Saturday, August 29, 2015

Shanghai Disneyland Tomorrowland : From Blue Sky to Reality - Part Two

As promised here is the part two of the Shanghai Disneyland Tomorrowland article and, after we had a look at the artworks in the first article, it's now time for the real thing! If you've missed the part one you'll find it HERE.

Above, SDL Tomorrowland during its construction, and below the Tomorrowland sign - which most probably will be placed at the entrance of the land - during its making.

We'll start by the first ride that SDL guets will see when they will enter the land, and it's the Jet Pack ride! Below, SDL Imagineers testing the ride in WDI "virtual room".

A picture showing Tomorrowland construction site, with the Jet Packs ride in the foreground. 

Below, a close shot on the giant sphere at the center of the ride. On Jet Packs, "guests will become sky pilots, taking off on transportation of the future. Strapped into individual Jet Packs and with legs dangling, pilots will enjoy the thrill and wonder of flying. At the center of the attraction, the energy sphere will spin faster and faster as the ride progresses. Guests will be able to control how high their Jet Pack goes and, the higher they go, the more the vehicles will pitch forward. From their sky-high vantage point, pilots will have a breathtaking view of Tomorrowland and the rest of Shanghai Disneyland."

SDL Tomorrowland will have a Buzz Lightyear ride, titled "Buzz Lightyear Planet Rescue" and it will be one with a totally different storyline, in which SDL guests will fight Zurg robot, and enter in "Emperor Zurg Lair". Here is the official description of the ride:
Guests will join a mission to help save the day on Buzz Lightyear Planet Rescue, an interactive adventure inspired by the DisneyžPixar Toy Story films. The immersive, new storyline combined with a new, interactive targeting system will make this one of the most engaging attractions at a Disney park.  The attraction features cosmic visuals, animated targets, LED screens and real-time feedback from the targeting system. As the story goes, the Evil Emperor Zurg is threatening to destroy the home planet of the Aliens. Buzz Lightyear calls out for more Space Rangers and park guests become his newest Star Command recruits, boarding their own spaceships and shooting on-board blasters with individualized colors. For every target hit, guests rise higher in the ranks of Buzz Lightyear’s elite squadron.

We have some new visuals for it, the first one below being again a virtual experience of the ride for SDL Imagineers.

This next shot shows most probably Zurg'Lair. Watch the element in the foreground...

As in real it will be the giant prop below which may be Zurg deadly weapon to destroy planets...

On the next pictures, all the show team of SDL Imagineers and workers who worked on the ride all together for a souvenir picture inside Zurg Lair decor on completion day, July 2015.

Let's move to TRON Lightcycles Power Run as we have fantastic pics of its construction!

Interesting picture of the Tron coaster track not yet surrounded by the walls and ceiling of the show building.

The ride team all together for a souvenir picture, surrounding "the last piece of track".

Another show team souvenir picture in front of the outdoor part of the track before the "Tron Cover" was built.

The giant dome officially called "Tron Cover" must have been a hell to build!

Two more souvenir pictures of the show team in front of "Tron Cover".

Creating and checking a Tron Lightcycles decor element...

May be one which will be placed in this part of the ride which looks like the boarding room...

...or may be it will be for this sequence...

Some shots from the virtual film...

And a picture of SDL Imagineers testing the ride "virtually"...

Another picture of the show team this time surrounding a Tron Lightcycles train!

We're not done yet as there is more to see about the Star Wars Launch Bay and Marvel Universe which have been added to Tomorrowland.

In Star Wars Launch Bay, "guests will meet heroes and villains of the saga, visit iconic intergalactic set-pieces, view props and memorabilia from the most recent Episode, and be immersed in the Skywalker story through a state-of-the-art cinematic experience."

Marvel Universe will be located near the entry to Tomorrowland, and guests "will have an exciting opportunity to encounter some of the popular Marvel heroes and their super-powered tech. Guests will attend a multimedia mission briefing on the thrilling world of Marvel, get up-close with some of their favorite Marvel heroes and learn to draw some of the characters, just like a real comic book artist".

And it's with this shot showing the Marvel Universe shop that will end this SDL Tomorrowland article. All the pictures you've seen in this two parts article are enhanced screen captures from a movie which was shown at D23 and filmed by Mouse Steps whom i can't thanks enough. Here is the full video which i'm sure you will enjoy a lot!

Pictures and video: copyright Disney - Shendi

Summer Special Offer on the Disneyland Paris Book Tomorrow Monday August 31st !

Folks, the summer special offer on the Disneyland Paris book will end TOMORROW Monday August 31 and it's still time to order a book copy in its english or french edition at 60€  ( + 15€ shipping only worldwide ). And for the first time you'll have a signed copy for the same price, instead of 90€ which was the regular price for a signed copy. The copy will be signed by me at your name or another name of your choice if you wish to offer the book to anyone you love. 
You can order the book easily by sending me an email at:

Paypal, bank transfer or credit card payment are accepted. The Paypal button on the D&M site or on the book website are coded for this limited time special offer, so you can use them. If you want to pay with Paypal you can also send directly the 75 euros to:

More about the book here:

As the Euro is literally crashing since months it also mean that the book is now at its best price ever for our American friends as 60€ currently equals $68 only! It really is the best time ever to order the book as you save money thanks to the special offer AND you save money too thanks to the Euro / $US change rate!

To order your copy with this special offer just send me an email at: and specify if you want an english or french edition and the name to whom you wish i dedicate the book.

Note: If you want to order a French edition don't use the Paypal button below which seems, for unknown reasons, to don't work for an order of french copies ( the Paypal button works fine for an order of English copies ). If it don't work send me an email or send directly the 75€ from your Paypal account to:

Disneyland Paris From Sketch to Reality - Include shipping

Don't miss this special offer, and a GREAT surprise gift also comes in addition for all buyers!

You can also watch below a video showing the whole book!

Friday, August 28, 2015

Google Earth Updates Its Shanghaî Disneyland Satellite View !

A short post to let you know that Google Earth has updated its satellite view of Shanghaî Disneyland with a new one which was shot by Digital Globe last April, but posted recently. You can really see the differences with the previous one so i suggest you go to Google Earth ( or Google Maps ) to have a closer look at SDL from above!

If you don't know where to find Shanghaî Disneyland, type in the search box "Shanghaî Pudong Airport" and SDL is a few miles on the left of it, a little bit up at a 45° angle, at 12km from the airport, you'll see SDL lake. Another solution: look at the bottom right of the picture below, write the latitude and longitude degrees and do the search with these. Good luck! :-)

Picture: copyright Google Earth

Thursday, August 27, 2015

Shanghaî Disneyland Tomorrowland : From Blue Sky to Reality

Officially, the final design for Shanghaî Disneyland Tomorrowland is the one you see above, a land that will include the Jet Packs ride,  Stitch Encounter, Buzz Lightyear Planet Rescue, and of course the awaited TRON Lightcycles Power Run ride. But, as usual when WDI Imagineers design a new theme park, the design of SDL Tomorrowland has changed a lot since the "Blue Sky" period. This always happen for various reasons whether it is feasibility or budget reasons. So we'll have a look today at the Shanghaî Disneyland Tomorowland "that never was"- although it sounds bit odd to say this about a theme park not open yet, so let's say "that never will be", to be more accurate.

The Jet Packs ride which will be located at the entrance of the land will be unique to SDL Tomorrowland but in fact it's been a while that WDI Imagineers were turning around the idea to create a ride in which the guests will be "attached" to jet packs. So we'll start this pictorial evolution of SDL Tomorrowland with these renderings which were probably not done for SDL but could have been done for DL Tomorrowland. We can see an Orbitron with Jet Packs instead of the usual rockets but also a ride using robotic arms - like the Kuka robot arms used in the Harry Potter ride at Universal - which would move on the track where once was the People Mover...

On this next artwork we see not only Space Mountain but the Jet Packs are also there, this time with a different tech including fountains and water effects.

Another rendering also done probably for Disneyland Tomorrowland - see on the left and right the Submarine and Autopia cars - with the first appearance of a TRON motorbike coaster, and always the Jet Packs in the background.

The five next renderings typical "blue sky" artworks but some elements that will be in the final design starts to appear like these curved lines and on the one below we can even guess an outdoor TRON Lightcycles outdoor ride. These artworks below were most probably done with the design of Shanghaî Disneyland Tomorrowland in mind. As you'll see most of them were done by artist Scot Drake, a great artist specialized in digital paintings.

The next one below is interesting, specially when we remember that the land where Shanghaî Disneyland is currently built was rice fields before.

Another "blue sky" rendering - and by the way, for those of you who wouldn't know what "blue sky" means, it is the period during which WDI Imagineers can design anything they wish without thinking about the feasibility. Afterwards elements of these concepts are kept, others not, and are include in the final "feasible" concept.

This next artwork is another different concept, but keep in mind the element on the left looking like a concert arena as we'll see it again later. The curved lines are always there too.

Another great "blue sky" artwork on which you'll note the elevated walkways, something which will stay in the final design.

A perfect Tomorrowland vision in this artwork most probably done for Shanghaî Disneyland Tomorrowland , and on which we see the TRON ride and the Jet Packs at its center. Look great but a vision probably very expensive to realize in real...

Now we're getting closer to the final design. Almost everything that will be in the final concept is here. The jet Packs, the elevated walkways, the curved dome structure, etc...

We're almost to the final design with this next artwork. Note that the Jet Packs ride is no longer in the center but placed at the entrance of the land. The curved  "TRON cover" is there but the water element with the Jet Packs apparently shouldn't be kept in SDL Tomorrowland final concept.

Again, here is the final design of SDL Tomorrowland,  the result of the evolution that you've seen on the artworks above. Looks disappointing in comparison of the others artworks? Of course it does, because of the scope of the others one. But the others concepts were not realistically feasible. They were probably technically feasible but the costs was too high.

That said, if everything works fine we should find most of the original spirit in the final result, whether it is the elevated walkways or the curved dome of TRON...

And remember this element on one of the artworks above that i told you to keep in mind. Well, you'll find it in the final concept as it will be the Tomorrowland Arena Stage!

Don't go away as we're not done yet with SDL Tomorrowland, more greatness to come tomorrow!

Artworks: copyright Disney - Shendi