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2010 Best Theme Park Attraction nominee: Epcot's Circle of Life

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Published: December 16, 2009 at 3:25 PM

Circle of Life: An Environmental Fable enters the 2010 Best Theme Park Attraction tournament as the 16th seed in the Best Movie or Animated Show bracket.

Epcot's Circle of Life
Image courtesy Disney

Playing in Epcot's Land pavilion at Walt Disney World in Lake Buena Vista, Florida, Circle of Life opened in the Harvest Theater on January 21, 1995, as the Walt Disney Co. looked to capitalize on the recent overwhelming success of its animated movie musical, The Lion King. The film replaced Symbiosis, a film about human damage to the environment that provided some footage that was recycled in Circle of Life.

Recycling - how environmentally friendly! ;-)

Circle of Life follows The Lion King's Timon and Pumbaa, as the two dam local rivers to create a lake for their planned Hakuna Matata Lakeside Village. Simba points out that their actions are robbing other animals downstream of the water they need to survive. Then he really rubs it in by telling Timon and Pumbaa that they're acting like a bunch of human beings.

Timon and Pumbaa learn the lesson and remove the dam, restoring the environment for all the downstream animals. And the audience learns a lesson.

You know who also learned a lesson from Circle of Life? The writers of "Madagascar: Escape 2 Africa," who used the same device (a dam in Africa threatening downstream life) as a major plot point in that Dreamworks animated film.

As a 16-seed, Circle of Life faces the toughest road to the title in this bracket. We will find out how this film performs when voting begins in March.

Readers' Opinions

From Anthony Murphy on December 16, 2009 at 4:02 PM
I gotta disagree with this one. Not a bit fan of this show even though I love its message. I am excited to see the other nominees.
From James Rao on December 16, 2009 at 5:24 PM
Not a bad pastime but this show is pretty much just first round fodder for some #1 ranked team...err...attraction.
From 70.31.7.162 on December 16, 2009 at 7:56 PM
I find this movie to be dated. After almost 15 years i think we could get rid of Circle Of Life rather than nominate it as a "best of" anything..
From Dan M on December 16, 2009 at 8:53 PM
I believe there was a rumor at one point that a Wall-E video would replace the Circle of Life. Haven't heard anything about it lately though. Personally I'd rather leave the video and see to it that Wall-E and EVE go onto bigger and better things.
From Joshua Counsil on December 17, 2009 at 12:28 AM
...Huh. Really all I gotta say.
From David Kirby on December 17, 2009 at 7:20 AM
This is already shaping up to me a, um, "interesting" tournaent.
From Manny Barron on December 22, 2009 at 2:42 PM
Obviously this attraction has no chance but the Lion King is one of my favorite movies so I always try to catch this show everytime I'm at Epcot.

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Previous article: Roy Disney's death, today at 79, silences passionate advocate for animation arts



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