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« Fess Dies Today at 85 | Main | Area Music [ Part 1 ] »
Wednesday
Mar172010

1967 "New Tomorrowland" Broadcast

Was Disneyland ever better than it was when "New Tomorrowland" opened in 1967?  I suggest that this was Disneyland in it's prime.

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Stunning Herb Ryman rendering of Tomorrowland 1967. Click for high-res version.

"Tomorrowland was rushed together in less than six months for the July 1955 opening of Disneyland.  Although significant additions were made in 1959 (Submarines, Monorail, Matterhorn), Walt Disney decided to start fro scratch after the New York World's fair in 1964-1965 and create a New Tomorrowland.  Soft yet symmetrical shapes and sculptured reflective surfaces reaching skyward symbolize human aspiration, while constant movement manifests the ceaseless activity envisioned in a city of the future." -The Art of Disneyland by Jeff Kurtti and Bruce Gordon

This broadcast with it's great instrumental music and the 1960's narrator voice and all that amazing footage just takes my breath away.

"Even today’s household word, astronaut, had not been coined."  How great would it have been to be the guy wearing the jetpack. Such great footage of the "Atom-mobiles" in Adventures Thru Inner Space.  The WEDWay People Mover had such great views of the Tomorrowland.  The view of the Character Shop (today's Star Trader) is fantastic.  The Flight to the Moon shots are great.  What an age.  (And nothing was painted gold). 

Reader Comments (6)

Vault Disney on the Disney Channel was the best. Nothing like that anymore.

These videos are bitter sweet for me. Boy do I ever miss the old Tomorrowland! There was something about it that is no longer there. I do like going now to look for left-over pieces from the old days. Like the pointy walls on either side of the entrance, the People Mover track, and I think some of the Flight to the Moon building architecture, etc.

March 18, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterTL98H8R

Thanks for posting this. Unlike the above poster, I actually just feel bitter. Am I just old (grew up in So. Cal and Disney and am now 36) and nostalgic or does Tomorrowland really lack vision? I guess I fall into the category of the "complainers" where I find very little that Disney has made recently to really "wow" me. I don't think it's my fault though, I think it's Disney's for setting the bar so high in the beginning that it's hard to follow... or is it? I have so many ideas for Tomorrowland that could make it better. I first found this site because I've been thinking of making a site to show off those ideas. I simply don't have the time to do so. Thanks for this site. I think I went on a tangent. :) Watching the video and looking at this really makes me miss the old Tomorrowland. Sure it needed to be updated over the years and this would look out of date. But, there's definitely a synergy and theme looking at this. There was vision, not cartoons. The Peoplemover is, by far, the most missed ride and not just by me: http://www.peopleforthepeoplemover.org/ Why can't Disney understand that not everything has to be super thrilling or in your face? Ugh, sorry, ranting again. Anyways, I hope, someday, Disney listens to us and perhaps just watches these old videos and realize how Disney is just becoming an Amusement park and not a Theme park. Thanks for sharing these videos.

March 18, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterSubsonic

Hello Guy's Walt Disney knew that Tomorrowland would always become todayland very quickly (2 to 5) years, tops. That is the problem with it. This Info is from Interviews with Ray Bradbury, who knew Walt and talked alot about Tomorrwland. It costs so much to tear it down and start over. Even the Disney Co. can't afford that. I say keep the basic under structure and build on top of it, every 10 years or so. Pre-Fab PeopleMovers and Buildings, the kind of stuff we would all like to see, with the latest tecnology real wow type of stuff. Let's hope. Linden

October 8, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterLinden Robertson

It is funny watching this as the look and feel of Tomorrowand today is almost the same as it was back in 1967 when this version was new and actually futuristic.

I first got to visit Disneyland just after my 21st birthday in the mid 1980s. All my childhood I had dreamed of visiting it but didn't get there until I was legally an adult. But I loved it as a child anyway. My biggest regret of that trip was NOT riding Adventures Through Innerspace because my friend, who had a season pass and had been to Disneyland many, many times, told me that it was a complete waste of time. It closed forever shortly thereafter and I was never able to ride it. Darn, Darn, Darn! How could I have known at that age that I would fall in love with all things Disney history and actually love the older attractions?

As cheesy as I thought it was when I was 21, I really enjoyed the People Mover and would never miss taking a ride on it at least once each visit. I was sad to see that go too, but was excited to hear about Rocket Rods replacing it. What a dud (or so I have heard as I never got to ride it). If only Disney could have spent just a little more money to splurge on things such as banked curves so that the concept would have worked.

it wasn't until I saw this video that I realized why Rocket Jets/Star Jets/Astro Orbitor was on the upper level. It was not just to get it out of the way or to create a "weenie" that would draw crowds into Tomorrowland. Going up the elevator (gantry) was actually part of the blast-off rocket experience. That makes so much sense now.

March 22, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterWoolf

Tomorrowland 67 was a sincere prototype of an optimistic future that was tangible. It died with Walt.

December 11, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterEddie Sotto

We really do live in a different time. I knew that originally there were not bars on the peoplemover cars, and that they were added later - but I have no idea that originally there was no walkway with handrails in the section that went over the autopia! It must have been very difficult to evacuate when the ride went down. Anybody know when the walkways and handrails went in?

December 2, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterMark

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