Bruce Vaughn Leaving as Head of Imagineering, Bob Weis Named President

Photo_WDI_Bruce Vaughn_2014_01_21

The head of Walt Disney Imagineering Bruce Vaughn is leaving The Walt Disney Company. Bob Weis, who led the transformation of Disney California Adventure and is currently behind Shanghai Disneyland, has been named President of Walt Disney Imagineering.

We will update this story as we get further information.

Bruce lead the integrated creative teams of WDI, Walt Disney Creative Entertainment and WDI Research and Development to drive excellence in product development and innovation. His responsibilities span theme park attractions and special effects, innovative theater experiences, and new business opportunities that leverage invented and emerging technologies.

Vaughn joined WDI as a senior technical specialist. He spent time as a writer for Theme Park Productions and associate media producer for the renovation of Spaceship Earth at Epcot. Since then, Bruce has been involved in disciplines across The Walt Disney Company, including feature animation, television, theatrical, music, Internet, consumer products and location-based entertainment.

Bruce has served as assistant professor at UCLA’s Theater, Film and Television School, where he teaches “Imagineering: The Art and Process of Entertainment Design.” He is co-chairman of the Disney Research Council, which oversees the group that performs a broad range of research and technical innovation for several areas of The Walt Disney Company. Bruce has led R&D teams that received three Themed Entertainment Awards: Pirates of the Caribbean: Battle for Buccaneer Gold (best attraction), Stitch’s Photo Phone (best use of creative technology), and Lucky the Dinosaur (best use of creative technology).

Prior to joining WDI, Bruce worked on the technical staff of Associates & Ferren in New York for five years where he contributed to the development and execution of special effects for various media projects. He has received screen credits on several feature films, including “Star Trek V: The Final Frontier” (assistant camera, live action effects unit) and “Imposter” (future-technology consultant).

Bruce graduated cum laude from Colgate University in New York in 1988 with a bachelor’s degree in English literature and a minor in art history.

Here is more information about Bob Weis.


Bob Weis is the president of Walt Disney Imagineering, the creative design and delivery arm of Walt Disney Parks and Resorts.  He is responsible for furthering Imagineering’s vision and developing and delivering extraordinary products and experiences that enhance the guests’ emotional connection to the brand.  In addition, he leads all creative and design aspects of the state-of-the-art Shanghai Disney Resort (opening June 2016).

Weis has decades of experience designing Disney theme parks and attractions around the world and is a proven leader of international and multicultural teams. Prior to his work on Shanghai Disney Resort, Weis completed a five-year expansion of Disney California Adventure Park. This undertaking completely transformed the park, included The Little Mermaid ~ Ariel’s Undersea Adventure attraction and the World of Color nighttime spectacular, and culminated in the highly successful openings of Buena Vista Street and Cars Land in summer 2012.

Weis’ previous projects include creative leadership over Disney’s Hollywood Studios and the Tower of Terror attraction, as well as conceptual design for Tokyo DisneySea.

Weis has been a creative force on three non-Disney projects honored with Themed Entertainment Association’s Thea Awards: the BattleStations21 Training Simulation project for the United States Navy, and two traveling exhibitions — Adventures In Movie Making and CSI: The Experience.

Weis’ additional work outside the Disney parks includes museum exhibits such as his collaboration with renowned architect Ricardo Legoretta on the Fort Worth Museum of Science and History. His feature film and documentary projects have been shown on Lifetime and American public television