The Bancroft brothers are excited about three-disk combo release of Mulan and Mulan II
"I'm an artist and did a majority of Mulan," said Tom Bancroft (Aladdin) supervisor of
animation on Mulan. "(The challenge) Eddie Murphy's dialect... just getting his mouth to open and close very fast."
Eddie Murphy (Tower Heist) is the voice of Mushu in Mulan. Mulan is the tale of honor and courage, when a princess,
Mulan, disguises herself as her father to save him from serving in the Imperial Army. She is accompanied by her pet dragon
Mulan is set in China and based on a Chinese legend. The digitally mastered film is celebrating
its 15th anniversary with the release of Mulan and Mulan II in a three-disk Blu-ray combo pack.
II, Mulan and Shang (Donny Osmond) journey to a distant city to save their empire.
"We have control
over everything," said Tony Brancroft (Beauty and the Beast) about his job on Mulan's director. "I was very blessed
to have Barry Cook (Mulan)...you need two directors (in animation). My co-director was a believer (in Christianity) and I
found that to be a benefit. Buddhism was and is the main belief system in China, so it had to have some element of that for
Brothers Tom and Tony Bancroft wear their Christianity on their sleeves and includes
it also in their projects and choices of projects. Darrell Rooney and Lynn Southerland directed Mulan II. The Rated G animation
by Disney was the company's 36th animation and grossed - at release in 1998 - over $300 million.
‘Big Time Rush' Challen Cates
ready for another season as Mrs. Knight
In April, 2013 Nickelodeon's #1 live-action musical-comedy "Big Time Rush" returns for a fourth season.
Challen Cates, who plays Mrs. Knight the mother to hockey-playing boy band member Kendall (and younger sister Katie), spoke
with me briefly about her role and the show.
"We do a table read on Wednesday or Thursday before we
shoot," said Challen about her day on the set of Nickelodeon's "Big Time Rush." "It's the first time we
see the script... its fun to see what we're going to do."
When asked if they get to adlib Cates said,
"It's funny...if it makes the director laugh he keeps it in."
The series focuses on the misadventures
of the four hockey players from Minnesota who discover themselves in Hollywood as a hot boy band. Challen's character Mrs.
Knight is affectionately referred to as Momma Knight; she is fun but always there to instill moral values to their crazy shenanigans.
"I lived in Atlanta...it wasn't that hard to get work...in Los Angeles the pool was enormous," she
pointed out about her acting journey. "I went from booking every other week to it being really hard. That was before
the internet. I still hope it gets bigger and better for me."
Challen Cates has had a recurring role
on NBC's daytime drama "Passion," has acted in "Desperate Housewives," "Criminal Minds," "CSI:
New York," "Monk" and "Missing."
Smooth Jazz sax man Mekiel Reuben gives good vibes on new project, ‘If
You Were Here Tonight'
"When I first started this project I had a lot of songs in the can," said saxophonist Mekiel Reuben
about his latest album release "If You Were Here Tonight." "David (Vasquez) created the vibe," Reuben
said of the title track. "I give David a lot of credit for creating the songs. This is my third time working with David."
Mekiel said in preparation for his songs he learn from people and he listens to them.
it's something I can use (I listen) and if it's not I throw it away," he said about his "process."
This is his seventh recording project and it features the lovely vocals of Nigerian singer Mary Akpa. It also featured David
on keyboards and Reuben plays the alto, tenor and soprano sax.
My favorite cuts from the "If You Were
Here Tonight" include "Moondance," because of the lead vocals of featured singer Mary Akpa; "At Seventeen,"
which brought back my memories at that age; "Another Sunday," a Smooth Jazz selection that's great for a lazy Sunday
morning; the cover of "Lovely Day," because I love the bass which made it a funky cut; "Summer Breezin,'"
another smooth selection that had the sax crying, and "I Just Wanna Be With You."
delivered what I wanted it to," Mekiel said in closing.
Find out more about Reuben and his new project
(Columnist: Eunice Moseley is a PR/media & promotions consultant, and as well as a syndicated
entertainment columnist for over 20 years - www.ThePulseofEntertainment.com.)