4 Things I Learned From the D23 Expo
I was lucky enough to get the time and energy to attend the D23 Expo 2015. I went all 3 days and here are 4 things that I learned.
1. Disney is much more than Mickey Mouse
In the last 25 years, The Walt Disney Company has grown by leaps and bounds. With notable acquisitions like Pixar, Marvel and LucasFilms, the Disney family tree has many branches. Divisions like Disney Consumer Products and Walt Disney Parks and Resorts have grown side by side so their elaborate booths and presence on the show floor reflected that. In addition to Consumer Products and Parks and Resorts, here were the other parts of the Walt Disney Company that were featured at the D23 Expo:
Walt Disney Archives
The Walt Disney Disney Studio (Pixar & LucasFilms fall under this division)
Disney Movies Anywhere
Disney | ABC Television Group
Disney Music Emporium
Disney Visa Card
The Walt Disney Company will continue to grow and evolve in order to position themselves as the leader in worldwide entertainment. They are not just about Mickey Mouse and the theme parks. They can really leverage all the members in their family tree in order to create magical experiences in film, television, music, consumer products, theme parks and resorts.
2. You Get to Hang Out with Fellow Disney Fans
Whether you are a fan of the theme parks, movies, or art, there were lovers of Disney from all over the world. I met people from Australia, Germany, Costa Mesa, Texas, and everything in between. Lots of fans planned their vacation around this event that included lots of Disneyland on the side. Everyone was wearing some kind of Disney apparel, costume or were Disney Bounding. We all had something in common, a love for Disney.
3. You Get to Meet the People Who Make the Magic
D23 Expo was a place where you could meet the people behind the scenes who make the Disney magic happen. From Disney Legends, actors, and current animators, there were many opportunities to meet some of these people. I have to confess I had some fan girl moments. It was fun to briefly meet some of my favorite Disney Imagineers responsible for creating landmark theme park attractions.
4. You Get to Hear About How They Make the Disney Magic
There were a variety of panels where you could hear a variety of people talk about their crafts and experiences. It was tough to make some choices but the opportunity to hear some behind the scene stories from first person point of view is so interesting. There were presentations and panels of all sorts of sizes and content. There was a new Walt Disney Archives stage that was a smaller venue with speakers who presented historical and intimate "peeks behind the magic."
Whew! It was an exhausting but mot fun D23 Expo yet. D23 began in 2009 as a Disney fan club. The D23 Expo (conventions) are held every other year. I remember going to the first one and you could see everything in a couple hours, there were not many presentations yet, and the Disney family tree was still small. Each D23 Expo 2015 exploded with so many offerings. I'll be back for the D23 Expo in 2017.