September 2, 2011
Location: Animation Courtyard
Everything in Walt Disney World has a history
attached to it. Some of the history is simple and still young and
growing over time, while others go back to a long, long time ago.
The Magic of Disney Animation building is tied to the Disney's
Company past more than almost anything in Walt Disney World (with a
few exceptions, which we'll get to in the future). How so? Let's
take a look inside.
While walking around certain sections of the Magic
of Disney Animation you can find several different classic Disney
characters scattered upon the walls. These characters range from
Cinderella to Pinocchio to the Genie to Timothy Mouse (much like the
pictures shown below).
However, one wall connects the past to the present
more so than any, but before we get there, let's take a look at the
history of this wonderful building!
Back when Disney-MGM Studios first opened in 1989 an
actual working animation building called the park its home. Here
actual Disney animators would work on several different Disney films
(with the majority of the main animator occurring in California's
animation location). This connected Disney parks to the original
foundation of the Disney Company in a brand new way. Instead of
Disney talking about their past, they were continuing to use their
past in new ways for their theme parks (and allowing us park guests
in for the journey!)!
While several films had bits and pieces animated at
this working animation studio, three films (Mulan, Lilo and Stitch,
and Brother Bear) were primarily done in Disney-MGM Studios. To
honor these three films, and the fact that they were almost
completely animated here, one wall features characters from all
I'm really not sure what Timothy Mouse from Dumbo
is doing there, but you can clearly see Mulan, Mushu, Lilo, Stitch,
Kenai, and Koda, portrayed on the wall. Just a nice little reminder
that these wonderful characters were born in the very building you
are now standing in. Our Fun Find doesn't end there, however. It
ends on a slightly sadder note (an actual note at that).
Unfortunately in 2003, The Magic of Disney Animation
ceased productions for all major Disney animated films. But, the
animators that were once located here do pay their respects showing
that this wasn't just a place for work, but a place where
characters, but more importantly memories, were born. If you take a
look inside the storyboard room on the tour (pictured below you can
find a small table on the right hand side of the room.
If you take a look on the second shelf up you can
find a note from some of the animators here with a simple note:
"Thanks Florida for the Memories"