If you're seeing this message, it means we're having trouble loading external resources on our website.

If you're behind a web filter, please make sure that the domains *.kastatic.org and *.kasandbox.org are unblocked.

Main content

The theme of a land

How we think about the deeper meaning of our lands. Copyright The Walt Disney Company.

Want to join the conversation?

  • aqualine seed style avatar for user rosslovesdisney
    STARK HOLLYWOOD CITY, is themed after realizing that the recruitment process at Avengers Campus went way above expectations. Per the request of parent company, Cheetah Tech, who found a way to get everything done in 75% quicker rate of the previous standards, the Stark Executives have decided that its is time to use this all new tech to create the "MARVEL-OUS HOLLYWOOD OF THE FUTURE." The theme is "passion and innovation" EDIT: What theme would work for my idea? Oh, I'm thinking my theme could be "SUCCESS"
    (15 votes)
    Default Khan Academy avatar avatar for user
  • starky seed style avatar for user Wanda Maximoff
    Be honest, would you go here?

    the World's Circus:
    Run away w/ the circus! Here you not only see new things and amazing acts, you're part of them. It's a giant circus where you can learn to walk a tightrope, do magic! YOU'RE the new act here!

    The feel is you can do anything. you have freedom. Everything is a bit bizarre, and a little whimsical. anything can happen. You can do anything.

    here the abnormal is fun! everyone just plays around. Beauty is in the eye of the beholder.
    (7 votes)
    Default Khan Academy avatar avatar for user
  • starky ultimate style avatar for user RogueGesus
    i would have a greek theme for my land
    (7 votes)
    Default Khan Academy avatar avatar for user
  • male robot hal style avatar for user ted999tran
    what is this teaching aboat?:(
    (2 votes)
    Default Khan Academy avatar avatar for user
    • boggle purple style avatar for user Crystal
      Hi ted,
      I can't give you an official answer, but I'll tell you what I think the point is based on my run-through of the course.
      This is a course on storytelling through architecture and landscaping. It is taught by Disney's imagineering department. The idea is to both give people a feel for what the imagineers do, while giving them a chance to turn creative ideas into something more realistic by breaking the process down. It teaches some problem solving skills, as well as getting a better understanding for all of the aspects you have to think about when building something. (Like where to position things like lights, how to create life-like movement through machinery, etc.)
      (1 vote)
  • mr pants green style avatar for user v1Ct()riA
    So...mine is based off Undertale!(Different story .though) This is late lol:
    You're the human. You're scared of the 'monsters'. As you go through each ride, you learn the monsters' (Sans, Papryus, Toriel, etc) stories and struggles. Each ride earns you UP (Understanding points) that are logged on a watch (much like the Disney Fastpass watches).

    My stars this is rushed-
    (3 votes)
    Default Khan Academy avatar avatar for user
  • duskpin ultimate style avatar for user Jade York
    I have sooo many ideas for my land. I'm not sure I want to do JUST ONE. Here are the ones I have, please help me.
    1) Wings of Fire World
    2) How to Train Your Dragon Adventure
    3) Greek Myths Journey
    4) Percy Jackson + Heroes of Olympus World
    5) Amulet Area
    PLEASE help if you can.
    (2 votes)
    Default Khan Academy avatar avatar for user
  • blobby green style avatar for user sabaestifanos456
    My plot is a little girl who is lost at sea without her parents and she had to grow up on a boat until she got hungry one day and decided to go into the river to go to town and she looks for some food she goes to a charity place and hopes someone gives her some money and someone donates to charity and she had enough to buy a house had had to live alone and she moved one day and when she was getting out she sadly moved away and then she went to a orphanage cause she thought she was lonely but then someone robbed her old house cause she forgot to bring the stuff and the robbed killed himself so the girl would like a murderer so after that she came back to her house to see the dead man and decided to demolish the house but when the demolishers came
    they called the police cause they noticed it and then she got arrested she was put on worldwide news her long lost parents saw it and came in so the parents commuted a crime to go to jail and then the parents and the daughter lived happily ever after in jail
    (3 votes)
    Default Khan Academy avatar avatar for user
  • blobby green style avatar for user easolomon
    STARK HOLLYWOOD CITY, is themed after realizing that the recruitment process at Avengers Campus went way above expectations. Per the request of parent company, Cheetah Tech, who found a way to get everything done in 75% quicker rate of the previous standards, the Stark Executives have decided that its is time to use this all new tech to create the "MARVEL-OUS HOLLYWOOD OF THE FUTURE." The theme is "passion and innovation" EDIT: What theme would work for my idea? Oh, I'm thinking my theme could be "SUCCESS
    (2 votes)
    Default Khan Academy avatar avatar for user
  • winston default style avatar for user AMOGSUSMEGASUPERULTRACOOLKIDPLAYZ123
    Can someone give me ideas for more lands comment for suggestions
    (2 votes)
    Default Khan Academy avatar avatar for user
  • mr pink red style avatar for user Brian_Gurrola
    My land lots of cowboys and cowgirls.
    (2 votes)
    Default Khan Academy avatar avatar for user

Video transcript

In the last video and exercise, we talked about the role of story in the creation of a land. Really great stories have a deeper meaning behind them called a theme. The theme is the unifying idea: the thing that the story is about. For example, in the movie Cars the story is about Lightning McQueen in his adventure but the theme is that life is about the journey - not the destination. Another example in all of the Star Wars films from the Star Wars Universe, we hear lots of stories about lots of different characters but they're all united by a common theme: the power of hope. So when we design a theme park we need to have a deep understanding of the theme we want to communicate. Let's hear more about theme. We call ourselves storytellers and we're telling a story. And a story is what happens. A theme is what's the story about. And that theme can really influence the whole design and tone of a project. Theme is the deep interior meaning of a story. For example, Avatar is not about a planet. Avatar is about our deep obligation to be respectful to the living world - that's a theme. If you think about watching a really good film, when you walk out of the theater, what is it that you've taken away from that story that changes you? Because if you think about all the best stories that you've ever watched or listened to or read or experienced, there is a change that happens in you and that is really really rooted into a very strong theme. I love amusement parks! I love amusement parks! There is a big difference though between a theme park and an amusement park. An amusement park tends to be focused on physical sensation. A theme park is built just like a novel around a theme. So the first thing you should understand from a theme park is that it is about something. And anything inside of it is only there because those things are also about what the theme park is about. Nowadays I think of it as immersive world, really, is the theme park 2.0. We want to create an extremely immersive and authentic land and we want you to truly believe that you're in this place. So, the difference between a theme park and an amusement park is that a theme park has stories that are interconnected and integrated and that all of the various pieces speak to one another. A theme park sets you on a series of experiences that you kind of know where you are and where you're going and that informs the design of everything within that particular land. Theme informs every aspect of a story and the way it's told. And for Imagineers it acts as the touchstone for everything we do when we bring stories to life in the real world. We create huge projects and we have to make thousands of decisions, so the theme is your standard for decision-making. The question you are always asking yourself is, "Does this thing or does it not help feed into the theme?" That theme is what you're designing to - it establishes the rules. If the story of Pirates, for example, it's about adventure and about freedom. That theme starts to drive how you design everything. You don't want buildings that are square and solid, you want buildings that have whimsy and fun and it wants to be colorful, who have a lot of humor built into it. Think of Disney's Animal Kingdom, the whole park. If my theme is the intrinsic value of nature and I have one door and there are thousands of doors - one door intrinsic value of nature - is that door more likely to be made of wood or is it more likely to be made of steel? It's probably made of wood. Is that wood more likely to be smooth or rough? Intrinsic value of nature - probably rough. If there's a doorknob on a single door out of a thousand doors in a place about the intrinsic value of nature, is that doorknob more likely to be shiny or rusty? It's probably rusty. If there is a pattern on a doorknob the size of my thumbnail, is that pattern more likely to be geometric or organic? It's more likely to be organic. So you can see how a simple decision, "is this or is it not related to the theme?" Can allow you to control a huge spectrum of decisions that go into making a theme park. So you can see that theme plays a central role in everything that we do at Imagineering. And that's what helps make Disney theme parks so unique. In the next exercise, you'll have a chance to think about some themes from stories you love. You'll get a chance to develop a theme for your own land.