All Aboard!!!! The Disney Christmas Carol Train Tour pulled into Union Station at Washington, DC September 29th and 30th. Hubby and I just happened to have a free, comp-time afternoon, so we jumped on the Metro and headed to Union Station. We found the Train Tour at Gate G. That a way!
We walked all the way down the train on the outside and then walked back on the inside. The outside decorations were stunning. I can just imagine seeing this train fly past on the rails.
To set the mood, a quartet of singers clad in Victorian dress entertained us with Christmas Carols (go figure! ).
Just inside the door cast members instructed us not to use flash photography. The first room showcased costumes from the movie along with pictures of the characters. The picture shows Bob Crachett's character, one of the characters played by Gary Oldman. In glass cases were memorabilia from the Charles Dickens Museum, sometimes from the Christmas Carol, sometimes not.
The second room showed maquettes and scenes used to provide a "real" picture of what the computer was supposed to simulate.
The next two rooms explained the motion capture process. The actors dressed up in tight fitting leotards covered in what looked like half ping pong balls but what were really "eyes" for the cameras. They provided data for the computers that would be used to animate the movie. The actors themselves had a myriad of dots on their faces that captured their facial movements. The actors were truly acting. The sets were sparse, the costumes non-existent so the actors had to rely almost exclusively on their imaginations.
To finish, we used a touch screen computer to explore the world of A Christmas Carol and then got to morph our own faces into one of the movie's characters. When the email gets to my inbox, I'll save and post it.
When we exited the train, we were almost back at the gate. Next we headed into the main concourse where you entered a balloon tent (even the doors had air in them) to see a sneak preview of a couple of 3-D scenes from the movie in some really attractive mirrored glasses! After the preview, adults could enter a sweepstakes to win a touchscreen computer and printer, and kids could enter to win a chance to be a Movie Surfer in their own hometown as well as score some Christmas tattoos.
The Christmas Carol stars Jim Carrey, Gary Oldman, Cary Elwes, Robin Wright-Penn and Colin Firth. It opens on November 6. I probably won't be fighting the crowds for the opening weekend, but it sounds like a fun Friday after Thanksgiving kind of movie, just right to get into the Christmas Spirit. And those glasses, too cute! :0)