As a little kid the existence of Walt Disney Imagineering’s offices was something equivalent of Willy Wonka’s Chocolate Factory in my mental map of the world; only instead of chocolate it produced Disney magic. A new series of videos gives fans a rare virtual tour of Disney’s very realy magic factory facilities located not too far from the company’s Burbank, CA headquarters.
Today we’re excited to share the last two videos of the virtual tour of Walt Disney Imagineering’s offices – The R&D Lab and The Art Library.
The Research and Development Lab
The Walt Disney Imagineering Research & Development, aka “R&D,” is the research & development team that helps create the magic at Disney’s parks by focusing on and developing new technology. This department also supports the studios and others in the media and entertainment industries.
Our tour guide for the R&D Lab is Mike Honeck, along the way he meets a friend that might eventually end up in Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge.
Alright, that was a little frustrating there at the end. Let’s move on to something with a cool reveal.
The Art Library
The last stop on the virtual tour might be best. It’s the Walt Disney Imagineering Art Library. This is the repository for more than 135,000 pieces of original concept art, including the original map of Disneyland drawn by Disney Legend Herb Ryman.
The Imagineering Art Library plays and important role in preserving and sharing the heritage of all Disney Parks and other Imagineering projects. You’ll meet the archive’s curators in this video including Mike Jusko, Denise Brown, and Vanessa Hunt.
Let’s step into the vault here:
Okay. This really makes me miss the old Disney Gallery in New Orleans Square. I really wish more of this stuff was available for public viewing, even as a digital archive.
Sadly, this the end of the series that Disney has released for everyone who is stuck at home during the theme parks temporary closure. I know there’s a lot more to see, but you can find some of that on Leslie Iwerk’s amazing documentary – The Imagineering Story – on Disney+.