Tuesday, June 23, 2009

Why you shouldn't expect to " Soar over the World " before 2011



Don't know if you've noticed it, but it has been quite a while since we've heard about the awaited "Soarin' over the World" movie. Generally, in the forum rumors, everybody keep saying that the movie has been filmed, and should arrive at DCA or Epcot anytime soon.

On the DLP forums, most of the members were ready to bet some months ago that "Soarin over the World" would be the next big "E-Ticket" at the Walt Disney Studios - I even wrote an article explaining where the Imagineers kept the room at the WDS to build the attraction in the future. And then, it became almost official that a Ratatouille dark ride should be WDS next big E-Ticket and no-Soarin' attraction was schedule for the future.

Well, the reality of all this is a bit different. Soarin' over the World will definitely not be the next attraction at WDS, but it doesn't mean that it will never come at the WDS. In fact, if DLP executives didn't choose it as the next WDS E-Ticket it's simply because they couldn't do it. Why? Simply because the movie is not filmed yet, and won't be before 2010!

Last year, WDI imagineers began scouting locations around the world, and they will continue this year. Once the locations are choosen, they'll need to have government's authorizations to film from an helicopter, and in some not-totally-democratic countries it's not that easy and can take a long time. The shooting itself - except if they change the dates - is scheduled for 2010. There is probably different reasons for that. First, the new "grand opening" of Disney's Caifornia Adventure - the park who need the most a new Soarin' movie as the first one is already 9 years old - won't be before 2011-2012. And it seems that Disney and WDI want to "keep" the new movie for this new beginning of DCA. And Two: an economic reason. Lot of works will happen at DCA in the next two years, it's not going to be cheap this time and they are definitely more important to create a brand new park than a new Soarin' movie.

So, let's keep the date of 2010 for the shooting. Now, may be it don't looks like, but this "Soaring over the World movie" is going to be a real challenge for WDI imagineers. Why, you ask? Well, as in this new "Soarin'" movie we will soar "over and around the world" it means different filming in different locations, right? And here come the question of the best season. Very probably the filming should happen in spring or early summer, to avoid landscapes with no leaves on the trees of winter or summer monsoon rains in other locations. Not to mention that for some other countries, it will be another season than spring which may be the right one for filming.

Before i go further, a little warning as there will be some spoilers ahead.

Now, the big question is : over which location will we "soar" in this new movie? Well, WDI imagineers have chosen some countries and if they don't change their plans, prepare yourself to soar over England, France, Italy, Egypt, India, China, Japan, and for the U.S.A: the Grand Canyon - which, by the way, is a perfect logical choice, as it’s one of the most known America's natural wonder. We must not forget that the movie will probably be watched in different countries, on different continents - not only eventually at the WDS but may be, too, at TDS - and WDI Imagineers have to take this into account. Whoever you will ask in Europe or Japan, everybody have seen pictures of the Grand Canyon and know about it.

Also, there is no South America country in the list above - which doesn't mean it's not part of the Imagineers plans. They have the choice: Brasil and Rio de Janeiro's bay or Iguaçu Falls, The Amazonia forest, The old Inca Machu-Pichu fortress in Peru, all these would be spectacular locations to soar above...

However, the other part of the Imagineers challenge will be probably to avoid filming a too "obvious" Travelogue. It's not going to be easy, as each country have its own iconic place/city/monument and it's a little bit everyone's dream to fly above them.

Now, what is coming next is pure personal thought, as i don't know which place in each country will be filmed. I mean: i really don't know. So what you will read below is pure personal speculation, although the locations choice below could very well be the one that will be filmed!

Also, please note that the pictures below are NOT Disney pictures, but a photomontage that i did with aerial views and the "Soarin'" vehicle from the "Soarin' over California" press picture. I've tried to choose aerial views which give you the soaring "vertigo" feeling as close as it should be in the final movie - click on each picture to see them in big size to get the "effect".

Now, think about the India sequence, who wouldn't love to soar above the beautiful and romantic Taj Mahal?...



...or, for Italy, over the gorgeous Venise, the City of the Doges? Soaring over the Grand Canal would be great!



For England, will we soar over the legendary Tower Bridge? I can almost see the camera plunging between the two towers of the bridge...



...And for China, can we escape to soar above The Forbidden City?



But may be it's a wrong question. Everyone would love to fly over these historical landmarks, so where is the problem to fulfill our dreams? So WDI Imagineers shouldn't think if a location is too obvious or not, it's not the problem, really!

Then, because we will travel around the world, i'm ready to bet that imagineers will play with the time of the day. And, because each location do have a "better" time to be filmed, WDI Imagineers will be right to do so. Why not, for instance, begin the "flight" by the Giza Pyramids at dawn? I know very well the place, i've been there many times in my life, and the best time for magical light on Giza Pyramids is definitely at dawn. Also, Egypt civilisation is the oldest one of all the countries listed above. To choose for the opening sequence Egypt and a dazzling view of the Pyramids at dawn would make perfect sense.



As for the evening sequence, soaring over London by night - the old Victorian city, the town of Peter Pan and the Darling family - would be wonderful. And if they need a Magic Kingdom for the "fireworks" final sequence, there is Disneyland Paris, just a few miles down in the south!



Even better: the best would be to have a different ending for each park where the attraction will play in the future. Take Hong Kong Disneyland for instance. Hong Kong at night is dazzling, and then they could "cut" to a scene with fireworks over HKDL castle. Same for Epcot, or TDL or the future Shanghaî Disneyland. Different ending for each park will not only be logical, but also great for fans who will discover a not-totally-the-same version when they'll visit Disney parks in other countries...



But in each country there is also plenty of natural wonders like, for instance, the Grand Canyon. And WDI imagineers may prefer to film them instead of cities or historical landmark like the Forbidden City in Beijing. Or may be they will do a mix of both to help the audience to identify instantly the "country".

To come back to the release date, once the filming will be done in 2010 the Imagineers will still have to do the editing and the music score, fix everything right which takes sometime, some months...and all of this lead us to the end of 2010. And, as NO new attraction is opening in winter ( okay, except Star Tours in January 1987, i agree ) i think it's reasonable to say that a grand opening of "Soarin' over the world" won't happen before - at least - 2011.

One more thing, and i'm sure that most of you who've ride the first "Soarin'" will agree with me: Dear Imagineers, please try to do a longer movie - which should be the case anyway as a roundtrip around the world in less than 5 minutes would be reaaally too short - 7-8 minutes would be fine, if possible ten, it's never too long when you soar above all these wonders...even if we must keep in mind the attraction hour capacity. Also: pleaaaase keep - or adapt - the original and fantastic Jerry Goldsmith music score!

In the meantime, let's all be patient and wait with confidence until 2011, as we can be sure that this awaited "Soarin' over the world" will be an awesome experience!

NEW!: You can now discuss this article on the Disney and more English Forum on Mice Chat !


Soaring vehicle image on the pictures and HKDL picture: copyright Disney

19 comments:

rob said...

yuck , the wait would be HORRRRRRRIBBBLLLLE. Love the ride, but the queue is awful.

Alain Littaye said...

You can't have a terrific ride and no wait, it doesn't exist, it's as simple as that.

Capt. Tomorrow said...

For the exisitng parks that have Soarin' increasing capacity would be a challenge if the movie clocks in around 10 minutes (which I think it should). But for parks that don't have Soarin' yet the best option would be to build more theatres as I think the attraction is going to be around a long time. Eventually I think it will turn into a 3D experience.

Greg said...

Wow, great update! I wonder if there is going to be a new soundtrack for this film?

Giacomo said...

Shouldn't Soarin be better in Discoveryland?

The only one good porpuse to build it in Walt disney studios is that we have more attraction in Disocoveryland than in that park (joke, but give u what i means).

I really think that we need some more "PIXAR-HOLLYWOOD-CINEMA" attraction/ambient in WDS.
Don't u think?

a little OT...why Toon Studios doesn't become Pixar place?

Anonymous said...

They should stick to natural wonders, not cities, to make the ride thematically fit into the Land pavilion at Epcot.

Bruce said...

I really like the natural wonders suggestion; it would also keep the ride current longer. Cities change too often.

Matt Hunter Ross said...

Cities might change over time, but national landmarks like the ones Alain presented do not, and I think that's the point - pairing nature's well-known, grand creations with humanity's well-known, grand developments. Sounds like a good fit to me.

As far as the ride is concerned, I'll look forward to the sounds and smells as much as the footage. And I agree, this (along with many other rides) will eventually turn 3D.

I also think having a long queue could be a benefit, actually. I hate WDW's queue as it stands now, which in turn effects my mindset by the time I get on the ride. But isn't Disney supposed to be known for their beautiful, innovative, and fantastic entry/exit theming? I don't know what happened the heck happened with Soarin' at WDW, but if they came up with a creative/engaging queue theme with possibly some entertainment, I wouldn't mind waiting for a 10 minute ride.

Great job with the composites, Alain.

brian said...

I don't think you film from "an" helicopter

Anonymous said...

Just give me Horizons 2.0, kick Nemo et all out of the Living Seas, get rid of the wimpy rollercoaster called "Test Track," kick Ellen Degeneres out of the Universe of Energy, get rid of the county fair ride better known as "Mission: Space" & kick Kim Possible out of the World Showcase. That's enough for me.

Oh, yeah, & bring back Dreamfinder.

Anonymous said...

First of all, what is going to happen to the score? Jerry Goldsmith's music for Soarin' is amazing, but now that he's dead they need to find someone else. I actually wouldn't mind new scenes edited to the old music.

Also, I can actually see them keeping some of the scenes from the current film. San Francisco and its Golden Gate is just beautiful, though I would most like to see a flyover of Upper New York Bay just because of the great scene it could present. Plus, it's the home of the Statue of Liberty, something iconic to both Americans and Frenchmen.

Anonymous said...

Oh yes I LOVE the proposal of adapting Goldsmith's score into the new movie! It is truly an amazing piece that fits and enhances the "flying" sensation.

Anonymous said...

This makes me a little nervous. I don't mind change per se, and Soarin' over the World makes sense for Epcot (but not as much sense for DCA). But what really makes me nervous is the impact of the score. Goldsmith wrote a masterpiece which fits in with California's landscape (think about the Mexican infusions when they are in the Anza Barango desert in the San Diego section). So overlaying over the sites of the world would not be so great. But the idea of them getting rid of the music worries me too (look at the difference it made with Mission2 at DLP's Space Mountain - Bramson's score was a masterpiece that was missed, Giaccino's Increadiblesesc score ripped the sould out).

So although the international traveller in me loves this idea. I no longer have faith in disney to pull off refurbs/reduxes (let the record show O Canada, el Rio del Tiempo, Spaceship Earth, Nemo and Friends, PotC etc.)

Anonymous said...

Doing a natural landscape one will make sense for EPCOT and The Land pavillion, as it will tie everything nicely together. This is clearly a film made for EPCOT, not DCA.

I don't see why DCA needs to get a new film? It's pretty much a necessity at EPCOT.

0s0-Pa said...

Looks like a fun ride. The trick is to figure out when is the best time to go to Disneyland to avoid huge crowds and higher rates.
-Jack

Anonymous said...

I think that this would be perfect for Epcot, and as for WDS, why not put it in DLP's Discoveryland instead and give it an Around The World In 80 Days theme? I really dont see how a movie about the world would fit in a park about california(DCA) though....

Anonymous said...

I think the idea for new soarins is Great! However, the California version should be permanent in DCA!!!!! It is a classic ride here and we simply adore it. Added scenes(of CA) would be welcomed, but it would be heartbreaking if the movie was changed altogether. Different versions should be done,maybe a World version in Disney World, a Europe version in Paris...well you get the point but LEAVE CALIFORNIA ALONE PLEEEEEASE!!!

Anonymous said...

Its not a good idea to make the ride go for 10 minutes it would mean that the ride times would get up to 4 hours in peak times. And why isn't Australia on that list, well hardly any if any are on the the list for the southern hemisphere. And we don't need more then one scene for American as its meant to be around the world not around america with Friends (countries).

Alan said...

I think if Disney are going to update or build a new Soarin' style attraction, they really should work a story into it. So what better story than Pixar's Up. Carl's journey up through the clouds, all the way to Paradise Falls. Read the discussion about this idea on the magicforum:

http://www.photosmagiques.com/forum/viewtopic.php?f=14&t=8437&p=171697#p171697