The Imagineering Story Mickey

(Welcome to The Quarantine Stream, a new series where the /Film team shares what they’ve been watching while social distancing during the COVID-19 pandemic.)

The TV Series: The Imagineering Story

Where You Can Stream It: Disney+

The Pitch: Created by Walt Disney, Imagineering is a division of the Disney company tasked with transforming their movies into fantastically themed immersive worlds for us to explore and play in. This six-part documentary series lifts a look behind the curtain at the division that created Disneyland and Walt Disney World, and the people who made it all possible. Each episode takes us through a decade, showing the creation and challenges behind some of the most beloved destinations in the world.

Why It’s Essential Viewing: This is essential viewing for any Disney fan, large or small, young or old. I would say this is the number one reason to subscribe to Disney+, even over The Mandalorian. This is essentially a six-hour documentary that has been split into bite-sized one-hour episodes, each covering a decade of the company’s history. It’s not only a fantastic history of Disney’s evolving theme parks and resorts, but an eye-opening look at how much work goes into creating them, from political deals to creative design to construction.

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The Imagineering Story interview

Oscar-nominated filmmaker Leslie Iwerks is about to unveil her newest documentary. The Imagineering Story is a six-part documentary series which tracks the history and evolution of Imagineering in Walt Disney theme parks, and it serves as a sort of spiritual follow-up to her 2007 film The Pixar Story, which chronicled the genesis of that company and its eventual rise to creative dominance. But this series has a special resonance for Iwerks.

Leslie is the granddaughter of Ub Iwerks, Walt Disney’s original business partner and the co-creator of Mickey Mouse and Oswald the Lucky Rabbit. Her father was Don Iwerks, a former Disney executive and Oscar winner for his technical contributions to the film industry. Because of her family connections, Leslie was taken behind the scenes of Disney parks as a child and got to see behind the curtain as these engineers were creating new additions to “The Happiest Place on Earth.” I sat down with Iwerks a couple of weeks ago to talk to her about her new documentary, how she’s trying to share some of the wonder she felt as a kid, the definitive Disney theme park attraction, and more.  Read More »

The Imagineering Story

(Welcome to The Disney Discourse, a recurring feature where Josh Spiegel discusses the latest in Disney news. He goes deep on everything from the animated classics to the theme parks to live-action franchises.)

The Walt Disney Company loves nothing more than to mythologize itself. Creating and maintaining its legacy is as valuable to the company as making new films, TV shows, theme-park attractions, toys, etc., that can help firm up its financial bottom line. So it’s not at all surprising that one of the brand-new series being unveiled on November 12 with the Disney+ streaming service is squarely focused on that legacy. The series in question is The Imagineering Story, a six-episode documentary that might wind up being more educational if you know less about Disney’s past.

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Disney Plus costs

Disney+ will officially join the streaming wars in just over a week on November 12. With it comes hundreds of The Walt Disney Company’s movies and television shows from over the decades, but there’s also a wave of original programming along with it. The most anticipated show is undoubtedly the live-action Star Wars series The Mandalorian. Unfortunately, that series hasn’t been made available to critics for review, and it won’t be until it bows on the launch day for Disney+. However, the subscription service has plenty more Disney+ original shows to offer, and we’ve seen some of them.

We were given access to early screeners of the first wave of original programming on Disney+, which includes the Disney theme park documentary series The Imagineering Story, the National Geographic culture documentary series The World According to Jeff Goldblum, the high school drama reunion reality series Encore!, the inspirational kid-focused reality series The Marvel Hero Project, and the scripted mockumentary series High School Musical: The Musical: The Series. Are any of these shows worth watching with a Disney+ subscription? We sampled each of them. Read More »

Imagineering Story Trailer

We’re under a month away from The Walt Disney Company entering the streaming wars with their Disney+ streaming service. The full roster of programming coming to the Disney+ was recently revealed, but it looks like one of their launch day shows was left out of the mix.

The Imagineering Story is a new documentary series, coming exclusively to Disney+, that will take a look behind the scenes of all the theme park magic that happens at Disneyland, Disney World, and more. Watch The Imagineering Story trailer below. Read More »