Remembering Disney Legend Blaine Gibson

July 5, 2015, 6:11 PM · The man who literally put the face on so many classic Disney theme park characters has passed away, according to the Disney Animation Research Library. Disney Legend Blaine Gibson was 97.

Blaine Gibson
Blaine Gibson, right, with fellow Disney Legend Marty Sklar at the 2009 IAAPA Attractions Expo

Born in Colorado in 1918, Gibson worked as an in-between artist and animator for The Walt Disney Studios before Walt noticed Gibson's sculpture work in 1954 and reassigned him to the Disneyland project. According to the Disney Archives, Gibson created the sculptures upon which Imagineers created animatronics for Great Moments with Mr. Lincoln, Pirates of the Caribbean, Haunted Mansion, and the Enchanted Tiki Room. Gibson also directed the creation of animatronics for all U.S. presidents up through George W. Bush for Disney World's Hall of Presidents.

Gibson officially retired from Disney in 1983, before being named a Disney Legend in 1993. That year, he also created the "Partners" statue of Mickey and Walt that stands in Disney theme parks all over the world.

Replies (3)

July 5, 2015 at 8:08 PM · R.I.P. Blaine Gibson. May the afterlife take you where all uh space-themed Disney attractions never could.
July 6, 2015 at 12:56 PM · Just think of everything his man saw in his lifetime.

From black and white to Color TV's and now you can watch a show on a mobile phone wirelessly...

I am sure he is now with Walt somewhere.
Thanks Mr. Gibson.

July 6, 2015 at 1:29 PM · Blaine, where you are I know you have plenty of clay as you continue to sculpt in your modest way! R.I.P. Blaine Gibson.

Bill Vanek an imagineer of 17 years who always admired your modesty and talent!

This article has been archived and is no longer accepting comments.

Park tickets

Weekly newsletter

New attraction reviews

News archive