November 30, 2009

When the Future was Forward Thinking

What was it about the 1967 version of Disneyland's Tomorrowland that inspired so many? If you look at this piece of Imagineering concept art, you'll catch a small glimpse and begin to understand the passion of those older Disney park fans that saw this version in real time.

Here is the McDonnell Douglas sponsored Flight to the Moon adventure, a prominent first version of the Peoplemover, and off to the far right, a freshly rendered version of Space Mountain. Much like Epcot's original version of Future World, the future has never seemed so thrilling, hopeful and inviting!

What do we have today? Potential- but little representation of what is to come. Buzz Lightyear (My favorite space ranger!) and Nemo take up prime property, the space flight to other planets is now a restaurant, tracks from the Peoplemover sit waiting for something to come, with all of it housed in an architectural environment consisting of a mish mash of styles and outdated 80's concepts.

Myabe this last visit to Disneyland and California Adventure reignited my passion to see Tomorrowland return to its glory days. Or my mid-February visit to Walt Disney World and its sci-fi version in the Magic Kingdom. If nothing else, both reminded me what the Walt Disney Company can achieve when they put their mind to it- and what they don't when they focus first on synergy and cross-marketing.

Let's keep looking forward as we continue our explorations of Tomorrowland on Monday mornings.

(Concept art copyright The Walt Disney Company.)

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