High ranking Imagineers Joe Rohde and Bob Weis expand their roles with Walt Disney Imagineering

Jul 09, 2015 in "The Walt Disney Company"

Posted: Thursday July 9, 2015 12:22pm EDT by WDWMAGIC Staff

Two of the most well known and highest ranking Imagineers at Disney are to expand their roles ahead of a period of expected growth.

Joe Rohde, currently the creative lead at Disney's Animal Kingdom, will expand his role at Imagineering to take on global creative leadership of the Marvel property.

Rohde is currently working on the the development of AVATAR Land at Disney's Animal Kingdom, and also oversees the creative work at the Aulani Resort.

Bob Weis, who is currently heavily involved in the creation of Shanghai Disney Resort, will also take on the position of creative lead of Hong Kong Disneyland.

Weis is best known to the American park fans as the creative force behind the development of Disney MGM Studios, and for the massive make-over of Disney California Adventure.

Together with the recent appointment of Scott Trowbridge as the lead on the Star Wars projects, the expansion of roles for Rohde and Weis would seem to send a clear message of where the future of Imagineering will be focussed - Star Wars, Marvel and Asia.

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ford91exploderDec 10, 2015

Dancin Groot's Galactic Disco!

AEfxDec 10, 2015

Yeah, I mean, he is best known for his masterpiece Expedition Everest - one wonders how he could top that? Disco Groot?

lazyboy97oDec 10, 2015

Frank Lloyd Wright was an architect architect and he most certainly did not see structure and details that well, that's why his buildings leak and Fallingwater almost fell into the water.

lazyboy97oDec 10, 2015

It is not just the AIA. Architect is a legally protected professional title throughout the United States.

RandySavageDec 10, 2015

Fair enough. As in "architect of a vision." When I see architect I tend to think of schematics and building plans.

FOH JimDec 10, 2015

I would use the word architect in the Frank Lloyd Wright sense. Designer, Artist, Manager. I think like Wright, Joe sees the structure and the details as unified and inseparable. That is what makes him so good at his job.

RandySavageDec 10, 2015

I understand what's being communicated, but to be technical on terminology, Rohde isn't an Architect, at least not in the AIA sense. He's is a renaissance man, who can sketch, paint, sculpt, make models, and all-around design theme parks really-well.

JoeCamelDec 10, 2015

So its just authentic and gives him cred to do African areas. No problem if that is what he wants. He is one of the best that WDI has left https://s-media-cache-ak0.pinimg.com/736x/e0/a4/43/e0a443511067868e74de19584a342020.jpg

ford91exploderDec 10, 2015

Every real creative has their unique quirk which is more of a signature, I believe the earrings are his.

RSoxNo1Dec 10, 2015

I don't like the look either, but at least with him the earrings are a pseudo travel log. Having said that, ear gauges look ridiculous.

ChrisMDec 09, 2015

He also excels at stretching his earlobe beyond reason.

RSoxNo1Dec 09, 2015

Joe excels at recognizing when something breaks theme. His influence is all over Africa and Asia in the Animal Kingdom.

FOH JimDec 09, 2015

I see what you are saying, Yes in that aspect Joe is certainly more of an architect. I don't know Joe, But having seen his work (AK Aulani etc) I think he has the ability to see the big picture, not miss the details, and work the politics in order to see the project through without losing the artistic integrity. I can only imagine how many meetings there were while AK was being designed and built where the number crunchers said "you can't do that, it'll cost too much" (because that is how every project is everywhere) and somehow things got completed in a way that is, in my opinion (and yours as well?), the most meticulously themed park of them all. Personally I was hoping that they would put him in charge of the refurb of Epcot, Marvel is Meh to me, so having him in charge of that seems to me to be a waste of his talents. I understand that marvel is a big deal for Disney, 'cause there are a lot of people who think it's great. That is just not me.

janoimagineDec 08, 2015

Curious, and I am not asking you to name your sources, but has that been confirmed? I know several peoples in various roles at DCL and none of them seem to believe they have anything on the radar like that over the next 5 years.