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by Wishes Diva

Cast members are a special group of people that work to make your experience at Disney a magical one. From running rides to serving food and taking pictures, without Cast Members our trips to Disney would be far from a vacation. But how many times have you actually had a conversation with a Cast Member? So many of them have fun stories to share, or tips to give to guests. The interview below has both– straight from a Cast Member of the Great Movie Ride.

Name: Stephanie P

From: Cleveland, OH

How long have you worked here / what different places or positions have you worked at? I have worked here almost exactly 2 years. I started as an Innoventions presenter at EPCOT and now I work at the Great Movie Ride as a tour guide.

Is there a story that brought you to Disney? I grew up loving Disney and the company. I always knew I wanted to work for them- I just didn’t know how! When I went to Disneyland Paris in the summer of 2012, I got to experience the company internationally. I remember watching the parade and then getting in line for “It’s a Small World” and knowing that I couldn’t imagine life without working for Disney at some point. I learned in college about the Disney College Program.   In my senior year of college, I applied to go down after graduation and was accepted on Valentine’s Day as an Attractions cast member. When I came down in June 2013 I found out my role and was terrified. I would be learning and memorizing a 35 page script and an 18 minute tour. I thought that was the end of my Disney journey, but instead I found I had a hidden talent and have loved it ever since! My College Program ended and I went seasonal and moved to Florida permanently. I wanted to transition to a Part-Time or Full-Time role and Great Movie Ride was first attraction offered to me.


Stephanie on the job with her family.

What’s is your favorite / least favorite thing about working at Disney? Favorite- Getting to be in the thick of it. I get to be here for all of the new attractions and special weekends and I get to help guests and put smiles on their faces. I love getting to be a part of the magic in every aspect. I also love days when I’m in really early and I get to watch the sun come up in the park. Least favorite- Having to scold guests who don’t listen to instructions that are there for their own safety. (She recalls having to tell a small child on Great Movie Ride: “Please stop hitting your light saber against the finale movie screen.”)

What is your most memorable guest interaction? I have several. I don’t know if I can pick… Any time that guests clap when Robin Williams comes on in the finale of Great Movie Ride… I once got a drawing from a guest on Valentine’s Day that said “Thanks for working today” (see picture below)… One time a 9-year-old gave me a picture of Minnie and Mickey holding heart-shaped balloons (see picture below)… I once wished a girl happy birthday because she had on a button and she replied “Thank you, you said the magic word!” and proceeded to pull out an autograph book and explained that everyone who told her happy birthday was signing her book and asked me to sign it. That made me very happy.



How do you like to spread Disney Magic? “I tell jokes, I do tricks with my fellow candle sticks!” But really, my favorite way to spread Disney magic is to share Disney heritage with guests who are interested: sharing stories and facts with guests who want to know! I like being able to put my passion for Disney trivia to use.

Is there anything you want to tell the guests about working for Disney? It takes a lot of faith, trust, and pixie dust to make it all work- more than I ever imagined.

Any advice to guests looking to become Cast Members? Getting experience in a customer service field is always a good idea, but knowing about the company and having a passion about the company is what makes the job fun. So don’t be afraid to do some research about your area before you interview or start. Part of the job is making magic- it’s more than just a job!

Favorite Character: Oswald the Unlucky Rabbit or Tiana
Favorite Movie: Lady and the Tramp, but Mary Poppins is a close second
Are you Team Heroes or Team Villains: Team Heroes, hands down, end of story.

What is your favorite CM costume in the parks? Soarin’

On your day off, if you go to the parks, what do you do? If I were planning my “Perfect Disney Day” I would go to Disney’s Animal Kingdom first thing. I would ride the Kilimajaro Safari and see Festival of the Lion King. Then I would go to EPCOT. Ride Soarin’ and then go see the dolphins and manatees in Seas with Nemo and Friends. Next I would go to Magic Kingdom and catch the 3pm showing of Festival of Fantasy. I would ride the People Mover (for suresies) and Carousel of Progress. I would have a FastPass for Under the Sea and then try to hit Jungle Cruise if I have time. Then head to Hollywood Studios and do the drawing class, Animation Academy, inside the Animation Building and Toy Story Mania interchangeably until the second showing of Fantasmic! But really, Starbucks and people watching in Studios is all I need.

Must have food item in the park?: Starbucks! Starbucks! Starbucks!

How do you show your Disney side outside of work? Let me count the ways…. I use Disney quotes regularly. I frequently sport Disney Alex and Ani bracelets (specifically Aurora, Ariel and Donald Duck). I frequently burst into Disney songs– I don’t know why they haven’t signed me for a musical sitcom yet. I also occasionally draw Disney things! (See pictures below!)

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Have you visited any other Disney parks? Which is your favorite and why? Disneyland Paris! It was a magical experience! I like WDW as a park the best but the Disneyland Paris evening show, “Disney Dreams”, takes the cake on favorite Disney entertainment by far. That show makes my answer for favorite park a serious competition.

If you had the chance to meet Walt Disney in person, what would you say to/ask him? I’d like to sit and have coffee with him. I would want to thank him first and foremost. I would ask now that Disney is on Broadway, what should the next Disney to Broadway adaptation be? I would also like to know what he thought of Tom Hanks playing him in Saving Mr. Banks. 🙂

Do you know any hidden gems or secrets of the parks that you are willing to share? In my opinion not enough guests know about One Man’s Dream in Hollywood Studios. It’s chock full of lots of fun information and the video at the end is equally as fabulous. The windows on Main Street: the facts and the stories behind the names on the main street windows. Also the park bench with Roy and Minnie on it: “Sharing the Magic” statue.
Great Movie Ride “secrets”: John Wayne’s belt buckle on his animatronic is actually his belt buckle. Also the computer screens on the left hand side specifically in the Alien section of the ride are proof of how much fun the Imagineers had working on the ride’s construction. There is a “passenger list” that is Imagineer names and each them have a task assigned. Some include missing passengers, searching for the missing passenger and still programming the witch (which took far longer than originally thought). The imagineers had a deep passion for Great Movie Ride. That’s part of what makes working there so fun!


What can we as guests do to make your job easier? If you are enjoying yourself let us know. It makes us feel better when we know that something we did made a difference for you. My job is easier when I am having fun and when I can bond with you over a shared love of the company and the parks.

What is the best tip you can give guests? Always try to go to the second showing of Fantasmic! and the Electrical Light Parade. Take advantage of the Fastpass+ system and Extra Magic Hours if you are staying at a Disney resort.