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Francis Xavier "X" Atencio was an American former Imagineer, writer, lyricist, and animator.

He joined Disney in 1938 as an animator. In 1941, he left the studio to serve in World War II with the United States Army Air Forces, returning to Disney after the war ended.[1]

In 1965, he became an Imagineer. He wrote the scripts for several Disney theme park attractions, most notably Adventure Thru Inner Space, Pirates of the Caribbean, and the Haunted Mansion, as well as the lyrics to the theme songs of the latter two, "Yo Ho (A Pirate's Life for Me)" and "Grim Grinning Ghosts", respectively. He also wrote the lyrics of "Bear Band Serenade" for Country Bear Jamboree and "It's Fun to Be Free" for World of Motion. Another brief voice-over Atencio provided was for the Submarine Voyage Thru Liquid Space, where he is addressed as "Bridge." He also wrote the lyrics to Buddy Baker's music for the retired Magic Kingdom attraction If You Had Wings.

His voice can be heard as the Talking Skull at the beginning of Pirates of the Caribbean as well as the drunken pirate on the bridge heckling the auctioneer. In the Haunted Mansion, his voice emanates from the coffin in the conservatory and in the emergency safety spiel when the ride comes to a halt.[2]

He was referenced in the Goofy short How to Dance as a dance school bears his name.

He was recognized as a Disney Legend in 1996.

Atencio died on September 10, 2017, six days after his 98th birthday.

Animation filmography

Year Film Position
1940 Fantasia Assistant Animator - uncredited
1953 Toot, Whistle, Plunk and Boom Animator
1955 The Mickey Mouse Club "Circus Day" - Layout
1956 A Cowboy Needs a Horse Layout Styling
1956 Jack and Old Mac Character Styling
1957 The Truth About Mother Goose Layout
1959 Noah's Ark Character Movement/Styling
1959-1968 The Magical World of Disney Layout Artist
1959 The Shaggy Dog Title Designer
1961 The Parent Trap Title Animation
1961 Babes in Toyland Toy Sequence animator
1962 A Symposium on Popular Songs Story
1962 Bon Voyage Title Designer
1964 The Misadventures of Merlin Jones Title Animation
1964 Mary Poppins Designer: nursery sequence
1966 Winnie the Pooh and the Honey Tree Story
1977 The Many Adventures of Winnie the Pooh Story

Disney Role



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