very best deals on everything from tvs to toys. from seasonal traps to killer apps. our insiders crack the codes to saving big. inside a global phenomenon. it shows in 98 cities, 6 tony awards and a record-shattering nearly billion-dollar run. tonight, we're pulling back the curtain on the making of "the lion king." and over 600 feet high, over 14 lanes of the world's busiest traffic. for these guys, it's an average day at work. is this the scariest job on earth? >> announcer: from the global resources of abc news, with terry moran, cynthia mcfadden, and bill weir in new york city. this is "nightline," november 20th, 2012. good evening. i'm terry moran. thanksgiving's only two days away now, which means that holiday shopping frenzy is upon us. and if your christmas list is threatening to do major damage to your bank account, you're not
alone. when it comes to finding the very best deals on everything from smartphones to cameras to toys, the answer may be only an app away. abc's sharyn alfonsi brings us the new tricks to saving big for our series, "easy money." >> reporter: meet the perillo family. three sisters in constant motion. it doesn't leave a lot of time for working parents, like sarah and chris perillo, to do a lot of holiday shopping. >> we look for online free shipping. anything we can do to avoid the malls and bring three kids to the malls. >> reporter: increasingly, families like the perillos who struggle to find time to shop and the best deals are turning to the internet. this year, for the first time, more than half of us will shop online, spending $226 billion.
in the true spirit of the season, we decided to bring them some high-tech help. nice to meet you. joanna stern is abc's tech editor. she showed us how to outsmart the stores to get great deals. on the perillos' list, a flat-screen tv and digital camera. we start looking. >> is that really the price? is it was this price this morning? >> reporter: we were surprised to learn that prices online fluctuate from day-to-day and hour-to-hour. watch in sony camera. the price dropped three times, $50, over the course of just 12 hours. when should you pull the trigger and buy? tip number one, arm yourself with apps. at the store, we see a digital camera we were looking at. >> we want a step up. >> reporter: and pull out our decide app. it scans the bar code, searching
through thousands of pieces of information, to tell us whether we should buy it now or wait and get a better price later. it tells us to wait. but what about the samsung tv, on sale for $648. it says buy. so, sarah does. on the toy aisle, we saw bouncing tigger. it's at the top of the girls' list. that's not going to make you crazy? >> it definitely will. >> reporter: it was $39.99 at target, marked down to $28.99. click to compare. using another app, called red laser, we scan the bar code and find it cheaper. target will match online pricing this year, so we get it for $21. know the trends. and those who analyze them, say unless you're trying to scoop up a hot-selling toy, you can steer clear of the toy aisle this black friday. toys will be at their lowest
prices two weeks before christmas. and typically, the best time to buy appliances will be monday. travel deals tuesday. julie wednesday. clothing thursday. but if you're shopping online and don't like the price, tip number four, just walk away. >> if you put something in your cart and you walk away from it, it's playing hard to get. tell them what you want, walk away. and they might lower the price. send an e-mail and say, we insided you had this in your cart, here's the 10% discount. >> reporter: to trick the computer, you may need to put in your credit card number. but don't use it. it's not about clicking on it and going away. we have to go to the very last step before you click place the order? >> exactly. >> reporter: and the discounts keep coming. the perillos saved $390. proving that you can crack the codes an get great deals. but hiding the gifts, that's still an old-fashioned artform. for "nightline," i'm sharyn
alfonsi, in connecticut. >> thanks to sharyn alfonsi for those tips. next up, after 15 years of breaking records across the globe, we bring you a special look inside, the making of "the lion king." ♪ first rule of taking the world by surprise? do something the world will actually notice. introducing the entirely new ford fusion. with a turbo-charged ecoboost engines and a hybrid that doubles the fuel economy of the average vehicle. it's an entirely new idea of what a car can be.
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>> announcer: "nightline" continues from new york city, with terry moran. it's a story beloved the world over. "the lion king." it's grossed over $5 billion now across the globe. and now, the broadway adaptation that some critics and insiders thought wouldn't last 15 minutes is celebrating 15 years of outrageous record-breaking success. in a journey that spanned from broadway to brazil and back, abc's juju chang brings us this
look inside the making of a phenomenon. ♪ >> reporter: that haunting zulu call. and the menagerie of puppets that follow, has enthralled audiences the world over. as "the lion king" celebrates 15 record-shattering years on the great white way, "nightline's" invited to pull back the curtain and discover the secrets behind the show's phenomenal success. ♪ >> reporter: it's the highest-grossing musical of all-time, with profitmaking runs in more than 100 cities around the globe. "the lion king" brand has earned more than all six "star wars" films combined.
it's hard to believe that at first, most people thought the musical would fail. >> i said, that's the worst idea i've ever heard. >> reporter: including the show's would-be producer, thomas schumacher. >> we're going to get yelled at for touching stuff. >> reporter: unlikely, since tom's now the head of disney's theatrical production. i feel like a lioness. he reminisces about arguing with his boss, who was hell-bent on making it all work. >> he said just get a great idea. and i got a great idea. julie taymor. >> reporter: at the time, julie taymor was a little-known theater virtuoso. she had directed operas. but never mainstream broadway. >> everybody told us we were crazy to work with julie taymor.
the broadway community assumed this would be a massive disaster. >> reporter: but the disney team decided the bigger the risk, the bigger the reward. they would reinvent this beloved cartoon for the stage. julie used every trick in the book. from 17th century stage craft, to african costuming and asian puppetry. the result, a fusion of high-art and low-brow comedy. and this is what you call the double -- >> that's the double-event. you get the human and the animal. when you want the aggressive nature of the lion, that's when scar will put his head forward. and there's the ability to get very violent. this is the sexiest animal we have. i love the idea that the audience sees the strings. i want them to appreciate the talent of the performer who is moving it.
>> reporter: and to find those performers, julie still scours the globe in search of raw talent. >> give him the cue right before scar. ♪ hakuna matata >> reporter: in sao paulo, we get a rare glimpse in a casting production. brazil is the 60th country to stage a "lion king" production. after weeks of callbacks, they finally strike gold. ♪ tiago barbosa, a 27-year-old plucked from the slums of rio, brings down the house, with simba's most emotional number. ♪ >> good job. >> can we? hey.
simba. >> reporter: 15 years into her journey, there's still magic in a discovery like this. >> i'm not sure anybody's ever put it together like that. >> not like that? >> no. ever. in any place. >> reporter: and julie taymor is no stranger to magical moments. in 1998, "lion king" earned six tony awards. julie became the first woman ever to win best director. she went on to direct movies, including "frida." and then, another musical. "spider-man: turn off the dark." but it was riddled with stage accidents, money issues. julie was pushed out of the production before opening night. she's not talked on camera about the experience until now. >> you can't blame me. you don't create a musical with one person or two. >> reporter: her famous
partners, u2's bono and the edge, accused her of being too close to the project to see its major flaws. would you agree with that assessment? >> i wouldn't. it's hard to create experimental, break ground, try to do something that's never been done, when people are going to second-guess it. the show that's there is the show that i created over eight years, minus some of the deaths. >> reporter: and after significant retooling, it's a show that's become a huge hit on broadway. julie says that's part to her early vision. big risk, big reward. it's the lesson she learned from "lion king." and as the original creators take the curtain call after sunday's 15th anniversary performance, they know all of the pageantry and the stage craft would be meaningless, were it not for a simple story retold. >> it's our story. it's the story of humanity, told with lions, a meerkat and a
flatulent wart hog. >> reporter: perhaps that's the secret to its success. for "nightline," i'm juju chang in new york. >> it is a great show, coming to a country near you. thanks to juju for that. next up, a vertigo-inducing climb to the top of the world's busiest bridge to hang with the team that made this their 9:00 to 5:00. ♪ ♪ [ engine revs ] ♪ [ male announcer ] oh what fun it is to ride. get the mercedes-benz on your wish list at the winter event going on now -- but hurry, the offer ends soon. [ santa ] ho, ho, ho! [ male announcer ] lease a 2013 e350 for $579 a month at your local mercedes-benz dealer. cool. you found it. wow. nice place. yeah. [ chuckles ] the family thinks i'm out shipping these. smooth move. you used priority mail flat rate boxes. if it fits, it ships for a low, flat rate.
paid for postage online and arranged a free pickup. and i'm gonna track them online, too. nice. between those boxes and this place, i'm totally staying sane this year. do i smell snickerdoodles? maybe. [ timer dings ] got to go. priority mail flat rate boxes. online pricing starts at $5.15. only from the postal service. i got this snapshot thing from progressive, plugged it into my car, and got a discount just for being the good driver i've always been. i'm just out here, snap-shooting it forward. you don't want to have to pay for other people's bad driving, do you? no. with progressive snapshot, you don't have to. i'm going to snap it right now. bam, there it is. goes underneath your dash. keep safe, and keep saving. you know, i won't always be around to save you money. that's why you should get snapshot from progressive. all right, dude! thanks! to the safe go the savings.
occupational hazard. spending a day suspended hundreds of feet above the ground, above 14 lanes of legendary rush hour traffic. it beats any corner office view. and abc's own bob woodruff gave it a whirl. >> reporter: it is a crown, atop the new york city skyline, made of cables and steel beams. the busiest bridge in the world. almost a mile long, towering more than 600 feet high. suspended over the hudson river. the george washington bridge is painted by workers balancing and walking, sometimes sliding down the beam. it takes them more than a year and a half just to finish the job. hardly any journalists have ever been allowed to the top of the bridge. but we were. it is a rare look at life atop this marvel of american engineering. so rare and exclusive, potential bridge painters need to ace a series of tests. and this is the final exam. >> a large portion of them, when
they get to this height, it's a better way for them to make a living. >> that's the bridge painter test right there. that beam up there. >> reporter: 90% of them fail that? >> some people fail that halfway out. the rest of them fail. they have to move to the next section. >> reporter: to go any further, we had to take the test and prove we wouldn't panic. this is certainly not for the feint of heart. but for a once upon a time mountain climber, i didn't feel too unsafe. but the real danger is out here, where the barrels of the bridge are round and sloping. and there's no net between us and the 14 lanes of traffic whizzing below. the workers told me none of their colleagues have ever died. >> it's been nine times that i've actually been scared. but up here, you have to be conscious of where you are. >> you know, you're crazy. you feel it. but as soon as you lose the fear of being up here, that's when you're in trouble.
>> reporter: there have been some close calls. have you ever fallen? >> never. >> reporter: did you ever slip? >> yes. >> reporter: obec gonzales has painted three other bridges. this is his first time on this one. what's the best moment up here? >> the best moment, probably in the morning when it's brightest. you're just up here by yourself. it's cool. occasionally, the helicopter will go by, the traffic guy. >> reporter: there's never been any women on this job. they tease my producer, lana zak, that she was the first to scale these barrels. but gonzales has a daughter who might be a future candidate. >> she tells everybody what i do. she gets a kick of me being up here. shows pictures of painting the silver or the gray epoxy. doesn't matter. >> reporter: what do your children say? >> my son, the first thing he looks for is my lanyard. make sure i have it on. >> reporter: a smart kid. look at this place. it's stunningly beautiful. you see the statue of liberty
from here. you can look almost all the way up to west point. for all the beauty, there are real safety concerns. everyone wears two harnesses. everything is securely attached. anything that falls could cause a traffic accident below. you are never trapped out here? >> i've seen a major hurricane blow through. it was a serious situation out here. >> reporter: when that severe wind barreled through several years ago, the painters were right here on the rig. >> it came close enough that it grabbed the rig, throwed it up in the air and slammed it down. >> reporter: despite those dangers, it is a beautiful place up here, a rare view for all of us. i'm bob woodruff, for "nightline," atop of the george washington bridge. >> wow. thanks to bob woodruff for that. we have a final news note for you tonight. despite rising hopes through the day, as of tonight, there is no cease-fire in the conflict gripping the middle east. israel and hamas, the militant
group that governs the gaza strip, they did edge a bit closer to a deal to stop the fighting after days of escalating missile attacks that have the world fearing a full-scale war is about to break out. u.s. secretary of state hillary clinton met with israeli prime minister benjamin netanyahu today, as part of this intense diplomatic efforts that are new under way. hamas, at one point, said a deal had been reached with israel. as of now, the fighting and the dying continues. "good morning america" is going to have the latest on that conflict in the morning. and lots of other stories. thanks for watching abc news. jimmy kimmel's coming up next. we'll see you here tomorrow. up next on an all-new "jimmy kimmel live." >> here's a black friday shopping tip for you. find out who is spending three days waiting in line for these