To continue the ongoing story of the week's studio walk-throughs:
What's termed "Disney Sonora" is a large building sitting near what was once Glendale's Grand Central Airport (seen above in its glory days) and is now a large industrial park owned by Disney and -- off by the cement channel known as the L.A. River -- DreamWorks Animation.
The "Sonora Building" is two stories, housing Disney Television Animation downstairs and Disney Toons Studios upstairs. Disney Television Animation produces half-hour series and reports to the Disney Channel hierarchy (it once was under Disney Feature Animation); Disney Toons Studios reports to the main studio lot in Burbank. In the last few months, John Lasseter has become involved in Diz Toons product.
Both first and second floors have been refurbished over the last couple of years. Downstairs, the DTVA crews work in traditional-looking gray cubicles with walls six and a half feet high. A year and a half ago, the downstairs was jack-hammered into its present splendor, with complaints of dust and noise from the Toon residents on the second floor.
A few months back, the upstairs got a make-over with new carpeting, new cubicles, and a large, spanking fresh open area with fifties-retro hanging lights similar to Disney Features, and new cubicles with deviders that look like starched white linen.
Most of the staff hates the new cubicles. "Too small"..."not enough work space"..."low dividers with people looking in at me all the time"...
On the bright side, when you're just walking through and around the new cubes as I do, the overall set-up looks kind of snazzy, like Civil War tents. It just doesn't have much practicality attached to the snazziness.
But the artists soldier on. The Tinkerbell and Fairies crews have now moved over from the Frank Wells Building on the Burbank lot, and are settling in. The fresh pass on Tinkerbell is now up on reels, and Lasseter is alegedly happy with the new story arc. The sequels beyond it are beginning to take on form and substance.
Enjoy the balance of the weekend.