“The mission of The Walt Disney Company is to entertain, inform and inspire people around the globe through the power of unparalleled storytelling, reflecting the iconic brands, creative minds and innovative technologies that make ours the world’s premier entertainment company.”~The Walt Disney Company
What do you think of when you think of Disney? As a conservative Christian, I know that there is much to reject, especially with Bob Chapek’s treatment of the quote-on-quote “Don’t Say Gay” bill and the leaked video stating that Disney’s mission is to flood their media with blatant and disgusting sexual innuendo. So much immorality is condensed in such little shorts, movies, and TV shows, and that immorality more than warrants avoidance and firm resistance.
However, when I ask myself what inspired me to pursue my calling as a storyteller, I find that Disney, specifically the Walt Disney World Resort, has been encouraging me to produce beautiful, innocent stories right from the beginning of my life. I first visited WDW when I was 18 months old, and to this day, I love exploring the parks and marveling at the inspiration such beauty ignites in me every time I visit.
The separation between these two realms of Disney is so vast, yet so few people know about the intricacies of good storytelling that exist in the parks. Typically, the conservative viewpoint is that the old movies were good, the new movies are bad, and the Disney Parks are the marketers of those movies. In starting this blog, I beg to differ. I have spent years studying the history of Imagineers (Disney employees who design the parks), park musicians, ride technologies, psychology, scripts, veterinarians, and everyone and everything else that goes into making such beautiful stories. Throughout that journey (which I still research and embark upon today), I’ve learned that the Disney Parks are lavish examples of unconventional, high-telos spatial storytelling. And if a now-predominantly secular company can produce such beautiful things and inspire me as God’s storyteller, then Christian storytellers should be encouraged and know that, because we possess the ultimate, eternal Truth of God’s love and mercy, we can produce even more enlightened art.
Thus, this blog is meant to encourage the Christian who may think he’ll never make it as a storyteller. It’s meant to enlighten the everyday citizen about why stories resonate so deeply with the human soul and why they are so important. It’s meant to help you muse about human nature as reflected in Walt Disney World. As Walt once said, “That’s what we storytellers do. We restore order with imagination. We instill hope again and again and again.”