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Fantasyland Downsizing Expansion?

Walt Disney World: The latest on the Magic Kingdom plans.

From Tim W
Posted October 19, 2010 at 9:37 AM
There have been quite a few allegations that the fantasyland expansion has never been fully approved and that some aspects would be reconsidered. In a post on screamscape.com linking to amusementinsider.com, these rumors are true.

They state: "Seven Dwarves coaster is 100% confirmed. It will be placed right in the center of the land, roughly where Dumbo currently stands, extending out into the center of the midway. It will NOT be completely indoors, though at some point in the ride you do enter the mine. It was described to me as roughly 2/3 outdoors, 1/3 indoors.

Dumbo is definitely still moving to his new Dumbo's Circus mini-land. The existing Dumbo *will* be one of the two ride systems. Aladdin's Carpets will *not* take the place of the other as originally planned. Zamperla is currently building the second ride.

The Barnstormer looks to be keeping its name, though it will somehow be tied into a Goofy as a circus performer theme.

Pixie Hollow, as well the Sleeping Beauty and Cinderella meet and greets are scrapped completely.

Snow White's Scary Adventures, the exising dark ride, will close forever sometime around February 2011. The space will be repurposed as a meet and greet location to make up for the lost spaces cut in favor of the new coaster.

Fantasyland will still be completed in two phases, with Dumbo's Circusland likely to be the first section finished (even though it's about the only section not even started as of yet.)"

Heres the link if you guys want to check it out!
http://www.amusementinsider.com/forums/showthread.php?92-New-Fantasyland-coming-in-2013-to-Magic-Kingdom/page19

So how do you guys feel about the closing Snow White's Scary Adventures, and the addition of the mine train coaster?

Do you think its a good idea to have no Pixie Hollow and not have meet and greets for Cinderella and Sleeping Beauty?


Comments in chronological order. Most recent at the bottom. Scroll down to respond.

From Anthony Murphy
Posted October 19, 2010 at 9:56 AM
Here are my thoughts:

I felt that the Sleeping Beauty and Cinderella Meet and Greets/Shows were too similar to each other and too girl centric. I believe that Beauty and the Beast has a similar one as well so that will stay. Either way, I would find it hard to keep up the show year after year and doesn't seem to have much of a repeat factor.

I do not want to see Snow White's Scary Adventures taken away since it is one of the last "Dark Ride" that the Magic Kingdom has. Disneyland, on the other hand, strangly, has this kind of ride in spades. Yes, I want the cheesy, black lit, pop up mannequin ride to stay.

Mine Coaster sounds cool!

I still think getting rid of Tootown Fair was a bad idea because where is Mickey's House now? Where does the mouse live? Evictited? I would have rather see them fix up the land and perhaps put a Roger Rabbit Toon Spin like ride. Perhaps with the Fab Five who are actually pretty absent from attractions. Perhaps the villan can be Pete or Mortimer the Mouse?

From Derek Morse
Posted October 19, 2010 at 11:22 AM
I'm definitely not in favor of closing down Snow White's Scary Adventure...there are so few classic dark rides remaining in the Magic Kingdom, it would be a shame to see that one go. But, I guess if they are doing a Seven Dwarf's roller coaster, they can't have two Snow White themed attractions.

No mention about whether they are still going forward with the Little Mermaid submarine voyage, is that one still a go, or not? Personally, I wish they'd bring back 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea, but alas...

From Scott B
Posted October 19, 2010 at 12:24 PM
Aw dude, no Pixie Hollow?! My daughter will be majorly bummed. Well, okay, she is only 3 so she didn't know about it anyway, but had she known, she would now be bummed.

From Ty Mullins
Posted October 19, 2010 at 1:52 PM
Personally, I think this is a downgraded from the former plans. Sure, all the Disney fanboys were complaining about the area being mostly meet-and-greets, but when a six-year-old girl goes to Magic Kingdom, what does she remember most? Meeting her favorite princess. These meet-and-greets were transforming a simple "Hello" and picture into an experience for the child- dancing with Cinderella, making birthday cards for Aurora, etc.
Also, Pixie Hollow seems to be a pretty popular brand amongst younger girls, and the area seemed like it'd look very cool.
Meanwhile, I can't imagine a mining roller coaster featuring a story nearly as extensive as Snow White's Scary Adventure, plus the coaster will have a minimum height requirement- something that Scary Adventures lacks.
Finally, I'm one to think that any carnival-like themeing is too similar to the "outside world" and not appropriate for a Disney park- I could go to the Florida state fair if I wanted that type of experience, no need to drop $80 for the same thing at Disney.

From David L.
Posted October 19, 2010 at 3:25 PM
I think this is great! even though pixie hollow, snowwhite, cinderella, and sleeping beauty will be gone, the mine train will make up for snow white in a way, snowwhite will be replaced by meet and greats, plus ariel and B&B will have their meet and greets. So we get 2 new rides, great themed areas, 2 refurbished rides, new meet and greets, and great restaurants and shops. This sounds as if it can easily beat Harry Potter if the the area will be themed well enough in general.

From Orrin Carstarphen
Posted October 19, 2010 at 4:50 PM
Not in favor of Snow Whites removal. It was bad enough they got rid of Mr. Toad's Wild Ride. What's next Peter Pan? I am all for expansion but not at the cost of losing the classic rides. Disney is making a huge mistake.

From Raul Araoz
Posted October 19, 2010 at 5:00 PM
This is further evidence that WDW management no longer knows what it is doing. They are clearly fumbling over themselves trying to create an adequate response to the massive success of the Wizarding World at Universal. They clearly want to attract more boys to the refurbishment by adding a coaster... but at what cost?

They are once again swapping a classic dark ride with a highly dubious thrill one. Some have had problems with Scary Adventures, but I always loved its' simple charms. It was the first ride I went on as a little kid that gave me a true sense of accomplishment and told me that I could conquer that spooky Haunted Mansion after all. I also like that it seldom ever has the horrendous line that Peter Pan does. Its' replacement? Sure, it sounds solid on paper, but how significant a coaster can they possibly make on the old Dumbo spot. I fear we will just be getting Barnstormer 2.0 or perhaps another Primeval Whirl. I mean how themed can it be? Only 1/3? On what is sure to be a relatively short coaster, we'll be lucky to get 30 seconds of anything interesting. Plus, the lines are sure to be longer. We're also losing the only Meet and Greet that I was actually interested in: Cinderella's. WDI supposedly had an amazing new effect planned where you could see the Fairy Godmother change Cinderella into her ballgown right before your eyes. So much for that.

Pixie Hollow is no big loss. I am no fan of major chunks of the theme parks being dedicated to direct-to-video cash grabs.

Toontown Fair was an idea that was never fully realized. It clearly paled in comparison to the far superior version at Disneyland. I too would have liked to see it expanded with the inclusion of a Roger Rabbit style ride, but its' current incarnation was simply lackluster.

The Little Mermaid should be a nice dark ride, but it continues to showcase WDW management's stinginess by simply cloning existing rides from the West Coast instead of making new ones. I would have much preferred to see the long dormant Beauty and the Beast ride finally built. Speaking of which, the new restaurant is the only part of the expansion that I am truly excited for.

All in all, there is nothing here that will come close to the innovation contained in the Harry Potter ride. A ride which is truly amazing.

It is also sad to note that when the expansion is finished in late 2012, Fantasyland will actually have the same number of rides it had... in 1993. For the past 2 decades, the land has had less rides than it did during the first two decades. I could also cynically point out that this revision is actually removing four attractions(1 ride and 3 M&Gs)for just 1 ride. I remain highly skeptical.

From David L.
Posted October 19, 2010 at 6:17 PM
I think WDW management knows exactly what they're doing. This is certainly NOT downsizing the expansion. Snow White is a good ride, even a small coaster would be better. Then again, I highly doubt this would be a small coaster like the barnstormer, that would be redundant. Disney is giving up the land where the Cinderella and Aurora m&gs are which is likely where the coaster would take up(not to mention dumbo's current area as stated above). This would be almost the size of Thunder Mt. Next, what's going to happen to Pixie Hollow? It could also be consumed by this coaster which would be great if it could making it a little larger than Thunder Mt. They could never make a decent coaster out of the dumbo space(it takes 2 dumbos to make the barnstormer space).

As for the m&gs, the current snow white area will include them. Not to mention Ariel's and Beauty and Beast's one.

Even if there are the same amount of attractions as 1993, the themed area should be much better(They're spending over 300 million on this). I view this as a great expansion to rival Potter.

From Tim W
Posted October 19, 2010 at 7:19 PM
I have to say I agree with the Raul side to this argument. I think they are making a big mistake by cutting the meet and greets and getting rid of Snow White's scary adventures. Its a shame to see this classic dark ride go, if this rumor is 100% true. I honestly can't see the coaster having tons of theming besides going through the mine. I fear that the theming of the coaster will be too close to Big Thunder Mtn. I mean they will still be totally different, but the coaster sounds like a less thrilling, dwarf mine version of the coaster.

And by doing this, how exactly are we making this land more boy-centric? They are still adding a coaster that is related to a princess. I think this is a big flaw in their behalf. To make the land more boyish, add rides based on Hercules and the Hunchback, but only in addition to the princess m&gs. Adventureland, Tomorrowland, and Frontierland are all pretty much boy-centric as they are. I think it would be smart to add a new ride in these areas and leave fantasyland the heck alone.

As for the toowntown fair, I know I was always thrilled for it when I was a child. i enjoyed meeting the characters in the judge's tent. It was always a highlight of my trip. However, being older, I do know that it doesn't fit well in MK and lacks the theming of the better in Disneyland. So here is my proposal, I suggest that they simply move toon town into the animation courtyard/mickey avenue portion of DHS. There is ALOT in this land that could use some changing and I'd love to see the toon town aspect brought into here. It's really time to get rid of the Narnia exhibit, the LM show, the playhouse disney live, and to restore the Magic of Disney Animation to its former glory. What better way to revive this land than to incorporate actually animated characters in a revival of the toon town concept, but just better.

And I still don't understand their reasoning to give dumbo his own mini-land complete with a circus coaster. Dumbo is my favorite of the three exactly alike attractions, but I don't think it is a neccessity to have two of them. In my opinion, without the m&g's, and no further plans besides the coaster, I feel they might actually ruin what could have been a beautiful fantasylandl. But I guess the perfect fantasyland will always be a fantasy.

From Nick Markham
Posted October 19, 2010 at 8:28 PM
First, Raul, I think you are a bit extreme on your views. While Snow White closure would be a bad move, Disney has and will continue to always do well with its parks. Management knows exactly what they are doing, probably doing a better job than any of us would do whether we like it or not.

And second, don't anybody get all worked up about this claim until Disney themselves confirm it. Amusement Insider is not a direct source as is Screamscape. Both can be accurate, but can never be 100% sure. don't fret yet people!!

From Jesse Key
Posted October 19, 2010 at 10:13 PM
Here are my thoughts on what I am reading of these revamped plans....

- Mine train is something I have always thought sounded cool.
- I would miss the Snow White's Adventures, and I think they could have two rides using the theme since one is more focused on the Dwarves.
- I'd rather them retheme the dark ride to something new than turn it into a meet and greet personally. A couple of meet and greets are plenty for one area of the park.
- Pixie Hollow is not big loss. There is already a Peter Pan ride, and I just don't see any pixies other than tinkerbell being that big of a deal. They can always do something smaller with Tink if they felt the need (maybe a greet that is near the Peter Pan ride), but not a whole section based on pixies.
- I think keeping the dueling dumbos is great to keep lines down, but I think that the Aladdin round and round would probably fit better in Fantasyland too. Flying Carpet with a genie is more fantasyland material. The camels shooting water make that ride better stand out some from the dumbos too (maybe moving Aladdin to Fantasyland would also make more room for something new in Adventureland).

Funny how people did not seem to like the original plans and called them to girly, but now that Disney is responding by changing the plans there are people who are not thrilled with them changing the plans. I guess this shows Disney they have to be confident they are making a great business decision for the park and know that some people will like it and some people will not, but you just have to go for it. Hopefully more people like it than don't, and maybe most of the ones who don't will grow to like it.

From Rob P
Posted October 20, 2010 at 2:41 AM
Reading the responses here has made me wonder if WDW actually carry out any type of vox-pops when considering changes.
If they do then they don't appear to take much notice of them. The majority of opinions here, and let's be honest TPI is an excellent well- balanced forum, are in favour of retaining dark rides like Snow White. The obvious knee-jerk reaction to Universal's expansion surprises me.
It used to be that WDW was pro-active rather than re-active. Playing catch up doesn't suit them and some of the proposed changes appear a little misguided.

From Terri Pierce
Posted October 20, 2010 at 3:01 PM
I like the idea of the coaster, however I think the complete demolition of Snow White is a bit ridiculous! I do think that it needs a complete 100% redo with new animatronics and more exciting track than the current curvy rough track.... but I don't like that the first full length Disney Animation and original ride at Magical Kingdom is going to be gone forever.

From Raul Araoz
Posted October 20, 2010 at 11:54 PM
Look... I hope the optimists are right. However, little that WDW management has exhibited in the past decade leaves me with hope.

First, these revisions, if true, are a downsize. The nicely themed Meet & Greets will be gone. The catch-all M&G area that would be placed in the existing Snow White area will not be the same as what was originally proposed. It is bound to be somewhat generic.

Second, the space that would be repurposed for the new coaster is not that significant. Big Thunder sits on about 2.5 acres of land. The area where the M&Gs would have been is probably around 1.5 acres. That is more than double the size of the Barnstormer. However, the land would be quite narrow considering that space needs to have walkways built on either side of it. So unless they decide to give the coaster some height, like the Matterhorn, I don't expect it to be anything mind-blowing.

Third, management DOESN'T always know what they are doing. Management were the ones who desecrated the Imagination pavilion in Epcot while they fell over themselves trying to keep Kodak as a sponsor. Management were the ones who shuttered Pleasure Island for another strip mall. Management were the ones who opted to remove Beastly Kingdom from the original plans for the Animal Kingdom which led to less attractions for the park which has led to the inability to fix Expedition Everest.

Increasingly, it seems to me that when WDW management is faced with two choices that involve sparing no expense or taking the cheap way out, they always take the conservative and frugal approach. They did this with the recent Space Mountain refurbishment. They did this with the Animal Kingdom. They are doing this with the Fantasyland expansion.

It fascinates me that we are still feeling the repercussions from the early failure of EuroDisney. The expense of that park led Eisner to cut back on all future parks. That meant Beastly Kingdom would be removed... for M&Gs. The Imagineers who designed that land would go work for Universal and design The Lost Continent. J.K Rowling is looking to make attractions on her popular books. One of the reasons she decides to go with Universal is that she is impressed with the look of said land at Islands of Adventure. Disney quickly approves Fantasyland expansion to answer the challenge of the much-hyped Wizarding World. WDW management decides to cut back on this expansion. I see a sad pattern forming.

It saddens me further to see that Disneyland management is willing to spend. The Eisner/Pressler era is clearly behind them. On top of the complete redo of California Adventure, they are already talking about completely revamping Tomorrowland with a possible new Tron ride. Plus, WDI is also designing a new E-ticket to go in Frontierland at the site of the old Big Thunder Ranch. It is rumored to be either a stagecoach ride or a new water ride.

As Rob said above, WDW management is just not as proactive as they once were.

From David L.
Posted October 21, 2010 at 3:48 AM
Disney is certainly NOT cutting back the expansion, they claim they're spending more than they originally said they would.

From Bernardo Simoes
Posted October 21, 2010 at 8:12 AM
Ok, I get it, WDW is desperate to get the boys that want to go to Islands Of Adventure back to Magic Kingdom, but I have a question: Is the Mine Coaster going to be for children, like the Unicorn one at the Wizarding World, or for grown-ups like Dragon Challenge?

From Victoria Jurkowski
Posted October 21, 2010 at 1:51 PM
No matter what they do, theres gonna be some people not happy. However, it's not like at first people were unhappy it was too girly and now they're unhappy it's not girly enough. then we would just be complaining. But the complaints are for two totally separate ideas, meaning the changes didnt address the first complaints at all. Does Disney ever look at feedback or are they just obliviously making changes and decisions and hoping people will like them? i liked the original plan much more, whether it was too girly or not.

From Jesse Key
Posted October 21, 2010 at 4:13 PM
I actually prefer the new supposed plans to the old plans with Pixie Hollow. My only complaint is I don't want to see the Snow White Dark ride made into a meet and greet. I think they could keep it if the coaster is slightly different in theme (although based on the same movie). If the coaster is more about the Seven Dwarves mine I think having both is not overkill. However, if they are going to do something different with it I would rather see it become a different dark ride than another meet and greet. There are already plenty of meet and greet opportunitues. If people wanted, I think you can even have a charchter breakfast. I don't really get that into seeing people dressed up as charachters. It may be an extra topping, but it's not really the main course to me.
I think the Dwarves mine coaster sounds cool. I think the fact that it is part indoor and some outdoor is cool. I think that it may be more tame than some of the others due to it being in the most kiddie-ish area of the park, but like almost all Disney rides it will be made for the enjoyment of all (including adults) so I think it will be a cool addition.
I do think the fact that they will be able to plant bigger trees and give it more of forest feel in part of the new section may be a neat thing. It would also be nice to have a place or two under those big trees just to sit and get out of the sun for a minute.

From TH Creative
Posted October 21, 2010 at 7:45 PM
"100% confirmed?" By whom, exactly?

For the record, the dwarf coaster rumor (along with the Snow White closing) appeared on Jim Hill's website back in 2008.

http://jimhillmedia.com/editor_in_chief1/b/jim_hill/archive/2008/10/09/disney-world-postpones-fantasyland-s-facelift.aspx

And please note: Even when it was announced, Pixie Hollow was always discussed as a bluesky concept. Its omission from the final design is not really breaking news.

This smells a lot like a rehashed rumor and (at this point) seems to lack credibility. At least enough for one to blanche at the assertion that it is "100% confirmed."

From TH Creative
Posted October 23, 2010 at 11:54 AM
I spoke to my industry associates about this rumor. No one seems to be buying this one.

From Javi Badillo
Posted October 23, 2010 at 12:40 PM
gotta to go with th its just a rumor

From Jesse Key
Posted October 23, 2010 at 4:37 PM
I don't neccessarily think the people who are commenting on this are 100% convinced that this is going to happen (after all very few of us, if any, are on the board at Disney or any park for that matter). A lot of the things commented on or even posted on this site could be considered speculation, or not always 100 % accurate.... and sometimes there may or may not be some truth to it.
I would think most of us are old / wise enough to know we don't totally buy or believe everything that is posted on the net just because it was posted. We talk about a lot of things on this site that were going to happen and never did as well (Beastly Kingdom supposedly?.... let that one go.... I don't even like the sound of that supposed was going to happen land.....lol).
commenting in fun regardless is probably (usually) no big deal and that is why the discussion board is here I suppose.... so themepark enthusiests have an outlet for ideas, thoughts, what-if's, and you know what I heards.... (and maybe if someone from Disney is reading they are getting some feedback on the idea, if it is their's or not....lol).

From Nick Markham
Posted October 23, 2010 at 8:48 PM
First off, the above message is really confusing. It seems like you are bashing us in one sentence, and the next you are supporting us. Next, we are fully aware nothing is 100% accurate, but we should be able to believe the majority of things on this site as they typically come from valid sources, this has come from ok sources, but again as a rumor. Not everything on this site is the same.

And third, you are the only person I know who did not like the Beastly Kingdom concept which if I am correct is still onboard whenever Disney wants to give a green light to it.

Now, I am definitely with TH on this issue. I find it hard to believe they would just get rid of Snow White, one of the classic Disney rides of Disney.

From TH Creative
Posted October 24, 2010 at 7:10 AM
When Tim W. wrote:

"In a post on screamscape.com linking to amusementinsider.com, these rumors are true."

I assume what he really meant to write was:

"ACCORDING TO a post on screamscape.com linking to amusementinsider.com, these rumors are true."

From Raul Araoz
Posted October 24, 2010 at 10:23 AM
Now, let's be honest. WDW management would happily throw Snow White under the river. Don't forget that, despite protestations and petitions from many Disney fans, Mr. Toad was removed and that was a far more popular ride than Scary Adventures. Why? Simple. Winnie the Pooh merchandise sells extremely well. Now, there is nothing necessarily wrong with that. All one has to do is look at the amazing Pooh ride at Tokyo Disneyland to see that the concept is sound. The difference is that The Oriental Land Company is willing to spend in order to have quality. This is something that WDW management hasn't exhibited for awhile. Few Disneyphiles hold the same affection for the Pooh ride that they had for Mr. Toad. The attraction simply comes across as a cynical cash grab. Whether or not the rumors are true, I would not be remotely shocked to see Snow White removed.

From TH Creative
Posted October 24, 2010 at 12:50 PM
Mr. Araoz writes: "Now, let's be honest. WDW management would happily throw Snow White under the river."

I Respond: I don't think anyone here is claiming that the Diseny company would not replace an existing attraction. But some of us are saying that the "rumor" that Disney intends to close the existing Snow White attraction has been floating around for (at least) two years and that there seems to be no indication from a credible that (to date) any net-talk related to such a closure remains nothing more than a rumor.

From Tim W
Posted October 24, 2010 at 7:18 PM
Of course TH, that does sound better. Sorry for the confusion, but I guess it was not clear that this was a rumor, that was backed by screamscape. It could be true, and it may not be.

From Jesse Key
Posted October 24, 2010 at 9:33 PM
Well, to clarify my confusing post from earlier.....

First, I don't like Beastly Kingdom as a new area concept for animal kingdom and I think the name sounds kind of rediculous. I feel special to be the only person you know who does not think it is cool, but there are probably others.... or atleast would be if it were a more well known subject (most park attendees don't even know about Beastly Kingdom). I admit it is tempting just to say I don't like it to get people all in a tizzy too though..... (I know, I know,.... I should not enjoy that).

Second, the earlier post was a pretty passive post in response to the post saying that the rumor we were all commenting on was not 100% confirmed. I was basically saying that most of us realize that, and to comment your opinion on the rumor does not neccessarily mean you buy it as fact just yet.

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