"You'll be shrunk to the sizes of Woody and Buzz and the other toys in Andy's collection and you will explore Andy's backyard," explained Disney Imagineer Kathy Mangum from the stage at the Disney Parks presentation at the 2015 D23 Expo in Anaheim.
The new land will include two new attractions:
- A spinner ride, themed to the Little Green Men's flying saucers, with "The Claw" looming above.
- A family coaster, themed to Slinky Dog. (We confirmed yesterday the news that a new coaster would be coming to the Studios.)
Toy Story Midway Mania will be part of the new land, and will be getting a third track on that ride, in a previously-announcement improvement to increase the popular shoot-'em-up ride's capacity. It appears from the concept art that Midway Mania might be getting a new entrance as part of the changes, all well.
Disney did not announce an opening date for Toy Story Land, which seemed to be a common theme in the presentation — lots of ambitious new projects, with very few timeframes announced.
In other news...
As for other projects around the world, Disney showed a preview of footage from the upcoming Iron Man Experience ride at Hong Kong Disneyland, the first Marvel-themed ride in a Disney theme park. Utilizing a Star Tours-type motion simulator, Iron Man Experience will take riders on a flight around Hong Kong, as their trip to the Stark Expo is interrupted by Hydra attempting to steal the world's largest arc reactor.
Imagineer Ted Robledo introduced the clip, teasing the audience with an appearance by Iron Man himself. When neither the character nor Robert Downey Jr. appeared, Disney Parks chairman Bob Chapek came on stage to help kill time by awarding a "trip to the Avengers tower in New York" to a lucky audience member... who just happened to be Marvel creator Stan Lee, whom Chapek pretended not know, calling him "Stanley." Lee came on stage to a standing ovation from the crowd of more than 7,000.
Another surprise guest was Avatar creator James Cameron. He came on stage with Imagineer Joe Rohde to review some of the announcements about the upcoming Avatar land at Disney's Animal Kingdom, which will be called "Pandora: The World of Avatar." The new Soarin'-style 3D Banshee ride will be called "Flight of Passage."
Finally, Chapek announced that the new Soarin' Over the World movie will debut next year on the Soarin' attractions at both Epcot and Disney California Adventure.
More 2015 D23 Expo Coverage:
"Let's go with the worst reviewed one!"
This doesn't necessarily foreclose Cars Land, but making it Pixar Place would be more logical if they were going that route.
The Star Wars land sounds awesome, but I think every new development needs to be just as good. I think a new e-ticket is required here too, and a trackless system dark ride would fit perfectly.
Still, the family coaster is a great idea! Not everyone wants inversions, and if they do, they can walk themselves on over to Rockin Roller Coaster, which I feel should get refurbished, by the way. The Slinky Dog coaster is larger than I first caught on to, as I didn't notice upon first glance that it extended all the way to the top of the image.
I have a question about the straight area with the rings. It looks like a perfect spot for a mid-ride launch, similar to what Cheetah Hunt does over at Busch Gardens Tampa. Still, I think this will be the coaster for families that 7 Dwarfs Mine Trains should have been, and it'll be an outstanding addition to the park!
The spinner...eh. Just a throwaway.
This is going to be so amazing though. Considering it'll be a cohesive 11-acre land, rather than a mismatched jumble of random shows and attractions, I couldn't be much happier.
Thank goodness it's not a copy of the two Toy Story Playlands! That was my biggest fear.
Disney's Hollywood Adventure is going to give Magic Kingdom a run for its money.
Avatarland will really boost Animal Kingdom's attendance numbers as well.
EPCOT? Come on, you old giant golf ball, you! Step up your game!
Diagon Alley, Radiator Springs, and Hogwarts were impressive to me, because I had an emotional attachment to the place: I wanted to go there from minute-one. If we were talking a Mos Eisely area or Cloud City or Monstropolis, or somewhere seen on film, I would be impressed. Right now, I'm interested in the Star Wars area, but have no emotional connection since I know it was just created for convenience (not story, since stories don't take place here yet). Meanwhile, the Toy Story one looks too generic. Toys in a yard? Yawn.
I'm not sure why people want a Pixar place. That would be a mishmash of themes in the old studio fashion that even Universal studios has moved away from. This is a cohesive theme with nice family attractions. Well done Disney!
Toy Story Land needs a few more flat rides at minimum. A barrel of monkey merry go around would be nice.
Star Wars Land is quite picturesque and tall. Toy Story Land is flat, sparse, and lacking. It doesn't even show where Toy Story Mania is situated. I guess we won't know where Star Tours fits either, but could the Ewok village go away in favor of the new land?
I am curious to see an overlay or some kind of blueprint showing us exactly where these two lands will be.
But I really can't get behind all of this negativity regarding TSL. Flat? Yes, I think it is. But Tower of Terror is already a tall landmark, just like Everest is at Animal Kingdom. Every area of the park doesn't need some 200 ft structure in it, especially as it looks like the Star Wars land will include some height as it is currently being shown.
What were you hoping for? 4 new e-Tickets at Hollywood Studios?
I'm the first to admit that I somewhat regularly have issues with WDW, and think they could and should do better. But I consider it "tough love" because I'm a huge Disney fan, and I want them to up their game and invest as heavily as possible in the Florida parks.
An arms race between WDW and UOR would be ideal, and I don't see Disney doing either of these lands on the cheap.
Now, how about you register before continuing to be Mr Grouchy Pants about these announcements, eh?
No, just a few more kids rides in Toy Story Land that won't cost that much. Goodness. So you can't criticize something that should be pretty obvious. If I was asked to be shrunk to Woody sized, i am sure I can entertain myself with many toys in Andy's toy box. Too bad Disney took them away.
Most importantly, I can only hope that whatever they add to the park doesn't take away one more thing from the Old Hollywood atmosphere still present on Sunset and Hollywood Boulevard. While the park may have veered away from the production studio aspect of things in recent years, it's still such a treat to be able to "time travel" to that golden era - just to walk those streets makes me feel like I'm in a dream. And while, perhaps, most of the closed attractions at the Studios may not be missed, I feel that the cornerstone of Disney, that for which it is most familiar, is the animation. It's most heartbreaking that they would close the one place in all of Disney World that truly celebrates the animation process.
On a recent trip, while waiting to meet Wreck-It Ralph at the Animation building, I witnessed a six year old boy sketching in front of me. My wife indicated him, and we struck up a conversation with him and his mother. The boy had the incredible cartooning skill at such a young age that makes one take notice - especially a fellow artist. When I complimented him, he asked who my favorite cartoon character was. I told him, "Donald Duck", and he proceeded to draw me a sketch that showed ability way beyond his six years. I gave him five dollars when he presented it to me, and his face lit up, and his mother was so proud - it was the best money I'd ever spent. I asked him to autograph it before he left. As an artist, I saw myself in the child, and really felt that multi-generational Disney magic. It was one of those magical moments that brings Disney fans together, and it wouldn't have happened the same way anywhere but the animation exhibit. There may be lots of kids who want to be a storm trooper, but there are just as many little artists - and since the reality of becoming a professional droid is unlikely, it would be nice to nurture the kids who come into the park with dreams of one day drawing for them.
I say, bring on "Star Wars", "Marvel", and anything that will make people happy - but stop taking away the things that are already making people happy to do it.
Great news, Im happy about all the announcements!
I also do hope that Disney is able to incorporate other Pixar IPs into their parks.
I'd like to modify what Manny said, it's a great day for all theme park fans. It doesn't matter if you're a Universal or Disney fan (or both asI believe we all truly are), I think this is great news for us all.
Walt did a great job with Disneyland putting all his ip's in nicely themed area's and it where the RIDES that where important and the theme was build around it.
I'm still hoping for a Villains Land being announced (not the horrible tv movie stuff but the originals).
It is interesting to me they seem to be building both of these lands at the same time at Disney Hollywood Studios. That's a LOT of construction at once. If the Downtown Disney construction is any indication... this could take a while.
All in all, some exciting stuff coming to the parks!!!!
There seems to be quite a bit of theming around the Rollercoaster, but not nearly as much as Disney's other coasters. The best theory that I can come up with is that Slinky is taking you through some sort of obstacle course inadvertantly made in Andy's backyard after one of his play sessions.
At the bottom left there is a building that looks suspiciously like Al's Toy Barn which was referenced in Toy Story 1 and makes a full appearance in Toy Story 2.This could most likely be a gift shop of restaraunt.
Right above it is a building with an orange entrance which leads into what appears to be a show building. I have a hunch that this is where the "new entrance" for Midway Mania is. Especially since the entrance looks kinda midway-ish.
Above that is a building with a...board game on the roof? Okay...
The most possible location for that spinner looks to be that building on the upper left side of the Rollercoaster with all the green and gray. Across from that is some sorta circle of...something. This could also be where the spinner is, but I don't see anything that looks remotely like a ride vehicle or "The Claw."
Above that is a little walking path which extends to what looks like a body of water. I think it's gonna be an "employees only" area.
Then of course there's the supposed Woody' Roundup Village on the bottom right.
I know a lot of people will have problems with this land. There's something about it's modesty that makes it look nice. But let me ask this to all of you Disney critics and Universal fans. And I want a serious answer. Why is that Universal builds a new land with only a spinner for a new ride and receive praise for it, but Disney builds a new land with a Rollercoaster in addition to the spinner and be called "cheap and "lazy?"
Sorry, I don't understand where you're getting the bit about 4 rehashed rides. Of the 2 Star Wars ones we do only know about the millennium falcon ride, which sounds completely fresh. In Toy story there is a new coaster (which from the art looks a step above the standard blandly themed coaster fair and more in line with Rocky Mountain Railroad). The other ride does sound like a more generic spinner style (hmph - although Universal managed to put one in the Simspons area with little complaint).
If you're talking about the Avatar one being like Soaring, I think the criticism hear is a bit excessive. The new ride mechanics should make this significantly different and the Use of a large Imax style screen makes for a greatly immersive experience - not really just a new shell.
As for the time frame, nothing has been announced. We can only hope they do expedite things and try to match Universal's rapid development.
As for placement in DHS, it's pretty obvious that they're reversing the entrance to Toy Story Mania, and turning the alley between the back of the Movie Ride and Mania Ride into backstage space. I'd say that this land is taking the "working studio" space and the backstage tour space for the space. I'd say the Star Wars is taking the stunt show, Muppets and up to Star Tours. This basically gives the newly thematic DHS basically three zones: Toy Story, Star Wars, and Old Hollywood.
I guess it's going to stay as a cheaply themed Fantasyland with characters not quite timeless enough for Fantasyland like Monsters inc and Stitch. It's a joke that Disney has kept Stitch encounter open for this long. Save Tomorrowland
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