Bruce Vaughn is returning to Walt Disney Imagineering, this time as its new Chief Creative Officer.
Vaughn previously worked as WDI's Chief Creative Executive for nine years, before departing the company in 2016. He first joined WDI in 1993 as a senior technical specialist, coming to Disney from a career in media special effects development, including work on 1989's "Star Trek V: The Final Frontier." He most recently worked for Airbnb as its Vice President, Experiential Creative Product.
Vaughn will co-lead Walt Disney Imagineering with Barbara Bouza, who continues as President of WDI. That should be a familiar arrangement for Vaughn, who co-led WDI with Craig Russell, who held the title Chief Development and Delivery Executive when the two ran Disney's themed entertainment design shop. Both Vaughn and Bouza will report to Disney Parks Chairman Josh D'Amaro.
"I've remained an Imagineer at heart, so I'm thrilled to join Barbara and reunite with this phenomenal global team of creators and innovators during this pivotal time," Vaughn said.
Bouza became WDI's President in 2021, replacing Bob Weis, who then took on the role Global Imagineering Ambassador before retiring from Disney last year. Weis then accepted a position as Global Immersive Experience Design Leader at Gensler, the architecture and design firm where Bouza worked as Managing Director, Principal before joining Disney.
"The Walt Disney Company, fueled by thousands of innovators and creative storytellers, has transformed the entertainment industry for the past 100 years," D'Amaro said. "I am proud to have the dynamic team of Barbara Bouza and Bruce Vaughn at the helm of Walt Disney Imagineering as Disney Parks Experiences and Products continues to focus on investing in creativity and developing new experiences around the world."??
"With so many exciting projects under way and tremendous opportunities ahead of us, I look forward to partnering with Bruce to fuel creativity and deliver next-level experiences," Bouza said.
Vaughn will rejoin Disney on March 20.
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Just 18 months from D23 Expo 2024 and 21 months from a new Disney CEO.
The timing on this announcement works out well. Count on WDI to announce a long list of new attractions before UEU opens.
So many questions. Why did he leave, why does he come back and does he make sure shade an cooling is as important than the ride and a ride should take longer than a minute.
Nice to see a re-emphasis on creativity in the parks
Not sure how Disney is going to build a bunch of new attractions now that they have to abide by the same construction rules as every other theme park in Florida. Permits now have to go through the city, like everyone else. Construction will cost them twice as much and take twice as long.
The self governing status they have enjoyed and exploited for so long has come to an end. Maybe they should allow Universal those same perks now.
Universal firing on all cylinders while Disney cuts costs everywhere to the tune of 5 billion. Galactic Starcruiser is a money pit, like Disney Plus.
Those same construction rules aren’t slowing down Universal. I don’t think it’s the politicians that has made Disney construction move so slow in recent years.
Well, Universal goes all out with 24/7 construction on most projects since Hogsmeade. Disney, even with all of their closed loop governing and self permit issuing always took longer for some reason. Imagine how long it will take to build a new land or even a new ride now. Everything needs city approval. Drainage, erosion studies... you name it.
sure, but none of that has to do with notoriously business-friendly florida. as such, I have a hard time believing these new regulations will have much, if any, impact on the way disney builds projects in orlando.
The new district changes nothing except who's on its board, and I suspect that Disney ultimately might not even let that stand in the way of continued business as usual.
More to say on this WDI change tomorrow on the Discussion Forum.
NB: "Not sure how Disney is going to build a bunch of new attractions now that they have to abide by the same construction rules as every other theme park in Florida. Permits now have to go through the city, like everyone else. Construction will cost them twice as much and take twice as long."
Me: I don't think they have to go through the city. As someone who hass been building stuff on WDW property for better than 20 years, I've seen no reports indicating the permitting process has changed. As for construction "rules" the so-called 'EPCOT Building Codes' are just as stringent as Orange and Osceola counties. You can review them here:
And, as Robert noted, when the if changes to RCID have a direct financial impact on the company, that's when they will have standing and can take the new district to court.
NB: "The self governing status they have enjoyed and exploited for so long has come to an end. Maybe they should allow Universal those same perks now."
Me: Universal managed to get Orange County taxpayers to pay $200 million to extend Kirkman Road into the heart of the UEU property. I don't think Disney ever got a check that size from the taxpayers.
NB: "Well, Universal goes all out with 24/7 construction on most projects since Hogsmeade."
Me: No. No they don't. They do not have full crews on their projects running 24/7. If they did they would be paying premium rates for second and third shift labor and massive amounts of overtime.
I forgot who I am dealing with here... the Disney force is strong with so many of you. I can't tell if it is apologism (yeah, I made that word up) or denialism (I think that one is real).
Just nice to see the park everyone laughed at down the road doing amazing things and the juggernaut who rested on their laurels for so many years see a stock worth half of what is was 2 years ago. Apparently, the solution was not to purchase everything in sight sand milk it dry.
All of Universal's recent success is because of one licensing deal.
I see how we get "Disney announces new $750 meal plan" but not "Attendance, revenue continue to decline at Galactic Starcruiser" stories.
I pasted your last post into Microsoft Word. You dropped 125 words -- none of which defended any of your previous assertions nor refuted any of my responses.
"I pasted your last post into Microsoft Word. You dropped 125 words -- none of which defended any of your previous assertions nor refuted any of my responses.
I respond: That was very much intentional.
By the way, just read about the possible dissolving of Bay Lake and Buena Vista as well. Things are not looking so good for the mouse. I hope the new leadership can fix this.
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This is, by all accounts, a positive move for WDI.