Showing posts with label Dreamworks. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Dreamworks. Show all posts

Thursday, October 17, 2013

Shrek The Musical Deluxe Edition Blu-ray™ and DVD out now!

Disclosure:  Thanks to Dreamworks and Twentieth Century Fox Home Entertainment for providing us with a review copy.  All opinions are our own.


Here at ChiIL Mama, we adore Shrek.   The great green ogre and his wife are the stars of a series of fairy tales that finally don't feature a skinny, blond, narcoleptic princess awaiting rescue.   Princess Fiona kicks booty, and is a fabulous role model.    

If you've never checked out the original book by William Steig, we highly recommend it.  The book is even quirkier and cooler than the animated movies (which we also love), and we completely dig the Broadway musical adaptation!   

Now the equation goes one step further with a Blu-Ray/DVD movie... of the play... of the book...

This one's a keeper!   Now out on DVD, Blu-ray and Digital HD from Twentieth Century Fox Home Entertainment.  

Steig is an excellent children's author and illustrator and this is the perfect candidate for playing the "same/different game".  We love to check out the original books when we go see book based movies and theatre and then compare and contrast the different versions of the tale with the "same/different game".

Last night Twentieth Century Fox Home Entertainment, special guests and Broadway stars from Shrek The Musical walked the green carpet in NYC at The Hudson Bond for the Blu-ray, DVD and Digital Copy launch event.  

In attendance were Kelly Rutherford (Gossip Girl) and the stars of Shrek The Musical, including Sutton Foster (Fiona), Christopher Sieber (Lord Farquaad), John Tartaglia (Pinocchio), Daniel Breaker (Donkey), Marissa O'Donnell (Teen Fiona), Leah Greenhaus (Young Fiona, Flower Girl) and many others!

Featuring a fantastic score of 17 all-new songs, Shrek The Musical was filmed on stage to capture the magic of a Broadway performance and stars an amazing celebrated cast. The film was shot live on Broadway with 10 cameras and directed by Michael Warren. Now you can bring the magic of Broadway to your home and get the best seat in the house with Deluxe Edition Blu-ray™ and DVD out now!

Here at ChiIL Mama, we had a chance to give away 4 packs of tickets for our readers and review Shrek the Musical by the Broadway Touring Company and then again by Chicago Shakespeare Theatre, earlier this year.  Shrek the Musical is a pure joy to experience and fun for all ages.  Now you can take it home with you to enjoy over and over at your convenience!

6 Steps To Bring The Magic Of Broadway To Your Own Living Room 

Experience The Magic Of Shrek The Musical On Blu-ray and DVD, Available Now! 
With the Blu-ray, DVD and Digital HD release of Shrek The Musical releasing this week, fairy-tale fans and musical theatergoers alike can now experience the Grammy-nominated stage production in the comfort of one’s own home! Featuring a fantastic score of 17 brand new songs, Shrek The Musical was filmed on stage to capture the magic of a Broadway performance and features an all-star cast.

Here are 6 simple steps to emulate the magic of Broadway in your own living room:
Step One - Sight
No digital interpretation of the stage would be complete without a state-of-the-art projector that can produce an image of up to 150 inches. If a projector is too costly, a 40 inch television or larger will suffice to give the home audience the optimum visual experience.

Step Two – Sound
No ultimate living room entertainment set-up would be complete without a crisp surround sound system. With the ear being stimulated from 4 angles, the illusion of being immersed in a theatre can be achieved.

Step Three – Tickets Please
Why not design your own tickets to your show? Guests will have to show their tickets before entering the living room for example. German Shepherds dressed in tuxedos make excellent ushers too.

Step Four - Wow it’s Green in Here
With a simple purchase of green crepe paper attached to a range of living room light sources, a green filtered glow will engulf the room to create a wonderfully Shrek-like ambience.

Step Five - ‘Curtain Call Ladies and Gentlemen!’
The anticipation of waiting for the famous theatrical curtains to trickle away is no doubt one of the fundamental experiences of going to the theatre. With a curtain rail, fabric and some sticky tape, your living room will mirror the Gershwin’s famous curtain call in no time.

Step Five: Intermission:
Why not engage in a 15-minute interval? Prepare a refreshing beverage for the adults and load up on the ice cream for the kids. Don’t forget those little wooden spoons for the upmost authenticity.

Step Six: Applause:
Don’t forget to clap along with the audience when something particularly amusing or impressive arises on screen. Booing and hissing at the respective villains may also prove effective. Please note, please do not throw your shows or any object at the screen for fear of damaging your precious TV set.  Although all these tips may make you believe that you are in the theater, it’s not real remember.
We are sure you’ll love watching your favorite animated characters come to life like magic, and now you’re ready to experience it at home! Pick up the Blu-ray for your family to enjoy today!


Get To Know The Shrek Bunch

The Cast Of The Animated Franchise Comes To Life On Stage and Blu-ray, This Week!

The loved and laughable DreamWorks animation Shrek is brought to life in Shrek The Musical and enjoyed by fans and families of the Broadway stage. Now you can bring the excitement to your living room when you pick up the musical on Blu-ray and DVD. What better way to celebrate the release than a brief introduction to the stage cast of your favorite animated movie. Read down to find out who among them was a Bunhead, a Julliard graduate, and will be starring in a Shakespeare Classic this season.  Meet the Shrek bunch!

Bryan D’arcy James – Bryan plays the role of our beloved ogre Shrek. While he’s sure to win you over in his green role he’s definitely not new to the stage. Mr. Darcy will be star opposite Ethan Hawke in the Lincoln Center Theatre production of Shakespeare’s Macbeth. The talented artist is also notable on the screen too, most recently for his role as Frank Houston on NBC’s Broadway themed drama ‘Smash’.  You’re probably wondering if he sings too, and he does, his solo debut album is From Christmas Eve to Christmas Morn.

Sutton Foster - Princess Fiona is brought to life by the beautiful Sutton Foster. The multi talented artist (actor, singer, and dancer) is best known for her role in the fan favorite ABC Family series ‘Bunheads’, for which she earned a Critic’s Choice Television Awards nomination. Using her beautiful voice, Sutton has performed at venues across the country performing in concerts such as Funny Girl, They’re playing out songs, Chess, and many more.  Like her fellow cast mate, she also works on solo album projects, releasing two albums, Wish and An Evening with Sutton Foster – Live at the Café Carlye.

Christopher Sieber - Every story needs a villain and none is more villainous than Lord Farquaad, played by Christopher Sieber.  His performance as the miniature maniacal royal is sure to make your living room erupt with laughter and boo’s. Chris’ talent has also been enjoyed in various Broadway productions, such as Pipin, Spamalot, Beauty and The Beast, Into the Woods, and much more. He most recently debut his solo concert  “Minnesota Boy Does Well: Tales from Back and Center Stage.”  Fans of the Olsen twins may also remember him from the ABC comedy Two Of A Kind, in which he played the girls’ father.

Daniel Breaker- The character enjoyed equally by parents and their kids is Shrek’s smart tongued sidekick, Donkey.  As the liveliest character of the musical, Daniel Breaker brings sass, smarts, and laughter to the stage.  The Julliard Scholl Graduate has starred in several Tony and award winning productions such as Passing Strange, Cymbeline, and more. Off screen he has appeared in top titles such as Limitless opposite Robert DeNiro and Bradley Cooper, the Spike Lee-directed project entitled Redhook Summer and Passing Strange.  

John Tartaglia - What do Pinocchio, The Magic Mirror, Dragon Puppeteer all have in common? They are all John Tartaglia. The talented Tartaglia is best known for producing, creating, and starring in the 8-time Emmy nominated children’s show “Johnny and the Sprites”. Additionally, he received a Tony Award Nomination for his role in the Tony-Award winning musical Avenue Q, in which he originated the roles of Princeton and Rod. Most exciting of all his credits may be his 12-year stint on Sesame Street, making him one of the youngest puppeteers to ever perform on the historic show.

We are sure you’ll love watching your favorite animated characters come to life like magic, and now you know the people that are behind that magic! Pick up the Blu-ray for your family to enjoy today!

Disclosure:  Thanks to Dreamworks and Twentieth Century Fox Home Entertainment.   for providing us with a review copy.  All opinions are our own.

Wednesday, July 18, 2012

Dragons Delayed-Dreamworks Opening Date Bumped A Day


The Dragons are draggin' and will be one day late opening in Chicago.   However, they have a good excuse.  
The critically acclaimed show’s enormous size and groundbreaking technology require an additional day to load-in and build, setting the stage for 23 fire-breathing dragons that swoop and soar directly over the audience.  The entire environment immerses children and adults into the magical, mystical world of Vikings and dragons in a never-before-seen arena setting that soars through oceans, valleys and vista mountain tops and spans more than 20,000 square feet of incredible set design. The date change will provide additional time to complete this extraordinary build. 
DreamWorks Animation SKG, Inc. (Nasdaq: DWA), Global Creatures and S2BN Entertainment announced today that the Chicago premiere of DREAMWORKS HOW TO TRAIN YOUR DRAGON LIVE SPECTACULAR will now be on Thursday, July 26 at the United Center, instead of July 25.
It takes 30 tractor trailers and more than 150 crew members to move 10,000 cases of gear and lay down a massive magnetic floor, along with hundreds of thousands of feet of cable to have the show ready for opening night.  This incredible family entertainment experience leaves audiences spellbound by the high-flying, fire-breathing dragons – 23 of them, some with wingspans up to 46 feet – hero Viking warriors, world-class acrobats, pyrotechnics and lasers.
DREAMWORKS HOW TO TRAIN YOUR DRAGON LIVE SPECTACULAR began its North American tour in June to rave reviews by media, mommy bloggers and families alike, withEntertainment Weekly declaring, “Dazzling…wide eyed children will emerge from the darkness wanting to believe. That’s enough to make any parent feel like Superman,” andParade calling it “Fire-breathing fun for the whole family!”
Ticketholders are encouraged to re-book their seats for any of the other scheduled performances and as added incentive, will receive a merchandise voucher valued at up to $25 which can be exchanged for the official tour T-shirt or program book. If unable to attend another performance, a full refund will be given. Current ticket holders can find out about exchanges or refunds by visiting the point of purchase.  For Ticketmaster purchases completed via phone or online please contact Ticketmaster Customer Service at 1.800.653.8000.  For tickets purchased at a Ticketmaster outlet please visit the outlet.   For tickets purchased at the United Center Box Office please visit the Box Office during business hours.  For more information please visit

DREAMWORKS HOW TO TRAIN YOUR DRAGON LIVE SPECTACULAR will appear at the United Center on Thursday, July 26 at 7:00 PM; Friday, July 27 at 7:00 PM; Saturday, July 28 at 11:00 AM, 3:00 PM and 7:00 PM; and Sunday, July 29 at 1:00 PM and 5:00 PM with free parking at official United Center parking lots for all performances.

Tickets are on sale now and start at $26.50 plus applicable facility fees and service charges.  They may be purchased through Ticketmaster or by going  A limited number of special premium Dragon Hot Seats, VIP and family packages are available.


Tuesday, July 17, 2012


Astrid (Sarah McCreanor) Flying 
production photos by Lisa Tomasetti

Dragons and Drama and Dreamworks...oh my

High-Flying, Fire-Breathing Dragons Take Flight on Worldwide Tour
on the Heels of Smash Hit Run in Australia & New Zealand
United Center, Chicago, July 25-29, 2012
Tickets on Sale Now
ChiIL Mama is sooo stoked for opening night, next Wednesday!!   Our family can not wait to see the giant, fire breathing dragons interacting with live action martial arts, aerial arts and acrobatics.   Dragons and Vikings are two of our favorite subjects and our whole family LOVES the movie version of How to Train Your Dragon.   I think I'm even more excited about it than the kids are.

Don't miss this one.   ChiIL Mama's readers can get a special 25% discount with the code MOM!   *25% off on select weekday show seats (includes Friday nights) available for ALL shows nationwide with the promo code MOM.

As most of you know, my 9 & 11 year olds have trained in circus arts for two years with CircEsteem and are on the pre-team, so aerial acts and circus arts are of particular interest to our family.   My son is training in trapeze and silks and my daughter has taken both those classes and spanish web, lyra, and Chinese pole too!   

We see a lot of circus shows, but when you add in Vikings and mythical creatures this is sure to be an experience unlike any other.

How To Train Your Dragon, Nadder and Viking

This summer, Chicago audiences will experience the magic of Viking warriors and fire-breathing dragons that soar through arena skies in DREAMWORKS HOW TO TRAIN YOUR DRAGON LIVE SPECTACULAR. The smash hit show from Australia and New Zealand will delight audiences at the United Center, 1901 W. Madison Street, for five days only, July 25-29, 2012. To bring the beloved 3D-animated movie How to Train Your Dragon to life, DreamWorks Animation – the studio behind other modern classics including MadagascarShrek and Kung Fu Panda – enlisted Global Creatures, the masterminds behind the international phenomenon Walking with Dinosaurs. The result is a breathtaking live action experience in which 23 dragons (some with wingspans of up to 46 feet), Viking warriors and world-class circus artists and acrobats, perform against a state-of-the-art, wall-to-floor immersive projection measuring more than 20,000 square feet.

The high-tech, high-energy spectacular breaks every rule of theatrical entertainment to fully immerse audiences into the show in ways that have not been attempted before. Barely contained within the arena, DREAMWORKS HOW TO TRAIN YOUR DRAGON LIVE SPECTACULAR  utilizes the full venue, maximizing every dimension of the performance space to transport audiences into a mythical world of fire-breathing dragons that float underwater and soar and bank overhead at great speeds. The state-of-the-art animatronic technology and large-scale cinematic projections interact seamlessly with the live actors, who bring DreamWorks Animation’s heartwarming story to life through theatrical storytelling, martial arts and acrobatics.

Hiccup (Rarmian Newton) and Toothless Flying

"The creativity, technology and sheer size of this show is unprecedented and we are thrilled to serve as hosts here at the United Center," said Vince Amatuzzi, Director of Marketing, United Center. "Children and adults alike will marvel at the magnitude of the experience and won't soon forget it."

DREAMWORKS HOW TO TRAIN YOUR DRAGON LIVE SPECTACULAR will appear at the United Center on Wednesday, July 25 at 7:00 PM; Thursday, July 26 at 7:00 PM; Friday, July 27 at 7:00 PM; Saturday, July 28 at 11:00 AM, 3:00 PM and 7:00 PM; and Sunday, July 29 at 1:00 PM and 5:00 PM with free parking at official United Center parking lots for all performances.

Tickets are on sale now and start at $26.50 plus applicable facility fees and service charges.  They may be purchased through Ticketmaster or by going to www.unitedcenter.comA limited number of special premium Dragon Hot Seats, VIP and family packages are available.

A remarkable sneak peek of DREAMWORKS HOW TO TRAIN YOUR DRAGON LIVE SPECTACULAR aired May 11 on the TODAY Show. 



HOW TO TRAIN YOUR DRAGON LIVE SPECTACULAR was created by DreamWorks Animation, producers of the Academy Award®-nominated film, How to Train Your Dragon, which grossed approximately $500 million at the worldwide box office and opened as the #1 film in more than 30 countries, and Global Creatures, the masterminds behind the international phenomenon Walking with Dinosaurs, the #1-grossing world tour of 2010. HOW TO TRAIN YOUR DRAGON LIVE SPECTACULAR’s worldwide tour is exclusively promoted by S2BN Entertainment and delivers some of the most ambitious theatrical technology to ever tour the arena.

The live production rolls fire-breathing action, epic adventure and heartfelt laughter into an original captivating story set in the mythical world of Vikings and wild dragons.  Based on the book by Cressida Cowell, it centers on Hiccup, a Viking teenager who doesn’t fit in with his tribe’s longstanding tradition of heroic dragon slayers.  Hiccup’s world is turned upside down when he encounters a dragon that challenges him and his fellow Vikings to see the world from an entirely different point of view. The story presents a vision so grand in scale that only DreamWorks Animation and Global Creatures could bring How to Train Your Dragon to life in front of a live audience.

“In our film, audiences around the world were transported to the mythical world of Vikings and dragons… and now, we are excited to immerse them in a one-of-a-kind live event in HOW TO TRAIN YOUR DRAGON LIVE SPECTACULAR,” said Jeffrey Katzenberg, Chief Executive Officer of DreamWorks Animation. “The innovative team at Global Creatures and the creative storytellers at DreamWorks Animation have done an inspired job in every imaginable way to present this story on an unprecedented scale that will take global audiences to unforgettable new heights. We are happy to be working with Michael Cohl and his team at S2BN Entertainment to promote and take this show around the world.”

Global Creatures Chief Executive Officer Carmen Pavlovic added, “With DreamWorks we have forged a relationship with one of the world’s leading entertainment companies. The collaboration fuses our own world-class technology with the vision and dedication of a company renowned for its cutting-edge creativity and storytelling skill. We are excited to expand the boundaries of public expectation by creating a show that combines dynamic creatures, world class performers and incredible staging to not only thrill and intrigue, but to engage audiences on an emotional level as well.”

Michael Cohl is the founder and chairman of S2BN Entertainment, global promoter for HOW TO TRAIN YOUR DRAGON LIVE SPECTACULAR, and serves as lead producer of the Broadway’s smash hit Spider-Man: Turn Off the Dark. Cohl commented, “HOW TO TRAIN YOUR DRAGON LIVE SPECTACULAR is the next logical step for me after Spider-Man: to be back in arenas where I’ve always been, and where the most exciting things happen. We are thrilled to be setting a new gold standard for live family entertainment while utilizing the full scope and scale of the arena floor and fly space. The show delivers cutting-edge production values which tell an incredible story and create an unforgettable and magical experience. This show will mesmerize children and parents alike.”
“A visual and technical work of mind-boggling proportions.” – Australian Stage
Sponsored by HP, HOW TO TRAIN YOUR DRAGON LIVE SPECTACULAR is brought to life through state-of-the-art technology unlike anything ever seen before in a live event experience.  Through DreamWorks Animation’s ongoing strategic relationship with HP, HP technology is part of the digital backbone for the production, providing family audiences across the globe with the most captivating live entertainment possible.

“Nothing less than sensational.” –

Young Hollywood actor Riley Miner, an accomplished dancer and musical theater performer, will play the lead role of Hiccup.  Joining Miner to share the role of Hiccup is Rarmian Newton, who won a Helpmann Award for his performance in the Australian production of Billy Elliot The Musical (2008). American stunt performer Gemma Nguyen, a third degree Black Belt and six-time world champion in Tae Kwon Do, plays Astrid.  Sharing the role of Astrid is 19-year-old Queenslander Sarah McCreanor who has starred in her own comedic productions and performed in a range of musicals and comedy shows.  Stalwart Australian actor Robert Morgan plays Stoick, Hiccup’s father and the rough and ready old-school chieftain of the brawny Viking tribe.  American Will Watkins, an accomplished fencer, will star as Gobber; French Kung Fu champion and stuntman Godefroy Ryckewaert plays Snotlout and Texan hip-hop dancer and rapper Dexter Mayfield will play Fishlegs. Australian hip-hop and break-dancer Virackhaly Ngeth has been cast as Ruffnut and Sydney break-dancer Frace Luke Mercado, a founding member of SKB (Street Kulture Breakers), as Tuffnut.

The cast of performers is assisted by an international technical team who has collectively created many of the world’s most memorable spectacles.  The team is led by award-winning director Nigel Jamieson, who won the 2011 Helpmann Award as Best Director for his production of Opera Australia’s La Fanciulla del West, as well as production designer Peter England and costume / projection designer Dan Potra.  The dragons themselves are created by Sonny Tilders and his team at The Creature Technology Company, whose work includes Walking With Dinosaurs – the Arena Spectacular.  The cast of 23 dragons pays homage to all of the favorites from the DreamWorks Animation film, including the single largest animatronic creature ever made by The Creature Technology Company. The stunning score features compositions from Icelandic singer-songwriter Jonsi from Sigur Ros and Oscar-nominated British film composer John Powell, who created the original score for the feature film.

DreamWorks Animation creates high-quality entertainment, including CG animated feature films, television specials and series, live entertainment properties and online virtual worlds, meant for audiences around the world.  DreamWorks Animation is the largest animation studio in the world and has released 23 animated feature films, which have enjoyed both critical and commercial successes. These include the franchise properties of ShrekMadagascarKung Fu Panda and How to Train Your Dragon. DreamWorks Animation became the first studio to produce all of its feature films in 3D and in 2010 became the first Company to release three CG feature films in 3D in a single year.  The Company has been named one of the “100 Best Companies to Work For” by FORTUNE® Magazine for four consecutive years. In 2012, DreamWorks Animation ranks #14 on the list. DreamWorks Theatricals was established by DreamWorks Animation in 2007 to develop and produce live stage and arena show productions inspired by the Company’s franchise properties. Current productions in development – including How To Train Your Dragon Live Spectacular and Kung Fu Panda Arena Spectacular– are one-of-a-kind, global tours and immersive entertainment experiences for the whole family. DreamWorks Theatricals productions are guided by much of the creative leadership team that develops the studio’s award-winning feature films.

Making of the dragons 4 - Gronckle

Global Creatures is an international entertainment group that develops new and exciting theatrical productions to take to audiences around the world.  The animatronics arm, The Creature Technology Company, invents and deploys the latest in animatronic design.  Their hugely successful production Walking with Dinosaurs – The Arena Spectacular, based on the award-winning BBC TV series, represents a new entertainment genre all on its own.  The production is a spectacle of unprecedented size and quality, which captivates young and old alike.  The Walking with Dinosaurs tour was the number-one tour worldwide in 2010.  Global Creatures has announced King Kong – Live on Stage, which will be produced in cooperation with the estate of “Kong” creator Merian C. Cooper.  Global Creatures and Bazmark (the multimedia company founded and owned by Baz Luhrmann and Catherine Martin) has announced a partnership to produce a stage musical adaptation of the first movie of Baz Luhrmann’s groundbreaking Red Curtain Trilogy, Strictly Ballroom.

S2BN is an entertainment company specializing in the production of family oriented shows for theaters and arenas.  Currently, S2BN has three successful shows in operation: the record-breaking smash hit Spider-Man: Turn Off the Dark on Broadway; Rock of Ages now in its fourth year on Broadway, recently opened in London, touring throughout North America and on June 1, 2012 a major Warner Bros. Picture Release; and thirdly, Fuerza Bruta, also in its fifth year in New York and touring throughout the world.  For 30+ years S2BN’s leadership has been a dominant and innovative force in the international concert touring industry, working in exclusive partnerships with renowned, global artists such as The Rolling Stones, Barbra Streisand, U2 and Pink Floyd among many others.  In that time they have also created and/or promoted a wide range of unique family entertainment attractions in tennis, figure skating, motorsports, boxing and wrestling as well as theater, opera and symphony.

The RZO Companies group was formed on July 1, 1988 through the merger of Sound Advice, Inc. and Joseph Rascoff & Company, Inc. by their principals William Zysblat and Joseph Rascoff, respectively. For more than 25 years, RZO and its predecessor organizations have been actively involved in the music business as tour producers and full-service business managers. RZO has represented such illustrious music artists as The Rolling Stones, David Bowie, Sting, U2, The Police, Luis Miguel, Patti LaBelle, David Byrne and many others.  The Company also represents personalities such as Carson Daly and Iman, along with the Estates of John Lennon and Ira and George Gershwin.

About the United Center
The United Center is a state-of-the-art, 960,000 square-foot multi-use entertainment facility that has welcomed more than 40 million fans since opening in 1994. Home of the Chicago Blackhawks of the National Hockey League and the Chicago Bulls of the National Basketball Association, the United Center hosts more than 200 events each year, including the best musical performers, sporting events, family shows and special events in the industry. A commitment to superior service makes the United Center one of the top venues in the world.  For more information, visit United Center's main site here.

Astrid (Sarah McCreanor) and Hiccup (Rarmian Newton), photo credit Lisa Tomasetti

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