Fastpass To History: Spaceship Earth

Spaceship Earth

Many people, even if they haven’t been to Walt Disney World, know Spaceship Earth as the symbol of Epcot. But this giant “golf ball” is more than just a park icon; This 18 story geodesic sphere houses an omnimover attraction which takes guests back in time for a look at the history of communication.

Over the years there have been a few changes to Spaceship Earth. Of these, some of the most notable changes include changes of narrators. Many Disney fans are passionate about which version of the narration is their favorite. For me, it’s the Jeremy Irons version – more on that later. Let’s take a look at each different Spaceship Earth narration.

When Spaceship Earth opened in October of 1982, the attraction was narrated by actor Lawrence Dobkin. This version of the attraction featured a quiet orchestral score along with the narration. If you remember hearing Lawrence Dobkin’s voice at another Walt Disney World attraction, you’d be correct. He was also the narrator for The Hall of Presidents from 1971 until 1993.

In 1986, changes were made to Spaceship Earth. The new version of this attraction featured a narration by Walter Cronkite. The wording of the narration was revised for this new version of the attraction. The 1986 refurbishment also saw the debut of the song Tomorrow’s Child. This song would play at the end of the ride as images of children were projected for guests to see.

The narration script for Spaceship Earth once again received an update in 1994. This time the new narration was spoken by Jeremy Irons. You may recognize his voice as Scar from The Lion King. This is my favorite version of Spaceship Earth because of Jeremy Irons’ unique voice.

 

Spaceship Earth once again closed for a refurbishment in 2007. When the attraction had it’s official re-opening in early 2008, guests could hear a new narration by Judi Dench. Though the Jeremy Irons narration is my favorite, I love the Judi Dench version of the attraction almost just as much. Other changes with the 2007 – 2008 refurbishment include a new interactive ending. As the attraction comes to a close, Judi Dench invites guests to select their vision of the future on the interactive screens found on the ride vehicles.

How many versions of the Spaceship Earth narration have you experienced? Let us know your favorite version in the comments!

Also, be sure to stop by the links in the blog hop below for some more great Disney history!


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Photo credit: Tom.Bricker / Foter / Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 2.0 Generic (CC BY-NC-ND 2.0)

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Kimberly's love of Disney began at an early age and grew even more when her family won a Walt Disney World vacation from a local radio station. She grew up visiting the parks every one to two years and is fascinated by Disney history and trivia. Whether at the parks or at home, Kimberly is constantly looking for hidden Mickeys. She enjoys sharing tips and helping others plan their Disney vacations. In addition to Frontierland Station, she can also be found writing for Park World Travel and selecting music for Park World Radio.

Latest posts by Kimberly (see all)

  • I always liked the Walter Cronkite one, but all of them are great. A trip to Epcot isn’t complete without a trip on Spaceship Earth.

    • I love that version too! Really, I love all of them (although I don’t remember the Lawrence Dobkin version…that was before I ever visited WDW). Confession time…I used to hate Spaceship Earth. I got stuck on it when I was 7 and well, 10 minutes of the same communication history is not fun to a 7 year old. I’m not sure that I’ve ridden it since then. But in listening to Disney parks music on Live365, I’ve discovered I LOVE Spaceship Earth now. I can’t wait to give it another try on my next trip!

  • Love it! Thanks for sharing!

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