Hello everyone! As most of you know by now I'm the author (along with Didier Ghez) of the coffee table book Disneyland Paris, From Sketch to Reality. You've seen the ads for the book here on MiceAge, but I've received many e-mails from readers asking me how the book looks inside, as only the cover can be seen at the end of my articles. So, with Al's kind permission, here's the look inside you all wanted, along with a little on the story of the making of this book.
First, let me tell you that it took Didier and I five years to put together, but it was worth all the time we spent on it, and it looks just as good as we had hoped for at the beginning. But assembling a book about a Disney theme park when a Disney publishing company is not involved is not easy. We had the good fortune that everyone at Disneyland Paris wanted this book to exist, and we had the incredible and wonderful participation of the Imagineers too.
The book is really large at 320 pages and with 750 pictures - of which 500 are park photos and around 250 are renderings from Walt Disney Imagineering (WDI)! The size is 9 x 12 inches, all pages are in color and it's hardbound with a glossy dust jacket. The text (by Disney historian Didier Ghez), was written after more than 75 interviews he conducted with all the Imagineers who created the park. He goes into just about everything you wanted to know about this unique place that many describe as the best "Magic Kingdom" ever created by WDI.
Now, of course we don't only to want to talk about this happy place, we want to show it too! After spending hours inside the Disneyland Paris photo library, and taking hundred of other photos myself, only then could the assembly of this mammoth puzzle begin. I had over 2500 pictures and renderings selected to start with and had to make a choice of what to finally offer, with just one goal: trying to keep those special illustrations that everybody wanted to see. By that I mean not only keeping all the best WDI artwork - we all love WDI renderings don't we? - but also photos of models, the Imagineers at work, and of course, the completed result.
When you put together a book, there's something that you must try to not miss. It's what you see at the opening and closing, the two first and last pages or "endpapers" as they are known. Fortunately, we found the great artwork you see below that helped us create a theatrical entrance...
And for a dramatic "good-bye," we used an illustration of Main Street at night that was painted by the great Herb Ryman.
The first chapter introduction features a presentation of the Imagineers involved along with the historical context that surrounded the creation of Disneyland Paris. It also introduces the readers to the concept of the book, to the type of documents that they will discover throughout that book and to the various steps involved in the creation off a Disney theme park. As you can see below, this chapter features lots of concept art, models of the various attractions and photos of Imagineers hard at work on the project, as well as a look at the park under construction.
This concept - of showing a rendering, the model and then the real thing - is found all along the book for virtually any attraction. To this we added the famous "attraction posters," marking the opening of each chapter or each attraction's section. Almost all the posters that were created for the park are here, many of them reproduced in a large size.
The first chapter Main Street has 52 pages and introduces the reader to the "legend" of Main Street, USA. You'll learn all about the Disneyland Paris Railroad, the unique "Discovery" and "Liberty" Arcades; find out about the architecture, the restaurants (like "Walt's," a tribute to Walt Disney, but also inspired by Club 33 in Anaheim) and the shops; with dozens of photos, renderings, models, and reproduced for the first time here, all the "cities of the future" posters located in "Discovery Arcade."
|CONTENTS | LEGAL|