Category Archives: Walt Disney World

‘Avatar’ Theme Land Headed to Disney Parks

Source: The Hollywood Reporter, by Alex Ben Block

The first themed “land” will be built at Disney World in Orlando, Florida, with construction expected to start by 2013.

The blue people are coming to Disney.

Walt Disney Parks and Resorts Worldwide has sealed a deal with filmmaker James Cameron and producer Jon Landau, Fox and Cameron’s Lightstorm Entertainment to create themed attractions at Disney parks based on the 2009 movie.

The first themed “land” will be built at Disney World in Orlando, Florida, with construction expected to start by 2013.

The first Avatar attraction will be inside the Animal Kingdom park. Disney said this was chosen because “with its emphasis on living in harmony with nature, Animal Kingdom is a natural fit for the Avatar stories, which share the same philosophy.”

Cameron and Landau, through Lightstorm, will be creative consultants and partner with Walt Disney Imagineering in the design and development of the Avatar attractions, which eventually will be at other Disney parks worldwide as well.

The deal is exclusive to Disney, which plans to roll out other Avatar attractions over time. Some of that will depend on discussions with joint venture partners on parks outside the U.S.

The parks will not only play off the huge hit movie which dominated the box office for months in 2010, but also benefit from the release to two more movies now in pre-production. Cameron has announced plans to release those movies at Christmas 2014 followed by the second at Christmas 2015.

Avatar was a movie that broke new ground in terms of presentation and technology, especially in the use of 3D. It is expected that the theme park attractions will also use that technology and new innovations to engage park visitors.

“James Cameron is a groundbreaking filmmaker and gifted storyteller who shares our passion for creativity, technological innovation and delivering the best experience possible,” said Robert A. Iger, President and CEO of The Walt Disney Company. “With this agreement, we have the extraordinary opportunity to combine James’ talent and vision with the imagination and expertise of Disney.”

Avatar created a world which audiences can discover again and again and now, through this incredible partnership with Disney, we’ll be able to bring Pandora to life like never before. With two new Avatar films currently in development, we’ll have even more locations, characters and stories to explore,” said James Cameron.  “I’m chomping at the bit to start work with Disney’s legendary Imagineers to bring our Avatar universe to life.  Our goal is to go beyond current boundaries of technical innovation and experiential storytelling, and give park goers the chance to see, hear, and touch the world of Avatar with an unprecedented sense of reality.”

“This exciting new venture combines the world of Avatar with the enormous reach of Disney and the incomparable talent of Jim Cameron,” said Fox Filmed Entertainment chairmen Jim Gianopulos and Tom Rothman.  “While Jim is bringing audiences further into Pandora with the next two chapters in the Avatar motion picture saga, the theme park attraction will likewise bring a new dimension to the amazing universe he created.”

Avatar is a uniquely powerful franchise that has global appeal with audiences of all ages. Its spectacular settings, intriguing characters, imaginative creatures, and strong themes of family and loyalty make it a perfect fit for Disney,” said Thomas O. Staggs, Chairman, Walt Disney Parks and Resorts. “We can’t wait to give our guests the ability to journey to Pandora and explore the incredible immersive world of Avatar in person.”

WDW Haunted Mansion Queue Update

Source: MiceChat
Denise nbodyhome Preskitt updates

The first thing you see when you enter are a row of busts. It seems like you are supposed to guess who the killer is (there are plaques), but I’m not sure how.

This Sea Captain sings, gurgles as bubbles blow out, and sneezes – if you are too close, you will get a little wet!

There are many more interactive elements – including a library with books that slide in and out, and musical instruments on a crypt that you touch to make music. I have tons of photos on my site and can share more here next week if anyone is interested! But here are a couple of more photos, including Madame Leota from a different angle than we’ve seen before:

This new queue area is slated to open officially on April 1st.

Star Wars Weekend at Disney’s Hollywood Studios

Source: Denise “nbodyhome” Preskitt
Micechat.com

Here is Jeremy Bulloch dancing during the Celebrity Welcome.


TRON Monorail Now at Walt Disney World

Disney Announces Big Expansion Plan

Experts Say Pressure On To Compete With Harry Potter

LAKE BUENA VISTA, Fla. — Disney announced a whole slate of new offerings at its Orlando theme parks on Wednesday, including the largest expansion in Magic Kingdom history.

Walt Disney World is about to break ground on a three-year project to expand Fantasyland. Among the new features will be a separate village for each of the Disney princesses. The Dumbo ride will also double in size, and park guests will be treated to a three-ring circus and carnival games while they wait in line.

The theme park is also planning a special promotion during nights this summer. In early June, the Main Street Electrical Parade will return to the Magic Kingdom along with a new fireworks spectacular. There will also be new lighting effects and a new drop sequence at Tower of Terror at Disney’s Hollywood Studios.

Disney Cruise Lines is adding two new ships: The Disney Dream will sail in 2011, and the Disney Fantasy will begin service in 2012.

One of the ships will feature an onboard watercoaster that allows guest to ride on rafts through glass tubes high above the ship. In addition, Disney will soon offer cruises that stop in the northern European capitals, as well as trips to Alaska. Disney’s private island in the Bahamas, Castaway Cay, is also getting a makeover.

Disney also announced a new partnership between its Wide World of Sports complex and ESPN. The two will work together to relaunch the complex with more interactive exhibits.

Disney’s announcement of all its new projects comes just weeks before the much-anticipated opening of The Wizarding World of Harry Potter at Universal Orlando.

Disney executives wouldn’t comment about whether or not they’re trying to compete with the Potter attraction, but theme park analysts said that’s clearly the goal.