Legendary Disney Imagineer Joe Rohde Retiring

ford91exploder

Registered
Joined
Jan 30, 2009
How incredibly sad, The last of the 'Real Imagineers' is leaving, I guess Disney corporate's hostility to creatives just became too much to bear.

I hope he finds a new gig where his incredible talents are appreciated.
 

ford91exploder

Registered
Joined
Jan 30, 2009
So many questions for the future now. An amazing person no doubt. One so many will miss. He played a big role in my love of Disney for sure.
He was Leonidas at Thermopylae keeping the hordes of accoutants at bay at Animal Kingdom which I think is the pinnacle of the imagineer's art. No the towns in Africa and Asia are not exact replica's but they evoke the spirit of those places down to the little remnants of the British Empire in Harambe. If you've been to a former british colony in Africa. Or many parts of India you see these same things like the cast iron post boxes and the phone booths.
 
  • WDWEPCOT

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    May 2, 2009
    Huge loss for Disney he’s an amazing person so creative I'm starting to miss the Disney that was as I’m not caring much for the Disney that is now! I’m really going to miss Joe - I follow him on another site he is truly an amazing person ! ❤
     

    rteetz

    Rumor Monger
    Joined
    Feb 20, 2013
    Rohde isn’t done it seems. He likely wants to experience new things. He’s a huge traveler, not only Disney research trips but so many experiences on his own. I hope he finds another great passion.

    There is a lot of uncertainty now. What’s next for Lighthouse point? What’s next for Animal Kingdom?
     
  • ford91exploder

    Registered
    Joined
    Jan 30, 2009
    He’s also 65 and many had been expecting his retirement to be imminent. Not truly a surprise.
    Artists rarely walk away from their artform unless forced to by circumstances. Art is one of those things if you win the powerball you say wow I won and are back in the studio the next day working on completing your current project. Art comes from the soul and demands expression I know many artists in their 70-90's some of them are fitter and more active than I and some struggle with a walker to get to their studios but they are all in their studios creating joy and beauty themselves and others.
     

    andyman8

    DIS Veteran and WDW Passholder
    Joined
    Mar 17, 2011
    He’s also 65 and many had been expecting his retirement to be imminent. Not truly a surprise.
    As with many things in life, the truth likely lies somewhere in between. I'm sure, at 65, he's had thoughts about other passions he wants to pursue at this point in his life. On the other hand, he still had several active and ongoing projects at WDI, and given the serious delayering that has happened at WDI as a result of the pandemic, this may have been a good time for both parties. Generally, with these high-profile Imagineers, they announce their retirement in advance (not suddenly) and then there's some sort of consulting/advisory period. This seems to be a hard exit.

    All that said, he has left his mark on Disney Parks all across the world. His unique sense of worldliness has added a sense of realness and authenticity (not often associated with Disney) to WDW. I've yet to find one person -- Disney-lover or Disney-hater -- who listens to him speak about his work and doesn't walk away with a real appreciation for it and the art and meaning behind it.
     

    snappy

    Survivor
    Joined
    Apr 15, 2002
    I know lots of people who have worked past 65. Can depend on health and other circumstances, like health of children and or grandchildren. You can give up the day to day and still steer the ship.
     

    NoTime42

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    May 28, 2019
    Artists rarely walk away from their artform unless forced to by circumstances. Art is one of those things if you win the powerball you say wow I won and are back in the studio the next day working on completing your current project. Art comes from the soul and demands expression I know many artists in their 70-90's some of them are fitter and more active than I and some struggle with a walker to get to their studios but they are all in their studios creating joy and beauty themselves and others.
    It’s interesting timing that he began his eBay “rohde garage sale” last week to sell some artifacts and is retiring this week.
    It could mean downsizing for retirement, or does it mean something else?
     



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