I’m going to make a confession to you all: I never really took to Cars. The well-recieved and loved Disney movie, Cars, has fans all over the world. I just wasn’t one of them. I watched it once with my husband and then toddler boy, and I felt underwhelmed. It didn’t help that both of my boys are gear-heads and love the premise of the movie — cars that talk like PEOPLE, winning races, running businesses and learning valuable lessons? They were all over it. After that one time that we watched it as a family, I decided to let them have “their” movie. The convinced me to watch Cars 2, but that was just too much Mater for me. After that, I decided to bow out of the Cars hoopla. That is, until Disney Social Media Moms Celebration at Disneyland.
Cars Land at Disney California Adventure is known as a “must-see” when visiting Disneyland. My Disney Parks Moms Panelist buddies, Tania and Lynette, told me repeatedly that I was going to be impressed with everything that Cars Land entails. I smiled, nodded and kept it moving. That is, until I heard Kathy Mangum, Executive Vice President at Walt Disney Imagineering, speak about the amount of work that went into the designing of Radiator Springs in the movie, and within the theme park. She regaled about the road trip that their team took up and down Route 66, the characters they met and how they fell in love with not just the ambiance, but the experience. She had me. Jay Ward, Creative Director of the Cars franchise and the Cars Legacy Guardian, lured every conference attendee in with his stories of the right color red that’s used for Lightning McQueen, and the amount of time spent planning production of the film, creation of Cars Land and the importance of authenticity. He had me even more. I’m all about the details, so to hear how much heart and soul when into just picking the brick of a building, I knew I had to give Cars another go.
Later that day, the husband and I ventured to Cars Land. As a fan, he immediately fell in love. He was silent, yet wide-eyed, and took just about a million pictures of everything. As we walked past Flo’s V8 cafe, he whispered to me, “Brandon would really love this. I need to come back soon and bring him along.” I could hear the fanatical appreciation in his tone. I was immediately jealous.
Just a few weeks after our adventure at Disney Social Media Moms Celebration, I came across our copy of Cars. It was late at night, I was tidying up the house, and just decided to stop and watch it. All on my own, without the opinions of others. As soon as the film began, I felt a smile form upon my face. I was excited. I was a fan. Thanks to Cars Land, and the conference, I found yet another Disney movie to love. I even now have a special place in my heart for Larry the Cable Guy. Now that’s some Disney magic.
photo credit: Josh Hallett
Disclosure: I was invited to the Disney Social Media Moms Celebration at a reduced rate. Transportation to the conference was my responsibility. All opinions are my own.