There have been a few really good Disney documentaries through the years. When asked the question, I often refer to The Boys or Waking Sleeping Beauty. Both were released quite some time ago but both told excellent stories about different parts of The Walt Disney Company story. Walt and El Groupo was also quite good. However, with the arrival of Disney+ this week, Disney’s new streaming service, there is now a new place to point people looking for Disney documentaries.
The Imagineering Story takes a look into the process that creates the magic found in Disney theme parks. A combination of imagination and engineering led to the word Imagineering. This documentary series digs into the story behind this iconic Disney company organization. Created by Walt Disney ahead of the building of Disneyland, this organization literally created magical effects never seen before and created themed entertainment as we know it today.
In The Imagineering Story, the creation of Imagineering is shared along with the projects that they tackled throughout the rest of Walt Disney’s life. This includes the creation of Disneyland, attractions built for the World’s Fair that would then move to Disneyland, the new Tomorrowland, and also the beginnings of Walt Disney World, more specifically Epcot. This is a wonderful look behind the curtain for how the magic is made. It also gives a great look at Walt Disney’s love of the creative process with Imagineering and the people who loved to work for him. This is a documentary that isn’t just sharing facts, but also heart and passion.
The strength of this series is that it isn’t historians just telling the story of Imagineering. Instead, it is Imagineers past and present sharing the stories of where they came from. Many of those included in the program worked directly for Walt Disney, or Disney utilized interviews of people who actually worked for Walt Disney. The result is a collection of personal stories coming together to tell the bigger story of Imagineering.
Through the years, there have been a few good Disney documentaries on different parts of The Walt Disney Company. Some of them were even about Walt Disney. The Imagineering Story is the first to really dig deep into one of Walt Disney’s favorite pet projects, Imagineering. It does a fantastic job of collecting stories from the people who lived them and put them together in a compelling way. At the end of the day, Walt Disney was always a great storyteller and showman. This documentary series grabs ahold of the Disney storytelling legacy and instead of telling a story about pirates, princesses, or cute fluffy animals, it tells the story about the organization that creates the magic experienced in the Disney theme parks. This is a series that all Disney fans should watch and easily gets a hat tip.