EPCOT 30th Reflection
In all candor, we at Disney were not prepared for the enthusiasm for the Epcot concept we presented. Perhaps it was the popularity of the Walt Disney World Resort with the public, or the backstage tours where we emphasized all the innovative systems already in place. Perhaps it was the attitude and enthusiasm of all the Disney people they encountered, from Cast Members operating an attraction to corporate executives and Imagineering designers. Perhaps it was the legacy of Walt Disney, still the master communicator a decade and more after his passing. – Marty Sklar
EPCOT is a magical place. Its clean. It holds numerous experiences that educate, entertain, and frankly it just has NEAT stuff! Spaceship Earth – its just neat, one of the ultimate dark rides! I walk to the other side of the park and see a dude in a fez and then nearby, eat as many bowls of spaetzle as I want. Where else can you experience all this?
I didn’t go to EPCOT for the 30th celebration but I have been reading everyone else’s take on what happened in the D23 sessions. Inside The Magic reported that the panel titled Looking Back at Tomorrow ended with an extended look at Horizons and all three classic film endings were shared in pristine condition. I think my head would explode.
Likewise, there was a panel titled The Music of Epcot Center where they highlighted the big hits such as “Tomorrow’s Child” by Ron Ovadia and Peter Stougaard and the Horizon’s Music by George Wilkins. Of course there was also a nod, as there should be for the Sherman Brothers.
Later in the day, Marty Sklar had his own presentation where he talked about the original EPCOT logo. “The original logo was a symbol of unity, fellowship and harmony around the world,” he said. “The goal was to create a better tomorrow.” The original logo “was much better than the stupid one they’re using now.”
Another cool tidbit – “One of the reasons there’s so much space between Future World and the World Showcase lagoon is that we discovered a gigantic sink hole near where the Odyssey Restaurant is,” Marty said. “We couldn’t build anything on top of it.” Maybe there really was a sink hole under Horizons.
This anniversary has offered an opportunity for a great look back (similar to the 25th EPCOT Anniversary Gallery) and also inspired some great new art, and new merchandise and concepts from many artists reflecting the greatest parts of EPCOT. Some of this makes me wish for the old days – a live guide for The Land, Cranium Command, Communicore and no strange tent decorations outside Spaceship Earth. While I still feel like not having Horizons leaves a huge (sink) hole in the park, I hope that the future of future world invokes some of the same imagination and innovation that it once had.