Wednesday, August 26, 2015

Shanghaî Disneyland "Voyage to the Crystal Grotto" Boat Ride Unveiled


Shanghaî Disneyland "Voyage to the Crystal Grotto" boat ride will be one of SDL rides which will be unique to Shanghaî Disneyland when the park will open next year. The ride is described officially as "an enchanting excursion that travels the waters of Fantasyland. Fanciful fountains and sculptures line the water’s edge, celebrating classic tales of magic and imagination. At journey’s end, guests will glide beneath Enchanted Storybook Castle, into a secret, underground chamber in which fountains of light will leap and dance in shimmering pools, surrounding guests with magic, music and color.  The experience is sure to inspire the dreams and imaginations of all who make this wondrous voyage."

So, "Voyage to the Crystal Grotto" will "celebrate classic tales of magic and imagination" but which ones, and where will they be located along the boat ride? This is what we'll have a closer look now, thanks to an upscale of the original rendering you can see at the top.

But, first, Warning: this article includes plenty of spoilers about the ride, so as usual make your choice and read it ( or not ) at your own risk.

First, SDL guests will have to get inside the boat and here is a closer view of the load / unload building.


What may be the first scene of the ride will be a Beauty and the Beast scene and it's the one we can see on the artwork just below the load building.


A rendering for it was shown at D23 - picture by Andy Castro.


The next scene will be an Aladdin scene, with both Aladdin and the Genie, and fountain effects, apparently.


Here are two renderings for that scene - pictures by Andy Castro.



Next will be a scene which is the only one i couldn't identified from the artwork, the only thing we can see is what seems to be a giant ball with others oversized decors, and if anyone knows what it is, please let us know!


The next scene was more easy to identify and it will be a Mulan scene.


Here is the artwork for it.


Next will be a tribute to Walt Disney's Fantasia and the Mickey Sorcerer Apprentice sequence. Here is the artwork upscale...


And here is the rendering for that scene as shown at D23 - photo by Andy Castro.


The next scene during the boat ride will be a Tangled scene with the famous sequence with the Chinese lampoons. Being in small on the artwork the upscale was difficult...


...but artwork and models of the scene were shown at D23 - pictures by Andy Castro.




The next scene was more hard to identify but considering the "water theme" of the ride,  i'm almost 100% sure that it will be a Little Mermaid scene. The upscale don't make it clear but you can guess the decor design in shape of shells and also see the red color of Ariel's hair, so i'm pretty sure it'll be a Little Mermaid scene.


After this one there might be another outdoor scene before the boat goes under the castle but we can't see it on the artwork. Anyway, the boat will then enter a grotto under Shanghaî Disneyland castle - the "Crystal grotto" of the title - where we can apparently expect some magical lighting effects...


...until SDL guests finally arrive in front of the giant crystal. This huge crystal being located under the castle i wouldn't be surprised if, in WDI storyline related to the castle, the crystal would have a kind of magic power with its magical effects going much beyond the grotto and eventually be responsible of something bigger in the castle mythology... we'll see...


Then the boat will go outside again - most probably by the door you can see on the left of the crystal on the artwork above - and up to the load / unload building.


To make sure you've well understood where will be each scenes i've indicated them on the artwork below.


Voyage to the Crystal Grotto looks like a charming boat / fantasy ride at the heart of SDL Fantasyland  and will be probably also a way to introduce some Disney classics to Chinese guests who may not know them. It will be part of the not-to-be-missed rides when Shanghaî Disneyland will open next year!

Pictures: copyright Disney, Shendi, Andy Castro

16 comments:

Anonymous said...

It looks like the unknown scene with the ball and pine trees could be from Wreck-It Ralph.

Alain Littaye said...

Yes, that's what i thought too but i found strange that they put a scene from Wreck It Ralph with all these others fairy tales scenes... It didn't fit right to me so that's why i didn't mentioned it.

Ethan R said...

Maybe the unknown scene could be Winnie the Pooh, with the dreamy heffalump style?

Anonymous said...

I am not sure what those colorful balls and cone would be, but the figure through the trees looks like the back Simba to me. So I am guessing Lion King.

Mark Hickson said...

Well researched!

The unknown area could be "candyland" from wreck it ralph! Also the orange glow above the little mermaid is most likely the entrance to the grotto and the purple the exit.

Brian Kolm said...

Maybe the colorful shapes are part of the "I Can't Wait to Be King" number from the Lion King? It did have a more stylized look to it.

Anonymous said...

Can it be assumed, that since the character scenes are outside, they are more like statues, rather than moving animatronics?

Alain Littaye said...

Probably not sophisticated Audio-Animatrnics as we know them, but they should have a minimum of animation anyway, i don't see them doing really nothing.

Tom said...

Well, I'm underwhelmed... Am I the only one or what?

I think this bigger version of the Storybook land canal cruise looks worse than the original version. It's just a boat ride along some minimal moving puppets of famous Disney movies. And the finale in the cave sounds out of place?!

This may take up a lot of space, for an introduction to the Disney characters. I'm not excited, sorry ;)

Anonymous said...

Minimal animation, like Belle and the Beast rotating on a turn table? Or the boat with Rapunzel and Flynn rocking in the water? I can't imagine the brooms from Fantasia moving, they look more like a static fountain. Also with Genie and Aladdin. And Mulan looks like she's just standing there. So, not looking too impressive.

Anonymous said...

I think I'm gonna love this ride :-3 But where are Anna and Elsa ? ;-) For the unknown scene I think it looks more like Winnie the Pooh, the Lion King, Wreck-It Ralph or even Inside-Out lol, one never knows haha. I think the characters will be AA, for example a bit like Ariel and Eric on the boat (In the dark-ride) for the Rapunzel scene. :-)

Marco Antonio Garcia said...

I'm also underwhelmed Tom, and that's exactly what I tought, a Storybook land version not in miniature.

The miniatures are more interesting to see, with small gardens, many bonsai trees...

Alain Littaye said...

Yes, but you forget that most of the Chinese don't know the Disney classics of the old days, and even more recent ones, so miniature villages like we have in SBL would mean nothing for them. I'm convinced this is the reason why SDL imagineers didn't built Storybook Land there because Chinese would never understand what would be shown. European tales are nothing for most of them, I'm even surprised there will be a scene from Fantasia. They will recognize Mickey but i bet you that most of them don't know the Apprentice Sorcerer sequence.

Anonymous said...

alan, many chinese people know disney movies very , so don't read into things too much

Mad Angel said...

Comparing with Storybook Land is a correct assumption (sailing past storytelling) but there are a few clear differences in business concept. I'm not talking about the size, I'm talking about the business goal.
(1) Shanghai = China. Everybody must understand that +90% of Disney classics are unknown to people in China. You would be amased how little is known about them, to almost everybody. That is NOT Japan, where kids actually grow up with ... European fairy tales & classic childeren's stories from Europe ! Told / read and on video, in primary school ! And that is not even Hong Kong, where there is still Brittish influence. So, the MARKET is completely different.
There we have a REVERSED business goal of presenting scenes on large size, SO THAT customers recognise LATER the film classics... It is the complete reversal as seen with Storybook Land, were mostly everybody recognises anything, even in miniature...
(2) I expect it to be a rather long-duration ride, to get the emphasis on "Disney has a very large production of classics". You do NOT present (= durably imprent first-time visuals of) 20 classics, in 5 minutes...
(3) Great opportunity to claim "unique attraction". To much copy-paste going on with Disney already, it's time for distinguishing parks, down to the core business : the attactions themselves. Business hit.
(4) Most probably a very large capacity (THRC) attraction, to swallow crowds. Much needed especially as this ride is clearly set up as FILM-SALES promotion instrument. (Storybook Land is a tiny capacity kind of attraaction, it's "one-of-the-many-smaller-rides" in Fantasyland.)

When building a park, buisiness goals prevail, to ensure success. In Paris, they failed to bring something unique for the European context. All adjustments later on, did not solve the orginal BIG concept planning mistakes. I think, in the end, Disney leared...

Cheers

Smiths Dan said...

Lots of children in China know European fairy tales such as Snow Whites, Cinderella, Sleeping Beauty, Little Mermaid and etc. Lost of them read European fairy tales when they were very young. I was born in 1992 and I watched Disney Animations when I was very young. I still kept the Disney's movies' VCd or DVD discs. And I once subscribed the "Mickey Mouse" magazine released in China when I was in elementary school. I still kept these magazines in my bookshelves!