Saturday, January 16, 2016

New Shanghaî Disneyland Rendering Reveal SDL Future Hotels

As usual i have a Shanghaî Disneyland article for you for the week-end and this one is about Shanghaî Disneyland future! A new rendering showing "Wishing Star Lake" - i.e SDL lake - has been released recently and this one is particularly interesting by what it shows.

As you know, so far, at its opening, Shanghaî Disneyland will have two hotels only, the five stars Shanghaî Disneyland Hotel and the Budget Toy Story Hotel. Only the Shanghai Disneyland Hotel will be near the lake, the Toy Story Hotel being located more or less behind SDL Tomorrowland, outside the park.

Now, what we can see if we have a closer look at this new artwork is that many more hotels are envisioned to be built neat the Wishing Star Lake. Actually, right on the left of the current Shanghaî Disneyland Hotel - which is on the right - another one with the same shape is supposed to come, and it may be another wing of the same hotel. 

Also at least one more is located at the left of this second hotel / wing, and all of them will be facing the park which si on the other side of the lake, so not visible on this rendering. And behind, on the other side of the road, others buildings can be seen in the background, though it's not possible yet to be sure at 100% that these will be hotel too - but they could be.

That's it for the SDL post of the week-end, and do not miss the next D&M article also about Shanghaî Disneyland as i have something great for you!

Pictures: copyright Disney - Shendi

Major Changes at Walt Disney Imagineering as Disney Names Bob Weis President of Walt Disney Imagineering!

Major changes at Walt Disney Imagineering yesterday as Disney named Bob Weis as new President of Walt Disney Imagineering!

From the N.Y Times: The Walt Disney Company on Friday installed new leadership at its linchpin Imagineering division, which is responsible for designing and building rides, hotels and restaurants across Disney’s $16 billion global theme park empire.

The changes, which come as Disney prepares to open a $5.5 billion resort in Shanghai, its first on the Chinese mainland, consolidate power under one leader. Bob Weis, most recently overseeing the Shanghai project as an Imagineering executive vice president, will become president of the division. A new leader for the Shanghai park, set to open on June 16, will be named at a later date.

Mr. Weis replaces two executives. Bruce Vaughn, who has served for the last eight years as chief creative executive for the Imagineering unit, will leave Disney after a transition period of several months. Mr. Vaughn’s counterpart for construction, Craig Russell, will remain at Imagineering, but not in the same kind of leadership role.

Bob Chapek, chairman of Walt Disney Parks and Resorts, announced the changes in an internal memo. “Since creativity is at the heart of what we do,” the memo said, “we need to relentlessly innovate and evolve our organization.”

The Imagineering unit has its work cut out for it over the coming years. Among other projects, Disney has announced multiple “Star Wars”-themed park expansions; a major “Avatar”-themed addition at Walt Disney World in Florida; and “Frozen”-themed areas at Tokyo Disney Resort and at Epcot.

Mr. Weis has considerable theme park experience. He helped design Disney’s Hollywood Studios park in Florida in the 1980s. More recently, Mr. Weis oversaw a successful redesign of Disney’s struggling California Adventure park.

Text: copyright New York Times

Great New Documentary “Great Big Beautiful Tomorrow: The Futurism of Walt Disney”

“Great Big Beautiful Tomorrow: The Futurism of Walt Disney” is a great brand new documentary about Disney and his pursuit of futurism. Featuring interviews with Disney Legends, Imagineers and Historians, "Great Big Beautiful Tomorrow" looks at the various technologies Walt Disney used and developed over the course of his life. From creating the first sync sound animation in 1928 to his unrealized dream of E.P.C.O.T., an experimental city that passed on with him in 1966, this film shows Walt Disney as the futurist he truly was!

Friday, January 15, 2016

Awesome Star Wars The Force Awakens Visual Effects Video

Star Wars : The Force Awakens has an Academy Awards nomination for "visual effects" - and probably will win the Oscar - and here is an awesome video showing precisely how the VFX were done.

Star Wars 7 The Force Awakens - VFX Breakdown par FilmsActuTrailers

Video: copyright Lucasfilm

Shanghaî Disneyland Alice in Wonderland Maze Full Storyline

D&M continues the series of Shanghaî Disneyland "attraction storyline" articles, and today we have more details about the Alice in Wonderland Maze including attraction artworks and pictures by Andy Castro from D23 presentation. I remind you that at SDL the maze will be inspired by the Tim Burton movie, not by the Disney classic animated film.

Classic Tale, New Twist
From Walt’s early films to Tim Burton’s brand of fantasy, Alice’s travels hold a special place in Disney history. The imaginations of Lewis Carroll and Walt Disney have been intertwined for nearly a century—dating back to Walt’s childhood, when he first read the author’s Alice books.

Alice’s Wonderland, a short film produced by fledgling filmmaker Walt in 1923, combined live-action with animation and was based on the stories he loved as a kid. The short introduced Carroll’s topsy-turvy universe, which Walt revived years later in the 1951 full-length animated feature, Alice in Wonderland.

The film has captivated audiences ever since and inspired the classic Fantasyland attraction, Alice in Wonderland, which debuted in 1958 at Disneyland Park. Due to the popularity of the original romp, Alice’s Curious Labyrinth premiered at Disneyland Paris in 1992, giving Guests a whirlwind tour of Wonderland—from Tulgey Woods to the Queen of Hearts’ castle.

The attraction at Shanghai Disneyland takes its cue from director Tim Burton’s 2010 feature film, Alice in Wonderland. Johnny Depp starred in the big-screen odyssey back to “Underland,” which sparked the park’s brand-new glimpse into the eccentric environment that remains a favorite with fans to this day.

Wind your way through the maze of Alice’s Wonderland world to attend this delightfully mad tea party.

Hatters and Rabbits and Cats… Oh My!
Join the Mad Hatter, Cheshire Cat and a fantastical cast of characters as you disappear down the rabbit hole. Inspired by Tim Burton’s Alice in Wonderland, this enchanted adventure surrounds you with huge blooms, giant hedges and hidden delights around every corner.

Enter the maze through one of three doors, each providing a different route into the dream-like landscape where Alice and her pals await.

Wonderland Garden
Meander down these peculiar little paths to discover a land full of wonder, mystery and danger—the beastly Bandersnatch, glowering flowers and whimsical armored creatures steer you toward a secretive underground cave. You needn’t be mad as a hatter to continue!

Cheshire Cat
His silly grin may be a comfort to Alice, but look sharp as Cheshire Cat floats before your eyes, then disappears in clouds of smoke—all while offering amusing advice! His Jabberwocky-style gibberish is meant to keep you in stitches… but if you’re still curious, bid him farewell and follow along.

Red Queen’s Garden
“Off with your head!” Heart-shaped arches, mighty knights and ruby rose bushes indicate you’ve arrived in the Red Queen’s courtyard. Climb the tower for a sneak peek of the ultimate tea party or stop by the Queen’s throne for a royal photo op. Love her big bulbous head? Funhouse mirrors flanking the door will do wonders for your image.

Hedge Maze
Though all ways here are the Queen’s ways, use the head you still have to select a path through the elaborate labyrinth of spiraling high and low hedges. To the left or the right? Each mapped route leads you into the maze, but it’s clearly a matter of choice on how quickly you arrive at the Mad Hatter’s merrymaking.

Tea Party
It’s always teatime here! Emerge from the maze and celebrate with a bunch who are truly bonkers—and all the best people are. Whistling teapots, spinning cakes and wacky stacked cups set the scene, with interactive elements that encourage Guests to play along.

Be sure to take a seat at a recreation of the table from the popular film and remember the tea-tastic festivities by posing for pics under “chapeaux” created by the Mad Hatter himself!

Above and below, making-of pictures of some creatures SDL guests will see in the maze. Pictures by Andy Castro

Stay tuned on Disney and more for more Shanghaî Disneyland updates coming soon!

Pictures: copyright Disney - Shendi, Andy Castro

Thursday, January 14, 2016

Shanghaî Disneyland Adventure Isle and Roaring Rapids Storyline !

After yesterday's article about SDL Pirates of Caribbean ride, the series of article bringing more details about Shanghaî Disneyland attractions continues, and today we'll have a closer look at Adventure Isle!

Let's start with the Roaring Rapids raft ride:

Plunge through dark chasms, outrace a ferocious beast and churn through raging, roiling currents on a thrilling raft adventure!

Confront the Mountain’s Terrifying Secret

Join a rafting expedition to explore an ancient legend… but beware the dangers that lie ahead.

You’re invited to join the League of Adventurers as they unravel the mystery of Adventure Isle’s highest peak, known as “Roaring Mountain” for the forbidding sounds it emits.
Arbori natives believe that Q’aráq—a crocodile-like beast—dwells within. But could this incredible tale be true? League scientists have already unearthed fascinating relics and a hidden pathway.
Finding more clues will require a perilous river journey through uncharted waters. Brave volunteers are needed. If you have a thirst for adventure and a yearning for excitement, climb aboard and set off into the unknown.

Feel the Rush!
A journey to explore becomes an adrenaline-charged race to survive.
You’ll board your raft and set off upriver to Field Camp Beta. But look out! A fallen tree blocks your way and diverts the current in a new direction—right inside the mountain!
Within the cavern, the roar turns deafening as the rapids propel you toward the enraged monster itself. Speeding through the darkness, you’ll see the bulging-eyed beast ahead, feel its steamy breath and duck as it snaps its giant razor-sharp teeth.

If your raft escapes the fearsome jaws of Q’aráq, you’ll plunge through a lava tube and into a churning whirlpool, then past erupting volcanic vents and steaming geysers as the whitewater rapids sweep you back to basecamp.
Breathlessly returning, you’ll be hailed by your fellow League of Adventurers members. Your mission has boldly embraced their intrepid spirit: seeking the unknown and discovering the unbelievable—no matter the peril!

And now, more details about Camp Discovery!
Traverse challenging rope courses, hike scenic trails and dig for ancient relics as you explore Adventure Isle.

Join the League of Adventurers
Discover an astonishing world of mystery, natural beauty and archeological wonders.

For millennia, the Arbori people have called this lush and beautiful island their home—living in harmony with their natural world. When, in 1935, an expedition of the League of Adventurers was blown off course and discovered Adventure Isle, the peaceful Arbori welcomed them. It turns out the tribe was just as curious about this intrepid band of scientists as the explorers were about the Arboris’ customs, artifacts and natural surroundings.

With so many natural and man-made marvels to be found on this remote tropical island, the League welcomes inquisitive explorers like you to help them with their ongoing investigations.

At Camp Discovery, you can choose from a variety of expeditions to help unravel the island’s mysteries and uncover its wonders. You can climb on elevated rope courses to survey the stunning terrain of Roaring Mountain, hike through the breathtaking scenery or work inside a dig zone to unearth ancient artifacts.

Are you ready? Onward, Adventurers!

Excitement for Explorers of All Ages
Choose your course, set out for adventure and prepare for the incredible!

For everyone, from the most fearless trailblazer to the youngest League of Adventurers recruit, Camp Discovery offers rare experiences and remarkable sights few have ever encountered.

Challenge Trails at Camp Discovery
These 3 uniquely thrilling elevated rope courses traverse the terrain of Roaring Mountain—taking adventurers over river gorges, waterfalls and sheer cliffs, through stunning terrain and into spectacular caverns.

Hidden Falls Chamber – Journey behind a waterfall and deep into the jungle to a mystical cavern, home to the glittering gem-encrusted Temple of the Milky Way.
Echo Cavern – Wind along a perilous river gorge, discover magnificent rock carvings and cave paintings, and hear for yourself how Echo Canyon got its name.
House of the Ancients – Trek to the site of an in-progress excavation, where League of Adventurers archeologists are unearthing an ancient Arbori trading center.
Please note: Guests must be at least 106 centimeters (41.5 inches) or taller to experience the 3 rope courses of the Challenge Trails at Camp Discovery.

Vista Trail
This gentle and lushly landscaped trail lets adventurers of all ages and abilities experience the wonders of the rope courses from ground level—with photo opportunities around every bend. Stop to marvel at the trio of large “humming stones” which emit a mysterious hum heard only by the most nature-attuned individuals.

Excavation Site
At this hands-on dig zone, young archeologists can discover fascinating relics embedded in rock and buried in sand. Slides and other engaging activities among the ruins make exploring this area extra fun.

No matter how you choose to explore, mysteries, wonders and new adventures unfold all around you when you make the trek to Camp Discovery

The main restaurant of adventure Isle will be Tribal Table: "Set out for the heart of the Arbori village where Guests like you are invited to a welcome feast—with entrees from our wok and roasting stations. Join us in celebrating the bounty and balance of nature! "

Stay tuned on Disney and more for more article about Shanghaî Disneyland rides and attractions!

Pictures: copyright Disney - Shendi

Wednesday, January 13, 2016

Shanghaî Disneyland "Pirates of the Caribbean : Battle for the Sunken Treasure" Full Storyline

Shanghaî Disneyland released the "full storyline" for one of its most awaited attraction: Pirates of the Caribbean Battle for the Sunken Treasure! I'm sure you're dying to learn more about this brand new version of one of Disney's most beloved rides, so here we go with a selection of the ride renderings!
Ahoy! Join Jack Sparrow’s swashbuckling band of buccaneers for a monster-meeting, treasure-seeking, high-seas adventure!
Avast, Me Hearties
Cruise Treasure Cove with the most charismatic rogue ever to rock the Jolly Roger—the devilishly dashing Captain Jack!

Set sail for seafaring fun that takes you on, over and under the deep blue in search of Davy Jones’ sunken plunder—all while crossing paths with pirates, mermaids and even the savage Kraken.

Landlubbers leave from the Royal Navy’s former fortress and embark on a course that passes through the mysterious Voodoo Alley and Jack’s own secret sanctuary—the Caves of Misfortune—before hitting the briny depths. From a face-to-face with some of the world’s saltiest sea dogs to dreaming of those coveted doubloons, you’ll surely “shiver ye timbers” during this rollicking romp!

Thar She Goes…
Yo ho, yo ho—batten down the hatches for a one-of-a-kind ride with your favorite Pirates of the Caribbean! Board a ship christened after some of history’s most scandalous scoundrels and watch their notorious tales come to life.

Hold on to ye eye patch, picaroon—each vessel twists, twirls and steers backwards while navigating treacherous waters!

Your Treasure Quest Begins
Weigh anchor and hoist the mizzen! Your journey commences as you wind through the fort’s 17th-century supply room, an illuminated map cabin and the abandoned jail cells Captain Jack now calls home. Have ye got what it takes?

Upon shoving off from the dock, your boat floats past Barbossa’s Bounty and meanders into murky waters. You arrive at the entrance to a series of eerily dark caverns. Dare to continue, matey?

Into the Caves
Light flickers and fades while gliding deeper inside the caves until suddenly you’re surrounded by pirates—but dead men tell no tales! Will the old bones of these scurvy rapscallions rattle ye?

Captain Jack
You spiral ‘round a corner as lightning strikes, revealing a skeleton that magically comes alive—it’s Jack Sparrow! Once the Captain gives his orders, heave ho, heave ho… it’s off to treasure hunt ye go.

To the Depths
Swallowed by the ocean, you plummet to the Graveyard of Lost Ships, where gold glimmers from wrecked hulls. Without warning, the monstrous Kraken awakens as you enter what’s left of Davy Jones’ massive craft.

Undersea World
While making your way into mermaid territory, a bevy of fish-tailed beauties harmonize as their crusty counterparts glare at passing ships. Jones’ former crew members fiercely stand guard over his glistening trove—one hammerhead sailor snarls “The Captain be wantin’ a word with ye!”

Davy Jones
Barnacle-encrusted spears, melancholy organ music and walls embedded with the bodily remains of a sordid few… you’ve reached the lair of that squid-headed horror himself, Davy Jones.

To Battle
All hands on deck! Swords are drawn and cannons blast as the captains wage war over the biggest booty in the Caribbean. You’re caught in the crossfire, with fighting pirates battling to their doom.

Inside the Hold
Trapped in the ship’s hull, water gushes all around your swirling boat. Captain Jack piles jewels and gold into the hold as Davy Jones jumps in. A dastardly duel ensues—will Sparrow escape all the richer?
Fool’s Gold
After surviving Davy’s grip, your voyage returns to Fort Snobbish, now filled to the gills with Jack’s precious treasure—but Jones isn’t done just yet! Will the wicked scallywag’s curse rob Jack of his good fortune? Take ye sea legs for a test run to find out!
Stay tuned to Disney and more as more Shanghaî Disneyland attractions "full script" are coming soon!
Pictures and video: copyright Disney - Shendi

Tuesday, January 12, 2016

Shanghaî Disneyland Opening Date Official Press Release With New Imagineering Pictures

Shanghaî Disneyland opening date was officially announced today - see next post below - and it will be Thursday June 16! Shanghaî Disneyland press office released the press release below and for those of you wondering at what point SDL Imagineers are in the rides construction SDL provided new pictures showing that things may not be as late as you can think!

Shanghai Disney Resort to Officially Open on June 16, 2016

Authentically Disney, distinctly Chinese destination will offer world-class attractions and premium guest experiences

Shanghai, January 13, 2016 – The Walt Disney Company and Shanghai Shendi Group announced today that Shanghai Disney Resort will host a multi-day grand opening celebration, culminating in a spectacular welcoming ceremony for the resort’s first official guests on June 16, 2016.

The opening of Shanghai Disney Resort will mark a key milestone in the development of Shanghai’s tourism industry, offering a unique new international tourism destination for guests from China and around the world. Considered one of the largest Sino-foreign joint investment projects in the modern service industry in China’s history, the resort’s grand opening will be a celebration of the partnership between Disney and Shanghai. The destination is sure to delight and entertain the people of China for generations to come at a truly magical place that is both authentically Disney and distinctly Chinese.

Once operational, a visit to Shanghai Disney Resort will be unlike any experience in the world and will demonstrate Disney’s relentless innovation and famous creativity. With Shanghai Disneyland, a Magic Kingdom-style theme park with six themed lands, two richly themed hotels, Disneytown, a huge shopping, dining and entertainment district and Wishing Star Park available to guests at opening, Shanghai Disney Resort will not only showcase the best of Disney’s storytelling but also celebrate China’s incredibly rich heritage and cultural elements to create a one-of-a-kind destination. From world-class attractions to Broadway-quality entertainment, the newest Disney destination will offer premium experiences that guests can only find at Shanghai Disney Resort.

“We are extremely excited to announce our opening date of June 16. Both shareholders and the joint venture board of directors agree this is the optimal time to welcome our first official guests to the resort,” said Philippe Gas, general manager of Shanghai Disney Resort. “Shanghai Disney Resort celebrates China’s rich heritage and is the result of years of partnership and innovation with contributions from our talented Cast
Members and Imagineers, as well as thousands of artists, designers, construction workers and suppliers from across China and around the world. Our special thanks go to the joint venture shareholders and the local government who provided tremendous support to the project along the way.”

Ride testing continues on another attraction created especially for Shanghai Disneyland. Guests will soon be able to take a spin on Fantasia Carousel, which features characters and symphonic music from the groundbreaking Disney film, Fantasia.

“Shanghai is one of the most exciting and dynamic cities in the world and we’re delighted to be able to open a world class tourism and entertainment destination befitting this incredible city and its people,” said Bill Ernest, president and managing director of Asia for Walt Disney Parks and Resorts. “We are taking everything we’ve learned from our six decades of exceeding expectations – along with our signature innovation and classic storytelling to create this truly magical place that is both authentically Disney and distinctly Chinese.”

"The construction of Shanghai Disneyland – which has involved the talents of tens of thousands of technicians and construction workers – has gone through an extensive construction period and is now entering the timeframe to prepare our operation,” said Fan Xiping, chairman of Shanghai Shendi Group. “Over the past five years the joint venture partners have worked closely with one another to ensure the smooth progress of the project and applied innovative and best practices for building the resort. There’s still work ahead in the coming months before opening but working together I’m confident we’ll be successful in our final sprint and provide a spectacular grand opening for our guests."

Major construction of Shanghai Disney Resort is now complete and will be followed by an extensive preparation period to ensure the resort is fully operational and ready to greet millions of guests. During this period the resort will continue to hire and train new Cast to join the current team of nearly 2000 Cast Members and Imagineers. Shanghai Disney Resort Cast Members will undertake extensive preparatory work to ensure Disney’s legendary guest service standards of safety, courtesy, show and efficiency are fully ready for the grand opening period. The theme park’s ticketing plan as well as other operational details of the resort will be announced at a later date.

Testing has already begun on the Seven Dwarfs Mine Train where guests will hitch a rollicking ride on the Seven Dwarfs Mine Train in Fantasyland.

Shanghai Disney Resort, part of the Shanghai International Tourism and Resorts Zone, is a complete vacation destination offering something for everyone, and on opening day, June 16, 2016, will include:
 Shanghai Disneyland, a theme park with six themed lands: Adventure Isle, Gardens of Imagination, Mickey Avenue, Tomorrowland, Treasure Cove and Fantasyland, with the Enchanted Storybook Castle. Guests will be immersed in popular Disney stories that come to life at the largest castle in a Disney park, at the first Pirates-themed land in a Disney park, on the longest Disney Parks parade route and in more enchanting places filled with thrills, creativity and adventure. Many of Shanghai Disneyland’s attractions and entertainment experiences will be appearing in a Disney theme park for the first time.

Ride testing is already underway at the Roaring Rapids, where guests will embark on a thrilling rafting adventure, straight through the heart of Adventure Isle.

 The Shanghai Disneyland Hotel and Toy Story Hotel, imaginatively themed hotels conveniently located near the theme park. The Shanghai Disneyland Hotel is an elegant Art Nouveau-inspired resort with a touch of Disney magic and imagination, while the Toy Story Hotel immerses guests in a world inspired by the toys from the Disney•Pixar series of Toy Story animated films.

 Disneytown, an international shopping, dining and entertainment district, adjacent to Shanghai Disneyland and including the Walt Disney Grand Theatre, home to the first-ever Mandarin production of the Broadway hit, Disney’s THE LION KING. Another “must-see” for guests will be the innovative World of Disney Store, offering a comprehensive collection of Disney merchandise, including many products designed especially for Shanghai Disney Resort.

 Wishing Star Park, with beautiful gardens, a walking path and a glittering lake. With approximately 40 hectares, the size of 56 football fields, Wishing Star Park presents guests with awe-inspiring natural views and beautiful sunsets.

In addition to Shanghai Disney Resort, guests who visit Shanghai International Tourism and Resorts Zone will also have opportunities to enjoy a wide range of other exciting tourism experiences within the zone, such as Shanghai Village, Ecological Park and Herb Garden.

In Tomorrowland, the massive, color-shifting canopy over the TRON Lightcycle Power Run is already being lit up at night while testing continues on the attraction’s exciting new ride vehicles.

Shanghai Disney Resort broke ground in 2011, began vertical construction in 2013 and has celebrated numerous construction milestones since then, including the topping off of the resort’s iconic Enchanted Storybook Castle in May 2015. In April 2014, the resort’s shareholders jointly announced an accelerated expansion plan to capitalize on the tremendous growth in China’s tourism sector – adding more attractions, entertainment and other offerings to increase capacity at the theme park on opening day.

Guests who want to go to infinity and beyond on Buzz Lightyear Planet Rescue will be excited to learn ride testing is already underway! A new storyline combined with a new, interactive targeting system will make this one of the most engaging attractions at a Disney park.

Guests can learn more by visiting, the destination’s newly updated official website for news and information about Shanghai Disney Resort.

Pictures: copyright Disney