Pirates of the Caribbean Signed Prints (1980-2014)

These three prints—two reproductions of vintage attraction posters and an image from the interior of the Disneyland version of the attraction—are individually hand-signed by Disney Legend X. Atencio, who worked on the development of the attraction, penned its iconic theme song, and provided the voice of the Talking Skull.

Francis Xavier Atencio first joined the Walt Disney Studio in 1938 as an animator. A product of LA’s Chouinard Art Institute, he worked on the feature Fantasia, as well as many short films, including the Oscar-winning Toot, Whistle, Plunk and Boom and the Oscar-nominated Noah’s Ark. He also worked on the animation sequences of live-action films, such as The Shaggy Dog, The Parent TrapBabes in Toyland, and Mary Poppins. In 1965, Atencio relocated to WED Enterprises to assist in the implementation of the Primeval World diorama, which had been featured in the Ford Magic Skyway attraction at the 1964-65 New York World’s Fair, into the Disneyland Railroad circuit. Shortly after, he was tapped by Walt to write the lyrics for the new Pirates attraction that had been in development for several years, something Atencio had never done before. His first attempt at songwriting was met with great success, as “Yo Ho (A Pirate’s Life for Me)” propelled the new attraction to one of the most popular at the park. Debuting at Disneyland on March 18, 1967,  millions of guests were soon singing along to Atencio’s catchy lyrics.

“Yo Ho (A Pirate’s Life for Me)”

 

Yo ho, yo ho, a pirate’s life for me.
We pillage, we plunder, we rifle and loot.
Drink up me ‘earties, yo ho.
We kidnap and ravage and don’t give a hoot.
Drink up me ‘earties, yo ho.

 

Yo ho, yo ho, a pirate’s life for me.
We extort and pilfer, we filch and sack.
Drink up me ‘earties, yo ho.
Maraud and embezzle and even highjack.
Drink up me ‘earties, yo ho.

 

Yo ho, yo ho, a pirate’s life for me.
We kindle and char and enflame and ignite.
Drink up me ‘earties, yo ho.
We burn up the city, we’re really a fright.
Drink up me ‘earties, yo ho.

 

We’re rascals, scoundrels, villains and knaves.
Drink up me ‘earties, yo ho.
We’re devils and black sheep, we’re really bad eggs.
Drink up me ‘earties, yo ho.

 

Yo ho, yo ho, a pirate’s life for me.
We’re beggars and blighters and ne’er do-well cads,
Drink up me ‘earties, yo ho.
Aye, but we’re loved by our mommies and dads,
Drink up me ‘earties, yo ho.

Atencio would additionally write both the Haunted Mansion and Country Bear Jamboree themes, Grim Grinning Ghosts and Bear Band Serenade, respectively, as well as the title theme to Walt Disney World’s If You Had Wings attraction. Besides Atencio’s songwriting contributions, he also worked as a writer on Disneyland’s Adventures Thru Inner Space, and contributed heavily to the scripts of both Pirates of the Caribbean and the Haunted Mansion, so much so that he was honored with one of the eight original tombstone tributes outside the Disneyland version of the latter attraction. He went on to contribute to the design and development of Disney’s third gate, EPCOT Center, assisting with the creation of several of the park’s “pavilions” in the early 80s. After an amazing career that lasted nearly half-a-century, he retired in 1984, and was awarded Disney Legend status twelve years later.

The first print is the primary attraction poster used for the Disneyland version of Pirates of the Caribbean for the past five decades. The iconic print features an inscription and signature from the early 80s, as well as the familiar copy used to promote the attraction. Copyright information is listed for both WED Enterprises, Inc., as well as Walt Disney Prouctions [sic].

PIRATES of the CARIBBEAN

 

Sail with the wildest crew that ever sacked the Spanish Main

 

Yo Ho!!

X. Atencio

 

NEW ORLEANS SQUARE

DISNEYLAND

The second print features original Disneyland artwork created to promote the opening of the attraction in 1967. Along with Atencio’s 2014 signature, the replica attraction poster includes an image of the Audio-Animatronic “Auctioneer” pirate, from the classic yet controversial “Auction Scene,” along with the following text:

Avast Mateys!

 

Now Open In New Orleans Square

 

Disneyland’s Most Exciting New Adventure

 

Pirates of the Caribbean

 

A Rollicking Adventure with the Boldest band of Swashbucklers to Ever Terrify the Spanish Main

The second print features a “Yo Ho!” inscription along with Atencio’s signature from 2007, both in gold ink. The image is of the Talking Skull, a character original to the Disneyland attraction, who went on to appear in other versions of the ride, as well. In fact, many fans were upset to see the skull removed during a refurbishment of the Walt Disney World Pirates, and in time, he was brought back.

“Psst! Avast there! It be too late to alter course, mateys…and there be plundering pirates lurking in every cove, waitin’ to board. Sit closer together, and keep your ruddy hands inboard. That be the best way to repel boarders. And mark well me words, mateys…dead men tell no tales!”  ―Talking Skull

Handling script and songwriting duties, as well as voicing the memorable Talking Skull, whose ominous warning has prefaced millions of guests’ swashbuckling adventures, it’s safe to say that this world-famous attraction would be a much different experience without X. Atencio’s involvement. These two prints are a nice tribute to the original version of the attraction and one of the very talented Imagineers who is to thank for its more than half-a-century’s worth of success.

VALUE: $100

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