By Carlye Wisel
November 28, 2019
Mariah Tyler

There are plenty of rumors about Disneyland, but thanks to The Imagineering Story, a six-part documentary on Disney+ about the history and legacy of Disney’s vast theme parks, a few are finally being put to rest.

The new series offers a rare glimpse at the creators and the process behind building Disney theme parks worldwide. With an in-depth look at Walt Disney Imagineering — known in the past as WED Enterprises and MAPO — this series will fulfill every behind-the-scenes dream any Disney fan has ever had.

That oft-rumored basketball court hidden inside Disneyland’s Matterhorn Mountain is real — and for the first time ever, you’ll see it. The fabled court is revealed in the first episode of The Imagineering Story on a tour led by none other than Imagineer Bob Gurr, who helped create the Matterhorn Bobsleds attraction. The new show also reveals the biggest secrets of the Haunted Mansion, offering a behind-the-scenes look at how the famed attraction’s ballroom scene works. (It’s a “pepper’s ghost” effect, but for the full reveal, you’ll have to check out the documentary.)

Ever heard about those secret tunnels Mickey Mouse uses to get around the Magic Kingdom? The new Disney+ series actually takes you inside the fabled Walt Disney World underground. Watching staff members cross through the interconnected “Utilidor” system is incredible, but brace yourself, as it won’t look anything like what you’ve seen at Walt Disney World before. The company only beautifies areas that guests will see, so like all other “backstage” areas, the utilidors are fully industrial, exposed pipes and all. (Part of the reason Disney World’s flagship park remains so clean is that garbage is whisked outside the park through a system of pneumatic tubes installed in the underground tunnels.)

Packed with plenty of intriguing tidbits and unbelievable stories, like how Tokyo Disneyland staffers shadowed Disneyland employees for an entire year to learn their jobs, it’s perfect for casual fans and Disney devotees alike. With details Disney fanatics are familiar with — like how the Haunted Mansion’s floating fortune teller was the company’s own artist, Leota Toombs — as well as ones lesser-known facts, like how her iconic scene was casually shot on her lunch break, there’s plenty for everyone.

The Imagineering Story is now streaming on Disney+. 

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