Like many others out there, my favorite Disney ride of all time is/was Horizons. Progress City U.S.A. just did a nice 3 part review of the General Electric promotional booklet for Horizons. Here were the parts I found to be most interesting.
An interview with Ned Landon from GE who worked on the Horizons ride did a great job of explaining all the aspects of the subject matter.
…guests will come to better understand how research programs in microelectronics, information sciences, new materials, energy systems, meteorology, space exploration, transportation systems, medicine and biosciences – to mention only a few – form the basis of our hopes for the future. Then we’ll actually visit future living situations made more livable – and more fun – by things like holographic imaging, genetically-engineered farm crops, the mining of underseas resources and the use of outer space for medical, health, manufacturing and even recreational purposes.
Its a shame that all of these aspects tied together along with a message about a positive tomorrow are now lost in Futureworld. Ned went on to say:
We’re not predicting a better world based on wild guesswork or imaginary science fiction. Instead we’re saying that today’s technology – scientific understanding – is so advanced that it gives the human race magnificent options to shape a better tomorrow. To achieve a future with greater promise for everybody.
It wasn’t fantasy but something almost tangible. Ned also described the Disney team as a “collection of artistic, architectural, design, writing, sculpting, movie-making, human-engineering, musical and heaven-knows-what other talent perhaps unequalled in the world.” I feel like some of this is lacking from some of the newer Futureworld rides. There is movie-making but I feel like the artistic, architectural, and animatronic side of the magic is missing. Are they creating music that people will remember? Are they working with special effects that we appreciate? I suppose we can smell the oranges in Soarin and that we can choose our own ending in Spaceship Earth. The differences with these is in Horizons we were smelling the FUTURE and our choose our own ending movies were created in part by David Jones, a special-effects veteran of Star Wars.
I could go on and on about my love for Horizons but others have done this in great detail successfully on these pages. If we can dream it, we can do it!