October 15, 2023, 6:25 PM ·
On October 16, 1923, Roy Oliver and Walter Elias Disney founded Disney Brothers Studio. One hundred years later, The Walt Disney Company endures as perhaps Hollywood’s greatest financial success story – the biggest company in the business that’s never been bought or sold to another.
The company has been celebrating its 100th birthday all year at the Disneyland Resort in California, which in January debuted two new shows for the anniversary, Wondrous Journeys at Disneyland…and World of Color – One at Disney California Adventure.We focus on theme parks here, but Disney long has blended its business operations. Movies, TV shows, and theme park attractions all are inspired by and inspire each other, creating a never-ending cycle of synergy that has made Disney not just a studio or a theme park company, but a lifestyle brand for millions of fans around the world. It’s difficult to tell stories about Disney and not touch on other areas of the company’s operations. So even if Disney didn’t get into/create the theme park business until 1955, let’s join with Disney and its many fans in celebrating the company’s 100th anniversary today.Disney is how I became a “theme park insider,” joining the company as a Walt Disney World cast member while in college. My sister, my wife, and my mother also have worked for Disney in Florida, with my mother spending more than a decade with the company. Even after leaving Disney while in graduate school, I have not stayed far away – covering the company for Theme Park Insider and other publications for more than two decades. [See 20 Great Reads for 20 Years of Theme Park Insider and Stories from a Theme Park Insider for some of my favorite moments.]You can find links to our Disney theme park visitors’ guide – based in large part upon Theme Park Insider readers’ ratings – at themeparkinsider.com/disney, but today I would love to hear more right here from Theme Park Insider readers about their time working for, with, or visiting Disney. What were some of your personal highlights? And what are you looking forward to from the company as it begins its next 100 years?In the meantime, here are some more of my other favorite Theme Park Insider interviews and blog posts about Disney’s history:* * *
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