Spaceship Earth, the Epcot icon, is getting a new script. It is simple, direct and the fiery color of a Florida sunrise: “Epcot,” it will say, in shimmering script letters as much as 36 feet tall.
The makeover will turn the 15-month Walt Disney World Millennium Celebration icon created for Spaceship Earth into a new and lasting beacon to a magical Disney world.
According to Roger Holzberg, a senior show producer with Walt Disney Imagineering (WDI), the intent of the icon design is “to wed a core Disney element -- the Sorcerer Mickey hand and wand -- with the futuristic vision of Spaceship Earth” in an effort to better identify the spherical entryway to Epcot.
During the highly successful millennium celebration, the whimsical, 25-story-high icon of Sorcerer Mickey’s arm and hand holding a gigantic magical wand featured “starfetti” raining down over a giant “2000.” Now the wand will “pixie-dust” the “Epcot” name spelled out in huge script letters created from a shimmering array of 250,000 metallic eye-catchers.
Altering the icon won’t be as simple as running an eraser over a chalkboard and writing in the new characters. It is estimated the project will take almost five months, beginning with the removal of the huge “2000” numerals in January.
When completed by the end of May, the steel structure will still weigh 500,000 pounds and extend 257 feet -- the tallest theme park structure at Walt Disney World Resort.
Spaceship Earth Icon by the Numbers
- 257 feet: Height to the sparkles above the tip of Sorcerer Mickey’s wand
- 250 tons: Weight of steel frame supporting the icon
- 100,000 pounds: Weight of Mickey’s gloved hand, the wand and the “Epcot” lettering
- 250,000: Number of shimmering metallic eye-catchers used to spell “Epcot”
- 36 feet: Height of the tallest letters in “Epcot”
- 5 months: Duration of the construction changeover from “2000” to “Epcot”
- 180 feet: Height above ground level of the top of Spaceship Earth
- 16 million pounds: Weight of Spaceship Earth
- 11,324: Number of aluminum/plastic-alloy triangles comprising Spaceship Earth exterior