How Neil Patrick Harris got Disney’s ‘World of Color’ gig

Actor Neil Patrick Harris and Mickey Mouse introduce Disney California Adventure's new "World of Color: Celebrate!" to the media for Disneyland's 60th anniversary celebration.

Actor Neil Patrick Harris and Mickey Mouse introduce Disney California Adventure’s new “World of Color: Celebrate!” to the media for Disneyland’s 60th anniversary celebration.

(Allen J. Schaben / Los Angeles Times)

Actor Neil Patrick Harris has hosted the Tony Awards, the prime-time Emmy Awards and the Academy Awards.

Now the 41-year-old celebrity is hosting a nightly show at Disney California Adventure Park that will be viewed by thousands of people on sheets and sprays of water.

Harris’ latest gig has him appearing alongside a parade of animated characters and vintage Disney footage in the new “World of Color” show for the 60th anniversary celebration for Disneyland. Images of Harris and the other characters are projected on water that sprays and shoots out of the lagoon at the park’s Paradise Bay section.

How did Harris get the gig?


During an interview, Sayre Wiseman, who oversees parades and spectaculars for Walt Disney Imagineering Creative Entertainment, said Harris was asked to host the show because he had already proved his skills at hosting big shows.

Also, Harris had already done work for the Walt Disney Co., hosting the inauguration of a Disney cruise ship in 2012.

Finally, Wiseman said Harris was an easy choice because everyone knows he is a big Disneyland fan.

“When asked, he literally said ‘Absolutely, I’m there,’” she said.

Harris began filming the scenes for “World of Color” only a day after he hosted the Oscars in February.

“He came in so prepared,” Wiseman said.

Another plus for Harris may have been that he can sing. In the “World of Color” show, he sings along on several Disney tunes, including the theme songs for the Enchanted Tiki Room and the Pirates of the Caribbean ride.

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