PHOTOS - ABC Disney Parks Unforgettable Christmas Celebration filming wraps up at the Magic Kingdom

Nov 13, 2015 in "Holidays at the Magic Kingdom"

Disney Parks Unforgettable Christmas Celebration performances
Posted: Friday November 13, 2015 1:15pm EST by WDWMAGIC Staff

Cinderella Castle at the Magic Kingdom has been the backdrop for the filming of the ABC Disney Parks Unforgettable Christmas Celebration.

This past week has seen performances from Andy Grammer, Ariana Grande, Jason Derulo, Reba McEntire, Seal, Tori Kelly, David Foster, Charlie Puth, Janel Parrish, the cast of Descendants, Charles Perry and Jhen Aiko.

The 32nd annual holiday special will air on ABC Christmas Day December 25 at 10am ET.

Photos Copyright 2015 The Walt Disney Company.

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Matt_BlackDec 28, 2015

Totally unrelated to hosting, but I think this was the first time we've seen any footage of Moana, yes?

Launchpad McQuackDec 27, 2015

This sounds like an improvement on the format. Of course, the one part I disagree with is where you say "have Robin check in..." I don't want her back ever again. I know she is a famous personality with an inspiring story of her own, but she doesn't have the charismatic personality or whatever x-factor it takes to really bring the Disney Magic to life on one of these shows. I hate to keep going back to this same person, but Neil Patrick Harris should be the standard. If you can't get him, maybe go with one of your primetime stars or someone who has been in a famous Disney role. I feel like they should have the resources to get a pair like Zachary Levi (Tangled) and Kristen Bell (Frozen). Put one at WDW and one at DL. Give them a format similar to what NPH and Nick Cannon worked with in 2013. Watch the magic unfold.

wdisney9000Dec 27, 2015

Thats all I was suggesting. And Im ALL for any deserving family getting to be a part of this. Heck, I would even make a small donation towards helping to make that happen. That would be a much better angle to take IMO. People watch the Disney Christmas Special (Parade, or whatever they call it now) to see Disney stuff. IF they wanna throw in some families getting trips to Disney I wanna see that. But I wanna see them at Disney, not at their house for a majority of the segment. I could watch Dateline if I wanna see all that. They could use all that time and make it like a trip report with the family checking in on day one, two, etc. HAve them report throughout the entire show. Have Robin "check in" on them to see what theyre up to. But make it real, not like the ceesy segments they did in te past that show the family standing on the beach at Aulani with Mickey waving. Show them in line in the Space Mountain Star Tunnel , show them eating at The Land, scanning their magic band to get in their room, and browsing through the shops. That would be so fun to see.

NearTheEarsDec 27, 2015

Why not let a deserving family benefit from being part of this, even if it comes off like a commercial. If they just went full commercial they'd just be paying actors. I'd rather see it going to these folks, even if they had to give up some of their time. I 100% understand your problem with how it's presented, and that's a failure by the production team. Coming from that background, I wonder if they thought it was too time consuming, or distracting for other guests to have a team follow them around, waiting to capture a genuine moment. Maybe it should be a better mix of genuine and staged moments. Or at least a better attempt a creating that genuine feel to the piece.

robonics95Dec 27, 2015

Yes, it's online and On-Demand.

FoozieBearDec 27, 2015

Does this thing ever show up online? Looks like I missed it again this year.

robonics95Dec 27, 2015

Ok, I am trying not to sound like a cheerleader for all of this stuff, and I apologize if I am, but having been one of the families in this latest special, I can expand a little here. First, the process is simply a casting agency sending out a mass web release asking for anyone and everyone to share their unforgettable Disney memories. For those of us who happen to see this release and were motivated to do so, we responded to this request with specific Disney stories and memories. You are absolutely correct, there are probably many more incredible stories out there, and I assume yours are very incredible, as well. But out of the (I assume) many, ours was one of the stories selected for this year. I guess I compare it to choosing a contestant for American Idol or The Voice. There are probably a lot of great voices out there, some could argue that they are "better" than those that made the final cut, but for some reason, we seem to see amazing new talent auditioning every year. After submitting our story, I was interviewed and asked to share more about how my passion for Disney started and some things that our family had gone through. Contrary to an earlier post, we are not an immigrant family, just a Hispanic family who used to visit a lot in my youth and a tradition that I have been carrying on through my life, through marriage, and now to our children. What wasn't shared, for reasons that I have already shared, was a head injury from my near death car accident in 2009 and my wife's Stage 3 breast cancer (chemo, radiation, double mastectomy) and how we fought through it all, together, with our family's love for each other and for all things Disney. In regards to the family with a lot of adopted kids, this is a couple who had a lot of love to share with their adopted children and wanted share that love with a special trip to Disney years ago. There were complications with their vacation travel and what supposed to be a magnificent and magical vacation, turned into less than a day vacation. I don't know about you but I think that would suck. And as stated in earlier posts, a trip like that for such a large family is not cheap. They probably assumed that that vacation was a complete loss. I assume that they submitted their story and, as a result, were selected and given a second chance to enjoy these magical memories.

wdisney9000Dec 27, 2015

I'm all for a foster kid/s getting to have a nice trip to Disney. But as I said prior, no need to tell a long drawn out story. Less sad story, more Disney moments of said foster kids having fun. I'd rather see that, not the dad on the couch for ten minutes expaining it all.

mnelson3Dec 27, 2015

WDW should purchase some of TDLs Easter parade floats!

DisneyPrincess5Dec 27, 2015

A bunch of foster kids getting adopted into a forever home, a military family whose very young child is a cancer survivor, an immigrant family, and an engagement of a military man. All beautiful stories that I enjoyed watching and glad they got nice vacations. As for the parade, I miss the 90s format and the lip syncing was kind of yikes. Unless I totally missed this, wasn't this a great opportunity to promote Avatar, Toy Story Land, and Star Wars Land? I cannot remember seeing/hearing anything about that. Did hear a quick blurb about Frozen Forever however. Would've loved to see more of the Disney Parks all over the world if that's what they're gonna call the parade. Overall, it was fun to watch and will tune in next year. If only they'd bring back my beloved Easter Parade...

Tigger1988Dec 26, 2015

I don't work for Disney, so I'm not privy to their process. Nor do I care, as "hardship" isn't a least not for me. What stories are worthy to you? Why don't you call someone at Disney and ask how they picked the families?

mousehockey37Dec 26, 2015

Well, I asked... what's the procedure for picking the families? And you can view my stance any way you want... I honestly don't care what you think, but there are much better stories than the ones that were chosen that could have been used. Again, I'd love to know the process for how they picked who they did.

Tigger1988Dec 26, 2015

So Disney shouldn't do anything charitable for anyone? Sounds like sour grapes.

mousehockey37Dec 26, 2015

There's lots of people/families that have earned and deserve a nice vacation... and per places like these boards and such, you get told, if you can't afford it, tough cookies, you don't go... what makes them so different?