Insightful mail ranging from Atlantis
to Soarin' over Florida to Disney Goes Ebay.
|Jason Bostick wrote:
As soon as I saw the trailer at the Animation Building
of DCA, I saw what you noticed, namely a ride begging to be
born. I don't know how this jives with the dire predictions
for the Submarine Voyage attraction, since all the recent
news about the subs rotting behind the waterfall is concurrent
with the Atlantis film development, but here's my fantasy
pitch for redoing Submarine Voyage to become Atlantis: The
Atlantis promotional art ©
Mechanics: The sub vehicles will be redone to look like
the sub from the movie. In addition to track wheels, there
will be hydraulics and a central pivot located at the rear of
the sub (out of sight, of course). The result will be a sub
with Star Tours capabilities, including pitch and yaw to
enhance the action of the attraction. The interior will need
to be widened and seat belts installed, along with video
screens and surround sound, a la the sound effects for Alien
Encounter. Also, there is no need for complete submersion
during the ride. You could keep the lagoon but once the sub
goes into the cavern and out of sight, drop the water level
below the new tracks to save on wear.
Now, I admit that I'm not up to date on the movie yet,
but there seems to be an obvious narrative structure that
could form the basis of the ride attraction. Part One: the
quest. Your sub and its intrepid crew dodge raiders and all
manner of hazards to find Atlantis. (Again, apologies for not
knowing the film's plot here). This part could climax with a
confrontation with the Leviathan. All the time, the real
effects of a sub could be applied in surround sound, including
creaking joints approaching crush depth, klaxons, power
outages/blackouts and water bursts from pipes, etc. And that's
not even counting sea battle effects! (What does a giant metal
claw rasping the hull of a sub sound like?)
Once the adventurers reach their goal, Part Two begins.
The volcano that destroyed Atlantis once has reawakened and
you must flee its wrath. The Escape sends riders through a
dizzying set of canyons with steep banking and scraping rock
noises and blast concussions from the volcano. The escape
concludes with the granddaddy of all sub maneuvers: the
emergency blow. Here the hydraulics really show off, pitching
the entire sub at a steep angle while rising to the surface.
The best part is that the sub could really break the surface
and crash back down, just in time to return to the loading
quay. Of course, people standing in line and observers on the
other side of the lagoon would see this dramatic action (maybe
even get splashed?), building expectation.
At any rate, I sure hope they do something worthy with
Submarine Voyage. Maybe they should save the nickels they may
dribble into DCA and schedule an Atlantis attraction for the
summer just after the DVD release.
Jason, you don't know how close you
are! Among WDI's several options for the subs are incorporating
Star Tours and Alien Encounter-type effects, although in a more
practical (and deceptive) way than you envision.
David, after reading your article, I am eager to see
Atlantis: The Lost Empire now more than ever. If it is as good
as it seems, then it should be a real winner.
Conversely, anything less than a full blown, home run
attraction based on this movie would be a real letdown, a
wasted opportunity. Unfortunately, I no longer have trust in
Disney that they are willing to go the extra mile to hit real
home runs, attraction wise, in Anaheim.
Not to say that the Imagineers aren't capable of
dreaming up something spectacular, but if this thing gets
"Presslerized" into something mediocre, then I'd
rather just see them drain that leaking lagoon and fill it up
As much as I'd love to see an E-ticket
sub attraction, I hope Disney doesn't go around replacing mediocrity
with mounds of dirt. The parks can't afford to lose any more
attractionseven SuperStar Limo.
|A Cast Member wrote:
Loved your article about Atlantis. Two of the characters
will be appearing at Disneyland and at the Hollywood district
of DCA as "face characters" when the film is
At this time, the two "face" characters that
are scheduled to appear are Milo (the hero with the glasses)
and Princess Kida (the blue-eyed, white-haired princess of
Atlantis). This information has not been released to
anyone outside the park, yet. So you are the first to know.
But you didn't hear it from me!
Concerning the fate of the Submarine Voyage, it doesn't
look good. If the attraction was to do any good, the reconstruction
work should have already started to tie in Atlantis. Whatever
plans I have seen would entail lots of money, and you
and I know that won't happen.
Also, a tech on Fantasmic! told me that management plans
to change the soundtrack to the show, probably because it will
be celebrating its 10th anniversary. How much they are going
to tinker around with it is unknown. It's still in the
|Another Cast Member claimed:
Roger Rabbit Entry Sign
Roger Rabbit is supposed to reopen with the start of the
summer schedule. WDI is supposed to be completing testing
there over the next couple of months, but communication isn't
quite what it used to be.
Word is that the Main Street Electrical Parade, at least
that which remains of it, is to return to Disneyland in 2002.
Jokes are already circulating that Disney will trade DCA
passes for all the lamps they sold off when it left for
He also included an email, sent to
salaried employees resort-wide:
Have you ever wondered what to do with that old sign
that just got replaced by a new brighter sign, and is now
sitting in the corner of your storage area taking up space?
Have you discovered some extra plastic leaves from the
remodeling of the Swiss Family Robinson Tree House?
If so, please do not discard them. The Disneyland Resort
is able to reuse this product to enhance our Guest's
experience through Disney Auctions Online.
Hello, my name is KC Sanders, Manager of Online
Initiatives, located here at the Disneyland Resort and I would
love to talk to you about your possible product. I would be
happy to evaluate the possible value of any items big or small
as well as taking care of storing them in the interim.
I will be concentrating on finding unique pieces to
drive awareness to the Disney Auction site. Toward this
effort, I will be approaching you and others to seek out the
product (old, new, prototypes) to create the optimum
assortment. In addition, if you have ideas or leads
for me, please let me know you know your business
and its appeal to a Disney Guest better than I, and I will
rely on your expertise.
Guidelines have been established for approving
Disneyland Resort product to be placed Online. This is to
protect the integrity, brand and image of The Disneyland
Resort. Therefore, any product to be placed on auctions
through Disney Online Auctions must have the proper approvals.
I will be coordinating this process.
My contact noted:
Disney continues to prostitute itself any which way it
can in order to get more money
all in the name of
"trivia" Could this be the first of many signs that
Disney could be going under?! and be sold off on eBay? Ha!
Will this give cast members "incentive" to rape and
I asked him: "Is there any
incentive for cast members providing items to Disney's New
Auctioneering Department?" He responded:
Under the Eisner/Pressler regime?!?!?! All one gets is
the pleasure of enhancing the company's bottom line!!!
I next posed the question to KC
Sanders, Manager of Online Initiatives, who replied:
How did you receive this the email?
a sampling of new themes suggested for Soarin' over California
when it is added to Disney World.
Reader Roger Colton wrote:
I would hope that any Soarin' adventure for Florida
would be a more general Above America theme. Imagine flying
above the Shenandoah Valley or, taking a page out of the old
CircleVision, a bird's-eye view of colonial Williamsburg. Or
how about an aerial view of the Grand Canyon?
One could come up with an endless line up of spectacular
views that guests would enjoy. And, yes, even some of the
views from California such as the Golden Gate or Yosemite
could sneak in.
An aerial view of just Florida might be a touch boring.
However, an aerial view of a space shuttle launch could be a
real show stopper!
When I first heard from the DIG that Eisner wanted to
take DCA to Orlando, my first thought was that we could change
Soarin' over California to "Flight of the Snowbird,"
a rollicking journey down the I-95 from Boston to a summer
retirement village in Miami, complete with special effects
like the smells of fry oil from the rest stop Hardees
Soarin' Over California
Seriously, though, the first time my wife and I rode Soarin',
my thoughts immediately turned to one inescapable conclusion:
this would be the way to see the original Star Wars. Imagine:
to celebrate the opening of the updated Star Tours, Disney
Entertainment throws a high-end limited attendance party (a
la Toad, Villains night, etc.) where guests can attend a one-night
screening of the original film on the IMAX screen. Or better
yet, just edit a 10-minute version of the climax of the theatrical
release so you can career (not careen, look it up) down the
trench of the death star before being escorted to the new
Episode One Star Tours. As one of the shrinking number of
fans who can claim that they saw Star Wars first on the big
screen (mind you, I was only seven), I would beat a
path and camp out for this experience.
|And Greg wrote:
I have another idea for your Soarin' speculation rides
series: Pearl Harbor!!! I think there are a looooot of planes
in this Disney movie, don't you think? Could be perfect in
the Orlando Studios and in the Paris Studios.
David Koenig is the senior editor of the 80-year-old business journal, The Merchant Magazine.
After receiving his degree in journalism from California State University, Fullerton (aka Cal State Disneyland), he began years of research for his first book, Mouse Tales: A Behind-the-Ears Look at Disneyland (1994), which he followed with Mouse Under Glass: Secrets of Disney Animation & Theme Parks (1997, revised 2001) and More Mouse Tales: A Closer Peek Backstage at Disneyland (1999); all titles published by Bonaventure Press.
He lives in Aliso Viejo, California, with his lovely wife, Laura, their wonderful son, Zachary, and their adorable daughter, Rebecca.
You can contact David here.
Click here to go to David's main page for a list of archived articles.
Visit MouseShoppe to purchase copies of David's books. (Clicking on the link opens a new window.)