Thoughts While Watching: Walt’s Epcot/Florida Film


So you’ve seen those “XX Thoughts I Had While Watching Y” posts, right? Where various and sundry authors jot down their thoughts while viewing something relevant to pop culture? I see a lot of ’90s nostalgia re-watches and new movie trailers circulating, plus Disney movies, of course. Buzzfeed does it. Vogue does it. High/low culture at its finest, really.

Stick with me; I promise I have a point.

My point is, Pat and I were rewatching The Imagineering Story the other night, and during the episode about the origins of Epcot he lamented that Walt never got to build his real Utopian city center. “It could’ve changed the way humans live,” he said.

Alas, he’s right. Once again, we’re stuck in the wrong corner of the multiverse. Still, it got me thinking about that time I was writing a paper about Epcot and cultural policy (here, you can read it), during the research stages for which I watched the original EPCOT introductory film. It’s the one where Uncle Walt himself gives an overview of everything he has planned for us in Progress City.

Aha, now you see where I’m going with this! Queue up the video to watch along if you like, as I grace you with…

29 Thoughts I Had While Watching Walt’s Epcot/Florida Film:

  1. This conductor isn’t conducting in time to the soundtrack…?

  2. The opening “To all who come to this happy place” speech always chokes me up a little.

  3. That cart horse is wearing a jaunty hat and I love him!!

  4. Wait… is this Disneyland footage just looping…?

  5. Oh, no, the Astro Orbiter is new.

  6. Old school bubble monorails!

  7. Good old WED Enterprises. I’d give the limb of Walt’s choice to go back and time and become an ink and paint girl.

  8. Wait, did the Carousel of Progress originally have a different dog?

  9. If you watch the Disneyland teacups from above for long enough, Disney hypnotizes you into a yearly tithe.

  10. A whole new Disney WOOOOOOOOORLD! A dazzling place I never knew!

  11. Oh, hey Uncle Walt. Yes, you’re my favorite relative too.

  12. Oh, interesting – there’s a Bay Lake on the map, but I don’t see a Seven Seas Lagoon.

  13. Fun fact: Uncle Walt is six miles tall.

  14. Wait, isn’t WDW 47 square miles? Walt said 43.

  15. An airport of the future in WDW? IF ONLY.

  16. Walt says “Experimental CITY of Tomorrow” the first time before switching to the official “Community” and for some reason this drives me slightly bonkers.

  17. It is taking all my energy not to make a joke about communism OR socialism right now.

  18. Oh, hey, I recognize this place from the TTA Peoplemover!

  19. Yes, thank you, I’d settle for living inside this matte painting.

  20. I totally forgot Walt wanted to build the biodome…

  21. Oh, the hotel must be the inspiration for the Contemporary! Albeit in a VERY roundabout way.

  22. The Peoplemover! I was just talking about you, old friend.

  23. What, you think you can bury “There’s A Great Big Beautiful Tomorrow” in the orchestral score and expect me NOT to sing along?

  24. I look forward to the DVC tower of the high-density EPCOT apartments. I will give them all the money I have to join.

  25. Did they say more cities could be built within monorail striking distance of each other? Sounds like somebody was playing the long game of Risk: Corporate America Edition.

  26. “The six million people who visit Disney World each year” – uh.

  27. Wasn’t World Showcase originally a small part of the EPCOT plan? I don’t think they mentioned it.

  28. I too am ready to go right now.

  29. Bye, Uncle Walt! Miss you already.

That was fun! I think I might dig up s’more old Disney parks specials to Thoughts-ify if there are no objections. Does anyone know which one has a young Kurt Russell in the dashing one-two sartorial punch of a turtleneck and gangster suit?

Kurt Russell Disney
That’s the ticket!

Don’t forget, you can follow FRoA on Twitter @fairestrunofall and on Instagram @fairestrunofall. If you have any questions or thoughts, leave a comment or email fairestrunofall@gmail.comSee ya real soon!

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