Disney’s imagination Joe Rohde announced in his Instagram post on Monday that he will retire after 40 years at the company.
The beloved creative said he thought it was now a “great opportunity to swim away without undue disturbance” while Disney World was “quietly ahead” during COVID-19.
While many fans have thanked him for his impact on theme parks over the years, others have questioned whether the broken yeti animatronics of Animal Kingdom, the theme park he manages, will ever improve.
Rohde has said several times that he has been working to improve animatronics for more than a decade.
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Disney World fans have realized that the Animal Kingdom Expedition Everest animatronic jet isn’t working the way it should.
But now some fans are worried that this will never change after beloved Disney Imagineer Joe Rohde announces that he will retire with the company after 40 years.
In his Instagram post on Monday, Rohde said he now decides to leave while the Florida theme park is “quietly ahead of time” so he can do so without “causing too much confusion.”
Joe Rohde, Disney Imagineer, is retiring after 40 years
Rohde first started working for Disney when he was 25 years old. According to his latest Instagram post, he “didn’t know anything about amusement parks, Disney and what it means to work for a large company.”
“Since then, every day of my life has been a learning experience,” he wrote. “I am very happy to have the opportunity to do so and I am proud of the work that has been done not only by me but by all my Imaginators and especially those who have worked for me over the decades.”
Nevertheless, he noted that 40 years in the workplace is a “long time” and feels that now that Disney World is coping with the trips affected by the COVID-19 epidemic, it is “a great opportunity to swim away without too much distraction.”
“If I wait, I’ll be in the middle of a huge project again, and by the time it’s done, I’d be really old,” Rohde wrote. “I’m not that old yet and there are things I want to do that can’t be done here. We encourage a culture of storytellers, not just among ourselves, but among our guests and fans, and that’s why it’s a strong temptation to catch this moment. and make it a story. But what kind of story? I think it’s an adult story. “
“I started at Disney as a kid, and there I learned almost all the life lessons, developed my self-confidence, recognized my abilities and weaknesses, and worked with both of them … and did what could be done,” he continued. “I could stay forever, but it’s like staying in a different kind of womb. I want to see what an adult man can do alone. This site here isn’t really for Disney. It’s for us.”
“I imagine many of you will be sad that I won’t be a part of Disney company anymore, and there will be those who move away and don’t follow my rumors anymore because they feel it’s not relevant,” Rohde said. I will always be here. And I keep thinking about things, and doing things, and talking about things … Because that’s what I do. “
He finally wrote, “I mentioned it in my notice of departure, and I mention once again the huge debt I owe to our guests and fans who were so generous. Working as an imaginary, I made it a good designer, but that’s all of you who made it a better person.”
Disney fans are now worried that Animal Kingdom’s broken yeti animatronics will never be fixed after Rohde retires
The Expedition Everest roller coaster opened in 2006 at Disney World Animal Kingdom. Rohde was responsible for the attraction, where the parkers meet Jet, who defends the Forbidden Mountain next to Everest.
At one point on the road, a 25-foot-tall animatronic jet must reach the arm above the riders. Fans unfortunately the creature didn’t function properly shortly after its debut. The animatronic stands motionless, with flashing flashes behind it – resulting in the nickname “Disco Yeti”.
At the 2013 D23 meeting, when the panel appeared, Rohde promised to eventually repair the jet, saying, “You have to understand, it’s a huge, intricate machine that sits on top of a similar, a 46-foot-tall tower in a finished building.”
“So it’s very hard to fix, but we’re working on it and we’re still working on it,” Rohde continued. “We’ve tried several things – none of them get to the key turn of the 40-meter tower inside the finished building – but we’re working on it. I’m personally such a bulldog, in a way that doesn’t always make it popular, but I swear I’ll fix the jet one day. “
Some Disney fans make memes and worry about the forgotten promise.
Others, including film director James Gunn, thanked Rohde for the magic he had created over the years at Disney parks via Twitter.
Many pondered some of the attractions he worked on, including the Everest Expedition, the Aulani Resort in Haula, and the Guardians of the Galaxy – Mission: Eruption! In Disneyland.
Disney World representatives did not respond immediately to Insider’s comments.
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