Saturday, March 30, 2013

Editor's Note: I remind those of you who don't own yet the great Disneyland Paris From Sketch to reality book that from now till April 15 I put on sale signed copies of the book in its collector edition and that both english and french editions are available. This is the very first time that collector's edition copies would be signed so they will be "double collector"!
Don't miss this great offer, signed copies are even with a 20€ discount on the normal price! You can have more infos about this gorgeous 320 pages book HERE and you can use the one-click Paypal button below if you wish.

Choose quantity and enjoy additional discount !

Disney " Planes " Poster and Characters revealed

So, if i can judge by the number of characters in the movie, it seems that Disney intend to do with the upcoming Planes movie what they did with Cars, i.e to release not only a movie where planes talk and have a life by themselves but also to bring some cash in with a whole series of planes merchandise items. And why not, after all? Kids and even adults - and even me! - always loved miniature planes and these ones looks great, as you will see below!

They didn't forget the vehicles working on the tarmac, and some might remind you others characters from another movie... but that's all right.

All the question now is: how good this Planes movie will be. Supposedly to be released directly in video, Planes will finally be released in theaters on August 9 and, personally, as i always loved planes i sincerely hope that it will be good. In the meantime you can have a look below to the teaser trailer!

Pictures and video: copyright Disney

Friday, March 29, 2013

New " Wolverine " movie - First Trailer

A new Wolverine movie is coming with the always good Hugh Jackman! It'll be released this summer, it's called, simply, "The Wolverine", apparently a big part of the action will happen in China, and it looks pretty good - well, at least on the trailer... Have a look!

Picture and video: copyright 20th Century Fox

The second life of the Jungle Cruise Gorillas

A looong time ago - more precisely 31 years ago - guests who ride the Disneyland Jungle Cruise could watch two not-so-threatening but massive audio-animatronics gorillas standing and observing you, from the banks of the "rivers of Africa".

And then, one day, the gorillas disappeared, vanished! Though, that was not without any reason. For the Imagineers, back in 1977-78, it was time for a major refurbishment of the attraction and legendary imagineer Mark Davis worked on the upgrading of this Disneyland Jungle Cruise - that was after WDW had opened with their improved show. Part of Mark's new show for Disneyland included the Gorilla Camp with the tents, overturned jeep and the family of gorillas unpacking and turning the camp inside out. That's when these older previous tenant Gorillas vacated the Disneyland Jungle Cruise.

But as they say at WDI, "good ideas never die", and as we will see, audio-animatronics too. Reemploying animation figures is common at Walt Disney imagineering, some of the AA from Natures Wonderland are now part of Big Thunder, and almost all America Sings audio-animatronics are in Splash Mountain.

Approximately at the same time, in 1978, the imagineers were also working on another major refurbishment of another Disneyland attraction: the Matterhorn. The Matterhorn was coming down to be reinforced with steel, as it was a wood framed structure since the beginning. The new Bobsleds were being added along with new track, and better brakes too for the splash down. It was also decided to put some show in the interior mostly for the Skyway buckets that passed through the Matterhorn more slowly. The Bobsleds of course at speed could see the new icy interiors and crystals as well as what is now a very famous Disneyland figure: the abominable snowman.

Steve Kirk, imagineer extraordinaire who will be later the show producer in chief for Tokyo Disney Sea worked on the design of it - i should say them as there is three "abominable snowmen" in the ride. The design of these Snow Men was based on Steve's artwork - the one above - which was a composite of several different contemporary depictions and his own warped imagination.

Sculptor Blaine Gibson will then sculpt the snowman mask, and the imagineers team with Legend and Matterhorn creator Fred Joerger added the interior with the new Ice Crystals. Now, and as i suppose you've already guessed the end of the story, yes, the old Jungle Cruise audio-animatronic gorilla put on a new suit in 1978, and is now living a second life in the role of the Matterhorn's abominable snowman!

Transforming ex gorillas into Snow Men had to have been purely for economic reasons and probably dictated also the proportions of the final generation of the simian snow men.

As there is three Abominable snow men figures in the ride, i couldn't tell you which ones exactly are the former Jungle Cruise gorillas, but next time you will ride the Matterhorn bobsleds and see the abominable snow man, have a little thought for these old Jungle Cruise gorillas, who were some of the first Disneyland audio-animatronics. I'm sure they will be sensitive to this attention, and watch out for that third abominable snowman as he may be the real one.

Many thanks to Davelandweb for the Jungle Cruise gorilla picture. Dave have an unbelievably good web site about the Jungle Cruise, with more pictures you can ever dreamed of. Be sure to have a look at it, it's HERE.

Steve Kirk's artwork and abominable snowman pictures: copyright Disney.

Some of the pictures are coming from Jason Surrell fantastic book "The Disney Mountains", full of WDI artwork. You can find it on from only $8.90!

Tuesday, March 26, 2013

Editor's Note: I remind those of you who don't own yet the great Disneyland Paris From Sketch to reality book that from now till April 15 I put on sale signed copies of the book in its collector edition and that both english and french editions are available. This is the very first time that collector's edition copies would be signed so they will be "double collector"!
Don't miss this great offer, signed copies are even with a 20€ discount on the normal price! You can have more infos about this gorgeous 320 pages book HERE and you can use the one-click Paypal button below if you wish.

Choose quantity and enjoy additional discount !

The " Mission Space " that Never Was

Ten years after Mission to Mars closed at WDW, another "mission" sent WDW guests on Mars, and it was at Epcot when "Mission: Space" opened on October 9, 2003. Well, as a matter of fact, the existing Mission Space that we know is in fact the first part of what was
a much better "Mission: Space" attraction concept.

In its original concept part one of the attraction was the same one that Epcot guests ride every day, i.e the shuttle centrifuge-simulator of a blast-off to outer space.

But instead to go on Mars, the original concept would have sent Mission: Space guests to a Space Station built on the Moon - or, according to Jim Hill in his excellent 2001 article, on a huge asteroid - see artwork below.

Always according to Jim "After they will arrive at the station, Epcot visitors will be free to disembark and discover the many wonders that are hidden deep inside that asteroid". And how, you ask? Well, that was the third genius part of the ride as Guests would have been able to move inside the Space Station thanks to a simulated "MMU" - Manned Maneuvering Unit - the famous propulsion backpack which was used by NASA astronauts on space shuttle missions in 1984 and which allowed the astronauts to perform untethered EVA spacewalks at a distance from the shuttle. Of course, as you can see on the rendering below, every one was supposed to follow the track, but the ride would have been great anyway, don't you think so?

So, why this awesome version of Mission Space was never built? Guess what, of course the cost of this amazing attraction concept would have been extremely expensive,  and probably too expensive for Michael Eisner,  Disney's CEO at that time. That said, i'm thinking that IF Disney wanted to expand the current version, change it and add all the awesome second part of the concept which was cancelled, they'll probably could do it, technically speaking. If they have enough land available behind the Mission Space building - and of course the needed budget - they could expand the ride. Sure, they'll have to change the storyline, the movie inside the ride itself and others things but basically it doesn't look unfeasible. But a quick look on Google Earth shows that in fact there is currently backstage buildings behind so i suppose they would need to remove these ones too...

So, only the first part of the ride was saved and Mission: Space was built on the former site of the beloved Horizons attraction.

Mission Space Grand Opening happened on October 2003 and here is the video of the ceremony attended by Disney CEO Michael Eisner, HP CEO Carly Fiorina and NASA Administrator Sean O'Keefe, as well as several NASA astronauts from its many phases of human space exploration- Mercury, Gemini, Apollo, the space shuttle program and two crew members aboard the International Space Station!

The next videos is a very good HD Video showing the attraction itself, from the pre-show to the ride itself, including the whole movie that guests can see during the centrifuge ride.

Pictures: copyright Disney, Google Maps

Many thanks to the different people for the Youtube videos!

Is a Star Wars Land Coming to Disneyland Resort ?

It seems that Lance Hart from Screamscape is not the only one thinking that Disney might build a Star Wars Land, and not only at Disneyland Paris but also at the Disney Hollywood Studios AND at the Disneyland Resort as recently Disney Parks did a survey asking Disneyland passholders some very specific questions that obviously they wouldn't ask if they had no reasons to -  i mean, if there was nothing "behind" the questions. 

The first one was: " How interested would you be in visiting a Star Wars themed land at the Disneyland Resort?"

It's difficult to ask a more direct question and you'll note that the question is related to the Disneyland Resort - not about Disney Hollywood Studios at WDW where, as you've seen in my previous article, we think they also have some plans there for a Star Wars land.

The second question was: "Which Star Wars characters would you definitely NOT want to see or meet in person?"

If we except this poor Jar Jar Binks, is there really any other one?

And the third question was: "How familiar are you with the Star Wars universe? By"Star Wars universe", we mean the people, places  and stories in the Star Wars movies, books and games?"

Hey, you never know, may be there is still some people in South Cal who have never ever heard about Star Wars during the last thirty years?

Note that others questions that i don't know might have been asked but apparently there was also questions about "which trilogy you prefer, the classic trilogy or the prequels", "what places would you like to visit in the SW universe", etc...

So, what all of this means? Well, it means at minima that Disney is seriously thinking about building a Star Wars land at the Disneyland Resort, but this, you already have understood it. However, this doesn't mean that a Star Wars land will come necessarily at Disneyland Tomorrowland - even if there is rumors saying that it will - as Disney could have in project a third park that we don't know about - even if we suspect them to have this project (!) So far it seems that a Star Wars land is definitely in project and i'll let you know if i have more news!

Pictures: copyright Disney

Monday, March 25, 2013

Disney Dreams Light Ears Preview

Disneyland Paris glow with the show light ears won't start before this summer but guests of the press event last saturday had a preview and Disneyland Paris shot some sequences showing both new Lion King and Brave sequences of Disney Dreams with people wearing the light ears. Have a look, it'll give you an idea of how it will look when they will be available this summer!

Also, this other video, showing this time not only the new Disney Dreams sequences but also some new effects. The new effects start from the villains sequence and at the final, with bubbles, and also in the final scene the little stars projected on the castle have a better definition, the rainbow rays are more clear with colors more "pastels" and we can see a kind of "light speed" effect at the end when Wendy says "we're flying".

Videos: copyright Disneyland Paris, Dlrp Welcome

Sunday, March 24, 2013

WDW Launches "Free the Goat" Marketing Campaign

WDW Marketing guys came with a new idea to promote the resort and actually this one is not bad at all and even pretty fun. In this case they ask you to "free" the Big Thunder Mountain goat and the first thing you need to do is to watch the video below AND to click on the link in it at the end.

Now, even if we all know WDW and don't really need a marketing campaign to go there, click on the link, as they did a series of cartoons with the BTM goat placed in a selection of attractions, and they are quite fun as the goat looks "perfectly" silly! After the video below - and above - you'll find a selection of my favorites, but there is many more so click on the video link and go "save the goat"!

Artwork and video: copyright Disney

Exclusive Signed Collector's Edition Copies Of The Disneyland Paris Book Available For a Limited Time !

Here is something about the Disneyland Paris book that a lot of people asked me and that i couldn't offer until now.  From now till April 15 anyone who will order a collector copy of the Disneyland Paris From Sketch to Reality book will have the possibility to get a signed copy whether you want the book in its english or french edition!

Because i'm living in a country and because the books are - and are sent - from another one i couldn't signed a copy when someone was asking me. But i'll be back for two weeks starting March 29 and i will be able to sign specially all book orders done during this period. You also have to know that so far, since the book was published ten years ago almost none collector copies were signed  - and just a few only of the normal edition, too. So, having a signed collector edition copy will surely make it a "double collector" and valuable copy!

And the good news is that these signed copies not only are not more expensive but until April 15 are sold with a 20 euros discount on the normal price! So go ahead and order your collector signed copy today! Paypal payment or bank transfer are accepted and you can also use the coded Paypal one-click purchase button below - prices on it include the shipping worldwide wherever you live! Also notify me your order and which edition you want - french or english - by email at:

For more infos about the book please go HERE and you'll also find a video below showing the whole book.

Choose quantity and enjoy additional discount !

New Lion King and Brave Sequences Added to DLP Disney Dreams Show - Videos

That's it, Disneyland Paris press event for the new season happened yesterday and from now the two new Lion King and Brave sequences are part of the Disney Dreams show - the Mary Poppins sequence is gone forever. Here is a first video of the Lion King scene...

...and here is the video of the Pixar Brave sequence.

So, what do you think of these new additions to the acclaimed Disney Dreams show?

Don't miss my limited series of signed copy of the Disneyland Paris book for the price of a normal one! One-click Paypal button available below!

Choose quantity and enjoy additional discount !

Videos: copyright Ornéla Mpasi