Talking Mickey Mouse debuts at Disneyland
Disney's now released its own video of the talking Mickey Mouse walk-around character at Disneyland
This comes after a tourist posted a YouTube video of the previously unannounced test:
Disney in recent years has been developing voice interaction with its guests, as seen in attractions such as Turtle Talk with Crush and the Monsters Inc. Laugh Floor. But a talking Mickey's the ultimate for Disney, and the initial tests look impressive.
So far, the talking Mickey is available only in Mickey's House in Toontown, and at selected, unannounced times. And if you do luck out and see the talking Mickey, Disneyland's now making visitors sign "no filming" waivers first, too.
I'm a little shocked at the length of time it took to implement this. It seems like such a given. You'd think that immediately after the validation case ("Crush") they would have began introducing this.
Oh man guys, this is just a small part of Nextgen. There's so much planned for the interactive program (with the cost of 1.5 billion). Not just the park characters but so many elements will be interactive. Once Nextgen is completely implemented, the theme park experience will forever be revolutionized. THink of a Disney World of Warcraft in person....
Exceptional! This is the type of tech implemented in Disney parks that seperates them from all other competition. This is a game changer for sure.
I was afraid this might seem creepy, but it actually has turned out great.
I'm not certain that Adam is correct. I think the person doing the talking is behind the mirror making it more of a 'Crush' thing than a NextGen thing. The real question is whether or not the voice is generated by a keyboard and software.
I am getting on a plane NOW!
That--is--Adorable! Nice job, Disney! The kids will LOVE this. I think this will make the characters more approachable to the wee ones. Meeting silent Micky seemed somewhat majestic and mysterious, but might seem a little intimidating and creepy to a small child.
Based on how TH believes they are doing this (and I agree), this isn't something that could be done for a character walking around the park, but it could be pulled off with characters in a stationary position, provided the park creates the right set-up. (Most Disney characters only walk to and from their positions these days, anyway. Unless they are in a parade.)
this has to be one of the best things i've ever seen disney do. only disney could make a cartoon character literally come to life. kids today dont know how good they have it. CRAZY!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
And everyone please understand, I'm just guessing about the details. But the placement of that mirror makes me believe that someone is watching.
Wow, just wow. Disney is truly king.
Its a little creepy to see his mouth moving, but its amazing what technology has done!!
TH Creative I’m going to say that you're wrong with your assumption that someone is behind the mirror or hidden and let me simply explain why.
i actually just got off the phone with someone from disney and they told me that the voice is controlled by the cast member in the costume. the cast member has a jack implanted in the back of their head and through that intercranial interface their thoughts are translated by a small computer and then vocalized by a speaker hidden in the mickey ears. this is why the project cost a billion dollars!
The mouth is moving, too. So let's not forget that there needs to be a mechanism in there to do that, and in coordination with the speech.
Why are they making people sign a no video taping waiver?
I would hate to show this to my son and then get there to see Mickey and him not talk. This would be a huge disappointment for even the youngest child. Depending on when you go to the Magic Kingdom this could also effect the rest of your trip.
Wow, I am seriously impressed... but I can't help think that this is gonna terrify kids to no end.
Eric G writes: However, it would be IMPOSSIBLE for someone to react in such a precise timely manner via voice instructions from another.
WOW that is awesome, im actually pretty surprised they've never done it before!! i cant wait for a talking Stitch!
I think it is a live voice (modulated)and the eyes and mouth respond to the sound. It is a common Halloween effect for cheap talking sculls. At first I thought it was a taking trash can but the hand movements are too close.
LA Times: "Imagineering officials said if the tests prove successful, the new talking meet-and-greet characters will probably not show up in Disney parks for another few years."
Wow, color me impressed. I was firmly in the camp that was assuming that this would be creeeeepy. But I have to give Disney props, it looks really cool and convincing.
I'm with Eric G. I lean more to this being a completely self contained system operated by the actor in the costume. During the interactions with the guest you can see Mickey instantaneously responding to comments, changing the inflection and volume of his voice as he interacts, and gesticulating in perfect coordination with whatever he is saying at that moment. Unless it's a completely controlled environment where all of the guest are scripted too, I don't see this as a two man show, the interaction is far too organic in nature.
I would be interested to see how they did it but regardless I am impressed. This is taking things up a notch and way overdue. Kudos to them for pulling it off. It will be truly impressive when this gets rolled out in a few years.
Cool! My son's favorite part of our Universal trip when he was 5 was the interaction with Donkey. Can't say that I felt the same since Donkey picked on me alot. :)
Its about time!!! We are huge Disney world fans and I have always wished the kids couls actually talk with Mickey
I sort of agree with Phil and Eric, with it being a one person show. After watching the videos several times and working with electronic all my life, one person could operate the costume.
This looks great, but I wonder what happens when the actor/actress inside sneezes?
No way .... ABSOLUTELY NO WAY ... the CM in the suit is providing the audio.
Yesterday you were only guessing at the tech involved, today you are definite. Why is that?
Well having seen several on-stage shows, particularly the one "Celebrate You" one at the foot of Cinderella's castle throughout the days and Mickey's Very Merry Christmas Party with the fully articulate head pieces I guess it was only a matter of time to see this come to life. I've seen the Turtle Talk shows on numerous occasions and it's always a huge hit with the kids and those with kids still inside them. Can't wait for this to become a staple of the parks. Not sure I approve of the non-video rule, BUT that could be only during the testing phases to prevent system glitches and such from hitting youtube...Perhaps once the bugs are ironed out this may not be a consideration. OR perhaps there will be a Disney Videographer there to record it one way or another, because this would be too precious not to have a momento of. You Rock Disney!!
I do not think it's the cast member in the suit. The movements of Mickey seem very general as well.
TH Creative says: "No way .... ABSOLUTELY NO WAY ... the CM in the suit is providing the audio."
Are you guys nuts? That's a T-Maus-A-Million! A Terminator! Fuzzy foam exterior over titanium metal endoskeleton! Its CPU is a neuronet processor; a learning computer! That kid should run, because he'll be back!
I am not kidding! I think TH Is right cough cough!
This is the coolest thing ever...
Greatest thing ever!
seems like a step up from the robotic moving/talking trashcan in california adventure. kids really liked it. would like to see disney resort go to the talking micky doll like they have at disney world that tells wait time, pardes/event and fun facts
TH Creative, two things. You weren't the one that suggested that it was a voice actor. Like I said, it was the first poster (Joshua) who mentioned Crush.
Now I want to hear the T-Pain Mickey. Betcha Imagineering busts that out for laughs one night when no one else is around.
I am sorry, but that is creepy. I also don't like how Mickey winds up giving directions for the photo op. I love the talking characters in shows, but this is a bit too much for me.
As much as I respect TH, I'm going to have go with the train of thought that with every great illusion, the simplest way to create the effect is the way it's done.
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