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+--Forum: CMC - Cast Member Clubhouse
+---Topic: What do the Disney Characters think about adults? started by RichKoster


Posted by: RichKoster on Sep. 14, 2003 5:01 am/pm

Yoo Hoo, Disney EchoEars!

If you or a friend/relative of yours has "assisted" the Disney Characters in any way when they meet and greet the Guests at WDW/DL, pose for pictures, interact, etc., here's a question for you:

What do the Disney Characters think of adults who like getting their picture taken with them, hugging them, and interacting with them?

I understand that not every one will feel exactly the same way, but in general do the Characters appreciate meeting adults -- perhaps as a welcome break from some of the overly-hyper children -- or do they think to themselves, as Chris / Goofyteer put it, "Oh, gimme a break you're too old for this!"? Or do they find that it is generally a nice change of pace to interact with fun-loving adults who are generally more relaxed and playful than the kids?

Anyone in a position to know the answer is welcome to respond, whether you're experience is as a Cast Member or former CM yourself or you've heard about this from a friend or relative who is or was a CM.

Posted by: RichKoster on Sep. 16, 2003 1:44 am/pm

kirby428 posted this great answer in another thread here:


Never has a cast member given me the impression that as an adult, I was somehow a bother to them.  I've had Tigger walk behind both my wife and I as we were seated at Crystal Palace and then mischieviously spoon mashed potatoes toward our mouth but missing it thus landing us with a nose full.  First he did it to me, but as my wife was laughing uncontrollably, he repeated the favor for her too.  I am sure the cast member had as much fun as we did.  

Adults can make it hard for cast members to maintain their character, especially so if no kids are around.  Chip was visiting our table at the Garden Grille one year.  There were mostly adults at the tables.  As adults, we have actually SEEN all the Disney cartoons and can come up with some silly PUNS and zany banter with the silent ones in costume, but on this one day, Chip couldn't stand it anymore and leaned over to my wife and said quietly, "let's throw him over the rail".  This was a just the greatest fun!  Without facial contact, it was obvious the cast members were having fun with us because they kept visiting our crazy table with great frequency.

Adults can get into the "show" with the characters too.  One day at MGM there was a collection of characters on Holywood BLVD that were surrounded by kids in clusters.  I wanted Jaffar's autograph too, so way in the back I yelled out "OH MIGHTY EVIL ONE, PLEASE SIGN MY BOOK TOO" .  Jaffar made his way to me, insisted that I bend over and kiss his boots which, of course, I did dramatically.  Then, Jaffar  quickly signed my book and gave me the Shooo Shooo motion with the hands to rid himself of such a big pest.  The kids were just AMAZED.  Good show, eh?  Lots of fun.

Posted by: Goofyteer on Sep. 16, 2003 10:50 am/pm

I wonder if the characters interact with men different from the women. And do men interact with the characters differently than women?
Posted by: MKBaughan on Sep. 16, 2003 11:26 am/pm

I have had several encounters with the characters... I think it's fun to have your picture taken with them... two incidents in particular come to mind...
On my second trip to WDW in 1998, I had a mission of a scavenger hunt for a fan club I was part of.  My friend who is a CM, and a member of the same club, and I set off to do as many things on the list as we could... we were amazed at how many things we found.  I had to have a picture of a petticoat, a saloon girl, and several other things.  I went to the old Soundstage restaurant ( now Bear in the Big Blue House) where they did  character breakfasts.  I was trying to get a picture with Belle, as I knew she had a petticoat.  I patiently waited in the lobby for her (after explaining my quest to the CM in charge of the characters).  A guy came up to me and said "Stephanie will be with you in just a moment)...
Stephanie was Belle... who was peeping around the doorway, trying to stay in character for the kids still in earshot!  She was really sweet, and nice enough to pose with me (as were every other character I need a photo with).  But, that one CM
almost ruined the moment for me, and for the children still in the area....  

On another trip three years ago with my granddaughter and her family, we met the Pooh characters in Toontown... they were great!  I am only 4'9" tall, and Piglet kept pushing me in his place and waving goodbye so I could be Piglet for him!  Tigger joined in and they each took one of arms pulling me back and forth... it was great fun and one of my favorite WDW memories!  My friend was sitting in the corner laughing and taking pictures of us with the characters, and Pooh tried to get her to join in.  

I have always felt the CM playing the characters enjoy doing what they do... and joking with the adults makes it a little more fun for them.

I don't think that the adults should take time away from the kids time with them, but I think they are there for all of us.

:pixiedust:

Posted by: RichKoster on Sep. 16, 2003 11:56 am/pm



---------------------QUOTE BEGIN-------------------
I wonder if the characters interact with men different from the women. And do men interact with the characters differently than women?
---------------------QUOTE-------------------


I'm not even going to go there...
:rolleyes:

Posted by: RichKoster on Sep. 16, 2003 11:59 am/pm



---------------------QUOTE BEGIN-------------------
I have always felt the CM playing the characters enjoy doing what they do... and joking with the adults makes it a little more fun for them.

I don't think that the adults should take time away from the kids time with them, but I think they are there for all of us.

---------------------QUOTE-------------------


That's what I think, too. :nod:
Great stories!  :clap:

Posted by: Goofyteer on Sep. 22, 2003 2:00 am/pm

There's a book out there called < Mouse Tales > that tells behind the scenes stories at Disneyland. It's also a book I tend to avoid like the plague because as far as I'm concerned the whole point of magic is you don't want to be reminded that there's a reality behind it. So I very cautiously took a few peeks at the chapter in it about the characters.

I'm shocked and surprised how little respect some "guests" treat the characters! I won't go into details but it looks like a lot of people going to Disney parks lack basic manners and kindness. Especially to characters who bring so much joy to everyone's lives. It turns out there are a lot of things that guests can do that can very easily hurt the characters, such as shoving a nose too hard and things like that. I don't want to go into details of what such abuse can do since I'm sure we have children reading here too, but it's shocking. I can't imagine anyone doing anything like that to poor Mickey or Donald. Some people are just mean and will do anything for a prank I guess.

:angry:

And then there are those who might accidentally cause something, but of course that's much more rare. It's alot more more understandable too.

But anyway this got me thinking, maybe somebody should write a list somewhere concerning proper etiquette for meeting characters. Some of the things could be common sense such as no shoving, no kicking, etc. But it could also mention some things people don't know about like not giving sudden shoves to noses and things like that. What do you think? I mean shouldn't the characters enjoy meeting us as much as we enjoy meeting them?

Posted by: AngieBelle on Sep. 25, 2003 10:32 am/pm

I just started doing characters at Universal.  :)  I have no problem with adults coming over.  If they are excited to see me, it's great fun.

Popeye was more popular with the adults than the kids.  They enjoyed doing muscle poses.  Women liked to put their arms around him.  Some people would squeeze my arm when I did a muscle pose. That was a bit odd.  One guy asked Popeye to arm wrestle...I had to shake my head no cause I couldn't tell if he meant it or not...no way is this not very strong girl going to arm wrestle with a big guy!  Then there was a Spanish speaking woman who found it amusing to sneak up behind me and shake my shoulders...
But most people were fine.

I'm also "friends with" Woody Woodpecker.  I had kids who wanted to hear his famous laugh.  Others did the laugh for me.  Everyone, adults and kids, were happy to see him.  :)  They'd wave.  Kids would run right into my arms.  So fun, if exhausting.

Posted by: RichKoster on Sep. 25, 2003 10:42 am/pm

That's great to hear, Angie! It's good practice for when you come back to Disney.
:)

Posted by: ItsAllAboutMe on Sep. 26, 2003 6:47 am/pm

What a wonderful topic!    

Character meeting always mean so very much to me.  

A few years ago - while Disney during a September Hurricane with torrential rain, I had the pleasure of meeting the Fairy Godmother under the Magic Castle after lunch upstairs.

As a then 45 year old single woman I told her I needed a bit of extra help in the 'Prince' department.  She said she would see what Magic she could do for me. ( She is allowed to speak).

12 weeks later i reconnected with someone i had known a few years before and he is now my husband.

When I was at the park last year... i told her what she had helped with ( who knows if it was the same godmother or not) and she replied.... I will pass the word around the Castle... eveyone is always so glad to hear that we helped!  You are not the first to tell us of such wonderful results!;)

To HECK with Matchmakers - I was MUCH more connected than that with a wonderful Fairy Godmother to assist!

Flo

Posted by: RichKoster on Sep. 26, 2003 8:27 am/pm

Yoo Hoo, Flo!

Thanks for sharing that with us and congratulations, Flo!

Reading about the wonderful Disney magic that happened literally brought tears of joy to my eyes.
:pixiedust:

Posted by: Goofyteer on Sep. 26, 2003 11:50 am/pm

ItsAllAboutMe, that story was charming! (No pun intended.) That was precious, I enjoyed it.
:mickey:  :minnie:

Posted by: dizneluver9 on Sep. 26, 2003 11:11 am/pm

Where do I have to go to meet My Fairygod Mother!?!?!? :) Hehehehehehehe
Posted by: Goofyteer on Sep. 27, 2003 1:08 am/pm

Looks like the Fairy Godmothers Union is going to have to set up a dating service  :mickey:  :minnie:
Posted by: Robinkay6573 on Oct. 09, 2003 1:25 am/pm

When I worked at Carlton Cards when I was in college every year "Birthday Bear" came to visit.  I was lucky enough to be his "assistant".  I loved it when adults would come up to me.  Since it was just the mall and not WDW (with autography books and cameras) people would just come up and say hello or get a hug.  The kids loved it and so did some adults.  The only people that really bothered me was the shrieking teen-agers especially the ones that would push their friends at me.  

Last Christmas my family went to WDW for the holidays.  We had a long day and were sitting taking a rest over near the Honey I Shrunk the Kids play-yard.  Mom & I noticed some of the characters were signing autographs and posing for pictures in "New York".  We walked real fast down there and we were third in line with Tigger came out.  When it got to our turn Tigger ran up to me and grabbed me around the waist and starting waltzing with me around in circles.  I was laughing so hard I was almost crying.  That was one of the highlights of my trip.

For my birthday in June my sister and I went to Chef Mickey's.  I think we had more fun then the kids did!  Goofy was GREAT.  Next to us was a family of 4 (a pre-teen, a teenage girl and their parents).  When the table next to us was halfway though their meal Goofy grabbed the older girl, put a folded napkin on her head handed her the basket with the salt, pepper, sugars etc. and had me stand in front of them with an opened autography book.  I was to "marry" them!  The mother was laughing so hard she could hardly compose herself.  After the ceremony Goofy went to show off his new "bride" to everyone in the lobby.  I turned to the mother and said, "and you thought this was going to be for your younger daughter!"

Just from my experiences feel that if you play-along with the characters they will make your trip to WDW even more special.

Posted by: disneyn on Oct. 09, 2003 3:03 am/pm

Rich, My first hand experience when I was on my 7day land/sea was that the characters really enjoyed having interaction with the adults.  Every time I wanted an autograph or a photo they seemed to want to do it.  When I was on Castaway Cay My friend Minnie was all alone for autographs and she made the cast member use her back to sign the two postcards I wanted to send home to my little friends. :minnie:  :clap:   Every time I was at the parks they went out of thier way to give me a photo or a kiss or an autograph.  I love  :hearts: The World  Disneyn
Posted by: mickeyvw98 on Oct. 14, 2003 9:04 am/pm

I was recently in WDW for my honeymoon. On a few days I wore the Minnie veil with ears (of course :) )... I think the characters had the most fun with me those days. In MGM I got the biggest hug from Eeoyre.  :mickey: (and a really cute picture)

We also did a character dinner at the Liberty Tavern in Magic Kingdom one night (without ears :) ). That was a blast. There wasn't really any kids around us but they seemed to visit our table quite a bit. Minnie sat with us for pictures at one point and started laughing so hard she put her head on the table because we were picking on her and CHip and Dale were following her around picking on her. It was so much fun! We tried to feed Pluto but he just hunched his shoulders and wandered away.  :hearts: The characters were so awesome! I hope we weren't really a bother to them!

Posted by: Sweetums on Oct. 14, 2003 8:49 am/pm



---------------------QUOTE BEGIN-------------------
Yoo Hoo, Disney EchoEars!

If you or a friend/relative of yours has "assisted" the Disney Characters in any way when they meet and greet the Guests at WDW/DL, pose for pictures, interact, etc., here's a question for you:

What do the Disney Characters think of adults who like getting their picture taken with them, hugging them, and interacting with them?

I understand that not every one will feel exactly the same way, but in general do the Characters appreciate meeting adults -- perhaps as a welcome break from some of the overly-hyper children -- or do they think to themselves, as Chris / Goofyteer put it, "Oh, gimme a break you're too old for this!"? Or do they find that it is generally a nice change of pace to interact with fun-loving adults who are generally more relaxed and playful than the kids?

Anyone in a position to know the answer is welcome to respond, whether you're experience is as a Cast Member or former CM yourself or you've heard about this from a friend or relative who is or was a CM.
---------------------QUOTE-------------------


I "assisted" characters at Disney/MGM (Goofy, Beast, Jafar, Chewbacca, Sweetums--tall ones).  Most characters I knew had lots of fun with most adults.  Most of the guests were very enthusiastic about meeting characters so that makes the characters enthusiastic toward them.  Of course, it's the kids that REALLY make a character's day because they don't come to it with any preconceptions.  They are just so happy to be meeting Mickey or Goofy or whoever.  The looks of awe and the smiles they had were priceless.

Most adults, as I mentioned, really were very nice.  Many get excited and that is lots of fun.  Personally, I still get excited when I see Disney characters.   :) When my wife and I were there a few years ago, we took pictures with just about every character we saw.  It was a blast!  Also, when we went to Islands of Adventure I thought it was so cool to get my picture with the Grinch, Popeye and Bullwinkle. :cool:

Sometimes, people could be rude about shoving to get a picture or autograph for their child.  Also, people (both adults and kids) seem to think it's funny to pull on tails (I remember this happening to Pluto a lot) which it isn't.  And, if you really want to irritate a character, walk up to them and ask "Are you hot in there?"   :grimace:

Anyway, as far as most characters I knew were concerned, interacting with adults, while maybe not AS fun as with the kids, was still fun if they were obviously fans who were having a good time.

Posted by: Sweetums on Oct. 14, 2003 8:50 am/pm



---------------------QUOTE BEGIN-------------------
I wonder if the characters interact with men different from the women. And do men interact with the characters differently than women?
---------------------QUOTE-------------------


The characters I worked with pretty much took their cues from the guests.  Men tended to come and give a handshake vs. women who would want a hug.  This is just in general--not the rule by any means.  Characters would typically put their arms around people for the picture regardless.  Or they will spread their arms with their hands/paws/claws spread as well.

Posted by: Sweetums on Oct. 14, 2003 8:50 am/pm



---------------------QUOTE BEGIN-------------------
Adults can get into the "show" with the characters too.  One day at MGM there was a collection of characters on Holywood BLVD that were surrounded by kids in clusters.  I wanted Jaffar's autograph too, so way in the back I yelled out "OH MIGHTY EVIL ONE, PLEASE SIGN MY BOOK TOO" .  Jaffar made his way to me, insisted that I bend over and kiss his boots which, of course, I did dramatically.  Then, Jaffar  quickly signed my book and gave me the Shooo Shooo motion with the hands to rid himself of such a big pest.  The kids were just AMAZED.  Good show, eh?  Lots of fun.
---------------------QUOTE-------------------


That reminded me of a day I was "assisting" Jafar and he was having people bow to him for autographs.  Unfortunately, he did not see a little boy who wanted an autograph and was not getting the whole "bowing for autographs" thing.  Well, Jafar got a complaint letter. :uhoh:

Even though he was still evil, he was a bit more careful after that.  :)

Posted by: RichKoster on Oct. 14, 2003 10:23 am/pm



---------------------QUOTE BEGIN-------------------
Minnie sat with us for pictures at one point and started laughing so hard she put her head on the table because we were picking on her and CHip and Dale were following her around picking on her. It was so much fun!
---------------------QUOTE-------------------


Oh, please share with us some of the things that made Minnie laugh so much!
:minnie:

Posted by: mickeyvw98 on Oct. 15, 2003 8:43 am/pm

It's kinda hard to describe... Minnie was being followed around by Chip and Dale. They were walking funny behind her, bumping into her when she stopped and just generally picking on her. Plus they had just come back from a character break... So who knows what happened there. When Chip and Dale disappeared for a few minutes (not sure where they went), we got a picture with Minnie while she sat at our table. We had a really good spot for spotting characters because we were against the wall on one side and the stairs on another side. Well Chip and Dale came back, started making gestures and stuff at Minnie. I looked at her and said "Well, you really aren't hidden very well, ya' know" she lost it. Minnie put her head in her hands and her shoulders started shaking, then the laughter! :minnie:  :hearts: It's one of our favorite memories!  LOL
Posted by: MKBaughan on Oct. 16, 2003 11:19 am/pm

When I went to DL back in '98 I had (& still have) a safari Piglet my cast member friend sent me after the CM preview of AK.... Piglet became the mascot of the group of friends I went to DL with.  On Main Street, we were waiting for some of the group to arrive when Pooh spotted me standing there with my Piglet.  He came over, pointed to Piglet, I handed it to him, and he hugged Piglet.  Then, he hugged me, and We got our picture together.  It made a special visit even more special.  Going to DL was the fulfillment of a lifelong dream.  I am six months older than the park.... and always wanted to go there.     :pixiedust:  :mickey:
Posted by: DanMedix on Oct. 20, 2003 2:17 am/pm

My family and I did the Character Breakfast at the Grand Floridian back in '01.  It was the first time my daughter (then almost 2 1/2) had been there.  Of course, at this point, she was a HUGE Pooh fan.  When we got around to the restaurant, she saw Piglet, who played like he was shy, and ran around the corner, peeking at my daughter the whole time.  My daughter then walked up to him and said something like "It's ok, Piglet", and tried to make him feel better.  She got a huge hug for that one! When we passed Piglet on our way to our table, leaned over to him and said a big "thank you very much".  Piglet then half-hugged me, and let me go to my table.  I'm not sure if the characters get all the "thank you"'s that they deserve, but I make an extra effort to thank everyone (characters or not) who helps to make the trip extra special.  

I hope I run into Piglet again in '04!

Posted by: Goofyteer on Oct. 21, 2003 12:56 am/pm

I'm really enjoying this thread! This is a really heartwarming topic and I love it.

Oh and Sweetums, I love your input on the subject! Please share more as you can, I'm hanging on your every word. It's wonderful to hear about all of this :mickey:

Posted by: Sweetums on Oct. 21, 2003 11:48 am/pm

Sure thing, Goofyteer!   :)

Just ask away and I'll do my best.

I am also enjoying reading people's stories.  Sometimes, a character doesn't even know how special they made someone's trip until they get a letter or someone says something.  People are usually pretty good about saying thank you, but for most characters, going the extra mile for people is a normal experience so they are sometimes surprised when they get a letter telling them how they made someone's day.  It is really cool when that happens.   :cool:

Unfortunately, sometimes because of crowds, it is all a character can do to just get the books signed and pictures taken.  It is much more fun when there aren't as many people around and the characters can really interact with people and/or the other characters.
:space:

Posted by: Goofyteer on Oct. 21, 2003 1:06 am/pm

Thanks Sweetums!

Here's a quick one for you now that I'm thinking about it. Well okay, it's sort of a silly one but it still just struck my mind. Have you heard of any adult celebrities (or heck, even just someone with money?) paying the park for any extra attention or favors from any of the characters? Like having a certain character joining them for a day or something. I figure that if Elizabeth Taylor can reserve Disneyland for a day like Rich said, then maybe anybody with money can get just about whatever they want within reason? I can easily see somebody like Haley Joel Osment or Michael Jackson requesting a day with Mickey Mouse or Peter Pan.

But then I can't imagine something like that being easy on the character, so I can't imagine it being a realistic request even for someone with money.

Posted by: Sweetums on Oct. 21, 2003 3:15 am/pm

As far as spending the day with a character, it would be difficult because they are only allowed to be out 30 to 40 minutes at a time.

But yes, I know there have been private meetings with the characters.

Celebrities will do photo shoots a lot of times with characters and "hang out" with them that way.  Mickey did a photo shoot with Nancy Kerrigan and although Mickey would never say anything that wasn't nice about someone, my friend Sarah, who was also there, told me Nancy was not very friendly to any of the characters.  In fact, she seemed annoyed with them.

Anyone with money can hire the characters to be at an event.  It is very common for characters to be present at banquets and other events that companies hold at WDW.  

Let me tell you, you wouldn't believe the parties/banquets/events/etc... Disney puts on!  I wish I could work for a company that would hire Disney to do one.  For example, at one event, the theme was "Aladdin".  The whole banquet room looked like Agrabah and then they also had a huge replica of the Cave of Wonders!  Wow!  I was there with Jafar and it was pretty strange.  I say strange, because there are usually no children at these events.  It's all adults and most of them are drinking.  It's a very different vibe than in the park.  Some of them will get excited to see the characters while many others either ignore them or just give them a weird look like "what are you doing here?"  

People have also had characters at their birthday parties.  I know Aladdin, Jasmine and Jafar were at a private birthday party for a very wealthy Prince (seriously).

But for the rest of us poor shlubs, we just have to wait in line or wait until we spot them in the parks!    :9

Posted by: RichKoster on Oct. 22, 2003 12:47 am/pm

Jeff, speaking of parties mainly for adults, I've totally enjoyed the special Disneyana Convention ceremonies and parties Disney has thrown at both WDW and Disneyland. I'm sorry to see them now just a past part of Disney history.

I don't know if you were helping with any of those events, but everyone was always just as nice as they could be and very helpful and giving at those conventions I attended.

I miss those good times very much, but I still have the memories, pictures, and souvenEARS from those times. Heck, I even have a silk banner I bought from one of them that says "I'm a ConventionEar!"
:ears:

Posted by: Sweetums on Oct. 22, 2003 10:08 am/pm

I remember some of the Disneyana conventions being at WDW (particularly when I worked at the Contemporary), but I never actually participated or helped out with them.  They sound like lots of fun, though!   :)
Posted by: Goofyteer on Oct. 31, 2003 3:08 am/pm

Sweetums, speaking of your saying people have had characters at private parties and all, do they have to be rich to do that? Or is it anywhere near affordable? I wonder what the requirements are
:coolgrin:

Posted by: Sweetums on Nov. 01, 2003 10:51 am/pm

I always wondered what they paid, but I know it ain't cheap!

The majority of the special events like that were companies who put them on.  So, yeah, I'd say you would probably have to have a bit of money to do it.

Posted by: Peggo on Nov. 01, 2003 11:23 am/pm



---------------------QUOTE BEGIN-------------------
What a wonderful topic!    

Character meeting always mean so very much to me.  

A few years ago - while Disney during a September Hurricane with torrential rain, I had the pleasure of meeting the Fairy Godmother under the Magic Castle after lunch upstairs.

As a then 45 year old single woman I told her I needed a bit of extra help in the 'Prince' department.  She said she would see what Magic she could do for me. ( She is allowed to speak).

12 weeks later i reconnected with someone i had known a few years before and he is now my husband.

When I was at the park last year... i told her what she had helped with ( who knows if it was the same godmother or not) and she replied.... I will pass the word around the Castle... eveyone is always so glad to hear that we helped!  You are not the first to tell us of such wonderful results!;)

To HECK with Matchmakers - I was MUCH more connected than that with a wonderful Fairy Godmother to assist!

Flo

---------------------QUOTE-------------------


Oh, I love this story! Maybe I should look up the Fairey Godmother next time, too.
end


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