I just came across this post, so I’ll put it here: Remembering Walter Cronkite in Spaceship Earth at Walt Disney World
Check the link, some good pics and a YouTube version of SE with Mr. Conkite,
Remembering Walter Cronkite in Spaceship Earth at Walt Disney World
Did you know that Walter Cronkite was the narrator for the Spaceship Earth attraction at Epcot from 1986 through 1994 and it seemed only fitting that the man with boyish enthusiasm for the space program as evidenced by his reporting during the Apollo missions, be the most memorable host for this “space-age” attraction. Actually, his was the first voice I heard when I visited Spaceship Earth for the first time in 1993.
For all of you Disney philes, and I use that term most endearingly because I consider myself a Disney phile, I am sure you know the history but there are a few of us who do not so let me take us a brief journey of our own through the history surrounding Spaceship Earth. Since the attraction opened in 1982, there have been four narrators in all, who told or tell the history of communication from Cro-Magnon man through to the 21st century. At opening, it was Vic Perrin who narrated the story from 1982 – 1986 when Bell Systems sponsored the attraction.
Following Vic, was Walter Cronkite and the debut of “Tomorrow’s Child.” How many of you remember that song? It is still my favorite from the “original” EPCOT Center. The attraction continued on its journey with Mr. Cronkite and “Tomorrow’s Child” through 1994 and it was during these years, Bell changed to AT&T who sponsored Spaceship Earth up until only a few years ago when Siemens stepped in to take the reigns. For all who want to relive Walter’s narrative through the attraction, see the video at the bottom of this article. Warning: The video is ten minutes long so unless you’re a true fan of both Spaceship Earth and Walter Cronkite, you may find it a bit too long. But for those of us who cherish his story and the attraction, I strongly recommend it!
Continuing on our journey, the attraction closed in 1994 and reopened with a brand new narrator, fresh from the Lion King, Jeremy Irons. He continued to escort us through 2007, when the attraction, once again, underwent another renovation and this time re-opened with Dame Judi Dench taking us on the journey through time and the history of communication or is it “herstory.” Whatever the case, hers is a most recognizable and distinguished voice, don’t you think?
Walter Cronkite will be forever remembered by America! At the time when he dominated the airwaves, there were only three major networks and it was his voice that was heard each night on every television set in America. His nightly broadcasts on CBS guided us through the days of John F. Kennedy, Martin Luther King, the Apollo missions, the Vietnam war, and more. He was a pioneer who established the “standard” in television journalism and who paved the way for all those who came after. There’s not an anchor person alive today that hasn’t been influenced in some way by Mr. Cronkite.
“And that’s the way it is, July 18, 2009” to quote a legend and pioneer of outstanding and exemplary television news journalism. Good night and God bless you, Mr. Walter Cronkite!