D23 and the Fanniversary

Last month I was given something that I have yearned to have for years – a D23 Gold membership. The gift was specifically a family membership, so that when events come around I can bring more than one person with me. There is an assortment of events and fun things that come with this membership, such as recipes on the website, an annual gift, tours of the Disney Archive and Lot.

Last Friday I attended my first event with my best friend. A special screening of Beauty and the Beast at the El Capitan theater. 20160902_2108590

 

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It was kind of like a dream come true for me. Beauty and the Beast is my favorite Disney movie. It’s the first one I can remember seeing in theaters when I was three years old. It’s the one Disney movie and soundtrack that I have always gone to when I needed that pick me up that only Disney can provide, and I can’t make it to either the Disney District in Anaheim or the local Disney store. Or heck – even just sitting near one of the Disney campuses has proven to be helpful.

For the event – not only did we get to see the original theatrical version of the film, but we were surprised with appearances by Producer Don Hahn.

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And Jo Anne Worley, the voice of the Wardrobe!

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Both gave a wonderfully delightful inside peek at what it was like working for the film while being hilarious and entertaining. Seeing the movie in theaters for the first time since I was a little girl was an experience. It was like I was seeing it for the first time, cocooned in w0nder and magic that I haven’t experienced in such a long time. I cried, I laughed, I cheered when the Castle overtook the villagers. And I just enjoyed myself. This gift was more than I could have ever imagined. It was a perfect first experience for this club. I really could not have asked for a better experience.

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The Fanniversary is always focused on one thing that is important to Disney history. This year the Fanniversary is Beauty and the Beast. The website has recipes based off of the film, craft ideas, and behind the scenes looks at the creation of the original film as it celebrates its 25th anniversary, but the live action version coming out early next year. The end of this event every member and guest there was given a gift – a set of three postcards with art drawn for this event. They are treasured works of art awaiting frames to go on my wall or bookshelves.

I am so grateful to the friend who got me such an amazing gift. I don’t know if I can every fully express just how much this membership has already meant to me, and everything that I have gotten from it. I cannot wait to see what else the D23 club has in store. Or for the live action Beauty and the Beast next year.