Sunday, March 23, 2014

Disney Animator Ruben Aquino in 'The Mouse Castle Lounge'

Ruben Aquino
Ruben Aquino didn't set out to become an animator. He originally had plans to be an architect. Talent, timing and dumb luck had other ideas, though, leading Ruben to a 30-plus year career at Walt Disney Animation.

His memorable creations include Ursula in The Little Mermaid, Maurice in Beauty and the Beast, Adult Simba in The Lion King, Powhatan in Pocahontas, Captain Shang in Mulan, Pleakley and David in Lilo & Stitch, and Eudora and James in The Princess and the Frog.

Ruben's repertoire reflects a remarkable versatility. His characters range from heroes to villains to supporting players defying any specific type. "I kind of always wanted to try different things," says Ruben. "So I always let the directors kind of cast me where they thought I could help out the most."

Simba in The Lion King

In part one of our conversation in The Mouse Castle Lounge, Ruben and I discuss his early animation career that included a brief stint at Hanna-Barbera. He also talks about the chain of events that landed him at Disney and shares why Ursula will always be his favorite character. Enjoy!


Related Stories: Celebrating 'The Mouse Castle Lounge's' First Anniversary with Pat Carroll
In the MCL: Disney Animator Ruben Aquino, Part Two

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