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One of my favorite Attractions in all of Walt Disney World, started on Main Street USA back in 1973. Originally, it was called “The Walt Disney Story” and the 23 minute  movie that was shown was narrated by none other than Walt Disney himself. This attraction closed down in October of 1992. Then in 2001 as part of the 100 Years of Magic Celebration, a different version of this attraction opened under the name One Man’s Dream.

One Man’s Dream is an often overlooked Attraction in Disney Hollywood Studios, which is why it is today’s Unknown Magic. The Attraction itself is actually two different attractions. The first is a mini-museum to the life and accomplishments of Walt Disney and the Walt Disney Company (mostly brother Roy). The second is a movie shown in the Walt Disney Theater at the back of the building.
As you walk through the museum part of the building, you pass by memorabilia that goes back as far as Walt Disney Brother’s Studios in the 1920’s. Actually the walking tour starts before that, with Walt’s early life in Kansas City and Marceline, Missouri. There are pictures of the early days of Walt’s professional life; things like Oswald the Rabbit movie posters and scenes from the “Alice” movies.
The walking tour is arranged in chronological order and you follow the progression of the studio through the decades; the movies of the Forties, lead you into the Disneyland years of the Fifties, which carry you into the years of the sixties when Walt and the Imagineers were preparing for the World’s Fair and then Disney World.

There aren’t just pictures in One Man’s Dream, though. There are displays of Disney Studio props and there are models of the different Disney parks. There is a model of the original Main Street USA from Disneyland, and there is a scene set up as Walt explaining the Florida Project in front of a television camera (incidentally, this was one of Walt’s last appearances in front of a camera). To see this you need to look through an old television camera that they have in front of the display. They also show some Audio Animatronics figures in construction. One of the neatest things they show is a Dancing Man figure that Walt made after filming actor Buddy Ebsen dancing. This was one of the first animated dimensional figures that Walt had made.

Some of my favorite things in the walking tour through One Man’s Dream besides the Florida Project film are the models of the four Disney World Theme Parks. They are very neat to see. One of the parts that gives me goose-bumps every time is the picture of the crying Mickey-world when they talk about Walt’s Death.
The other part of this attraction is the film shown in the Walt Disney Theater. This movie is about 15 minutes long and is narrated by Julie Andrews. She starts the movie with a line, “They say that Hollywood is a town built on dreams and one of its greatest Dreamers was Walt Disney.” She then says that no one can tell the story of Walt better than Walt himself. Here the Imagineers start using clips from interviews with Walt to tell his story. He talks about his parents, his childhood, going off to war and then his early failures in business and movie making. Then the story of the Disney Brothers Studio and the Walt Disney Studios is told. The Film takes you right up to Walt’s death but shows scenes of Disney World. It is a very informative and interesting film.
Everyone should see this movie at least once, as it is a great piece of Americana. This is one of the attractions though that many people overlook even if they haven’t been through it, as they think it is as the Hollywood Studios guide map says just a “walking tour of Walt’s life.” But it is so much more than that. It is a view into the life of one of the World’s Greatest Dreamers.

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