Disney fires two longtime cast members, no explanation given

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Longtime actor Mick Ayres, known as B’Lou Crabbe at Disney’s Hilton Head Resort, and resort mascot Shadow, who accompanied Ayres, were recently informed that they would not be returning to work at Disney after have been on leave for 20 months. due to the ongoing pandemic.

Credit: Mick Ayres Facebook

Disney’s Hilton Head Island Resort, a Disney Vacation Club Resort, is located on the coast of South Carolina, just five hours from Walt Disney World Resort. This is where cast members Mick Ayres, known as B’Lou Crabbe, and his friend Shadow entertained the guests. However, the two have received unfortunate news from Disney as they will not be returning to the Disney Vacation Club Resort.

Ayres and Shadow took to their fan page to write a heartfelt message to their fans, explaining what had happened. The post begins by thanking fans for their love and support, and mentions the change.org petition, which was set up to encourage Disney to bring Ayres and Shadow back.

inside disney hilton head
Credit: Disney’s Hilton Head Island Resort

Both cast members were put on leave last year, along with the majority of other Disney entertainment, due to the ongoing pandemic. But as the entertainment returns to Walt Disney World, Ayres believed he and Shadow would finally return to Disney’s Hilton Head. Unfortunately, this was not the case.

Over the past 20 months, Ayres said, “The resort has constantly told us, ‘We can’t wait to see you and Shadow again. “We’re just waiting for Orlando to bring all the artists back at once.”

However, just a few weeks ago, they received an unfortunate phone call. Ayres explained in the post:

Then last week, during a 5 minute phone call from a resort administrator, I was read a very short letter outright that revealed that we were not coming back at all. I repeatedly asked for an explanation, but only got silence. To be fair, the administrator is a friend whom Shadow and I love as much as we love you; he was obviously uncomfortable and hated being the warning sign. Yet our 21 year career at the Resort was over.

Actor Mick Ayres and Shadow
Credit: Mick Ayres Facebook

Ayres went on to explain how hurt and confused he was by this news, as he was continually told that he and Shadow would be returning to Disney’s Hilton Head Island Resort. So when he got that phone call he was shocked – especially since when he asked for the reasoning behind that decision, he got nothing but silence in return.

He wrote:

I am certainly hurt and confused (but NOT bitter, you know). The entertainment industry as a whole has been nearly wiped out by Covid’s excessive restrictions. Believe me, there is nothing more frustrating than being declared “non-essential” by people as non-essential as excessive politicians. But I never dreamed that Disney would willingly slap this label on Shadow and B’lou or one of their equally beloved artists across the world. For me, the arts are as essential to human beings as breathing, eating and sleeping.

Over the past 20 months, to their credit, Disney has fully honored Shadow’s part of our mutual performance contract by continuing to pay the vet and groomer for Shadow’s care. However, although I did not receive any monetary compensation from Disney since I was not performing at the resort, I still honored the terms of our contract which placed limits on all off-property performances. So my auto-renewing contract was still active during that entire period because Disney and I still lived up to its terms. Therefore, in all faith and confidence, I believed them completely when I was told we were coming back.

If your beautiful and passionate petition, phone calls, emails and letters work – and we are asked to come back – Shadow and I would definitely do it! The shade is fine. I’m fine. My health is balanced. God has always had me in his grip. There is still a lot of magic to share.

Shadow of the actors
Credit: Mick Ayres Facebook

Ayres concluded the Facebook post by once again thanking their fans for their continued love and support, and he hopes they can one day return to Disney’s Hilton Head Resort:

THANKS A LOT TO ALL for everything! If Shadow and I are brought ‘home’ it’s only because of you and what you started here.

Much love to you all. We have always felt like part of your families, but more than ever.

Shadow says “Wow”.

Are you upset to hear that actor Mick Ayres, known as B’Lou Crabbe, and Shadow will not be returning to Disney’s Hilton Head? Let us know in the comments below.


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