Answers from Imagineers

What is WDI looking for when you apply to be an Imagineer?

Eddie, Just a few hours ago I met my first Imagineer at (believe it or not) an AIAA convention. He was discussing the F-22 and just happened to mention that he was hired by WDI as an engineer, and since then I have been looking at Imagineering sites and stumbled upon this one. I am in such awe of Imagineers because they create fantasy. Fantasy, to me, is something unbound and exaggerated, and an Imagineer’s main job is to bring it to life. How? I have often heard that a dreamer is no good unless he brings it into...
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Answers from Imagineers

Who originally comes up with the concept or idea behind a ride?

Eddie, First of all, how does the designing process start? Who originally comes up with the concept or idea behind a ride? Is it a writer? Engineer? Group decision? What’s next from there? Does a story writer script it, then pass it on to a engineer to see how viable the project is? Or is a ride conceptualized, then handed over to a writer to script just the dialogue? Will – At WDI, there was no one way an idea came about. Sometimes they were a quantified business request from the operator (E-ticket $70m budget, 2000THRC, opens EPCOT 2001,...
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Answers from Imagineers

Why aren’t walk-through attractions more appealing?

Eddie – In the interview you mentioned that walk-through attractions are very difficult to make successful. I was wondering why you think they are more difficult to make work than attractions with ride systems? What must happen to make a walk-through have that edgy appeal we all crave? I can think of some examples of what I consider successful walk throughs are: 1) The Swiss Family Tree House 2) Haunted Houses…e.g. Halloween Horror Nights at Universal (especially when you have a lady friend clinging on you!) 3) The Sleeping Beauty Dioramma in Sleeping Beauty’s Castle 4) The Tom Sawyer...
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Once an attraction is opened, who is responsible for the upkeep when problems arise?

Eddie – Once an attraction is opened, who is responsible for the upkeep when problems arise? I would imagine (pardon the pun) that the Imagineers are not responsible for this and that there is a group of maintenance personnel on site for such occurrences as ride malfunctions or routine maintenance. What qualifications might these cast members have? I’m curious if maintenance of the attractions would require similar qualifications to those of an Imagineer. I’m sure there is a need for plumbers, electricians, mechanics. But what about programmers and engineers? – Russell Russ, This is a big issue for the...
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I want to contact an Imagineer at WDI. How do I do this?

Eddie – I would like to contact Joe Lanzisero. Is there anyone who may have his mailing address? I have an idea for a concept/theme for Disney World that I would like to share with him. I don’t want any money. I don’t want to become an Imagineer. I just want him to listen to the idea. If he likes it, I would love no more than the joy of seeing it become a reality. Any suggestions? Thanks, Edwin Edwin – Nothing stops you from calling WDI (818-544-6500) and looking him up. My experience with WDI legal policy is...
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How can I share my ideas with Disney?

Eddie – I would like to contact Joe Lanzisero. Is there anyone who may have his mailing address? I have an idea for a concept/theme for Disney World that I would like to share with him. I don’t want any money. I don’t want to become an Imagineer. I just want him to listen to the idea. If he likes it, I would love no more than the joy of seeing it become a reality. Any suggestions? Thanks, Edwin Edwin – Nothing stops you from calling WDI (818-544-6500) and looking him up. My experience with WDI legal policy is...
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How to protect your intellectual property

Eddie – Once you have an idea and a portfolio made up for it, how do you make sure that the people you present it to do not reject you and then steal your idea. How can you prove it is yours? Steve Davis Steve – How do you keep them from stealing your attraction idea from your portfolio? You really can’t. If someone really wants it, they change it a bit and take it. In fact, when I was at WDI, I wasn’t even allowed to look at submitted ideas for projects without legal approval, which they almost...
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How do I make my theme park idea a reality?

Eddie – My name is Anthony Preston I have been reading about Eddie and he sound’s just like me. When I was 5 years old I took my first trip to Disney World. I really liked the first thing I saw, which was the Indiana Jones epic stunt spectacular. It really impressed me. I grew up going to Disney world alot, and I wanted to be a theme park owner. I have been working on theme park ideas since I was six. And now have a great plan. I want to create a theme park called ‘The Secret World’....
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How do I put my ideas into tangible form?

Eddie – I have always had “ideas in my head” for themed attractions. But I have always struggled getting them out of my head and into a tangible form for others to see and evaluate. At 29, I am looking to totally change my career and pursue the themed industry. I have wanted to do this my whole life but I have always struggled to find the right approach to get into the business. With that said, I have a good friend who is a C.A.D drafter and he is willing to teach me the program. Do you think...
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How is math used in Disney Imagineering?

Dear Eddie, I’ve wanted to become an Imagineer for as long as I can remember. I am doing a report for algebra class. We have to pick a job that we would like to have when we grow older and explain how math is used in that job. Can you please tell me from your standpoint how it is used and what type of math is used most commonly. Thank you in advance, Brendan Generelli Brendan – Well, depending on where you land at imagineering, math plays a crucial role in each area. In the engineering realm, everything from...
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