really been looking forward to performing on ‘Disney Night.’ That’s one of the main reasons we scheduled this particular Dancing with the Stars show for the middle of the season. So that as many of our celebrity performers as possible would then get the chance to dance to a piece of classic Disney music,” Rob stated.
“Of course, we obviously want to make sure that whatever our celebrities do with the Disney characters looks fabulous and is suitably impressive. So just from a technical perspective, this particular episode of Dancing with the Stars will be a real challenge. There’s an extra level of precision involved with this particular show,” Wade said. “Which is why I’d like to remind the folks watching at home that — thanks to all of the talented people who work in front of and behind the camera — ‘Dancing with the Stars’ always looks polished and professional. But you still have to remember that this is a two hour-long live TV show.”