The Dreamfinder is a Disney Parks character with some affiliation to the S.E.A. mythos.
The Dreamfinder is jolly professor with a tendency to dress as if he was from the Victorian or Edwardian era. He studied psionics and psychology with strange science and inventions, sometimes bordering on the arcane. One notable invention of his being the Dream Mobile which could fly and access the Realms of Imagination. Dreamfinder would have been active by 1938 at the latest during which time he had already constructed his Dream Mobile.
Around the 1980s, Dreamfinder would come to operate out of the Imagination! Pavilion at E.P.C.O.T. (the Experimental Prototype Community of Tomorrow) where he held his Dream-Port that he used to access the realms of imagination with his Dream-Mobile. He is frequently accompanied by Figment, a small, child-like, purple, dragon-like creature he created as a physical figment of his imagination.
At some point in time, Dreamfinder's operations in EPCOT would cease without apparent explanation. The Pavilion would be repurposed by the science enrichment organization known as the Imagination Institute of unknown relationship to the Dreamfinder. This group had a higher fixation on studying imagination to control it and use it for profit however, opposing the Dreamfinder's ideals. Figment on the other hand would continue to inhabit the Pavilion where he regularly terrorized the institute's chairman Dr. Nigel Channing with a much more mischievous and obnoxious personality than that he held while in Dreamfinder's company.
Dreamfinder appears under the name of Prof. Blarion "Blair" Mercurial in the Disney Kingdoms comic-book mythos in a shared continuity with Big Thunder Mountain Railroad, Walt Disney's Enchanted Tiki Room, The Haunted Mansion and the Museum of the Weird. He serves as the protagonist of Disney Kingdoms: Figment and Disney Kingdoms: Figment 2 which show him as having been a young victorian scientist at the Academy Scientifica-Lucida (a reimagining of the Imagination Institute).
While trying to develop a spark-converter which would create electricity from brain-waves he accidentally created a portal to the realms of imagination. The story revolves around this young Dreamfinder and Figment journeying through the psionic realm and saving it from controlling villains. In Figment 2 they would come from the realm to modern day at the academy's base in the jungles of Florida (the Imagination! Institute). After failing to properly study the giant monolith of Spaceship Earth, Dreamfinder would transform into his villainous counterpart The Doubtfinder with Figment needing to team up with his descendent to save him and the academy.
Dreamfinder was a major character in the original Journey Into Imagination at EPCOT. Despite being beloved, this attraction would be removed in 1998 due to sponsorship issues. The attraction would be replaced with the universally hated Journey Into Your Imagination where Dreamfinder and Figment were replaced by a patronizing scientist of the Imagination Institute named Dr. Nigel Channing (portrayed by Eric Idle) who harassed guests for having no imagination. Due to how hated it was, this attraction would be replaced by the contemptuous Journey Into Imagination With Figment which was a remake of Journey Into Your Imagination with Figment and a few more imagination themed tableaus.
Appearances and allusions
The Dreamfinder and Figment were originally conceived by Tony Baxter to appear in Discovery Bay with Dreamfinder under the name of, "Prof. Marvel" (a name likely taken from the 1939 film adaptation for The Wizard of Oz). He would have been a professor working under Jason Chandler in Discovery Bay and he would have had two affiliated attractions. Firstly he would have had, " Professor Marvel's Gallery of Illusion" in which he and his pet dragon would highlight different illusions to guests and secondly there would have been the skyway inspired, "Professor Marvel's Balloon Descent" where guests would ride artificial hot-air balloons from Discovery Bay to a proposed Dumbo's Circus area in Fantasyland.
The Dreamfinder would finally come to realization in the classic Epcot attraction, Journey Into Imagination where he and Figment took guests throughout the realms of imagination.
Journey Into Imagination with Figment
An easter-egg reference to Dreamfinder can be found in Journey Into Imagination with Figment where one of the offices at the Imagination! Pavilion belongs to an Imagination Institute employee named Dean Finder. The plasma orbs from his dream port are also located in the Imagination Institute's shelves.
Liberty Square Ticket Office
In this building is an illustration of the Dreamfinder and Figment riding the Dreammobile overhead the Tree of Life, Cinderella's Castle, Spaceship Earth and the Hollywood Tower Hotel. The function of this poster is to advertise annual passes to Walt Disney World Resort.
Dreamfinder makes a cameo in the audio-loop for the Jungle Navigation Co. Ltd. Skipper Canteen. In the background of the restaurant (set c. 1938), the Dreamfinder can be heard asking cast-members where he can park his Dream Machine.
In Other media
Dreamfinder is the protagonist of the two Figment series.
- In an unused TV show called Dreamfinders, Dreamfinder would have been given the name of Old Eli.
- Dreamfinder shares his animatronic/mould with the Mayor of Phantom Canyon in Phantom Manor.
- Disney Kingdoms comic writer Jim Zub has shared that the Society of Explorers and Adventurers played a key part in his unproduced outline for Figment 3: Journey into Imagineering, where Dreamfinder and Figment explored the secrets of Spaceship Earth.