When DISNEYLAND was in the planning stages, Walt Disney was planning something special for his Adventureland- "Jungle River", where guests would be taken on an adventurous cruise by their intrepid skipper. It would be an exciting adventure through a wild, tropical jungle!
However, the faux robotic animals and vinyl leaves of DISNEYLAND's "jungle" were not eliciting the sort of reaction Walt had hoped for. He turned to Imagineer Marc Davis to see what could be done to improve the ride. Marc's suggestions were so drastic that a few members of DISNEYLAND's staff didn't even want to present them to Walt Disney for fear of angering him.
Marc's drastic suggestions were to scrap the seriousness of the previous cruise and turn each boat into a floating comedy club. Instead of intrepid skippers, the new captains of the Jungle Cruise would be comedians, cracking jokes about the vinyl leaves and robotic animals. Rather than get upset, however, Walt loved the idea and gave Marc the go ahead to do whatever was needed to make the suggestions a reality. This involved writing a new script and making the seemingly serious animal scenes a bit more comical. Guests loved it. So if you love the Jungle Cruise, thank Disney Legend Marc Davis.