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This is your brain, you will eat with it, sleep with it, you will never leave it. Without you, the brain is nothing; without your brain, YOU are nothing.
―General Knowledge

Cranium Command was an audio-animatronic theatre show in Wonders of Life at Epcot. It was a humorous, educational presentation on the importance of the human brain and it's relationship with the body. It was directed by Jerry Rees, who also directed The Brave Little Toaster and the pre-show was the first directing effort of Gary Trousdale and Kirk Wise, famous for later directing Beauty and the Beast, The Hunchback of Notre Dame, and Atlantis: The Lost Empire.

During the 2007 International Food & Wine Festival, the entrance was used as a wine presentation. As of today, Disney is still deciding whether to keep using it for the Food and Wine Festival, or to build a new attraction inside the pavilion.

Preshow

The preshow consisted of an animated segment featuring General Knowledge (voiced by Corey Burton) briefing the Cranium Commando troops on their mission: to pilot human brains and keep the people they operate out of trouble. A bumbling little soldier named Buzzy (Scott Curtis) had been given one of the most difficult missions of all: piloting a twelve-year-old boy.

General Knowledge explained the dynamics and individual functions of the brain. In one instance, he showed a picture of Albert Einstein, as the example of a highly, well-developed brain and Ernest P. Worrell (a popular fictional character played by Jim Varney, who was appearing in series of feature films produced by Disney at the time), as the opposite. At the end of his briefing, he facetiously asked the guests, "Where do you think you are, Disney World?" and ordered everyone into the main theater.
Craniumcommandtheatreinterior

Show

The main show was presented in a theater which was designed to represent the inside of a human head; the outside world was seen on video displays where the eyes would be. Buzzy was an Audio-Animatronic on an articulated seat so that he could move around during the performance. Helping him pilot the twelve-year-old boy (also played by Scott Curtis), via appearances on other video screens, were the logical Left Brain (Charles Grodin), the wacky Right Brain (Jon Lovitz), the hungry Stomach (George Wendt), the panicky Bladder (Jeff Doucette), the Adrenal Gland (Bobcat Goldthwait) who was prone to overreacting, and the heart's Right and Left Ventricles (Dana Carvey and Kevin Nealon, reprising their Hans and Franz roles from Saturday Night Live).

The Hypothalamus (voiced by Kirk Wise), which regulated autonomic bodily functions, was represented via Audio-Animatronics as a robot. The show took Buzzy's host through a typical day: getting up, skipping breakfast, running to school, meeting a cute girl named Annie (Natalie Gregory), getting involved in a food fight at lunch, getting sent to the principal (Kenneth Kimmins), and being thanked kissed. At each point in the day, the various organs talked to Buzzy and explained the problems they were facing. In the end, they overcame their differences and learned that with teamwork and cooperation, nearly anything could be done.

Trivia

  • The 2015 Pixar film, Inside Out is thematically similar to the show in that they feature characters within an adolescent's mind trying to help them through tough times. Pete Docter, who would later direct the film, animated part of the preshow where his head is also featured.
  • General Knowledge makes a brief voice cameo in The Walt Disney World Explorer, which is partly narrated by Corey Burton, who points himself out after he does his General Knowledge voice. (Burton narrates Cranium Command's slideshows in the application.)

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