View Poll Results: Rate D23 Expo 2009

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  • Outstanding time

    63 51.22%
  • A great time but could have been better

    32 26.02%
  • Good time but need improvement

    20 16.26%
  • It was ok but there are issues

    8 6.50%
  • They blew it!

    0 0%
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  1. #31

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    Re: Rate D23 Expo 2009

    I paid my way on Thursday and got in for free on Sunday.

    I wasn't quite sure what to expect, but by the end of Thursday, I really had a blast attending it, so I voted outstanding. And that was even after standing in seven lines all day, LOL! I've been to Comic-Con for just a day each of the past couple of years, just roaming through the exhibit hall because I didn't wanna standing in long lines. Here, I felt I got to see and enjoy a lot despite the long lines on Thursday. I also went in with a lot of patience, knowing this was surely a mystery in terms of whether Disney will really be able to pull this off or not. And I think they did, for the most part, for their freshman year. And I'm sure they'll be emailing all of us who went to collect our feedback and try and make the next one better.

    I had a wedding to go to this past weekend, so the earliest I could get back there was midday on Sunday. The only thing on the program I had to see was the Toy Story presentation at the end of the day, so my afternoon was spent doing more roaming around without waiting in any lines, thank you very much! And the best thing was making it up to the third floor which I didn't do at all on Thursday. Discovered all of the displays upstairs (Tron Legacy, Sorcerer's Apprentice, Christmas Carol, etc.) as well as the 3D home theatre try out (which was okay). But to realize there was still more to see that I'd missed on my first visit was fun!

    I loved it! But I think I'm probably easier to please than other Disney fans.

  2. #32

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    Thumbs up Re: Rate D23 Expo 2009

    I was there all four days. I have been going to Star Trek and other fan conventions for years so have something to compare with D23. I've also talked to people who go to Comic Con. D23 has room for improvement but I rated it Outstanding for the first year. The lines and waits are annoying but talk to people who go to Comic Con and they will tell you that the popular panels/screenings fill up fast and you need to spend hours waiting for them. The cost was comparable to other conventions.

    I agree that Friday was a home run. I told many people about it and then they went Saturday and they were very disappointed. The subject matter of Disney movies spans many decades and have great clips and music to spark memories so the comparison may not be fair but WOW! Give me more!! Imagineering pavilion was awesome.

    Ditto on the late start times for most of the panels. I heard that many of the delays were technical because there was little coordination with the needs of different audio visual requirements. The first presentation would go fine then they needed to make major changes for the next panel. Then they often had to revert back to the first configuration for the next panel.

    It was smart to use so many cast members and I agree that some of the regular convention center employees are not Disney material. I wish Disney did all of the food. When you are there for 12 hours you have to eat and the food was at best mediocre. For those who didn't stay Sunday night there was a foul up with staffing the only concession stand so people waited a long time before anyone even showed up to work. The Arena Grill was overwhelmed and you had to go back through security trying to hold your food and empty your pockets, etc. People are going to be in a theater watching movies until 10 p.m. so you could anticipate they would be hungry after spending the day at the Expo. Missed opportunity that I'm sure will be fixed next year.

    I understand the protection of the Toy Story 3 clips and rumor is that they caught more than one person filming some of the forbidden content during some of the arena presentations. By Sunday they made some improvements and by then many people had learned the routine so it went a little smoother.

    I was also surprised by the lack of some representation by Disney companies on the expo floor. No Disney Channel. No Disney Cruise Line. There was certainly room for them as they had tables and chairs in some places like near the entrance where there was only one little food cart. I also agree that the Dreamstore was not exactly a dream. I was ready to spend money but had to work at it. It was nice to learn that my PAP got the 10% discount. I was able to snag a copy of Toy Story Mania for Wii. That is a winner.

    The auction was amazing. People have too much money! They drove the future prices of collectibles up considerably Saturday night. I wish they had some items that the average person could afford. They didn't sell four or five lots and still sold $180,000. I'm sure they rate the auction a success.

    They also collected hundreds of email addresses which will be sent surveys for follow up. This will be a chance for people to provide direct feedback to Disney for next year.

    Next year will be bigger and better. I will go all days and love it. I was tired Sunday night but still felt I wanted one more day. I was glad I got to meet Al Lutz and some of the MiceAge folks. I belong to NFFC and Mouseplanet so it was nice having them close to each other. There is room for friendly "competition". The vendors were pretty good overall it just depends on your interests.
    Leonard
    "Growing old is mandatory. Growing up is optional. I REFUSE!"

  3. #33

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    Re: Rate D23 Expo 2009

    Good post, Disney Leonard. I think the panels are one thing but an area that can certainly be addressed much more easily is the convention floor.

    WDI really batted a homerun with their display (that included cruise line but maybe not enough). The Studios and home video had a decent amount of things on the 3rd Floor. Archives also scored a home run I think with their Treasures of the Archive exhibit.

    The most lacking of a physical presence: Walt Disney Animation and Pixar. Sure they had a lot of panels to cover their bases but I expected at least a meet & greet with the new princess perhaps? New frog characters if any? I think it would be very smart to have some sort of booth so that those who DON'T have access to the panels can have something to check out.

    I know there was an animation desk on the 3rd floor with some maquettes and i think there was a cool animation giveaway - but I think I'd like to see something bigger next year from animation.


    As for the dream store, i think maybe rethink the merchandise in there too. D23 has the potential to becoming a blockbuster all 4 days. I love the night movie screenings but there definitely could be more.

    How about a masquerade or costume contest? I think they were not allowing people to dress up this year and then changed their mind.

    Or maybe a disney after party someplace where people can just mix and mingle, kick it and eat and drink and not worry about a massive line for once.


    Overall, I think the staff at D23 have pulled it off and should be very proud of themselves. I think the problems weren't within their control although I think communication could have been better so that people can at least be alerted to the delays.


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  4. #34

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    Re: Rate D23 Expo 2009

    I had a great time and am very glad I made the trip from Utah. I feel I got my money's worth. However, I'm not sure that I'd spent the $1000 to do it again next year. If I lived in So Cal and didn't have to fly, pay for hotel and transportation, etc. I definitely go every year. The lines were a drag, though I had a chance to visit with some great people. I loved the parks pavillion and the various presentations by the Imagineers!

    I think the highlights for me were seeing the Imagineers (especially Atencio, Baxter, Davis, & Sklar). Marty Sklar was very kind and let me pose for a picture with him as he sat in a row in front of me at one of the presentations. It was also an honor to meet Robert Olszewski--I love his work. I just wish the D23 pokitpal was not a limited edition--getting one of those and having him sign it would have been THE souvenir from the Expo for me.

    Massive thanks to the D23Expo staff--you guys pulled off a great show!
    Last edited by Dr. G; 09-15-2009 at 06:50 AM. Reason: Add some stuff

  5. #35

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    Re: Rate D23 Expo 2009

    I voted for "Outstanding Time" and I mean it. Although I have been to several comic cons before, this is the first convention I've been to that was run by one company and I knew they had a lot of challenges going into it. They completely blew me away. Yes, there were some problems, but most things were done very well. The presentations were fantastic and exactly what I was hoping to see. This was really a learning experience for all involved. Hopefully there will be another D23 Expo next year and I'm sure the D23 Team will have many of the kinks worked out by then.

    I think the biggest challenge they faced was staffing issues. At a comic con, companies send a few employees to operate their presentations and booths, so it doesn't cost that much. But at D23 Expo, Disney has to hire everybody. So all of the Disney employees helping out with lines came from Disneyland. I saw a lot of attendees yelling at them for not knowing everything about the Expo, which is really sad. These are the same smiling faces that greet you as you enter Disneyland or who help you at the parks. They were in an unfamiliar surrounding and doing things that are very different from what they are used to. I think this is also what limits D23 Expo from being held far from a Disney park. I've heard rumors that in 3 years, they may hold them in Orlando, but I don't think it will ever be possible to hold it far from one of the parks.

    A lot of you have complained about the rude convention center staff and I agree that they were far less than what you expect from Disney, but they are a necessary evil. Disney is using their space and so they are going to have their people on hand to regulate it. The same goes for the food vendors. The convention center has their own policies on what food can be sold. Disney was allowed to brand the names of the food areas, but they had little control beyond that so you can't really blame Disney for bad food or the prices. It was beyond their control and it is the standard policy of all large convention centers.

    Another challenge was the space in which they had to work with. The areas on the second floor where Storytellers Theater, Stage 23, and Treasures of the Archives were held are basically conference rooms and they had to make the best of the space they were given. It's hard to forecast demand for a lot of these presentations. Who could have guessed that so many people would want to listen to Roy P. Disney talk? It would be nice if the rooms were bigger and if there was room for lines, but the confines of the space don't really allow it. I think if there is another Expo, we will see a lot more events held in the Arena beyond the few in the morning and early afternoon.

    While I do agree that some of the items in the Dream Store seemed less than a dream come true, there was always a line, so obviously people bought it. I thought the art section was really cool, even though it was out of my price range. Beyond the pins and D23 Expo apparel, I was overjoyed to find a snow globe from the Broadway Little Mermaid, which was sold out when I saw the show last month. It was only $15, less than half price, which was awesome. And the Mary Poppins umbrellas seemed like a big seller. I personally expected there to be more items from the international parks, but I recently learned about international shipping laws and plastic, which I think is why that wasn't possible. But overall, I thought the store was done well and the cast members and managers were so friendly and helpful.

    It's a shame that so many presentations started late. I had to leave a few early to make it to others I wanted to see, but overall it didn't really impact my enjoyment of the Expo.

    The final point I wanted to touch on is the camera and phone check. A lot of people got angry at how long it took and the fact that they had to take them in the first place, but this really was for legal reasons. It was either take your cameras or not show you exclusive clips or bring out big celebrities. I would rather get to see all of that stuff than bring a camera or a phone. We left our electronics in our hotel room and went and got them after those events were finished, so I don't have experience with trying to pick them up, but the operation seemed much more efficient after the first day, which I hear was a mess. I think the important thing to look at is the fact that Disney bent over backwards to show us some really great stuff and that they really tried to make the process as painless as possible. To those who are really bothered by it, the simple solution is to avoid the events where they take your phones and cameras. It was no secret that this would be happening and the specific events were announced.

    I had such an amazing time at the Expo and honestly, if it was run the same way next year I would still go and have just as great of a time. I think that D23 really hit it out of the park with the Expo. There is room for improvement, but overall it was incredible. I hope they are all giving themselves a well deserved pat on the back right now. They definitely deserve it.

  6. #36

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    Re: Rate D23 Expo 2009

    Quote Originally Posted by goofystitch View Post
    The final point I wanted to touch on is the camera and phone check. A lot of people got angry at how long it took and the fact that they had to take them in the first place, but this really was for legal reasons. It was either take your cameras or not show you exclusive clips or bring out big celebrities. I would rather get to see all of that stuff than bring a camera or a phone. We left our electronics in our hotel room and went and got them after those events were finished, so I don't have experience with trying to pick them up, but the operation seemed much more efficient after the first day, which I hear was a mess. I think the important thing to look at is the fact that Disney bent over backwards to show us some really great stuff and that they really tried to make the process as painless as possible. To those who are really bothered by it, the simple solution is to avoid the events where they take your phones and cameras. It was no secret that this would be happening and the specific events were announced.

    In retrospect, leaving everything in the car or hotel room would have been the far better way to go. But the only time the camera check seemed worth while was for the Dick Cook presentation. I don't think the animation presentation with Lasseter had enough new stuff to warrant it.

    I felt that all the stuff shown would be released to the press soon enough anyway. I wouldn't shoot it even if I had the equipment.


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  7. #37

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    Re: Rate D23 Expo 2009

    Honestly....best part for me....the MC booth and seeing friends like Rick & Lu, Dusty and Circarama. THAT, for me, was the best part of the D23 Expo! Otherwise...it was very average. One big advertisement for upcoming t.v. shows, movies, etc. The store was SO disappointing. I did get the HM hitchhiking ghosts and had Jim Shore sign it. That was neat because he was a very sweet man!

    The archives took me 5 minutes to go through. It was not impressive to me. I think I saw more in Seattle when the Disney exhibit came through here!

  8. #38

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    Re: Rate D23 Expo 2009

    went all 4 days - absolutely loved it - always room for improvement but that will happen. Am so glad I didn't miss this!

  9. #39

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    Re: Rate D23 Expo 2009

    Quote Originally Posted by CynthiaC925 View Post
    went all 4 days - absolutely loved it - always room for improvement but that will happen. Am so glad I didn't miss this!
    Ditto. In the end, it was absolutely worth it. Yeah, there were a couple of snags, but nothing that ruined my good times. It can only get better from here.

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