We continue with our series of EPCOT Center B-Roll footage from a 1987 3/4" videotape issued by Disney to media outlets for their use.
EPCOT Center B-Roll Restoration Series
- Part 1 - General EPCOT Center, Spaceship Earth and Innoventions
- Part 2 - Living Seas, The Land, Journey into Imagination
- Part 3 - Universe of Energy, Wonders of Life, Horizons, World of Motion
- Part 1 - General Footage
- Part 2 & 3 - Canada & United Kingdom
- Part 4 & 5 - France & Morocco
- Part 6 & 7 - Japan & American Adventure (This Article)
- Part 8 & 9 - Italy & Germany
- Part 10 & 11 - China & Mexico
Continuing our journey around EPCOT Center as depicted in B-roll footage shot in the mid 80’s, we stop at Japan.
Serene garden footage opens this pavilion as a series of shots show each building in the complex. A pan back from Spaceship Earth through the Friendship Arch sets the view from Japan in World Showcase. A stop in the Mitsukoshi Department Store reveals a very different environment than today’s often frenetic energy found inside the store. Japan’s oldest department store has been a presence in EPCOT since the pavilion opened. This footage shows the early experience was more high end and quieter, focused on works of art and collectibles.
An origami artist entertains guests on the promenade before our hungry visitors step inside the hibachi restaurant, Tokyo Dining. A panorama via boat in World Showcase Lagoon gives a final look at this pavilion whose experiences chronicled here show how little has actually changed since opening day. A few minor additions (including the sushi restaurant) but a very good glimpse at an unspoiled corner of EPCOT Center.
The American Adventure
Visiting our host country at the center of World Showcase, the footage opens with some unnervingly fast zooms on the pavilion from across the lagoon. You can see what it looked like before the America Garden’s theater of today was built on the shores of the lagoon in front of the pavilion. The Voices of Liberty make an appearance performing America The Beautiful before we take an escalator ride up to the theater to see The American Adventure show which, despite a few minor changes in dialogue and the exit film has run pretty much untarnished since it’s 1982 opening.
Colonial Mickey greets guests in front of the pavilion We even make a stop for a bite to eat in the Liberty Inn (note the little kid’s Figment hat in the background!). Our visit closes out with pavilion panorama showing the names of both sponsors: American Express and Coca-Cola This was the first example of two separate companies sponsoring one attraction. (Pepsi owned Frito Lay when they both sponsored the Country Bear Jamboree a decade earlier).
This is the only b-roll that does not end with a panorama shot from the water because so much of the American Adventure is obscured from the waterline.