MouseStation 436 - Will Avatar Fly at Walt Disney World?

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On today's show, Mark and Mike talk about the announcement of Disney's deal with Lightstorm Entertainment and Fox Filmed Entertainment to bring the universe of Avatar to Disney Parks.

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Meet Mark next month in Florida!

Do you want to meet Walt Disney World Resort Update editor Mark Goldhaber? There's a fun event coming to Walt Disney World this fall. Join Mark on Sunday, November 13, at 4 p.m. through park closing for the Big Bad Voodoo Food-Do To-Do.

We'll wander the last day of the Epcot International Food & Wine Festival, sampling cuisines from around the world, taking pauses to watch each of the three performances by Big Bad Voodoo Daddy (one of Mark's favorite groups) at 5:15, 6:30, and 7:45 p.m. on the final day of the Eat to the Beat concert series. After the last performance, we'll get one last snack, secure some international desserts, and then find a place to enjoy the evening's performance of Illuminations.

You can RSVP on Plancast, or by email. You can also just show up, but if Mark can snag some swag from the MouseAdventure goodie bag, he'll want to have enough for you! We'll meet at 4:00 p.m. at the World Showcase side of the Odyssey bridge. You can also follow @ on Twitter for updates on November 13 if you want to join the group later on in the day.

Calling all with a spirit of adventure!

Are you ready for MouseAdventure: World Explorers III? The third iteration of the scavenger hunt/puzzle quest/race through Walt Disney World's parks takes place on Saturday, November 12 at Disney's Hollywood Studios (the game has been going on at the parks of the Disneyland Resort for more than 10 years now). Do you think that you know Disney's Hollywood Studios? We bet you don't know them as well as you think you do. Test your wits against those of our puzzle masters. For more information, check out the MouseAdventure information page and sign up now. Hurry up! Registration closes October 21!

The Kid's Bar Mitzvah Project

Mark's son (a.k.a. "The Kid") will be having his Bar Mitzvah at the end of October. For his Bar Mitzvah community service project, he has elected to raise money for the March of Dimes to help them promote research that can help more kids born prematurely like him. To raise that money, he is writing a new song for this project, and will send a CD with the new song and two more of his "greatest hits" to anyone that donates at least $5 to the March of Dimes on his fundraising page.

The Kid is actually a very talented musician and songwriter (though Mark helped out with the lyrics for this song), as demonstrated in the background music for Mark's discussion of this topic. Please consider donating to The Kid's fundraiser, and you too can own a copy of an original song written, performed, sung, and mixed by The Kid.

Tip of the Week

This week's tip comes via Facebook from Vance Cope, who recommends a strategy for saving money when buying your three-year-old's first Annual Pass if you are already an Annual Passholder. If you're already a passholder, the child's pass can be processed as a renewal instead of a new pass.

Feature: Will Avatar Fly at Walt Disney World?

Mark and Mike talk about the announcement of Disney's deal with Lightstorm Entertainment and Fox Filmed Entertainment to bring the universe of Avatar to Disney Parks.

Mark set out a lot of the points that he originally covered in last week's Walt Disney World Update, and the conversation went on from there.

Topics included:

  • the actual and adjusted all-time box office grosses;
  • the staying power of the Avatar universe;
  • the fact that the movie was rated PG-13 for violence and other adult themes;
  • the possible themes from Pandora that could be explored;
  • using Avatar vs. using Disney content;
  • how Avatar would do compared to the Wizarding World of Harry Potter;
  • will Avatar be passe by the time that it opens;
  • will it be the immersive environment or the name that brings people in to see the land (and if so, could the Imagineers have come up with something amazing without the inspiration of Pandora);
  • what could they possibly build in a land inspired by the movie;
  • where the land would be built;
  • the length of time before the land can be built; and
  • when we might see some concept art.

Let us know what you think Avatar could bring to Disney's Animal Kingdom, and whether you think it's a good thing or a bad thing.

Mark forgot to do the drawing for the contest to give away two extra D23 Expo Guidebooks and six D23 Expo hand fans. We'll do the drawing and announce the winners on the October 18 show.

Magical Moment

This week's Magical Moment comes via email from Mary Tesch, who told us about the magical treatment that her family received when their room at the Disneyland Hotel was not ready when promised.

Listener Feedback

John and Cindy wrote in to say that on our Walt Disney World transportation episode, we forgot to mention the free transportation for Disney resort guests who wish to play golf on one of the Disney golf courses.

Paul wrote in (and posted on MousePad) that he wants to see the Dreamfinder come back to Journey Into Imagination.

IllusionofLife posted on the show notes for Update It! Replace It! Change it back! on MousePad that the big things for him are to replace or update Stitch's Great Escape, and to replace Laugh Floor and Buzz Lightyear's Space Ranger Spin. He likes the topic and can't wait for us to get around to doing it for the parks of the Disneyland Resort.

kvandmx posted on the show notes for Update It! Replace It! Change it back! on MousePad that they also like the show topic. The pointed out that we somehow missed talking about Mr. Toad's Wild Ride being replaced by Winnie-the-Pooh. We thought about it, but Mark blanked when trying to go back to Fantasyland.

mkelm44 posted on the show notes for Update It! Replace It! Change it back! on MousePad that he had a list of changes that he would like to see at the Great Movie Ride.

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Wrapping up

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Thanks to our announcer, Andrew Rich, and to our sound editor and audio engineer, James Granger!

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The MouseStation crew (@MouseStation) currently consists of Mark Goldhaber (@MPMark) and Mike Demopoulos (@MPMike).