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Industry Filmography
Founded 1985 (1985)
Founder Don Iwerks and Stan Kinsey
Headquarters Toronto, Canada[1]
Key people
Ub Iwerks, Don Iwerks, and Stan Kinsey
Products Special venue and virtual reality theatres, 2-D, 3-D, and 4-D films

SimEx-Iwerks (formerly Iwerks Entertainment) is an American film studio founded in 1985 in Burbank, California, by Oscar winner and Disney Legend Don Iwerks and Stan Kinsey, two former Disney Executives. The company was named to honor Don's father, Ub Iwerks, who was Walt Disney's first business partner and co-creator of Mickey Mouse.[2]

The company has received two Oscars by the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences for Scientific and Technical Achievement.

The company specializes in high-tech entertainment systems, films, film technologies, film-based software, and services. Today the company has 300 attractions in 40 countries worldwide. They are a leading innovator of immersive 3-D and 4-D attractions, special effects, and cinematic experiences; they are also an exclusive distributor of over 130 proprietary 2-D, 3-D, and 4-D films.


In the 1990s, Iwerks Entertainment became well known as a leading developer of special venues and films, and virtual reality theatres throughout the world.

In late 1999, Iwerks Entertainment acquired the assets of Santa Fe Springs-based[3] McFadden Systems, Inc. following the company's bankruptcy.[4] McFadden Systems was founded in 1963, manufacturing motion simulators for use in military training.[5] In early 1992, Warner Bros. Movie World approached McFadden Systems to develop a motion simulator for Batman Adventure – The Ride.[5] By expanding their business into the amusement industry, McFadden Systems' annual sales quadrupled to $10 million in 1997.[3] Further motion simulator systems were developed for the Star Trek: The Experience, London Trocadero and Palace Park, Irvine, along with preliminary design work for Walt Disney Imagineering on DisneyQuest.[5][6][7] While other companies were producing motion bases with six degrees of freedom for approximately $1 million, McFadden Systems was able to produce them at a fraction of the cost.[8]

In 2002, Iwerks Entertainment merged with SimEX and began trading under the name SimEx-Iwerks.


By 2000, Iwerks had over 250 installations in 38 countries worldwide, including Giant Screen (Iwerks Extreme Screen) ride simulation attractions (Iwerks TurboRide), 3D/4D theatres (Iwerks 3D/4D FX Theatre Systems), and 360 Theatres.[9]

By 2011, SimEx-Iwerks had 300 attractions in 40 countries worldwide.[10]

Academy Awards[edit]

The company has received two Academy Awards by the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences for Scientific and Technical Achievement.

The first occurred in 1998 at the 70th Academy Awards show, where founder Don Iwerks was awarded the Gordon E. Sawyer Award, given each year to "an individual in the motion picture industry whose technological contributions have brought credit to the industry."[11][12]

The second occurred in 1999 at the 71st Academy Awards show, where the company was awarded an Academy Award for a technical innovation called the Iwerks 8/70 Linear Loop projection system.

Film library[edit]

SimEx-Iwerks has a film library of over 132 films including:

See also[edit]


  1. ^ SimEx-Iwerks Inc. Company Profile
  2. ^
  3. ^ a b Pollack, Andrew (10 October 1997). "From Science to Fiction; Military and Entertainment Industries Swap Expertise". The New York Times. Retrieved 24 November 2013. 
  4. ^ "SimEx.". Amusement Business. 111 (49). 6 December 1999. 
  5. ^ a b c Huffstutter, P.J. (4 August 1997). "Virtual Rides Take Off". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved 24 November 2013. 
  6. ^ Ray, Susan (21–27 February 1994). "Showscan Corp. to build theater no. 2 in London". Amusement Business. 106 (8): 18. 
  7. ^ Splits, Jill Jorden (3 November 1997). "Futuristic Fun Defies Definition At Disney". Orlando Sentinel. Retrieved 24 November 2013. 
  8. ^ Murray, Charles J. (23 June 1997). "Fluid power adds high-tech thrills in amusement rides". Design News. Retrieved 24 November 2013. 
  9. ^ Brian, Demkowicz. "For Immediate Release". 1570 Communications Center. 
  10. ^ Home Services. "Services". SimEx-Iwerks. 
  11. ^ NNDB. "Oscar, Gordon E. Sawyer Award". Soylent Communications. 
  12. ^ Fact for the Day. "This Day in Disney History". The Walt Disney Company. 
  13. ^

External links[edit]