Sunday, April 13, 2008

The World May Never be the Same


To my beloved readers: those of you who frequent this blog undoubtedly know about my deep esteem and love of Mary Blair and equally my passion for maintaining the integrity of Walt's original ideas and philosophies. Many of you read and gave heartfelt responses to one of my most emotionally infused entries to date regarding the closure of the Disney Gallery last Fall. So often it seems the only bandage for a broken heart is hope: in this case the hope that with one grave mistake lessons will be learned and such errors will never again be repeated. It would appear that the Disney Company has no such conscience. I'm certain that Disney-centric bloggers visiting this page will have already heard the death knell that is the news regarding "It's a Small World" at the original Disneyland park. For those of you who haven't, an angry buzz, nay growing outcry is spreading as a result of a new "revamping" to Mary Blair's original concept and themed ride "It's a Small World", originally produced for the 1964 World's Fair. Now, before I opine on whether all of the clamor is warranted or not, I think it's important to take a turn through the halls of "Small World's" history so we can gain a better understanding of why this project was started in the first place...

It was 1956. Disneyland was but one year old when Walt was invited to attend a prestigious conference, at the invitation of President Eisenhower, with the intention of creating some kind of national organization to help promote world peace. This was an arena that Walt had worked in before, and it wasn't the first time the government had turned to Disney to help convey its political messages - The "Goodwill Ambassador Tour" that took Disney and Blair, among other Disney artists, to South America in the early 1940's resulting in the creation of "The Three Caballeros" and "Saludos Amigos" being a prime example. The organization which ultimately materialized as a result of the 1956 conference was the People to People Student Ambassador program, however, Walt was left inspired by the ideas from the conference and began putting his best imagineers, concept artists, and songwriters (eg. Mary Blair, Marc Davis, Joyce Carlson, The Sherman Brothers) to work on what would ultimately become "It's a Small World." The idea, of course, was to represent all of the children of the world, in unity, emitting one message: that our differences, our languages, our nationalities, matter so little when we realize that we are all human beings experiencing largely the same needs, the same dreams, and the same emotions.


Fast forward to present. In January Disney announced that it would be closing Small World for refurbishments until early 2009. Originally plans included basic audio/sound improvements, boat and flume remodeling to more easily accommodate disabled guests, and a possible paint job or two. By March, however, rumors began circling that logistical and cosmetic changes were only part of the plan and that the company had begun implementing more substantial storytelling alterations. The restyling, as I understand it, is to include the addition of more "popular" Disney characters such as Donald Duck, Simba, and Lilo and Stitch - to name a few. But the most egregious and downright puzzling alteration is the abolition of Mary's well-known "Rainforest" scene which will be replaced by a new segment: "Up with America." I'm immediately left scratching my head. Can someone please explain to me what U.S. patriotism has to do with the idea of world peace and the message that ultimately we are all one and equal on this earth? How does one possibly derive from lyrics that state "there's so much that we share" the idea that U.S. culture is sovereign from the rest of the world - afterall, not everyone in this small world is American. It's completely antithetical to the entire philosophy behind the ride's original concept, and in my opinion, completely misplaced.

A regular staple of my blogging diet, Re-Imagineering, has been closely following and fervently commenting on the "It's a Small World", um, downgrade. They summed up the contradiction of the refurbished segments this way:

"In consciously excluding a large scale U.S.A.-land from It’s a Small World (a lone cowboy and Indian in the finale was just enough), the original show writers were asking American audiences to step away from their own national consciousness and take stock in the wider world around them. It’s a Small World was never about nationalistic fervor. It was about finding our common humanity outside our own borders."

In addition to some of its own persuasive clamor regarding the refurbishments, Re-Imagineering has posted a string of touching comments from the art and design community, as well as a letter to the Disney Corporation from Kevin Blair, son of Mary Blair, decrying the changes as "idiotic" and "a marginalization" of his mother's work. I don't need to tell you that it's worth the read.

Others in the online community are taking a more pro-active approach. A website entitled, "Save the Small World" has been gathering supporters since its launch, encouraging readers to take a stance against the company and affording ways to do so. It's slogan, "Save the Rainforest, Save the Small World" has been catching like wildfire around Disney blogging sites. It contains the most comprehensive list that I've found including press releases and news articles regarding the rumors and responses from Disney's spokespeople.


At the end of all of this lunacy, I'm extremely sad to say that I wish I could garner the same outrage I hear from the rest of the community - but I cannot. It's not that I think this is any less heinous than the offended public, but my faith that this company might finally set itself on the track toward the ideals of a greater world, a greater humankind, and a greater sense of beauty in the world are dwindling fast. I have become numb to the thoughtless antics of the so-called artists and engineers that the company has employed to market its poor ideas. I am heartbroken. Some things are so sacred that the occurrence of desecration never allows the observer to move beyond a state of disbelief. This is where I am. I would have believed that the company might install gift shops replete with mass marketed plush and plastic at the end of nearly half of its attractions; I would have believed that they would fire all of their animators and replace them with international CGI artists; I would have even believed that the Disney Corporation would close the Disney Gallery and replace it with a tactic for attracting more consumers to its "Year of a Million Dreams" sweepstakes. But this... well, this I simply cannot believe.

46 comments:

Koldo Barroso said...

I agree with you and I would add that I cannot see the point in refurnishing master pieces at all. Why?
What kind of art heritage will be left to our children if every new generation gets there and change it?
Personally, I always wanted to visit Disneyland in Florida instead of any other Disney park just because of Mary Blair's work. If they do that, where am I supossed to go now?

Duvivier said...

There is no better word to express what the Disney corporation is doing than "desecration", really. Like you, I've been seeing this take bigger proportions all the time. 2008 New Year's Eve in Disneyland was simply apocalyptic. They saturated the park much beyond its limits, "destroyed" Sleeping Beauty Castle with hideous decoration, Las Vegas like, and put frantic DJS screaming fake joy, to a mob that seemed to be in brainwashed stupor. If Walt Disney's good taste and coherence doesn't count to the corporation, should they go as far as to subject their clients to the degrading condition of inhuman overcrowding, noise, garish lighting and destruction of everything that was really magic? Following "desecration", the word is apocalyptic. Thanks for being a voice against this!

Anonymous said...

I'm with you on this one Lainey. I'm just sick about this, and the letters from Sklar and Smith haven't helped, it looks like they're going to do it despite the growing opposition.
Sad. So unnecessary.

Koldo Barroso said...

I posted about the subject in my blog, in case it helps. Linked to this article.
http://www.koldobarroso.com/mary-blairs-world-gets-smaller/

Viewliner Ltd. said...

I have great admiration for Mary Blair. And believe that she was a true genius. Here is a link to an article from the Disney Magazine, I posted on my blog.

http://viewlinerltd.blogspot.com/2008/04/designing-woman-mary-blair.html

Anonymous said...

At this time it looks like Wordpress is the top blogging platform available right
now. (from what I've read) Is that what you're using on your blog?


my site ... chiropractic treatment for migraine headaches

Anonymous said...

With havin so much content and articles do you ever run into any issues of plagorism or copyright violation?

My site has a lot of exclusive content I've either written myself or outsourced but it looks like a lot of it is popping it up all over the web without my agreement. Do you know any techniques to help stop content from being stolen? I'd genuinely appreciate it.


My blog post :: golf putting schools

Anonymous said...

What's up to all, how is everything, I think every one is getting more from this web site, and your views are good designed for new users.

my weblog :: las vegas golf lessons

Anonymous said...

Every weekend i used to go to see this site,
because i want enjoyment, as this this web site conations
genuinely pleasant funny information too.


My web site ... Chiropractor-orlando.Com

Anonymous said...

I don't even know how I ended up here, but I thought this post was good. I don't know who you are but definitely you're going to a famous blogger if you are not already ;) Cheers!

my page Different chiropractic Adjustment techniques

Anonymous said...

What's up everyone, it's my first visit at this web site, and piece of
writing is really fruitful for me, keep up posting these types of articles.


Also visit my weblog; golf shoes for men

Anonymous said...

When someone writes an paragraph he/she keeps the image of a user in his/her mind that how a user can be aware of it.

Thus that's why this paragraph is outstdanding. Thanks!

my web site - physical therapy assistant certification

Anonymous said...

Increasingly individuals are adopting this strategy
which they're obtaining very straightforward to practice.

my web blog - the Flex belt reviews

Anonymous said...

[url=http://www.lenbags.com/]louis vuitton wallet[/url] specific "VeVe" tote line is created by Haitian delivered manufacturer, Phelicia Dell, and furthermore is sold for about $70 $120. the woman's "VeVe choices" sections has had Dell within the seeking perfect on to a prized artist as their totes are now your firm stand out regarding that Haitian inspired movements. the bags play poker hand-sewn sequins and likewise decorative, elaborate shapes, generally making a range of icons together with the voodoo heritage, consequently are in is very important and range within the massively general Birkin pouch.


[url=http://www.pickforbags.com/]louis vuitton luggage[/url] what is this great received urgent backlashes. chief credit police officer Natwar mirielle. Gandhi required the resignations age irs health care practice, beginning with Sherryl Hobbs Newman, the dog's director considering the fact that 2005. your loved one deputy movie director, Matthew Braman; my home most typically associated with real possession taxing government, Myour ownrtin. Skolnik; in addition,yet main assessor thomas Branham at the same time if left. barely any was considered suggested as a factor within a scam, still officials defined which distributed because of the fail to trap that.


[url=http://www.uukbags.com/]www.uukbags.com[/url] afar first penned more than a few affairs before, soon to be a different style get journal. compared to rent subscribers, the two of us by way of they all. people intending upmarket, trying to factor ports of call there are many usual route as long as appealing to tv ads totally from country's holidays organisations, usually-transport air carriers and website designer tote brands. these businesses taking them back and moreover anybody simply because lamented vacation mag.

Anonymous said...

http://hermesbag.finniwolf.com delivering these individuals along the length of probably would free you plenty of strength due to their easy fold. this brand of suit was most popular inside your 20th Century, certain to assist the hermes faubourg 24 fix on century. our own i. d,identity selection can top quality upon a white-coloured square bit of sticker label old fashioned paper underneath two jewelry Chanel logos even when old cases understand under one logo.
http://hermesbag.finniwolf.com

Anonymous said...

http://hermeshandbags.finniwolf.com furthermore there montre hermes femme is definitely a few flurries, specifically in the eastern this morning, but the majority venues should have a desert like day. a super setting starting or compact say thanks a lot birthday present idea to buy a meet up is an event favour! even if the event you putting is on your own or someone close, parties prefers add picture come near to any type of situation.
http://hermessale.finniwolf.com

Anonymous said...

Good post. I learn something new and challenging on sites
I stumbleupon every day. It's always helpful to read through content from other writers and use a little something from their web sites.

Feel free to surf to my web-site :: back pain exercises to relieve pain

Anonymous said...

I'm gone to convey my little brother, that he should also visit this web site on regular basis to take updated from latest news update.

My homepage :: Orlando Chiropractor

Anonymous said...

Howdy! I'm at work surfing around your blog from my new iphone 3gs! Just wanted to say I love reading through your blog and look forward to all your posts! Carry on the excellent work!

Also visit my homepage :: Sushi En Orlando

Anonymous said...

Asking questions are really pleasant thing if you are not understanding something totally, however this piece of writing provides nice understanding yet.


Stop by my page - las vegas golf

Anonymous said...

Does your site have a contact page? I'm having problems locating it but, I'd like to shoot you an e-mail.
I've got some ideas for your blog you might be interested in hearing. Either way, great website and I look forward to seeing it develop over time.

My website golf simulator cost

Anonymous said...

I am not sure where you're getting your information, but great topic. I needs to spend some time learning much more or understanding more. Thanks for magnificent information I was looking for this info for my mission.

My homepage ... www.yelp.com

Anonymous said...

Hi, i think that i saw you visited my site so i got here to return the
favor?.I'm trying to in finding things to improve my website!I assume its adequate to make use of a few of your ideas!!

Also visit my web page - Residential LED Lighting

Anonymous said...

Howdy, I do think your blog may be having web browser
compatibility issues. Whenever I take a look at your website in Safari, it looks fine however, when
opening in IE, it has some overlapping issues.
I merely wanted to give you a quick heads up! Aside from that, wonderful blog!


My homepage Ladies Golf Gloves

Anonymous said...

Hi there, just became alert to your blog through
Google, and found that it is really informative. I am going to watch out for brussels.
I will appreciate if you continue this in future. A lot of people
will be benefited from your writing. Cheers!

my web site :: Golf Schools Las Vegas

Anonymous said...

What a material of un-ambiguity and preserveness of precious familiarity regarding unexpected feelings.



Review my page ... torn rotator cuff symptoms and treatment

Anonymous said...

Pretty! This was an incredibly wonderful article.
Many thanks for providing these details.

Also visit my weblog :: Karaoke Bar

Anonymous said...

Excellent, what a webpage it is! This webpage
presents useful data to us, keep it up.

Also visit my weblog :: scapulothoracic joint dislocation

Anonymous said...

Today, while I was at work, my cousin stole my
apple ipad and tested to see if it can survive a 25 foot drop,
just so she can be a youtube sensation. My iPad is now destroyed and she has 83 views.
I know this is totally off topic but I had to share it with someone!



Also visit my page www.al-dalel.com

Anonymous said...

The Apple TV is much cheaper now, at only $99, a far cry from what it
used to sell for back in 2007 when it was more than $200.
However, we can't choose our favorite program and movie when we watch TV. You can edit and set for conversion here, such as file and title name, bit rate, frame rate, file size, frame resolution, aspect ratio, volume, and so on.

My web page ... apple tv review

Anonymous said...

Hello i am kavin, its my first occasion to commenting anywhere,
when i read this paragraph i thought i could also create comment due to this good post.


Also visit my blog post Chiropractor

Anonymous said...

Hmm is anyone else experiencing problems with the pictures
on this blog loading? I'm trying to determine if its a problem on my end or if it's the blog.
Any feed-back would be greatly appreciated.

Feel free to surf to my blog trapezius pain shoulder blade

Anonymous said...

The device is certainly worth considering, even at the full
retail price and with only a $200 discount on the contract, it might make sense to consider paying
the full retail. 1 tablet supports 1080p HD video
playback with 1280x800 capacitive display, which
will bring you an exciting movie enjoyment. They are Vodafone, Virgin, T-Mobile,
Orange, O2 and Three.

Feel free to visit my web-site - samsung galaxy tab

Anonymous said...

(LouisVuitton) initiator people, safe keeping goods [url=http://louisvuittons.ashigaru.jp/]ルイビトン 財布[/url]
terra deposition, [url=http://louisvuitton.aikotoba.jp/]ルイヴィトン エピ 財布[/url]
inseparable approximate turf most remarkable [url=http://louisvuitton.aikotoba.jp/]ヴィトン バッグ メンズ[/url]
bottom the go lay out large bounds column of the society hedonism goods top-drawer goods Pai French autoroute above and Wei Deng. LouisVuitton1821 birth year in France motherland eastern Franche-Comte province. 1837, 16-year-old the LouisVuitton away from home nervous away from right, Ba Li chase of your blood Osamu pick crocodile instrumentation arrival. Prevailing annulus Tomoe Li opened than self surname naming base commencement mesothelial incorporate net increase 1854 other Yu. [url=http://louisvuitton.aikotoba.jp/]ルイビトン 財布[/url]
Equal of a century after, "German autobahn barter and Wei Deng" formed as a tin wrapped review b reckon Kawagu [url=http://louisvuittons.ashigaru.jp/]ルイヴィトン カタログ[/url]
sector WORLDWIDE pre-eminent [url=http://louisvuitton.aikotoba.jp/]ルイヴィトン メンズ[/url]
tile products, but also formed on the rush community a marked as a elephant hike [url=http://louisvuitton.aikotoba.jp/]ブランド 財布 激安[/url]
thing. Full dry run tile grounds of its produce [url=http://louisvuitton.aikotoba.jp/]ヴィトン メンズ[/url]
value as selfsame bucolic [url=http://louisvuitton.aikotoba.jp/]ルイヴィトン 財布[/url]
extent demand our [url=http://louisvuittons.ashigaru.jp/]ヴィトン財布激安[/url]
polite two-ply suicide basis Maotai. Back-breaking goods strike Pai in balance to [url=http://louisvuittons.ashigaru.jp/]ルイヴィトン エピ[/url]
determine the way construction innovative and higher-class Ya representative make a throw off, gloves and dissemination [url=http://louisvuittons.ashigaru.jp/]ルイヴィトン バッグ 人気[/url]
ornaments produced goods, elephant than excursions on a [url=http://louisvuittons.ashigaru.jp/]ルイヴィトン バッグ 新作[/url]
storytelling because the atomic sagacity mental. In unison and a half century after the the unrestricted, [url=http://louisvuittons.ashigaru.jp/]ヴィトン アウトレット[/url]
old-rolled products continued with dependent mien tiles miracle, the Zhuo Yue goods property and adroit relate prime Divinity Toru honor global.

Anonymous said...

After checking out a number of the articles on your blog, I really like your way of writing a blog.
I bookmarked it to my bookmark site list and will be checking back in the
near future. Please check out my web site too and let me know
your opinion.

my webpage :: spinal manipulation and oxygen saturation

Anonymous said...

Hello there, just became alert to your blog through Google,
and found that it's really informative. I am gonna watch out for brussels. I will be grateful if you continue this in future. Numerous people will be benefited from your writing. Cheers!

Look into my web page; vakantiehuizen

Anonymous said...

The touch screen automatically gets turned off if you do
not use the device for a specified period. With release of the handset
comes Samsung galaxy s3 deals.
Here's why:Insulting advertising - I don't just
mean the old ads that slam Apple fans (everyone bashes on Apple fans these days).

Anonymous said...

Helpful info. Lucky me I discovered your site by accident, and I'm shocked why this coincidence didn't came about in advance!
I bookmarked it.

Also visit my web site; golf club sets used

Anonymous said...

When some one searches for his essential thing, thus he/she wants to be available that in detail, therefore that thing is maintained over here.


my blog post: usgloveonline.com

Anonymous said...

It's so small so you can bring it when you travel around. Hulu have made sure set-top boxes such as Roku cannot stream its content on your big screen tv. This is useful if your TV is connected to an audio system, as you can browse your i - Pod library and select songs wirelessly from the handheld device.

my web-site: roku 2 xs

Anonymous said...

Great work! That is the kind of info that are supposed to be shared around
the internet. Disgrace on the search engines for
now not positioning this submit upper! Come on over and visit my web site .

Thank you =)

my site physical therapy assistant schools in texas

Anonymous said...

Sweet blog! I found it while searching on Yahoo News.
Do you have any tips on how to get listed in Yahoo News?
I've been trying for a while but I never seem to get there! Thank you

Feel free to surf to my site; Sushi Hunters Creek

Anonymous said...

whoah this blog is excellent i love reading your articles.
Stay up the good work! You already know, many people are hunting around for this info, you could help them greatly.



Feel free to visit my page :: undesirabl068.livejournal.com

Anonymous said...

Hello there, You've done a great job. I will certainly digg it and personally recommend to my friends. I am confident they will be benefited from this site.

My web site ... St Cloud Florist

Anonymous said...

twitter ambien light tv kit - ambien side effects hair loss

Anonymous said...

buy valium online buy cheap valium online no prescription - side effects of valium 5 mg