November 25, 1992, Aladdin took us on a magic carpet ride and showed us a whole new world. The story, if you haven’t heard goes like this: A poor street rat named Aladdin spends his time stealing food from the marketplace in the city of Agrabah. The adventure begins when he meets a girl who happens to be a princess running from her father trying to marry her to an acceptable suitor. Aladdin’s luck changes when he finds a magic lamp in the cave of wonders, but like any good story, there’s a twist when the Sultans sinister advisor Jafar has his own plans for both Aladdin and the lamp.
Scott Weinger (Aladdin), Robin Williams (Genie/Peddler), Lina Larkin (Princess Jasmine), Jonathan Freeman (Jafar), Frank Welker (Abu?Cave of wonders/Raja), Gilbert Gottfried (Iago) and so much more magical actors and actresses who bring our favorite and loveable character to life along with the help of the directors Ron Clements and Jon Musker. Disney made two more movies about Aladdin, the sequel being Aladdin The Return of Jafar which came out May 20, 1994, and the third and final movie Aladdin and The King of Thieves came out August 13, 1996.
During the course of recording the voices, Robin Williams improvised so much they had almost sixteen hours of material. Because Robin Williams ad-libbed so many of his lines, the scripts were rejected for the best Adoption Screenplay Academy Award nomination. Originally, Jafar was more hot-tempered, while Iago was a cool haughty British-type. The filmmakers felt having Jafar losing his temper too much made him less menacing so the personalities of the two characters were switched. The film became the 14th (and the first animated) movie to gross more than 200 million dollars. Howard Ashman and Alan Menken originally conceived the opening song “Arabian Nights” to be recurrent throughout the film, acting as narration. The idea was dropped when the visual and storytelling proved strong enough in their own right.
On Jan 17, 2003, Aladdin: A Musical Spectacular became a Broadway-style show that was performed at the Hyperion Theatre in Dinsey California Adventure which sadly ended 13 years later on Jan 10, 2016. It ran approximately 45 minutes seating 2,011, guests. There were 250 costume changes per show, 48 custom scenery change, and about 36 cast members. This was my all-time favorite show because it was truly a spectacular Broadway show that brought extra magic to the park.
Jonathan Freeman, who voiced Jafar, ended up playing the live-action version in the Broadway musical. Aladdin premiered at the 5th avenue theater in Seattle in 2011. In 2012 after several regional and international productions. The musical was given a Toronto tryout in 2013 it opened on Broadway at the New Amsterdam theater on March 20, 2014. There are 337 costumes in the show, over two million Swarovski crystals were used in the costuming. One pair of gold trousers used in “A Friend Like Me” uses 1,428 crystals alone.The cave of wonders where Aladdin first meets the Genie was built for the stage using the same golden material that was used for C-3PO in the Star Wars films. ‘Friend Like Me’ in the 1992 film was two minutes, but on the stage production, it became an eight-minute extravaganza. It takes 75 people to deliver each performance of Aladdin on tour.
Happy Birthday, Aladdin thank you so much for the adventure of love and laughter you bring to me everytime I watch your movie, show or listen to your soundtrack. Whatever way I watch or listen I always feel like I’m on a magic carpet ride.