Retro Disney World

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Contemporary ResortWelcome to Episode 2 of the Retro Disney World Podcast.  We have had lots of great feedback thus far, we hope you continue to enjoy our retro presentations!

Introductions - The regular crew is all here, Todd, Brian, How & JT are all present and accounted for. How kicks off the podcast with the correct story behind the crying aligator gag in the Jungle Cruise from the last show.

Main Topic - The team starts by mentioning their favorite part of the Contemporary Resort, from there we dive into the overall design, the association with US Steel and how the rooms were constructed. JT gets to say "Like a chest of drawers" a few times while Brian imagines the construction view from Roy's Cabin. Todd struggles with the escalator size and continually gets lost in the Grand Canyon Concourse. We move on to the north & south wings and then ask "What would you pay to stay in a retro Contemporary Room?" Todd once again mixes up Shari Lewis and Phyllis Diller as we move up to the Top of the World. The commercial discussed during the show can be viewed here: US Steel Contemporary Resort Hotel Construction Commercial

Guest Star - We welcome Chad from wdwmap.com to the show to discuss his amazing reproduction Paul Hartley map of WDW that hung in the rooms at the Contemporary and Polylnesian Resorts.

Audio Puzzler - Congratulations to Carolyn for winning the Episode #1 Audio Puzzler, the answer was "Foot Power Scene" from World of Motion. . If you think you know the answer to the audio puzzler, email us! This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.  We will enter all correct answers into a drawing for retro prizes! All correct answers will be entered into a drawing in December 2015 for a Paul Hartley reproduction map from wdwmap.com!!

Viewer Mail - From David, we discuss a retro WDW Globe souvenier, one that How purchased a number of years back  - Send your questions to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Film Restoration - We watch and discuss a retro film that has been restored with Pixcel and Imageworks. Follow along with us as we add color commentary to this film: Contemporary Resort - 1970s Shag and Flair - Restored Home Movie HD

We hope you enjoyed this episode! If you have any questions, suggestions or find errors please email us This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..
Be sure to check back with us very soon for Episode #3 when we pay a visit to Fort Wilderness

Until next time, "Do not pull down on the safety bar please...I will lower it for you..."


Podbean: podcast.retrodisneyworld.com
iTunes: itunes.apple.com/us/podcast/retro-disney-world-podcast/id935548315
Stitcher: www.stitcher.com/podcast/retrodisneyworld/retro-disney-world-podcast

Ahead of our podcast episode devoted to the Contemporary Resort (www.retrodisneyworld.com/podcast) we bring you three restored home movies of the A-frame building bundled ito one 9 minute package!

The first of the three is a silent 8mm film and we were impressed at the filming locations and the steadiness of the camera. There are many shots of the monorail gliding in and out of the resort - almost to the point of ad nauseam; fortunately we soon move inside and are treated to the area that has now become Chef Mickey's. Look at the lights! Look at the Orange Juice dispenser on the buffet table! Then, surprise, more monorails again! This time taken from the balcony off to the side of the resort - I must admit the shots obtained from this perspective are very unique, especially at the 2:18 mark - what a unique vantage point! Out to the concentric circle pool we go - this time more monorails and some nice exterior shots before monorail glides away from inside the hotel.

Our second film is also silent 8mm and comes in at 3:45 and is very short but features a long shot from a boat on the way over from Ft. Wilderness. Then Bob-A-Round boats at 4:14 !! Finally we end with some wing shots and the pool area.

The third film is Super8 with sound, although what sound was recorded is really just the din of the cavernous interior of the resort. We start off with a slow pan of Bay Lake. Another monorail pulls in, get a load of the carpet color and design - now that would be a great cell phone cover case! Interior shots of the Grand Canyon Concourse continue, and then the party begins at the top floor of the resort looking down. The pan shot that ends this film really shows how the north side of the concourse was laid out.
 
Learn how to get 10% off your digital transfers and FREE restoration of your films! retrodisneyworld.com/imageworks

There comes a time when an eBay automated search turns up a diamond in the rough - this has surely got to be one of those times. Brian and I both found this film on the auction site and we immediately began to ensure that we would be able to secure it. We accidentally bid against each other, but no harm done, we got the film.

There are a few things that make this particular film unique. First it was taken on October 14, 1982 - a mere 13 days after EPCOT Center opened its doors. Second it is film, not video. In 1983 Sony released the first home camcorder and the influx of grainy poorly lit home videos boomed from there. It is very rare to find any film footage of EPCOT, let alone this early in its life. I believe this footage was taken by an older couple, there is a woman who appears in the film a few times wearing a long pink skirt - on top of that, they have almost zero interest in Future World. I can only assume, and maybe a stereo-typical one, that this couple made the pilgrimage to EPCOT and by 1981 they weren't about to spend any money on a "newfangled Super8 sound camera" and "fancy technology" wasn't that appealing to them, hence they spent their time at World Showcase over what appears to be two days.
 
The film starts off back in the parking lot of EPCOT. We see the monorail swing by and we are quickly whisked away to the fountain. From there it is a tour of World Showcase. There are some very nice slow pans of the Lagoon and a great shot of the chrome windowed Friendship boats. Note how the small trees make some countries look like they are on top of others. The Germany pavilion, which was going to house a Rhine River Cruise attraction, shows its massive size more than it does today. The first part of the film ends with a sunset over Paris.
 
Remember when I said the photographer had almost zero interest in the future? Well this all changes at the 6:02 mark when Horizons comes into focus, under construction. You can see welders and steel workers on top of the structure - the familiar Horizons shape is very clear. From there we are back to World Showcase and the film ends with a fantastic shot of the monorail gliding into the station.
 
Learn how to get 10% off your digital transfers and FREE restoration of your films! retrodisneyworld.com/imageworks

Things have been quiet with the holidays and a storm that knocked out power/internet to RetroWDW's home office for a few days. Fear not, we are back, and today a package arrived with our latest home movie transfesr. Here are a few frame caputures of un-restored footage. This is the raw footage before any processing...

Contemporary resort? Check... Home of Future Lriving? Got it!  Ft Wilderness Railroad.. Yes of course!  Horizons under construction? What is that you say?

Enjoy and stay tuned for the fully restored films.

Saturday, 22 November 2014 16:13

Podcast Episode 1 - Planning for Tomorrow

Written by

Tomorrowland '70s Welcome to the First Episode of the Retro Disney World Podcast.  We have had lots of great feedback thus far, we hope you enjoy the first official episode!.  

Introductions - The regular crew is all here, Todd, Brian, How & JT are all present and accounted for.

Main Topic - This first episode takes us to the early days of Tomorrowland, or the small area with two attractions that was referred to as Tomorrowland in '71. How goes into many great details about what happened and how it all began. The Grand Prix Raceway, If You Had Wings, and Mission to Mars and others are discussed in crystal clear retro detail and of course we make our way around the rest of the land as well. And here are links to some videos of MtM:

Viewer Mail - From Mark, we discuss the question "Do you recall the smell that exists in the dinosaur section of Universe of Energy?" - Send your questions to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Audio Puzzler - Congratulations to Jared for winning the Preview Episode Audio Puzzler, the answer was "Legacy" which played in the EPCOT Center entrance area. If you think you know the answer to the audio puzzler, email us! This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.  We will enter all correct answers into a drawing for retro prizes! 

Film Restoration - In this episode, we watch and discuss two films that have been restored with Pixcel and Imageworks.  Follow along with us as we add color commentary to these two classics from '71 & '72.

We hope you enjoyed our first episode! If you have any questions, suggestions or find errors please email us This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.. Once you are done listening, you can discuss the podcast and interact with the team and other listeners in this thread.

Be sure to check back with us very soon for Episode #2 focusing on the Contemporary Resort. 

Until next time, "Kindly move all the way to the end of the aisle, filling in all available spaces..."

Podbean: podcast.retrodisneyworld.com
iTunes: itunes.apple.com/us/podcast/retro-disney-world-podcast/id935548315
Stitcher: www.stitcher.com/podcast/retrodisneyworld/retro-disney-world-podcast

Welcome to the Preview Episode of the Retro Walt Disney World Podcast.  This is the very first, but not officially the first episode (get all that?) of a monthly podcast by your friends here at Retro Disney World.  We are going to maintain a consistent format that will last around an hour and you can look forward to new topics each month.

Introductions - Learn who we are and get a taste for how the show will be structured.

Main Topic - We quickly discuss the concept plans for WDW, including the original layouts, maps, land purchasing, resorts, Tomorrowland and more. Don't worry we will come back to all of this in a future episode!

Viewer Mail - From Andrew, we answer the question "Is Disney now creating life long Fans? Send your questions to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Audio Puzzler - If you think you know the answer to the audio puzzler, email us! This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.  We will enter all correct answers into a drawing for retro prizes!

Film Restoration - Todd goes over the film resoration process at a high level, video and "polishing the turd", Kodak prices, and inside the psyche of visitors with cameras. What restorations are coming next and we list out the holy grails of photos and movie footage we are looking for: Wave Machine, Orange Bird character, Orange Tree at Juice Bar in Adventureland, Bob-A-Round boat, early resorts, LBV Whatchamacallit.

We hope you enjoyed this preview episode! If you have any questions, suggestions or find errors please email us This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Once you are done listening, you can discuss the podcast and interact with the team and other listeners in this thread.

Be sure to check back with us on November 24th for the official Episode #1!

Until then, "Please stand clear of the doors..."

Podbean: podcast.retrodisneyworld.com
iTunes: itunes.apple.com/us/podcast/retro-disney-world-podcast/id935548315
Stitcher: www.stitcher.com/podcast/retrodisneyworld/retro-disney-world-podcast

Notes: A reader wanted to know the books we referenced in this episode. "A Complete Edition of Walt Disney World", WDW Preview Edition, and the Master plan. Images of some can be found here: https://www.retrodisneyworld.com/pictorial-souvenir/pre-opening.html

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