Tuesday, February 7, 2012

Shanghaî Disneyland Update

Here is a new Shanghaî Disneyland update and i have to say that it's pretty hard to have any infos about SDL as WDI is quite well keeping the secret on this park. That said, i have some new ones that are quite interesting. The first one is not necessarily a good news as from what i've been told it seems that the first stage of SDL might be a downsized plan of what was originally envisioned. If that is true it could explain why there is so much space available in the park for "future expansion" as we saw last month in my previous article. You must remind that Disney is not alone to invest in the SDL project and that a joint-venture with the chinese was created. If it happened that the chinese didn't agreed to put the amount of money that Disney has expected this downsized plan might be real and due to insufficient capital. However, and although my source is as always a reliable one, please take this info as a not-totally-confirmed news until i'll be able to double-check it.

Let's have a look now at what rides we can expect in the park. Laughing Place has posted some weeks ago a list of the SDL expected rides which is quite accurate, but not totally as we will see.

So, in Fantasyland according to LP the rides would be:

-Storybook Castle
-Castle Boat Ride
-Tea Cups
-Seven Dwarfs Mine Train
-Peter Pan's Flight
-Winnie The Pooh ride

LP is right on most of them except that the tea cups ride would be replaced by the Winnie the Pooh Hunny Pot Spins. Talking about Pooh, the SDL Pooh dark ride will be the same than in HKDL and not unfortunately the Tokyo Disneyland version. Fantasyland seems to be the most completed land and my source also mentioned a Alice in Wonderland garden/maze and that the Carousel will be themed with a Fantasia theme, which by the way is a good idea.

Let's have a look now at Adventureland. According to LP the rides should be:

-Lost World River Rapids

Pirates Cove:
-Pirates of the Caribbean Water Ride
-Pirate Stunt Show

Laughing Place is right on all of them and i've been confirmed that there will be indeed a POTC stunt show, may be partly inspired from the one previously envisioned for DLP WDS and which was never built. The Dinosaurs "Lost World River Rapids" ride will be indeed a raft ride with AA Dinos but there will be also in Adventureland, and on another theme, a walk through attraction. It might be one called "Sunken Treasure" that i've been told about but so far the mystery of what would be precisely this "Sunken Treasure" still remains a WDI secret.

About the POTC ride i thought that WDI would put at SDL the concept which has been developed for HKDL but in fact it might not be the case. More strangely, i've been told that SDL might not have many audio-animatronics at its opening, and even in POTC there might be less AA than in other POTC versions. Apparently WDI will also use projections effects. I can agree with you that all this remains not perfectly clear but Shanghaî Disneyland is a big puzzle that will take the next three years to be completed and the parts of the puzzle are coming one by one, little by little ...

Let's move to Tomorrowland rides now. According to LP SDL Tomorrowland should have:

-TRON Indoor Rollercoaster
-Astro Orbitor / Rockets Ride

I can't confirm the Astro-Orbitor but the TRON motor bike coaster seems to be definitely a "go". A Stitch encounter is also envisioned and it should be the same one than we can find at HKDL and Paris WDS.

Apparently Tomorrowland will also have a Buzz Lightyear Astro Blaster ride but from what i've heard it will be a different version than the interactive dark ride we know and it'll be changed into a ride with projections rather than animatronics or 2D animated decor. Could WDI recycle the Toy Story Mania technology in a ride dedicated to the universe of Buzz Lightyear? I'm afraid we'll have to wait a little bit to know exactly the truth!

Picture: copyright Disney


Tom said...

Well, what's the use of building a "different" park, with lots of darkrides/ themes that one can find in HKDL too?

Why a Honneypot spinner? Come on, that sounds amazingly tacky and 2 Pooh rides, with such catalog full of beautiful characters?!

A Fantasia Carousel sounds very good, but overall this project seems to be very underwhelming.

From "5 times the size of HKDL" to the things you describe right now seems to me that HKDL will be more worth visiting than this park...

Can't wait to see what the future holds!

Alain Littaye said...

The reason why of the Pooh attractions is because Winnie the pooh is the most known Disney character in China (with Mickey, of course). European fairy tales are not part of the chinese culture like it is in Europe or the U.S, that's why you will have at SDL only the Peter Pan dark ride and not, for instance, the Pinnochio dark ride.

Marco Antonio Garcia said...

Won't they ever learn the lesson? Small parks with few rides always loose money and are bad for the company's image. The most successful parks are always the most sophisticated and complete ones.

On the other hand, there are many original attractions, and that is excellent. They should build the POTC envisioned for HKDL, this attraction would be a big plus to the park, but a POTC with few animatronics and more projection effects sounds terrible. Hope they make new, more sophisticated versions of the all time classics, like Peter Pan's flight, that is always one of my favorites, and a nice Alice maze, like the one in Paris, that is a very beautiful and special feature of the park, but even better.

That sad, it doesn't sound as good as I was hoping, but still better than HKDL. Let's wait and see...

Anonymous said...

Wow, lots of projections and video game rides, yet few AAs. May as well stay home and play your Xbox/PS3/Wii/iPad/Droid. Oh wait: there are all those spinner rides that always bring in the crowds. And a monstrous castle.

If they aren't willing to actually invest in this park, then just give up now. Haven't they learned? How far this company has fallen.

Perhaps Iger should stick to building cable channels, as that's about all he seems capable of doing well. He's failed at movies, failed at videogames/digital (and lost billions trying), and milked the US parks as cash cows. Too bad the Chinese government won't let him have the TV channel he wants. Instead it's this half park. Don't worry about him though--he's timed it so that he'll be gone right around the time this place opens.

Anonymous said...

i'm gonna take your words with a grain of salt. i mean are you sure you have have an all -know source? what you have described are terrible to say the least, you might as well tell use that there are no ride in shanghai. why would they not use AA? the main focus of a disney theme parks are audio animatronic dark rides! by the way Chinese people love pinnochio.

Anonymous said...

one more thing, why wouldn't shanghai shendi group invest more into the project, you do know that china is the economic superpower of the world right now right/ they are not like the hong kong government you know.

Alain Littaye said...

Wait a minute, i've never said there won't be any audio animatronic in SDL, i've said that from what i've been told SDL might have less AA at its opening than usually in Disney theme parks. Just like you it's hard for me to believe this and especially for a POTC ride which has no sense without animatronics. So, of course there will be animatronics in the POTC ride, but may be they might have less AA than usual. I'm pretty sure that there will be AA in others rides too. Beginning by the dinosaur raft ride as a dino ride without AA dinos is just unthinkable.

But what i know also is that executives hate the cost of animatronics. Not only they consider the cost as prohibitive but they also don't like them because of the maintenance cost. So, i don't know where exactly is the truth in all this but i won't be surprised if Disney execs would have asked WDI Imagineers to "be careful" on the number of audio animatronics in SDL, but that's just my personal guess and i might be wrong.

As i've said SDL is a big puzzle with well kept secrets and although the infos are coming from a reliable source anything about SDL must be taken with caution.

Alain Littaye said...

Well, may be it is Disney who didn't wanted to go above a certain number for SDL budget...or may be both of them... You know, i'm pretty sure that both Disney and the chinese wants to put a lot of money in the SDL project but there is also a limit and on this kind of project where you don't count in millions but in billions you inevitably reach a point where you have to say stop because the risk becomes too high. So, yes, Shendi will spend a huge amount of money but they've probably also fixed a limit, which is normal.
The other problem is that the cost of an attraction is not the same than it was 20 years ago, and WDI costs are known to be high, too, which means that for the same kind of ride Disney will need to spend much more money than they did at DLP or TDS or HKDL.

Jones said...

Seriously, I could not care less - I mean, were talking about Shanghai, I will never see that park in person (nor do i have any desire to see it), so who cares? However, you never know what´s the right strategy - DLP, the most complete and wonderful park ever build (yes, TDS in second place, IMHO), has not exactly been a money machine, either...

Anonymous said...

This actually sounds alright. Remember, DisneySea, a beautiful park, didn't open with a lot of attractions, and Disney parks worldwide built since Epcot (DLP aside) haven't been packed to the brim with rides at the outset. Every land sounds like it has a coaster, dark rides, ect. What more could you want? This is more exciting than HKDL, even today, since it's filled with clones. At least SDL will have new concepts. Count me as still excited.

Marco Antonio Garcia said...

I think that you are exaggerating on your opinion about Iger Anonymous, he did many good things for Disney, and the company is stronger than ever.

Just to mention a few, under his management Disney built two new wonderful cruise ships, a beautiful hotel in Hawaii...

You said that he failed in movies, well there were many hits in during his management. If you consider box office success, there were a lot of Pixar ones, the last POTC, Tim Burton's Alice, just to name a few. Talking about quality, the Pixar ones are excellent for sure, I didn't like much the last Pirates, but that is just my opinion, and I really enjoyed Alice.

You said that he milked US parks, but the company is investing a lot of money on them right now, just in CA they are investing over USD 1 billion, and turning it from a mediocre to an awesome park, they are also investing at least USD 500 million on the MK fantasyland expansion, and there are other investments.

Besides all that, Disney bought Marvel, expanded it's presence in other countries, e.g. As a small shareholder and Disney fan, I'm very happy with Iger, he's not perfect, of course, but overall has done a very good job.

And to Jones, I don't think that the problem in DLP was the park, Disneyland Park in Paris a plubic success from the beginning. The financial problems came from many other things, like seven hotels from the start, crisis in the beginning, real state price did not increase as much as they were hoping, a mediocre (to be nice) second park, and other reasons.

And I also think that it's a terrible idea to change the Tea Cuos theme from Alice to Pooh, but I must admit that I don't have much love for Pooh...

Jones said...

@Marco: No, of course the problem was not the park - that´s exactly my point! What I meant is that you can have the most wonderful park in the world, and still run into financial trouble...

Anonymous said...

Alain, according to Randy Savage on Micechat, he posted this list as pure speculation, and then someone took it and posted it on Laughing Place. So I would not assume it be official by any stretch, although the final version will most likely be something similar.