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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Fun, fast read
Chris Mitchell entered the Walt Disney World work force after his personal and professional life was left in tatters by a failed romance and a lost job. He became a theme park photographer by way of the third-party subcontractor. He initially resisted adopting the "Disney vision" held dear by many of his co-workers--the seasonal and the "lifers"--but as he made friends...
Published on 21 Mar. 2010 by Diana

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1.0 out of 5 stars I'll be pulping my copy...
As a big Disney fan, I was hoping that this book would provide an interesting, 'behind the scenes' view of working at Disney World, similar to other books such as 'Stories of a Theme Park Insider' or The Hidden Magic of Walt Disney World' (both excellent books, highly recommended).

However, upon reading this book, I was mostly disgusted - mainly at the intense,...
Published 9 months ago by Jamie


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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Fun, fast read, 21 Mar. 2010
By 
Diana (Casteau, Belgium-) - See all my reviews
This review is from: Cast Member Confidential: A Disneyfied Memoir (Paperback)
Chris Mitchell entered the Walt Disney World work force after his personal and professional life was left in tatters by a failed romance and a lost job. He became a theme park photographer by way of the third-party subcontractor. He initially resisted adopting the "Disney vision" held dear by many of his co-workers--the seasonal and the "lifers"--but as he made friends and found new romance, he embraced the Disney lifestyle even as he flouted some of its more draconian rules and regulations.
Mitchell not only captures the eccentricities of his co-workers, but also of Disney's multitudes of visitors. While the visits with "Make-a-Wish" children are truly gripping and poignant, Disney World also attracts fanatics who so yearn to be "part of the magic" that they not only collect autographs and bric-a-brac, but also napkins, scraps of costumes, and anything that isn't nailed down. The ongoing Disney dilemma is the precarious balance between controlling human behavior and giving it free reign in an idyllic fantasy realm where, according to the official line, "No guest has ever died."
Mitchell's contribution to the behind-the-scenes-at-Disney lit tells inconvenient truths and a few heartwarmers about working in Florida's Disney World. Mitchell confirms a few rumors or urban legends, such as the allure that wearing cute little Disney-character costumes has for "furries" (people who sexualize plush creatures and related anthropomorphic beings). He discusses the alleged existence of a gay hiring cabal that quietly infiltrated Disney after the untoward news several years ago concerning corporate mistreatment of gay employees and guests, and in passing he mentions being "surprised by just how gay" the Disney milieu is. Other highlights include a brief disquisition on how "Christians and conspiracists have long been convinced that Donald Duck is a racist based on a snippet of dialog . . . in Who Framed Roger Rabbit?," in which Donald calls Warner's Daffy Duck a "stubborn nitwit." And then there's Mitchell's furtive initiation into the SOP (i.e., Sex On Property) Club in a storeroom full of Tinkerbell pens and Little Mermaid T-shirts. Good clean fun.
Hilarious and revealing!
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4.0 out of 5 stars An Eye Opener, 12 Jun. 2011
This review is from: Cast Member Confidential: A Disneyfied Memoir (Paperback)
If you've ever wondered what goes on when the fireworks have finished and the lights have gone out in Walt Disney World this is the book for you. I read it while on vacaction in Orlando this year - we're regular visitors and love all things Disney - and enjoyed the insight into life as a cast member. I've often wondered what brings people to Disney World to work and how they all appear to willingly embrace the cast member/guest relationship having heard how poorly rewarded they are financially. I have a better understanding now.

At the same time, and on a lighter note, once you've read the book you'll look at the Princesses in the parade in a very different light! Every time I saw an Aerial I wondered if it was Caleco!

But there's much more to this book than the romantic goings on amongst cast members. Despite his best efforts, Chris finds himself embracing the Disney ethos and understanding why Walt Disney World is such a special place for so many people. He tells heart warming stories about Make a Wish children and tells tales of the fanatics who collect anything Disney.

At the same time he is dealing with significant and emotional issues in his own life. The story is well told and I found myself warming to the writer more and more as he wrestled with "real life" and "Disney life" and ultimately saw the two come together as the magic slowly but surely, and then rather abrubtly, died.

Recommended for anyone with at least a passing interest in Disney and unmissable if your interest is more than that.
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1.0 out of 5 stars I'll be pulping my copy..., 7 Jun. 2014
This review is from: Cast Member Confidential: A Disneyfied Memoir (Paperback)
As a big Disney fan, I was hoping that this book would provide an interesting, 'behind the scenes' view of working at Disney World, similar to other books such as 'Stories of a Theme Park Insider' or The Hidden Magic of Walt Disney World' (both excellent books, highly recommended).

However, upon reading this book, I was mostly disgusted - mainly at the intense, graphic descriptions of various sexual encounters the author had (or had heard about) behind the scenes. Not at all what I expected from the blurb provided with the book, or from the cover art. It is most certainly NOT for children!

Like some other reviewers, I found some of the writing fairly unbelievable - sensationalised at best, untrue at worst. I would say that the book isn't really written in a entertaining way, unlike the other books mentioned at the start of this review.

I'm sorry to provide such a negative review, but I was just so shocked with a book that I had really looked forward to reading. If you're after a diary of college flirtations and inappropriate encounters which happen to take place on Disney property, then this is the book for you! Otherwise, if you're after an entertaining look behind the scenes of Disney, I'd stick to 'Stories from a Theme Park Insider'.

As for my copy, I'll be pulping it - I would feel embarrassed and irresponsible giving it to a friend or family member, and I don't want to profit from this type of material by selling it on either.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Anarchic faction?, 17 Aug. 2014
This review is from: Cast Member Confidential: A Disneyfied Memoir (Paperback)
A much more absorbing read than I expected. Disney facts intrigue me and I'd expected this to be one more of those diaries detailing what was eaten for breakfast and how rides had changed over time.

The tale however dragged me into the life of the author and had me on his shoulder in his journey from a CM outsider to a member of a CM clique and finally back home to family.
Photographing characters in non Disney poses was such an anarchic entry ticket (and clearly dates this to the pre digital age)

Just one niggle, and that's my wonder on the amount of poetic license used. Where in the faction spectrum does it lie, and does it lie? Maintaining confidentiality of such vulnerable individuals like Calico needs a lot of fiction to mix with the fact.
It would be good to read something amongst these reviews to corroborate some of the characters.

But still a gripping read and one to recommend
Also 5 stars to the cover artist. The image picks up the theme perfectly.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Thoroughly Enjoyable, 14 Aug. 2013
By 
Mr. T. Kenning (Staffordshire, England) - See all my reviews
This review is from: Cast Member Confidential: A Disneyfied Memoir (Paperback)
I really enjoyed reading this book. Whether or not it is all entirely true I'm not sure, I suspect the basics of the stories are true but they may have been glorified or exaggerated to make them more entertaining to read. It seems odd to me that some parts are very detailed, describing exactly what was said during various conversations that happened years ago, maybe the author does just have a very good memory. Nevertheless, as a Disney World fan I did really enjoy this book, it's nice to imagine what goes on behind the scenes, away from the 'practically perfect in every way' image that Walt Disney World tries so hard to portray to it's guests.
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4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A great read!, 20 Jan. 2011
By 
W. Eagles (London UK) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Cast Member Confidential: A Disneyfied Memoir (Paperback)
If you want to know what goes on behind the scenes at DisneyWorld, get this book. Well written and sometimes touching account of a year working at DisneyWorld.
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4.0 out of 5 stars Enjoyable read, 27 Jan. 2014
By 
Jan Turnbull (UK) - See all my reviews
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I love all things Disney and have done the utilidors tour in the past, but fortunately never witnessed anything like the goings on in this book. This is a good read but not one to visit unless you're willing to have your disney illusions shattered. Very interesting though.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Fab!, 27 Oct. 2013
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This review is from: Cast Member Confidential: A Disneyfied Memoir (Paperback)
Really good book for any fans of the Disney Parks, however if you know the parks and cast member rules well enough, it is clear many of the stories and experiences the author states are true, cannot possibly be so. Take them with a pinch of salt!
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4.0 out of 5 stars Brilliant, 18 Jan. 2013
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The book was absolutely amazing. It is really great getting to know about all the things that happen out of the public eye at Disney.
This is definitely an adult book but great for the Disney fan at heart.
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2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Not one for the kids.... a good read though, 23 May 2012
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This review is from: Cast Member Confidential: A Disneyfied Memoir (Paperback)
A really good account of a very talented writers year working at DisneyWorld. It's funny, and a bit graphic in parts (describing some of the riskier sides of the house of mouse) - but all in all a really good story. Sincere at times, a bit rude at times, but all good. - Definitely one for the grown ups though.
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Cast Member Confidential: A Disneyfied Memoir
Cast Member Confidential: A Disneyfied Memoir by Chris Mitchell (Paperback - 1 Jan. 2010)
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