ONCE UPON A STUDIO Creatives Discuss Bringing in an Icon of Disney’s 100 Years of Magical Melodies

Dive into the making of "Once Upon a Studio," a short film that pays tribute to Disney's rich animated legacy, capturing the magic and memories of yesteryears
Once Upon a Studio

Disney’s legacy is not just about enchanting tales and timeless characters; it’s also about the melodies that have captured the hearts of millions. In the recent short, Once Upon a Studio, this musical legacy was brought to life in a poignant way, thanks to the legendary songwriter Richard Sherman.

A Dream Realized

Directors Dan Abraham and Trent Correy had a grand vision for Once Upon a Studio. Throughout its production, they were continually astounded as their ambitious dreams transformed into reality. One such dream centered around a touching moment in the short: Mickey Mouse pausing to express his gratitude to a portrait of Walt Disney. The musical backdrop for this scene had to be as special as the moment itself.

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Abraham reminisces, “We already knew that the Sherman Brothers song Feed the Birds had to be heard at that special moment in the short. It was Walt’s favorite song, and he often invited Richard and Robert Sherman to serenade him with it on Friday afternoons.”

A Musical Tribute in Walt’s Office

The idea to make this moment even more memorable came from executive music producer Matt Walker. He proposed, “What if we got Richard Sherman to actually play Feed the Birds for this? And what if we recorded it up in Walt’s office?”

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In August 2022, this dream was realized. Abraham and Correy, dressed in sports coats, met the 94-year-old Richard Sherman in Walt Disney’s office on the Burbank lot. There, at the very piano he had played decades ago, Sherman performed a beautiful new rendition of Feed the Birds for the film.

“I think that may have been either the best day of my life or, at least, one of the very top days ever,” Abraham fondly recalls.

Correy echoes the sentiment, stating, “Being with Richard Sherman on that day up in Walt’s office is something we will always remember.”

Once Upon a Studio is a testament to the enduring magic of Disney, a magic that is amplified by its rich musical heritage. The inclusion of Richard Sherman’s performance, especially in such a historic setting, adds a layer of depth and emotion to the short, bridging the past with the present and paying homage to the timeless melodies that have defined Disney for generations.

If you miss the premiere or just want to watch the short film over and over again, Once Upon a Studio will be available on Disney+ on October 16, 2023.

About Once Upon a Studio

Once Upon a Studio

Premiere Date: October 15, 2023
Directors: Trent Correy, Dan Abraham
Writers: Trent Correy, Dan Abraham
Producers: Yvett Merino, Bradford, Simonsen
Cinematography: John Hasbrook, Daniel Rice
Music By: Dave Metzger
Production: Walt Disney Pictures, Walt Disney Animation Studios
Distribution: Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures
Runtime: 9 Minutes

An all-star ensemble of beloved characters from Walt Disney Animation Studios come together
in “Once Upon a Studio” for a joyful, entertaining and emotional reunion as they assemble for a
spectacular group photo to mark Disney’s 100th anniversary. Featuring 543 characters from
more than 85 Disney feature-length and short films, “Once Upon a Studio” welcomes heroes
and villains, princes and princesses, sidekicks and sorcerers—in all-

What was your favorite moment from Once Upon a Studio? Which classic Disney character holds a special place in your heart? Were there any moments in the short that brought back cherished memories? Share your thoughts with us on social media!

KEEP READING: ONCE UPON A STUDIO Made Sure to Honor All The Performers and Not Use AI


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Kevin Fenix

Professional Nerd | Amateur Human | Creative/Content Director The best way to describe Kevin Fenix is the kid you never tell what the buttons do in video games so you have a chance to win. Being 6’ 4” and Asian, he never really fit in, so he got comfortable standing out. Not only is it easy to find him in crowds, he dabbles in the culinary arts, does a little stand up and improv, and can honestly say Spider-Man is the Jesus-like influence of his life. Kevin Fenix loves dogs, movies, television, comics, comedy, and to shoot people… with video.