I had a really big choice this week. Actual monetary work was interfering with my Disney life. Putting me in between a rock and a hard place. I could've either made it to today's 30th Anniversary Celebration of Hollywood Studios, or made it to Hollywood Studios for May the 4th's Star Wars Day. Obviously me being me, I chose the latter of the two. So I had to live vicariously through Disney Parks Live for the Celebration's parade & wait till Saturday to see the new Wonderful World of Animation Fireworks & Projection show. Needles to say, that choice left me a little bummed. After seeing this though, I think I really made the right choice. Though I'll miss out on my 30th Anniversary button, I don't feel like I'm missing out on anything I can't see Saturday. This 30th Anniversary parade was a little disappointing. Not only was the commentary as annoying as the worst Macy's Day Parade coverage, a lot of what could've been big payoffs were very anti-climactic. I thought we were gonna see something really cool with Indiana Jones. Only to be very dissatisfied with the final payoff. Same thing goes for the big Galaxy's Edge reveal to a very not enthused Chewy firing his bowcaster. No Droids, no Kylo, no Boba Fett, no Phasma. This whole thing felt like a lot of missed opportunities. For that matter, it felt like it was thrown together today. The only success for ke out of this went to Toy Story. They stole the show in my opinion. At least the speech at the end & shout out to the cast was more entertaining than the commentary. I definitely know I made the right choice on this one. May the 4th be with me. On a bright note however, I do really like the new logo for Hollywood Studios. What do y'all think? Did y'all see something I didn't? Put it in the comments, like, & share.
Disney Parks went Live last night for Mickey's Boo to You Halloween Parade. This is probably my favorite parade at Disneyworld. I love seeing the characters in their costumes, the villains, the gravediggers, & most of all the Headless Horseman. I will say this though, I remember the year we went, the horseman came barreling through at top speed. It was a pretty intimidating sight. It seemed like he came through a little slower this time around, but at least everybody gets a better look at him. Awesome parade though. If you can't get out here to see it, definitely watch this live stream. You also get to see Vampirina's WDW introduction. She's hanging out for Halloween before she becomes a part of Hollywood Studios. My littlest LOVES Vampirina. So, needless to say, when she heard the music she came runnin. She's super excited, & I'm glad she got to see them make this big deal about the addition of her new favorite character. Anyway, check it out, & let me know what your favorite part was. Put it in the comments, like, & share.
Remember the flipping stickman robot from about a couple months ago? Well it evolved pretty quick. This thing is in full humanoid robot mode now, & ready for whatever. This video blew me away. I can't wait to see what these things will be used for. Obviously shows are the first thought. These things have awesome superhero written all over them. I mean, the one in the end basically IS Iron Man. I started drifting off & speculating other uses immediately though. Like what if these are used in-ride even? As moving animatronics? That would be friggin awesome! The main thing on my mind when I see this amazing achievement however is, I hope they don't use these to cut costs. The worst thing they could do is use these in place of an actor, as opposed to using them just to fill in where actors can't. Being somewhat expendable, I only want to see these achieve the impossible. Bring em on though. This is the next level of animatronic. I've seen them become as real as we can possibly make them look. Even cartoons now, with digital projection mapping. The is the next step, years in the making. Audio-animatronics can not only move now, they can be more acrobatic than myself. What do y'all think of this amazing development in robotics? Awesome, or one more reason to fear the emergance of A.I.? Put it in the comments, like, & share.
June 30th is coming around the corner fast, & with it Hollywood Studio's newest addition, Toy Story Land. Disney Parks just released this video showing some of the highlights, & interviewing some of the imagineers als they put on some finishing touches before opening day. You can tell they're all really excited. Even if they do get the land opening in between Pandora & Galaxy's Edge. In which, I'm sure it's gonna be cool, but come on. It pales in comparison to those. I did see some things in this video that helped get me a little more excited for this land. I can't wait to be surrounded by giant versions of some of the classic toys I grew up with. The wooden glider is what really did it for me. I'm now more excited to just look around, & see what toys I can find than anything. I want to explore even more so than the attractions now. If that's not enough, look below at the next video for a look at the park at night. It looks like a carnival/fair all lit up. It really is beautiful. I really can't wait to see this land, even if it's destined to be the third place land of recent additions. The rest of the second video gives a look at the awesome merchandise. As well as some of the food selections. Which look great, especially for what I've grown to expect at Hollywood Studios. They also manage to sneak in a look at the new Incredibles float coming to Disneyland's Paint the Night parade. Which is shaping up to look pretty friggin awesome by the way. Curious though, what is everyone else's excitement level for Toy Story Land? Put it in the comments, like & share.
Disney just announced an awesome new FREE app coming to Android & iOS sometime this summer. Play Disney Parks is said to let us explore Disneyland & Walt Disney World in a whole new way. This app will access exclusive experiences that interact with the surrounding environment. Turning wait times into play times, there's more to discover the more you explore the Disney parks. This sounds really fun. Not only that, I'll take anything to keep the kids busy in line. No telling what they have in store for this. The various games in the park such as Sorcerers of the Magic Kingdom & the Agent P found in Epcot are so interactive. Playing affects hidden animatronics throughout the parks. I'm wondering if some of that will make it into this app? Can't wait to hear more about this one. This could shape up to being something really fun. What do y'all think? Any hopes & ideas on what features this app will have? Put it in the comments, like & share.
Wow! Disney Parks just put up this look at all the progress so far for Toy Story Land In both Shanghai Disneyland & Hollywood Studios, Walt Disney World in Orlando, Florida. Last week we found out they'll be opening in Hollywood Studios on June 30th, & now we get a look at a little of what to expect in action. Though I'm not as excited about this as say, Star Wars: Galaxy's Edge, I have a feeling that will change when I get a real sense of the scale of the place. It looks huge! Slinky Dog's starting to grow on me a little now too. It's ride just looks so smooth. I still say, I'm a little more impressed by the look of Shanghai's version, but in all honesty, I'm totally blown away by everything I see in that park. Check this out, & let me know what y'all think. I can't wait to see this place! Put it in the comments, like, & share.
This first part is still pretty far off in the future with further plans to be revealed in May 2018, & construction beginning in 2025. Viral Disney has reported that Disney & it's partners in the Oriental Land Company have revealed plans for an all-new Japanese theme park with the focus on it's host country with new characters. It will be focused on the culture of Japan much like California Adventure to California most likely. That's about all there is on that, but if you factor in Studio Ghibli they already have some very interesting things already sharing the Disney branding. I'm very curious to see where this is going, I've been thinking about planning a trip to Japan just for Disneyland. I might have to postpone it if this thing looks really cool. The next bit is way more fleshed out, but that's probably because it's right around the corner. WDW News Today reports Shanghai's Disneyland's Toy Story Land, opening summer 2018, has released some concept art & details about the layout. I hate to say, their Toy Story Land looks like it's gonna destroy ours. Shanghai's Toy Story Land looks huge with some awesome attractions. Slinky Dog Spin, where you'll take a seat inside Slinky Dog's spirals & race around a wavy roundabout. There's Rex's Racer, an RC car that goes forwards & backwards increasing height & speed. They'll have Woody's Round-Up where you'll swing to & fro in time to lively music in pony drawn carts. After that there's the obvious Meeting Post (Meet & Greet), Al's Toy Barn (Merchandise), & the Toy Box Café (Restaurant). The whole land is set up around immersion on a Pandora: World of Avatar level. There's a whole story of being shrunk down to toy size that goes with the land. I'm really blown away by these concept photos. If you haven't seen some of the ride videos already from Disneyland in Shanghai watch them. This park is becoming a must-see very quickly. What do y'all think of these amazing additions? Put it in the comments, like, & share.
I didn't even know this was a thing until today, but apparently it is. There's not only a Themed Entertainment Association (TEA), they also give out awards. Awards for, go figure, themed entertainment. And obviously if I just heard of them, that must mean Disney has won some of said awards. Orlando Sentinel reports that Disney has picked a handful of TEA Thea Awards. First, Frozen Ever After, in EPCOT won for outstanding achievement in "attraction reimagining". Originally this was my favorite ride in EPCOT, the Maelstrom, a journey through Norway, populated by trolls. I wish I could say that this ride wasn't half the ride Maelstrom was, but I can't. This reimagining is truly amazing. The animatronics are the best I've ever seen, & the story is told flawlessly throughout the ride. Next, they picked up a couple for Pandora - World of Avatar, in which we detailed our own opening day experience here. Not only was the new addition to Animal Kingdom recognized for outstanding achievement in "theme-park area development", Flight of Passage was also recognized for it's achievement, going on to say it was "flawlessly executed". We've made it back to Pandora since opening day, & I must say, I was just as blown away the second time around. As for Flight of Passage? "Flawlessly executed", as great as that sounds, is still an understatement. That might be one of the most thrilling experiences I've ever had. Truly out of this world. Disneyland got a little love too. With Guardians of the Galaxy - Mission: Breakout, the remixed Tower of Terror in Disney's California Adventure was also recognized in the "attraction reimagining" category. Even though I'm not a fan of being dropped, much less repeatedly, I always do something once. I really do want to check this out, I love me some Guardians of the Galaxy. It'll be awhile before I make it out there though. Anyway, congrats to Disney for winning these well deserved awards. The achievements recently made by these parks, is the main thing that keeps me excited to see what could possibly be coming next. With Star Wars: Galaxy's Edge & Toy Story Land right around the corner, I can't wait. What do y'all think of these awards though? Any thoughts on any of these attractions? Put it in the comments, like, & share.
"One goal in designing the ride system was to deliver an experience similar to what it would feel like to be with Tarzan or a similar character swinging between trees of a jungle on a vine or with Spider-Man or a similar character swinging on webs between buildings as you move down streets of a city. [The ride is] intended to have swinging sensation provided while also having forward travel along a ride path in a direction of travel and for the swinging sensation to feel thrilling and fun." That's the description that came with these pictures according to the Orlando Business Journal. Now the real questions are what is this going to be, & where is it going to go? The easy pick would be a Spider-Man ride. To me that just sounds a little iffy with the studio team-up situation Disney has with Sony when it comes to Spider-Man. I could be wrong, but I'm not sure Disney would want to go with an attraction for a property they only have a half interest in. If I had to go with my gut, I'm thinking this is something for either the Guardians of the Galaxy coaster, or the Millenium Falcon attraction planned for Galaxy's Edge. The patent also mentionsthe movement of the swings could be controlled where the arm could be slower at the top of a roll to simulate a pause before swinging downward quickly, speeding up as it reaches the bottom-most part of the swing to simulate natural movements. That also gives me that idea as opposed to it actually being a Spider-Man ride. It's all speculation right now though until we hear more. What do y'all think though? Put it in the comments, like, & share.
This one's got me a little jealous. It was put up by Inside the Magic, & it features the new talking characters featured at Disneyland. As a person who thinks Walt Disney World is Disneyland perfected, I've already had to acknowledge that Anaheim's park probably does Halloween better than ours just yesterday. So it pains me to see this the next day. This is friggin' awesome!! It's on a whole real-life Who Framed Roger Rabbit tip. Talking characters in the park?!? Now there's three?!? We don't have one in Florida?!? Why is this?!? I'm sure there's going to be a split, & this'll be either the most amazing or most terrifying thing you could think of. I'm definitely on the amazing side of that spectrum. Funny thing is now that they talk, I don't know if I'd even know what to say. I do wish Walt could see this though. This was the dream. We're finally getting there. Total immersion & escape from reality in the worlds he helped create. I hope these make it to my world soon! I can ask Mickey his perspective on his ever changing role in cinema. Not really, but that does make me wonder the actual speaking capabilities. Can they say anything, & if not what's the limit of their vocabulary? That's the limit of what I want to know about these new talking characters though. I don't want to destroy any of the "magic" by understanding the ins & outs. To me this will be the real Mickey, Minnie, & Donald. What do y'all think of these amazing additions to California Adventure? Put it in the comments, like, & share.
Disneyland put up this little montage of what to expect at Disneyland & California Adventure this Halloween Time, & it's definitely no Mickey's Not-So-Scary Halloween Party. A couple of the things look legitimately creepy. Like whatever the heck that is after the shot of Space Mountain. Also, a lot of the rides are themed out for the occasion. The Haunted Mansion has been totally re-hauled as Nightmare Before Christmas, Guardians of the Galaxy: Mission Breakout has changed the whole adventure, Cars Land is throwing a Haul-O-Ween, & that's just the biggest changes. I loved the Not-So-Scary Party when we went, but after seeing this I'm hurt to say Disneyland may be doing it better. I can only tell from the videos & pics I've seen, but this looks amazing. I love the extent it looks like they go through to change the whole atmosphere. Especially the ride overhauls. I see myself planning this trip in the future. What do y'all think? In fact, if you've been to Not-So-Scary, what do you think in comparison? Put it in the comments, like, & share.
I've actually got to attend this parade. Now, I'm not usually a parade person when it comes to Disneyworld, but when I went this thing was started off by the Headless Horseman barreling through the streets with his flaming pumpkin on his black horse. I don't know if they do this anymore, as it's not shown in this video as the opening, but I will say it was a sight to see, that really got my attention. The parade features the Disney characters donning costumes along with prominently featuring the villains, who's floats are awesome I might add. It's your standard parade stuff other than that except for the gravediggers. The gravediggers are friggin' awesome. They have a choreographed "dance" that involves them scraping their shovels on the concrete to produce sparks. It's probably the coolest sight I've seen in a Disney parade. I'm so glad Disney Parks are streaming all these things for those that don't get to see them. If you think they look cool on video though, they're even more amazing in person. Check out the video, & not only do I want to know what you think, but what's your favorite Disney parade? Put it in the comments, like, & share.
Walt Disney Parks & Resorts took the stage at Hall D23 with chairman Bob Chapek as host, & it blew everyone away. With news & rumor confirmations abound from everything from the Star Wars lands to the 50th Anniversary of the Walt Disney World Resort in 2021 there's a lot about to be going on in the lands of mouse & they have concept art to prove it. That being said let's go over what we go coming:
Mickey & Minnie's Runaway Railroad: This one's fun. In an experience the Imagineers are calling 2 & 1/2 D (No Glasses), Walt's own Mickey Mouse will be getting his first attraction at Disney's Hollywood Studios. Replacing The Great Movie Ride in the Chinese Theater, the most surprising thing about this announcement is this hasn't happened yet. This all started with this mouse, & as much as I'll miss The Movie Ride (a favorite of mine), it's about time. I hope this transition doesn't take too long.
Galaxy's Edge: What's this you ask? Well that just so happens to be the official name of the new Star Wars inspired lands. We also found out that they will set in a remote trading port on the edge of wild space. Chapek mentioned the scale of the attraction being unlike anything they've ever done, & judging from that model, I'd have to agree. Described as a living place where you might receive some "galactic credits", find yourself on a bounty hunter's list, pilot the Millenium Falcon, or find yourself inside the hangar bay of a Star Destroyer. Afterwards, you can hit up a cantina for some blue milk & some tunes from ex-Star Tours pilot droid Rex. This thing had me at Galaxy's Edge. I'm already in line for this one, I don't know if I can wait til 2019.
Star Wars Themed Resort: We talked about this awhile back & now it's going to become a reality. Upon arrival you will be thrust into the Star Wars galaxy in an immersive story all the way down to the clothes you wear. They say the story will touch every minute of the day, & end in a unique journey for everyone. Man, this thing sound pricey, but at the same time, sounds like it's worth every penny. This is the closest thing to Total Recall we're ever going to see.
Mission: SPACE: This EPCOT ride will not only be adding a new Green Mission that allows you to soar over Earth, but you will also be able to dine at a new restaurant adjacent to the attraction that also takes place outside the atmosphere. I expect the food to be truly out of this world. See what I did there? It's a space theme? Out of this world? Yeah? Really though, this sounds beyond cool. I'm usually not a sit-down restaurant kinda person at the Parks, but this might an experience worth checking out.
Ratatouille: Disney confirmed this rumor announcing the France Pavillion of EPCOT will be receiving this attraction. While being very similar to the ride at Disneyland Paris, I think this will be a welcome addition to the rideless side of the World Showcase. It'll give my kids something to look forward to as we traverse the world.
Guardians Of The Galaxy: Don't worry they're not taking away another Tower of Terror. This will seem to take the place of Ellen's Energy Adventure unfortunately though. This thing sounds friggin awesome. I like what they're doing though. Apparently, it was revealed that Peter Quill (Star-Lord) actually paid a visit to EPCOT as a young boy. This information will play a part in the adventure with roots in an EPCOT story. Using the park as part of the story is an epic decision that will just make the whole ordeal more immersive.
TRON Lightcycle Power Run: Magic Kingdom won't get left out of the 50th celebration either. The highest rated attraction of Shanghai Disneyland will be coming to an area near Space Mountain in Tomorrowland. So not only will the lightcyle rollercoster be coming, it sounds like the Tomorrowland Speedway might even be safe. This news is great, Tomorrowland needs something new.to keep it in the land of tomorrow.
Toy Story Land, Pixar Pier, & Haul-o-ween At Cars Land: Toy Story Land got an opening time next summer for Disney's Hollywood Studios, along with a really neat piece of concept art for the Slinky Dog Coaster. Meanwhile over on the other coast at Disney's California Adventure's pier becomes Pixar Pier. New name, new look. Starting next year, Pixar Fest will have a new fireworks show, special characters, & entertainment. At the same time, Pixar Play Parade will move to Disneyland, while Paint the Night will be moved to California Adventure with a new float. In addition to all this news this fall will feature a Halloween celebration in Cars Land. This stuff sounds so cool. I've never made it to the California Parks, but this is making an eventual trip a necessity.
Transportation: A couple of new ways to get around Disneyworld Resort were unveiled. One in the form of Minnie Vans. Minnie themed vehicles that will work very similar to Uber. The other a little more exciting in the form of the Disney Skyliner. A gondola system connecting Disney's Art of Animation, Pop Century, & Caribbean resorts, & other locations with Hollywood Studios & EPCOT. I have a feeling I will be riding these without reason when they go up. I love gondolas for some reason. Two new cruise ships were also announced, bringing Disney Cruise Line's fleet up to seven ships. If I had to guest this will mean bigger windows for Star Wars & Marvel Super Hero themed cruises. They might finally get me in the middle of the water after all.
Other Announcements: Also worth mentioning is an entertainment theater coming to Magic Kingdom based on the Willis Theater in 1920 Kansas City & Disney's Hotel New York, The Art of Marvel for Disneyland Paris, a reimagination of Disney's Hotel New York that will transport guests into the world of superheroes with art, costumes, & more. Speaking of Marvel Baby Groot came by to announce, "I am Groot." Meaning Spider-Man & the Avengers would be joining California Adventure for a new immersive super hero universe at the park.
Word from Chip & Co is Disney filed a patent for some awesome tech that will simulate throwing & catching Captain America's shield. Part of a new virtual reality experience, the user will fasten it to their arm. It has an attached shield on a sliding mechanism that will simulate the actual throwing & catching feel, as you see the shield leave your hand via virtual reality. The VR environment will have simulated battle scenarios expected to have different levels of difficulty. You can also probably expect being able to ricochet the shield also with the boomerang effect, feeling the return & release through the attached arm device. This thing sounds pretty cool. I don't know if it's repeatedly stand in line to do it again cool, but only time will tell on that note. I'm definitely curious for sure. I'm loving this new level of immersion Disney Park's trying to jump into. What do you think? Does this sound intriguing? Throw it down in the comments, like, & share.
Disney released this trip down memory lane with the animators behind Disneyworld's Happily Ever After. It's newest firework show that includes new hand-drawn animation by the original artists. I honestly could sit & listen to these guys talk for hours. I don't know what it is, whether it's these guys, the nine old men, or Walt himself, this stuff just fascinates me. Anyway are there any hand-drawn animation enthusiasts out there as excited as me about this show? Let us know in the comments, like & share.
If the rumors are correct there is. Chip & Co. is saying rumor is Disney officials are floating around the idea of a volcano-themed roller coaster coming to Adventureland. It's actually a revived plan from the early 2000's for what was to be called Fire Mountain. Put on the shelf due to not making it through testing, it was to be an indoor flying coaster. For those not thinking this would fit, Chip & Co. makes sure to remind us of a certain Polynesian Princess, Moana. Pretty sure after her recent box office success the park heads have been beating their heads against the wall trying to figure out how to capitalize on getting her in as soon as possible. Especially after the success of the quick addition of Frozen replacing Maelstrom in Epcot. I know I'm all for this. Everyone knows the highlight for thrill-seekers at the Disney Parks are the mountains. So all in all another one just has to be looked at as a plus right? And Moana themed? What do ya think? Let it be known in the comments, like, & share.
The most electrifying man in sports entertainment has taken Hollywood by storm, dominating box offices world-wide. Recently announced to lead Disney's upcoming Jungle Cruise however, might have just added another skill to Dwayne Johnson's repertoire... Imagineer? Yup, The Rock took to his Instagram posing with a picture of the actual plans to Disneyland from The Vault, but the real story comes underneath where the Jungle Cruise star goes on to say, "..... we'll partner with Disney's brilliant Imagineers to help re-engineer & re-design the #JungleCruise ride in all the Disney theme parks around the world." That's just an excerpt from the whole, but I think it totally gets the point across. New things are coming to the jungle. I'm kinda torn at this news as my only comparison is the changes that were made to Pirates of the Caribbean post movie. And while I highly enjoy the additions of Davy Jones & Captain Jack Sparrow, I'm bummed that the ride is shorter. Disney was built to grow forever though, & that should even go for one of Walt's opening day rides as well I guess. As of now I have faith in The Rock so let's just see where this goes. What do you think? Changes to one of Walt's originals, or is this sacrilege? Let us know in the comments, like, & share.
I've been watching rumors of this for a while and now finally Orlando Sentinel have obtained documents that confirm the planning of "The Italian Job". No they're not remaking that movie again. "The Italian Job" is the name used in reference to the Disney and Ready Creek highly rumored gondola project they've been trying to keep under wraps. The notes mention 6 stations with 3 lines linking Hollywood Studios, Epcot, Caribbean Beach Resort, and the lakeside area between Pop Century and the Art of Animation Resort. Each cab would hold 10 people. It even listed the gondola vendor Doppelmayr. No one answered questions, but Disney released the following statement: "We are always looking to explore new transportation options that will make the resort experience even more magical for guests. We're excited about our future plans on this front and look forward to sharing details at a later date. So there we go it finally seems like it's real now. Me personally. I am very happy that they are finally taking to the "Skyways" once again and I will most definitely use this to go from park to park once it's up many times.
Imagine sitting in the Millennium Falcon. You might not have to imagine in about a year, & that's not the only thing learned today. The Star Wars themed lands being added to Hollywood Studios in Disneyworld & Disneyland Parks are to contain things familiar to the Star Wars universe, but will be themed to completely new worlds. The focus of this world will be on the story being told. I'm not going to lie, I might have shed a tear during this video. I never thought in my wildest dreams as a child growing up that even a facsimile of this world from a long time ago in a galaxy far, far away would ever happen. Described as, "the most ambitious project I've ever seen in the history of Walt Disney Imagineering" by Chris Beatty, Executive Creative Director of Walt Disney Imagineering, I would have to agree based on the artist renderings & the sheer scope of the thing. What do y'all think? Let me know in the comments if you're as excited as I am or could care less to get to come as close as possible to the Star Wars universe? Or maybe just hit up an alien cantina for awhile?
Remember that episode of The Simpsons where the family gets to go to Itchy & Scratchy Land? If you don't it all ends up with the robots going rogue & attacking everyone in the park. If that sounds awesome you're in luck. Chip & Company has brought up a patent application Disney filed Thursday. It's contents? "Designing a robot that will move & physically interact like an animated character." With a picture that resembles Big Hero 6's Baymax, the patent also states the soft-bodied robots would be "designed for reducing collision impacts during human interaction." Obviously safety first, as the last thing we want is an incident even a fraction of the aforementioned Simpsons incident. Disney refused to comment on the patent or the robots. I find myself at a crossroads on this one. I've always somewhat envied the people who get to dress as my favorite cartoons & entertain the masses. On the same note though, I've had to agree with my daughters on the fact that none of our costumed friends talk. I'm also sure that you don't have to pay the robots is another plus for the house of mouse as well. Okay that said, I've gotta say, this does excite me. I'm for anything that further distorts reality & expands the magic. If that means I can have the same interaction with the cartoons that I do with the Princesses & Princes, bring it on! What do you think? Progress or not? Let us know in the comments.