Press Release from Walt Disney Archives and D23

The Exhibition, which celebrates Disney 100 Years of Wonder, launches a World Tour at Philadelphia’s Franklin Institute on February 18, 2023 


 Tickets are now on sale for the world premiere of Disney100: The Exhibition, debuting at The Franklin Institute in Philadelphia on February 18, 2023. Created for the 100-year celebration of The Walt Disney Company, the exhibition invites guests to step into their favorite stories using innovative and immersive technology throughout ten galleries in the 15,000-square-foot exhibit. 

The Walt Disney Archives is opening its vault of treasures, showcasing more than 250 of its “Crown Jewels,” rarely seen original artworks and artifacts, costumes and props, and other memorabilia—five of which were unveiled today, including: 

  • Disneyland Employee Badge #1 (1955), issued to Walt Disney 

Disneyland – Walt’s Disneyland Number 1 pin (name tag), brass (as seen in the Disneyland 10th Anniv. TV show). In the early years of Disneyland, hosts and hostesses were issued badges inscribed with numbers instead of first names. It was not until 1962 that names were engraved on name tags, starting a tradition that continues in all Disney theme parks to this day. Opening Day
  • Steamboat Whistle in Steamboat Willie (1928) 

  • Prop Storybook featured in Snow White and Seven Dwarfs (1937) 

  • Skywalker Lightsaber Hilt from Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker (2019), used by Daisy Ridley 

  • Magic Ring from The Shaggy Dog (1959), used by Tommy Kirk 

It was also announced that composer Steve Mazzaro, whose work can be heard on the soundtracks of such Disney-produced films as The Lion King (2019), Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Men Tell No Tales, and The Lone Ranger has composed an original soundtrack for the exhibit blending themes of such beloved classics as “When You Wish Upon A Star” from Pinocchio (1940) and “Let it Go” from Frozen (2013) with a new theme crafted exclusively for the exhibition. 

Also exclusive to this exhibition, Disney has curated special behind-the-scenes glimpses into the creation of the company’s most popular characters, films, shows, and attractions—from Disneyland to Walt Disney World and beyond. The ten magnificent and imaginatively themed galleries, all featuring moving stories, unique interactive installations, and exciting background information, will take guests on a journey through 100 years of The Walt Disney Company, celebrating the classics from Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs to Strange World, as well as the latest members of the Disney family—Pixar, Star Wars, Marvel, and National Geographic. 

Exhibitors today shared the first look at six gallery renderings, including: 

Where It All Began 

This gallery introduces visionary filmmaker and innovator Walt Disney and his philosophies that laid the foundation for the Walt Disney Company. Guests will explore his story from before Mickey Mouse to Mickey’s debut in Steamboat Willie in 1928 to the fantastic breakthroughs in animation during the early 1930s. 

Where Do the Stories Come From? 

A gallery dedicated to the art of storytelling with ever-changing multimedia environments that illustrate how Disney storytellers bring characters to life. Guests can explore the sources of inspiration for Disney’s most beloved and iconic films through art and artifacts from Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs, Frozen, and The Princess and the Frog. 

Sources of Inspiration 

From classic fairy tales and legends to original creations, this immersive and interactive installation invites visitors to explore the literary influences behind some of their favorite stories and see how they inspired Disney artists and storytellers. 

The Spirit of Adventure and Discovery 

From the depths of the ocean and the mysteries of the jungle to the outer reaches of the galaxy, Disney adventure stories from Disney, Star Wars, and the Marvel Cinematic Universe invite exploration and discovery in this interactive gallery where curious youngsters can embark on a quest to uncover hidden artifacts from favorite films. 

The Nautilus Window 

Guests can peer through an interactive window of Captain Nemo’s legendary submarine, as seen in 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea, for a glimpse of Disney and Pixar’s enchanting underwater worlds. 

Your Disney World: A Day in the Parks 

Guests step into a recreation of Main Street, U.S.A., to explore the legacy and development of Disney parks and attractions worldwide. 

“In 1923, Walt Disney set our company on a path that would revolutionize the entertainment industry, creating unforgettable stories, beloved characters, and unparalleled experiences that generations of fans around the world have enjoyed,” said Becky Cline, director of the Walt Disney Archives. “This incredible exhibit will take guests on a remarkable journey from those earliest days into Disney’s dazzling future using seamless technology, a rich musical score, and—of course—treasures from the Walt Disney Archives collection.” 

“The Franklin Institute has spent almost 200 years bringing stories of innovation and discovery to the public in an immersive and interactive way, so Disney100: The Exhibition is a perfect fit for us and our audience,” said Larry Dubinski, President and CEO of The Franklin Institute. “We are proud to host the world premiere at The Franklin Institute so fans across Philadelphia and beyond can have the first opportunity to see these crown jewels come to life in beautifully crafted galleries reflecting Disney’s imaginative storytelling, innovation, discovery, and wonder.” 

Disney100: The Exhibition is created and curated by the Walt Disney Archives and Semmel Exhibitions. The Franklin Institute is proud to present and play host to the world premiere of Disney100: The Exhibition in the Nicholas and Athena Karabots Pavilion and the Mandell Center. PECO, the Premier Corporate Partner of the Franklin Institute, is the Local Presenting Sponsor of the exhibition, and PNC is the Associate Sponsor. 

Disney100: The Exhibition | February 18 – August 27, 2023 

Daytime Tickets 

Daily: 9:30 am-5 pm 

Adults $45.00 

Seniors and Military $43.00 

Children (ages 3-11) $41.00 

Daytime tickets include admission to The Franklin Institute. 

Evening Tickets 

Thursday – Saturday: 5 pm-close 

Adults and Seniors $25.00 Children (ages 3-11) $25.00 Evening tickets include admission to Disney100: The Exhibition only. 

Tickets are timed and dated, and advance ticket purchase is strongly recommended. For information on purchasing tickets, please visit 

About The Franklin Institute 

Located in the heart of Philadelphia, The Franklin Institute is a renowned and innovative leader in science and technology learning and a dynamic center of activity. As Pennsylvania’s most visited museum, it is dedicated to creating a passion for learning about science by offering access to hands-on science education. For more information, visit 

About the Walt Disney Archives 

For more than 50 years, the Walt Disney Archives has carefully safeguarded the most treasured items from The Walt Disney Company’s history, including original scripts, movie props and costumes, Walt Disney’s correspondence and script notes, theme park artifacts, merchandise, millions of archival photographs, and many of Walt’s personal effects. Founded by Disney Legend Dave Smith in 1970, the Walt Disney Archives is a vital resource for every part of Disney, as well as an important research center for Disney scholars, researchers, and writers. The Archives also shares its countless pieces with Disney fans everywhere through its exhibitions and close association with D23: The Official Disney Fan Club. 

About Semmel Exhibitions 

Semmel Exhibitions creates exhibitions, which travel worldwide, and hosts international exhibitions in Germany, Austria, and German-speaking Switzerland. Semmel Exhibitions is a division of Semmel Concerts Entertainment, the large German live entertainment producer. Since Semmel Exhibitions started touring its exhibitions TUTANKHAMUN – HIS TOMB AND HIS TREASURES; THE DISCOVERY OF KING TUT; and most recently, MARVEL: UNIVERSE OF SUPER HEROES and SPIDER-MAN: BEYOND AMAZING – THE EXHIBITION, they have reached an audience of more than seven million people worldwide and built a strong international network within museums, science centers, cultural venues, and the creative industries. More information at 

Follow Me
The Main Street Mouse