Wednesday, November 16, 2016

Shanghaî Disneyland Wins Three THEA Awards

The THEA Awards are to theme parks what the Oscars Academy Awards are to movies, i.e the most prestigious awards that any Imagineer can get. The annual IAAPA - International Association of Amusement Parks and Attractions - is currently happening in Orlando and Shanghai Disneyland Resort won on Tuesday three main THEA awards from the Themed Entertainment Association. 

Shanghaî Disneyland park is the recipient of the THEA award of outstanding achievement, an award that the park - and of course all the Imagineers and workers who built it - deserves totally. And the winning award for outstanding attractions went to Adventure Isle Camp Discovery and Treasure Cove Pirates of the Caribbean: Battle for the Sunken Treasure ride. 

I couldn't agree more with these awards as these are truly the most "perfect" attractions in the park. However, you'll note that TRON Lightcycles Power Run didn't get a THEA award. And, although i think that the Imagineers who built SDL Tomorrowland did a super job, i consider that it's also fair that the TRON ride didn't get one. There is a lot of things in the TRON attraction which are truly great  - starting my the magnificent dome and lighting as well as the ride vehicles design - but, in my opinion, the ride is not perfect. Surprisingly the TRON ride was even a disappointment for me and the main reason is a simple one: it should have last at least one more minute, if not two. The ride would have been one minute longer or more it would have been more immersive as we would have had the time to truly be immersed in TRON's world. Currently, you have barely the time to realize where you are - in TRON's grid - that it's already over. I'm pretty sure that Tomorrowland Imagineers are not responsible of this and that the reason why the ride don't last one or two minutes more is an executive decision to save money.

Disney's Central Florida’s theme parks were shut out of the Thea awards this year but Disney won another award for “connected immersion” for Haunted Mansion: Ghost Post at Disneyland, California.

Bob Chapek, Chairman of Walt Disney Parks and Resorts posted today: “These awards are a testament to our talented Cast Members, who continue pushing the boundaries of creativity and innovation as we bring treasured Disney stories and characters to life in our Parks and Resorts around the world”.

Universal Studios Hollywood was recognized for its themed food and beverage experience in its Springfield area, and also received the Thea Classic award for WaterWorld – A Live Sea-War Spectacular.

Other winning attractions awards went to WhiteWater’s Slideboarding for 'technology on a limited budget'; Mack Ride Systems’ Suspended Power Coaster for 'innovation'; the 5D Castle Theatre in China; House of Eternal Return by Meow Wolf in Santa Fe, N.M.; Meet Vincent Van Gogh Experience, a touring exhibit; Transformations at the Museum of Latin American Art in Long Beach, Calif.; the Senate Immersion Module at the Edward M. Kennedy Institute in Boston; Le Dernier Panache, Puy du Fou, Les Epesses, France for live show; and Center Parcs Le Bois Aux Daims of Les Trois-Moutiers, France for 'eco-friendly destination'.

Jerry Railton, founder and chairman of Entertainment Design Corp. won the Buzz Price Thea Award, a lifetime achievement honor. Peter Chernace of The Chermack Group won the distinguised service award, which was renamed the Peter Chernack Distinguished Service Award in his honor, posthumously.

IAAPA last at the Orange County Convention Center until this Friday.

Here is the full THEA award text for the three awards won by Shanghaî Disneyland, with official SDL pictures:

Shanghai Disneyland, China - Theme Park
The 12th Disney park, sixth Magic Kingdom and largest of the Disney castle parks is excellence on an international scale. Shanghai Disneyland, which opened June 16, preserves the best of Walt Disney’s original vision, while pioneering a host of dazzling new creations.
It is a massive and successful, state-of-the-art world-class achievement with groundbreaking technology and creative design, production and execution.

Shanghai Disneyland photo ©Disney
Within its six themed lands (Mickey Avenue, Gardens of Imagination, Fantasyland, Treasure Cove, Adventure Isle and Tomorrowland) are elements both classic and new, with many first and new attractions specifically tailored to the Chinese audience.
Disney, one of the world’s biggest entertainment companies, took time to rethink its core brands in the context of the host country. Culture, technology and creative are seamlessly integrated to deliver a guest experience that is, in the words of Bob Iger, “authentically Disney and distinctly Chinese.”

Camp Discovery, Shanghai Disneyland, photo ©Disney
Camp Discovery, Shanghai Disneyland, China - Attraction
Camp Discovery is comprised of three major components: Challenge Trails; The Vista Trail; and Excavation Site. All are set at the base of an iconic waterfall mountain. The Excavation Site is a hands-on dig area for younger visitors. The Vista Trail is a walk-through area at ground level that affords views of those on the more daring Challenge Trails. The Challenge Trails proper are the primary attraction of this area and feature three unique, ropes-course options through spectacular settings, integrated into the mountain: Hidden Falls Chamber; Echo Cavern; House of the Ancients. Camp Discovery delivers hands-on, participatory entertainment and a variety of experiences that cater to guests of all ages and appetites for adventure and that will continue to engage over multiple visits. Camp Discovery is ambitious in scale and complexity, rich in story, and big on adventure.

Pirates of the Caribbean: Battle for the Sunken Treasure,
Shanghai Disneyland - Thea Award for Outstanding Achievement -
Attraction - photo ©Disney
Pirates of the Caribbean: Battle for the Sunken Treasure, Shanghai Disneyland, China - Attraction
This attraction at Disney’s newest park embodies excellence in concept; it is a signature next-step achievement that reinvents and reimagines Pirates of the Caribbean. Based upon the original Pirates of the Caribbean attraction that first opened at Disneyland in 1967, “Sunken Treasure” is housed in a mammoth 175,000 square foot facility in the park’s Treasure Cove land, and features Captain Jack Sparrow and Davy Jones from the blockbuster Pirates of the Caribbean movies. The ride is an eight-minute adventure that plays out in 10 major scenes, with seamless technology, a new controllable boat ride system, operatic scale scenery, large format projection, special effects, illusions and next-gen Audio-Animatronics technology. Pirates of the Caribbean: Battle for the Sunken Treasure represents the pinnacle of Disney storytelling, immersive design and advanced technology. 

Pictures: copyright Disney and more, Disney


Anonymous said...

Dear Alain
Thanks for every entry of your blog!! they are always great!

PD: We are looking forward the rest of your Sanghay Disneyland review!! I'd love to read your review about Pirates and the rest of the atractions of the Park!


xavier said...

It's great that they acknowledge a "smaller" attraction like Camp Discovery. With the Tron ride, the "ropes-course" was the thing that fired my imagination & excitment in this park.

I love the self discovery attractions like Tom Sawyer Island in the US parks or Adventure Isle in DLP.
And it's good move to add more active attractions like canoes to help us exercise ! ^^