Last Wednesday on July 28, the cast and crew of the Who Wants to be a Millionaire Play It! attraction at Disney's California Adventure were notified that the game show attraction would be closing on Friday, August 20. There is no word on whether the Walt Disney World version will suffer a similar fate.
The latest closure has sparked yet another round of speculation about the future of the Hollywood Backlot District. Three closed venuesHollywood and Dine, SuperStar Limo and now the Millionaire stageall sit next to one another. As one MousePlanet reader observed, That's a lot of contiguous, available, real estate. Many hope that the long-rumored Aerosmith's Rock 'n' Roller Coaster project from Florida's Disney-MGM Studios will come to fruition.
A usually reliable source tells us that the rumored Finding Nemo attraction slated for the Submarine Lagoon has been given the green lightagain. Riders will board a submarine to take an educational trip among the reefs to learn about the fish and flora of the ocean.
Nemo, Marlin and Dory may be moving in with the mermaids. Photo by Adrienne Vincent-Phoenix.
Of course, something will go terribly awry, with passengers enlisted to help Dory save the day. Our source says that work can begin as early as this month, with the ride scheduled to open in November 2005the same time that Space Mountain reopens. We'll be waiting to see if this reoprt pans out, or, if like so many rumors about the Submarine Lagoon, it's just another fish tale.
Downtown Disney has another vacancy. Petals, which sold purses and luggage, has closed. The store was operated by the group behind three other original Downtown Disney tenants: MainSpring, Soliton and Liquid Planet. Soliton closed last year, moving into the MainSpring store and making room for a new Jamba Juice. Liquid Planet went through a major transformation this spring, and recently reopened as the Quicksilver Surf Shop.
Your name hereDowntown Disney has new vacancy. Photo by Adrienne Vincent-Phoenix,
The vacancy was not unexpected. We reported in March that a rumored expansion of neighboring Marceline's Confectionary could bring a new Disney Home store to the resort just in time for the holiday season. But some cast members were told that the expansion is off, and Disney is looking for a new tenant to fill the Petals space; possibly another quick-serve restaurant.
Disneyland visitors have the opportunity to purchase the next movie in the Platinum Collection right at the park. The Aladdin Special Edition DVD ($29.99), with a release date of Tuesday, October 5, can be ordered at various stores around the Disneyland Resort. As with the other Platinum Dollection films Disneyland has offered in the past, there is free shipping on all orders. Those who order the DVD receive a lithograph of Aladdin and Jasmine on the flying carpet on the spot, so either get a locker or order at the end of the day. Annual pass holders also get a 10 percent discount.
Among the features on this release:
During a meet and greet at Disneyland on July 24, entertainer and doll designer Marie Osmond told fans that she will be the guest narrator for Disneyland's 2004 Candlelight Procession and Ceremony event. In 2003, Osmond, who was at Disneyland for another merchandise event, agreed to narrate the ceremony when scheduled narrator Louis Gossett, Jr. suddenly fell ill. Osmond said that she enjoyed the event, and was pleased to be asked to return. Disneyland has not yet announced the dates of the 2004 event.
In last week's Park Update: Disneyland, we incorrectly reported that a Disneyland 50th Anniversary charity gala event would be on board the Disney Wonder cruise ship on July 17, 2005 and benefit the Boys & Girls Club. The event instead benefits the Make-a-Wish Foundation on Saturday, July 16 aboard the Disney Magic.
Start saving your pennies. Members of the 2004 Disneyland Creative Advisory Council, a consumer focus group, had its first meeting last week. Although participants sign nondisclosure agreements promising not to discuss what they see and hear, a few rumors have already trickled out. Among the products in development for the 50th anniversary are a series of Big Fig sculptures based on classic Disneyland attractions. Unlike the current character-based figures, these new Big Figs are said to be models of the attraction buildings, including an Enchanted Tiki Room hut and a Splash Mountain with working water effect.
A cast member mists a passing park visitor. Photo by Adrienne Vincent-Phoenix.
The Downtown Disney AMC Theatre hosts the premiere of Princess Diaries 2 on Saturday, August 7.
Halloween has arrived at the Disneyland Resort. The World of Disney and Disney Showcase locations are now offering Halloween costumes for children and adults. While it seems odd to be shopping for Halloween in the middle of summer, cast members warn that many costumes sell out even before school starts. They also remind shoppers that Disney may raise prices if a costume proves to be especially popular, so shop early and avoid the markup.
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Note: Disneyland is progressively closing more and more attractions as the park readies for its 50th anniversary celebration in 2005.
The moat is being drained as part of the Sleeping Beauty Castle refurb. Photo by Adrienne Vincent-Phoenix.
Work continues on Sleeping Beauty Castle. Photo by Adrienne Vincent-Phoenix.
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