• Universal Versus Disney

  • The Unofficial Guide to American Theme Parks' Greatest Rivalry
  • By: Sam Gennawey
  • Narrated by: Robert Feifar
  • Length: 13 hrs and 37 mins
  • 4.4 out of 5 stars (90 ratings)

1 title per month from Audible’s entire catalog of best sellers, and new releases.
Access a growing selection of included Audible Originals, audiobooks and podcasts.
You will get an email reminder before your trial ends.
Your Premium Plus plan is $14.95 a month after 30 day trial. Cancel anytime.
Universal Versus Disney  By  cover art

Universal Versus Disney

By: Sam Gennawey
Narrated by: Robert Feifar
Try for $0.00

$14.95/month after 30 days. Cancel anytime.

Buy for $29.95

Buy for $29.95

Pay using card ending in
By confirming your purchase, you agree to Audible's Conditions of Use and Amazon's Privacy Notice. Taxes where applicable.

Publisher's Summary

Universal Studios never really wanted to get into the theme park business. They wanted to be the anti-Disney. But when forced to do so, they did it in a big way. Despite the fits and starts of multiple owners, the parks have finally gained the momentum to mount a serious challenge to the Walt Disney Company. How did this happen? Who made it happen? What does this mean for the theme park industry? In Universal Versus Disney, his newest work to investigate the histories of America's favorite theme parks, seasoned Disney-author Sam Gennawey has thoroughly researched how Universal Studios shook up the multi-billion dollar theme park industry, one so long dominated by Walt Disney and his legacy.

©2015 Sam Gennawey (P)2015 Audible Inc.

What listeners say about Universal Versus Disney

Average Customer Ratings
Overall
  • 4.5 out of 5 stars
  • 5 Stars
    45
  • 4 Stars
    37
  • 3 Stars
    5
  • 2 Stars
    2
  • 1 Stars
    1
Performance
  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • 5 Stars
    38
  • 4 Stars
    26
  • 3 Stars
    16
  • 2 Stars
    5
  • 1 Stars
    3
Story
  • 4.5 out of 5 stars
  • 5 Stars
    47
  • 4 Stars
    32
  • 3 Stars
    6
  • 2 Stars
    1
  • 1 Stars
    1

Reviews - Please select the tabs below to change the source of reviews.

Sort by:
Filter by:
  • Overall
    1 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    2 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    1 out of 5 stars

Dull and VERY Misleading Title

I was originally excited to finally get this book but soon discovered that I was never going to be able to finish listening. Although I know my Disney and theme park history well and better than the average Joe, nothing I heard was anything new. The title wants you to believe that this is a Universal vs Disney book and that is NOT what it is at all. It should have been titled, "The History of Universal Studios" because 95% was about it. You rarely hear anything about Disney, and everything you do is already known. I am disappointed at the misleading title. Had I know this was going to be a book on the history of Universal Studios I would have not wasted my money...I guess I now know why they chose to go with this title. I do not recommend this book at all and it pains me to say that because I do like Sam Gennawey and his other books, specifically on EPCOT. This was a HUGE and boring let down for me and if you are reading this review I hope you don't make the same mistake that I did.

2 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    2 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    3 out of 5 stars

History of Universal(with some mentions of Disney)

This book was interesting and I learned a lot about Universal. However, the title is a bit misleading as there is really no rivalry discussed and 90% of the book is about Universal.
The audiobook production is rough. There are a few times where multiple takes of the same sentence are included as well as some questionable pronunciations.
Still, overall the audiobook was enjoyable and it is always nice to see more theme park books produced in audiobook form.

2 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

98%Universal, but still a good read

If your looking to learn about Disneyland, read Sam Gennawey's The Disneyland Story. This book is mostly about Universal and it touches on the rivalry between Disney. As it talks about the details of Universal and it's growth, it discusses what happened between Disney and Universal. The performance at times funny because of some poor pronunciation.

1 person found this helpful

  • Overall
    2 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    1 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    3 out of 5 stars

Narrator is annoying

Any additional comments?

After trying to give this book a chance and listening for over an hour, I just couldn't get around the fact that this narrator's voice irritates me. His inflections and changes in tone don't seem to match up to the words that he's saying, as if he has absolutely no understanding of what he's reading.

I am a huge Disney fan and a fan of theme parks in general. I had hoped that after an hour of listening, the story would be gripping enough that I could get past the annoyances of the narrator's voice. But so far, it has felt like nothing more than a list of dates from the first half of the 20th century regarding how Universal Studios was formed. This one will likely sit unfinished in my Audible library.

1 person found this helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars

The title isn’t completely accurate

The book is an excellent look at the development of Universal Studios as a major player in the theme park industry. However, it’s not really Universal vs. Disney with the exception that Disney is their major competitor. It’s a great story and there are some moments on how each company tried to gain the upper hand, especially in Florida. What this book really is, and it does it well, is a history of Universal Studios.

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars

Written from Universal’s point of view

The history alone is worth listening to. I liked it. It was slanted towards Universal, but still very good. Having experienced these parks in Florida it was fun to hear the backstory on rides and attractions I’ve visited. The narrator has an interesting accent and pronunciation. Takes a minute to get used to.

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars

Universal's Rivalry with Disney

While a facinating look at Universal history, it is almost exclusively about Universal's venture into theme parks. on the few occasions that Disney is brought up, its usually used to put context onto what Universal would do next, or to compare ride type and/or theming. The occasional mention of Eisner, Iger, or the imagineers is rare as Sam Gennawey mostly chronicles the corporate and partnership fluctuations of Universal.

While still a good read/listen, it would be much more appropriate to label this as a Universal parks history until 2012.

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

English isn't narrator's native tongue...

Love book, but narrator struggles with pronunciation. ok considering English is 2nd language for him.

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

My goodness, this guy has a tough time with pronunciation.

Please, isn't there an editor that is supposed stop this slaughter of pronunciation??? Great book otherwise.

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    2 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    3 out of 5 stars

Great for the history of Universal

Would you listen to Universal Versus Disney again? Why?

Yes. It tells the history of my favorite studio, Universal. Except I will have to prep my ears for Robert's mispronunciations throughout the recording.

How would you have changed the story to make it more enjoyable?

I would not have misled the audience by having the title "Universal vs Disney" as the story skews heavily in Universal's favor.

Would you be willing to try another one of Robert Feifar’s performances?

No. He horribly mispronounces common words that everyone listening knows is pronounced a different way. It feels like he's from another country and learned English as a second language.

If you were to make a film of this book, what would the tag line be?

How Universal Studios took on the juggernaut of Walt Disney!

Any additional comments?

Have someone 'LISTEN' to this recording when it's done. No one from America could have possibly let certain words be pronounced the way Robert pronounced them. It makes you feel as if the producer of this recording could just care less. Here are some examples. The first is the actual word/name and the second is how you will hear Robert repeatedly say words. Trust me, it will drive you crazy.Industry (we say indusTREE) - Industry (He says in-DUS-tree) this is the most used and mispronounced word in the entire book, and he says it a lot! / Ivan Reitman - Ivan Reetman / Rosevelt - Roozavelt / Expletive - Expleetive / Hermione from Harry Potter (we all know it's Her-my-knee thanks to all the movies) - Robert says Her-MY-oh-knee (seriously...WHAT!)

Sort by:
Filter by:
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars
Profile Image for Mr. J. Shillington
  • Mr. J. Shillington
  • 02-16-19

A nice history of universal

I found this one really interesting as it goes right into the history of Universal Studios and it’s Hollywood and Florida parks. Don’t go in expecting much on Disney though, very little ‘VS’ goes on here. Also the narrator doesn’t pronounce some of the ip words correctly.

1 person found this helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    3 out of 5 stars
Profile Image for Mark Sherry
  • Mark Sherry
  • 07-17-21

Universal story

Although I enjoyed the book, this is more a history of Universal than about the rivalry with Disney. In fact they are mentioned only fleetingly throughout. Still enjoyed the story of the rise of Universal theme parks in Florida in particular.

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars
Profile Image for N1mbleFinger5
  • N1mbleFinger5
  • 02-05-21

Not much about Disney but loads on Universal

Small amount on the rivalry between Disney & Universal. Most of the book covers the history of Universal's theme parks with some really good information on how the parks evolved along with rides etc