Weis Takes Over at Walt Disney Imagineering
Bob Weis is the new president of Walt Disney Imagineering, Disney Parks Chairman Bob Chapek announced today.
Weis moves up from an executive vice president position and assumes control of Disney's theme park design division from the team of Bruce Vaughn and Craig Russell, who held the titles of Chief Creative Executive and Chief Development and Delivery Executive, respectively. Weis has been helming the design of Shanghai Disneyland and before that oversaw the transformation of Disney California Adventure, including the additions of Cars Land and Buena Vista Street.
Weis also oversaw the creative development of the Twilight Zone Tower of Terror at Disney's Hollywood Studios and has worked on the Tokyo Disney Resort, including conceptual designs for Tokyo DisneySea.
Bruce Vaughn will be leaving the company following a transition period, and Craig Russell will be moving into a new role within the Walt Disney Company.
Sounds like an upgrade.
Hmm...given the great work he did at other parks, be nice if he gets more done, especially Epcot.
A big time upgrade. Nice!
What a résumé! Agree that it is a big time upgrade!
Tony Baxter is probably partying this weekend.
Sounds good , hope that they start focusing on Epcot.
He certainly has a great track record. The right man for the job.
Never heard of him. Although anyone has to be better than those who have been in charge of the recent output of the past few years - Mine Train, Star Wars Bay, etc have been nothing short of a disgrace.
Thank god. Congrats to Weiss. Perfect.
California needs upgrade at bugs land, hope he can help
Yay! He has done great things; the DCA transformation, Shanghai Disneyland, Tokyo Disney Resort, Tower of Terror at DHS, etc. So exciting! I hope they fix Epcot too.
To be fair, if the top brass Bob Iger isn't investing in the parks ... you could have the late Steve Jobs in charge and nothing productive would come out.
I never believed in the mantra "I plan, you do".
I look forward to seeing what this guy does. So Weiss, here is my wish list of Disney attractions I want:
I saw somewhere that as part of this change Kathy Mangum was taking creative direction of Disneyland Paris, which I think Tom Fitzgerald was previously in charge of. Any idea if this means his role is changing as well?
Anonymous poster writes: " ...Mine Train, Star Wars Bay, etc have been nothing short of a disgrace."
I love the person who wrote, Iger isn't investing in parks....ummmm, yeah that's just wrong
Iger has been investing in Chinese parks. Disney hasn't opened an e-ticket attraction in Orlando since 2006.
I completely disagree. Bob Iger has been an utter disgrace for Disney's theme park division. Sure, visitor numbers are remaining on a upward trajectory (due to new foreign markets like Brazil opening up), but his personal lack of investment in the parks means whoever the next CEO will have to clean up the mess Iger's lack of invetment , otherwise visitor numbers will start to fall.
What ever happened to John Lasseter having a big voice in all this? It seemed so promising at one point.
Anonymous poster BB-22.214.171.124 is just adorable.
If you really want to know what Robert Iger has done for the company, check out this December 2014 article from 'Forbes'
What happened to the remainder of the "upgrades" for Fantasyland's
I don't know about not "only looking for profits" (there's got to be a reason why Frozen is still being shoved down our throats 2 years later), but TH is absolutely correct in that Iger is not timid when it comes to park investment and he definitely ain't cheap.
Oh woopee Bob Iger is building shops. If you think Iger has invested his energy and monies in the parks you are in denial.
Yes TH ... because we go to Disney for the shopping experience. So kudos for Iger for tapping into our psyche (rolls eyes).
Iger has treated the Orlando parks like unwanted stepchildren. 15 years between e-ticket attractions doesn't cut it.
TH Creative writes: Anonymous poster writes: " ...Mine Train, Star Wars Bay, etc have been nothing short of a disgrace."
OT on Mine Train: " It's just not Disney worthy."
126.96.36.199 writes: You just have to look at the state of DHS,Epcot, no e-ticket attractions under his tenure in Orlando.
Incidentally 188.8.131.52, if you think the Disney Springs expansion is just the company building shops, you are either woefully misinformed or are purposely trolling by discounting what is a massive expansion of retail, food and entertainment. Disney Springs is going to be a HUGE hit.
TH - you are actively supporting a guy, who has invested next to nothing in the theme parks. You go to great lengths to compile a list which consists of hotel upgrades, paths, roads, and shops he is building as a way to support him - completely forgetting about the whole heart of Disney - namely it's THEME PARKS!
Iger's Orlando investments - too little, too late.
I, of course, agree with TH. Fellow anonymous poster, you do realize there's more to theme parks than just big e-tickets, right? Going to a theme park and only focusing on e-tickets is like watching an action movie and fast-forwarding to all the fight sequences...not caring about such things as story or character. There is a little thing called "simple pleasures." Simple pleasures aren't big or thrilling, they might not be heavily themed, or feature the latest, most groundbreaking technology. But what they do offer is joy and contentment. A wholesome experience you can enjoy with others. A nice, momentary relief from all the hustle of rushing between all the popular roller coasters or motion simulators. Just something simple and pleasant. A simple pleasure is getting wonderful scenic views of the Rivers of America in the Mark Twain. Or taking a romantic stroll with your special someone around the World Showcase Lagoon and admiring the beautiful architecture of pavilions like China or Italy. Or sitting around the beautifully-lit World Showcase Lagoon at night with your special someone and watching the fireworks of IllumiNations lighting up the sky. Or watching majestic African creatures roaming around a realistic interpretation of a natural African habitat in Kilimanjaro Safaris. Or seeing the bright expression on your child's face as he/she meets their favorite Disney characters. Or sitting back and listening as the Tiki Room birds sing their quirky little songs. Or spotting your favorite movie amongst so many cinematic legends during the final film of the Great Movie Ride. Or that delightful sensation you get when you first step on to Main Street on a bright morning and see the elegant Cinderella Castle accompanied by the delightfully sweet scents of Main Street's air fresheners. Or when you leave the Magic Kingdom after watching a brilliant fireworks display and admire just how even more elegant Cinderella Castle looks.
If Walt Disney World fans are so unhappy over the lack of major new rides in the parks, might I suggest that they stop going to Disney World? Declining attendance at WDW would inspire an even more massive investment in the parks, I would think.
184.108.40.206 contends that the developments I list "completely" overlook theme parks.
Bob Iger's motto - "Go cheap or go home."
220.127.116.11 motto: "Stay anonymous and troll mindlessly."
1) Essentially nothing new at EPCOT since Mission Space.
TH Creative, I'm glad that you can laugh at your own lame jokes. Somebody has to.
Actually nobody "has to."
Every park needs a good balance of simple pleasures and E-ticket attractions, but, with the exception of New Fantasyland, every simple pleasure that you describe existed long before Iger became CEO.
Amazing that an article about Bob Weis turns into a flame war regarding Bob Iger.
What is or is not an E-Ticket attraction is a matter of opinion. It is not determined by anonymous posters.
Mr. Kausch writes: "Amazing that an article about Bob Weis turns into a flame war regarding Bob Iger."
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