Past Presidents

Rick Rothschild

International Board President: 2011, 2012

Founder and Chief Creative Officer
FAR Out! Creative Direction
PO Box 222246
Newhall, California, 91322
United States
Tel: +1 818-294-0487

Twitter: FARout_Rick
Skype: rickrothschild


As both a film maker and director, blending a unique set of entertainment skills developed in the world of theater, media, Disney theme parks and museums, Rick Rothschild established himself as Chief Creative of FAR Out! Creative Direction in 2008.


With over 40 years of experience, he brings strong creative perspective together with deep technical knowledge to provide both vision and direction.  His skills enable him to integrate complex ideas, systems and story and deliver them effectively and efficiently as a complete filmic experience or entertainment product.


Along with the responsibility of creatively directing and producing over 25 separate Disney attractions during a 30 plus year tenure as a creative executive at Walt Disney Imagineering, Rick lead and participated in a variety of concept development teams that have created special venue film based attractions, along with theme parks and other resort, recreation and immersive experience related business lines.


During the 1990’s, Rick headed the design team that developed the Land of the Golden State, the central third of Disney’s California Adventure theme park, and was the film writer/director for Soarin’ over California, a thrilling and unique IMAX-scale flying ride experience where guests “hang glide” over dramatic Golden State scenery projected in high-definition on an 80 foot dome. Working with a variety of leading entertainment industry talent over the years, he led teams that brought other popular 3-D experiences to Disney theme parks, including It’s Tough to be a Bug!, Honey, I Shrunk the Audience and Mickey’s PhilharMagic, a celebration of animation and music.


As the Chief Creative for FAR Out!, he has continued directing special venue productions and giant screen films for numerous themed entertainment companies, major film studios and prestigious museums and institutions around the world.


FlyOver Canada, a next generation “flying ride” large format film attraction that opened in Vancouver BC in June 2013, engaged Rick’s directorial film talents as well as overall Creative Director.  FlyOver America followed in summer of 2015, opening in Bloomington, MN at Mall of America.  FlyOver Iceland is due to open in summer of 2019 in Reykjavik, Iceland.


As overall creative director/producer, Rick opened Kaka’s Ocean Adventure, a state of the art 1000 motion seat 5D immersive 180º ride theater attraction at Chimelong Ocean Kingdom, in Hengqin, China in June 2015.  This attraction was honored with a THEA Award for Outstanding Achievement in 2017. 


Rick previously partnered with Global Immersion, a creative technology team based in the United Kingdom, to develop a unique immersive experience for the Adler Planetarium in Chicago that opened in July of 2011.


After retiring from Walt Disney Imagineering, he helped bring three groundbreaking attractions to multiple Disney theme parks around the world; the 2010 revival of the 3D experience Captain EO staring Michael Jackson that Rick helped originally create in 1986: a whole new George Lucas inspired StarTours attraction and in 2017, Nemo and Friends Searider at Tokyo DisneySea, both of which received industry recognition with a the THEA Award for Outstanding Achievement. In the twenty-eight years since the Theme Entertainment Association (TEA) was established, 8 projects that Rick directed have been recognized with the THEA Award for Outstanding Achievement.


In November 2012, Rick completed a 2-year term as President of the Themed Entertainment Association (TEA), the only international non-profit association representing the world’s leading creators, developers, designers and producers of compelling places and experiences and continues as an active member of the association’s Past Presidents Committee.   Rick is also an active member of the Producers Guild of America and the Visual Effects Society.


With a 2007 opening, Rick directed the team that created Finding Nemo Submarine Voyage at Disneyland, using innovative new audio and visual technologies to magically bring beloved PIXAR animated characters into a totally immerse 13 minute undersea adventure. Rick’s first directorial role with Disney was leading the creation of The American Adventure for EPCOT Center in 1982.  In 1987, Rick was named Executive Producer, Entertainment Center Projects, responsible for helping guide the planning of several Disney entertainment/retail centers, including Pleasure Island, which opened at Walt Disney World Resort in 1989.  When Walt Disney Imagineering was selected to produce Portraits of Canada, a CIRCLE-VISION® 360 motion picture, for Vancouver Expo '86, Rick worked with producer/director Jeff Blyth to develop the story concept and acted as a creative executive on the production.


Other theme park projects have included Armageddon - Les Effets Speciaux, a special effects spectacular at Walt Disney Studios - Paris; and three new attractions for Tokyo DisneySea: Magic Lamp Theater features 3D Disney animation integrated with live performance; StormRider pushed the art of immersive simulation with special effects to a new; and 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea is a journey into unexpected magic and mystery. In Florida, The ExtraTERRORestrial Alien Encounter and a new Hall of Presidents were also completed under his leadership.


Rick received his degree with honors in Theater Design from Lawrence University in Wisconsin and attended the MFA Theater Arts program at UCLA. He worked in Los Angeles, Minneapolis, New York, Spokane and Ohio area on over 100 productions as both a scenic and lighting designer prior to joining Disney in 1978.




TEA boards and committees

Past Presidents – International Board President: 2011, 2012