Watch “The Hollywood That Was” – Stories From The Making of Disney’s Hollywood Studios, A Series of Imagineering Panels on Disney-MGM Studios and Beyond!
As part of Disney’s Hollywood Studios Appreciation Week this year, we decided to bring back full presentations from last year’s WDWNT event, Stage 89!
All 3 full-length presentations from Disney Imagineers and Legends premiered on YouTube throughout the week as part of our WDWNT Live! programming, but we’ve decided to round them all up for you here for the ultimate Disney’s Hollywood Studios appreciation playlist. Check out former Imagineers and Disney Legends as they tell us all about their experiences in creating the Hollywood that never was… and always will be!
“Backstage Pass” with Former Imagineer Brian Collins
As a Disney Cast Member and Imagineer in the early 1990’s, Brian helped create the magic for some of the most beloved attractions throughout the Walt Disney World Resort, including show concepts for such attractions as The Great Movie Ride, Studio Backlot Tour, Jungle Cruise, and Epcot’s World Showcase. After leaving Disney, he continued to earn his stripes in a variety of creative positions within the ranks of corporate America. A passionate educator, Brian has served on the faculty of several colleges and universities where he has developed and taught courses on entrepreneurship, marketing, innovation, and even “Product Development for Theme Parks.” Through it all, he has always maintained a “dotted line” relationship with Disney and has continued to work for them in a variety of freelance and contractual projects over the years.
“Special Effects Workshop” with Former Imagineers Jack Gillett and James Mulder
Jack Gillett, a 26-year Imagineering veteran, was a Principal Special Effects Designer for Walt Disney Imagineering. In that role, he took the creative lead on developing, designing, and installing special effects for Walt Disney Imagineering projects spanning from the opening of EPCOT Center and continuing up to recent special projects and opportunities. Beginning as Cinetechnician at Walt Disney Studios, Jack quickly transitioned to WED/MAPO in order to bring his one-of-a-kind technical know-how and creativity to Walt Disney Parks and Resorts. Among the highlights of Jack’s portfolio is his work as lead on projection effects for Horizons at EPCOT Center, work on projection technology for Star Tours, field installation for Euro Disney, design and installation of special effects for Space Mountain Paris, work on projection and interactive effects for Mickey’s Philharmagic 3-D show, effects work on Expedition Everest, and effects work on Finding Nemo Submarine Voyage. Jack worked closely with WDI R&D and was part of the “hit squad” that was responsible for the design, implementation, and installation of special effects as part of the Disney-MGM Studios project. As part of this team, Jack lent his expertise to the classic early Studios attractions including the Backlot Tour, Indiana Jones Epic Stunt Spectacular, and The Great Movie Ride. Jack and his team are three-time TEA award winners for outstanding achieve for Special Effects for Space Mountain in Paris, Expedition Everest, and Finding Nemo Submarine Voyage. James Mulder, a 30-year veteran of the themed entertainment industry, was a Senior Principal Designer and Principal Special Effects Designer for Walt Disney Imagineering for more than twenty years.In that role, he took the creative lead on developing, designing, and installing special effects for Walt Disney Imagineering projects beginning with the opening of EPCOT Center and continuing up to recent opening of Shanghai Disneyland.Among the highlights of James’s portfolio is his work on visual effects for Journey Into Imagination, The American Adventure, Spaceship Earth, the Living Seas, and the Norway pavilion’s Maelstrom attraction at Epcot Center; management of design, production, and installation of visual effects and theatrical systems for Mickey’s Philharmagic 3-D show at Disney parks around the world; and management of design, production, and installation of visual effects and theatrical systems for It’s Tough to Be a Bug at Disney’s Animal Kingdom.As part of the Disney-MGM Studios project, James contributed extensively to the design, fabrication and installation of visual effects for The Great Movie Ride and MuppetVision 3-D. For their efforts, James and his team won the TEA award winners for outstanding achieve for Special Effects for It’s Tough to be a Bug.James continues to work at the vanguard of visual effects technology in the themed entertainment industry for a variety of clients including work on the Shanghai Disneyland project and with Universal Studios Creative.
“Star Conversation” with Former Executive Vice President of Walt Disney Entertainment Ron Logan
As executive vice president of Walt Disney Entertainment, Ron Logan was responsible for creating, casting, and producing all live entertainment products for The Walt Disney Company, including the Disneyland Resort, the Walt Disney World Resort, Tokyo Disney Resort, Disneyland Resort Paris, The Disney Institute, Disney Business Productions, Disney Cruise Line, Disney Entertainment Productions, and Walt Disney Entertainment Worldwide. Logan also was executive vice president of the Walt Disney Special Events Group, executive vice president of Disney Special Programs, Inc. and the founder and first president of Disney Theatrical Productions, which produced Beauty and the Beast on Broadway and around the world. He was also involved in the following productions which he will be talking about at Stage 89: Disney-MGM Studios Grand Opening, Sorcery in the Sky, The Hunchback of Notre Dame – A Musical Adventure, Aladdin’s Royal Caravan Parade, Beauty and the Beast – Live on Stage!, Voyage of the Little Mermaid, Fantasmic!, Lights, Motors, Action Extreme Stunt Show, Indiana Jones Epic Stunt Spectacular, and multiple offering from Pleasure Island.