This was filmed less than two months before Walt Disney's death, hence his sickly demeanor throughout his appearance and narration. See more »
Here in Florida, we have something special we never enjoyed at Disneyland: the blessing of size. There's enough land here to hold all of the ideas and plans we can possibly imagine.
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Being a lifelong Disney fan, I salivated at the notion of being able to see the promotional film, "EPCOT '67". The film is very well done and Walt presents himself as very enthusiastic for the project.
But, seeing this film also saddens me. The film was shot about two months before Walt's death. One can tell that he is weak through his voice. Bot, the amazing thing was that Walt maintained his image and enthusiasm. Marty Sklar, a Disney Imagineer, helped with the filming of "EPCOT '67" and related the same feelings in "Walt: The Man Behind the Myth".
In his usual charming way, Walt takes us through his greatest (and his last) project, EPCOT. The acronym stands for "Experimental Prototype Community of Tomorrow", which is exactly what it would have been. EPCOT would have been a living, breathing city of 20,000 residents. Quite an undertaking, but that was why Walt bought all that land in Florida which now makes up Walt Disney World.
Walt's EPCOT was never built and the project was abandoned after Walt's passing in 1966. Roy O. Disney, Walt's brother, as a tribute Walt, continued the project and opened Walt Disney World in 1971. The Magic Kingdom (their Disneyland) was there, but EPCOT wasn't. Then, in 1982, Epcot Center opened as a second theme park on the Disney property, although it was not the city Walt envisioned. It was a pseudo-World's Fair, and still is in Florida today.
The film takes me back to the time when Walt was alive, where anything imagination could dream up seemed possible. "EPCOT '67" is an inspiration and a testament to Walt Disney's life, as well as his career. As Walt said at the end of the film, "We know what our goals are. We know what we hope to accomplish. And believe me, it's the most exciting and challenging assignment we've ever tackled at Walt Disney Productions."
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