Report: Trump Admin Battling Disney Over ‘Hall Of Presidents’ Speech

(Shutterstock/Evan El-Amin)

Katie Jerkovich Entertainment Reporter
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President Donald Trump’s administration has reportedly been battling Disney over his speech for the “Hall Of Presidents” attraction at Walt Disney World, according to Vice.

Disney sources told Vice that the two sides have been going back and forth over what Trump’s speech would be following reports that the popular attraction would feature a silent figure of the sitting president. (RELATED: Disney’s Hall Of Presidents Might Not Include A Talking Trump)


“When Disney tried to get this process started earlier this year,” a source told Vice. “Trump’s people said, ‘We’ll be writing the speech that the president’s audio-animatronic figure will be saying.'”

In the past, the White House and Disney reportedly have worked together to write the speech given by the current president.

“The Imagineers [the researchers and developers behind Disney’s theme park attractions] tried to point out that they’re typically involved with this process,” the source added. “That they directly collaborated with Clinton, Bush, and Obama’s people when it came to figuring out what the president’s audio-animatronic figure would say. Trump’s people said, ‘No. We’re writing this speech. You guys have no input on this.'”

“They’d particularly like to avoid him tweeting about this situation,” the source continued. “It would most likely result in a call for conservatives to boycott Walt Disney World, which is the company’s biggest fear. Disney officials are bending over backwards in an effort not to be seen as disrespectful towards President Trump.”

Disney confirmed Monday that the Trump robot will share a message contrary to earlier reports saying otherwise, but how the two sides came to an agreement on the writing of the speech is still unknown.

A specific date for the reopening of the attraction was not given except to say that it will happen in “late 2017.”

After the election, Disney CEO Bob Iger confirmed that a bust of Trump had been created and would be going into the hall.

Hours after the story broke, Disney called the Vice report “inaccurate.”

“Despite some media reports to the contrary, President Trump will have a speaking role in The Hall of Presidents, like every president since 1993,” Thomas Smith, Editorial Content Director for the Disney Parks Blog wrote. “We have been working closely with the current White House–just as we have with previous administrations–and the president’s recording session has been scheduled. The attraction will re-open in late 2017.”

Update: The story has been updated to include the response from Disney over the Vice report.