From 11 am – 3 pm, guests are invited to join hostess Miss Betty Blue, as she presents some hauntingly good entertainment including the barbershop quartet, The Cadaver Dans, the piano playing Dearly Departed Stan, and magician Abner Cadaver. Guests will be able to grab a Halloween inspired treat, including a special cupcake.
The Jungle Cruise is one of my favorite attractions because of its corny jokes, its nostalgia, and, of course, the fact that it really is junglier at night. (Why, yes, I did make that word up!) This winter season, it looks like it will actually become jinglier because starting in early November at both Disneyland and at Magic Kingdom, this Adventureland ride will receive its first ever holiday makeover.
According to the Disney Parks Blog, with the new seasonal storyline, the Jungle Cruise skippers have grown homesick for the holidays. To help get them into the spirit, they’ve added holiday cheer to both the Jungle Cruise queue and boathouse, putting up some decorations that have been mailed to them from home, as well as a few homemade festive baubles. Best of all, new jokes have been added to their tours to get folks into the spirit. Keep your eye out, as the boats have been renamed, and for those who listen in the queue, a holiday-themed radio broadcast will playing in the background.
This seems like it will be a fun addition for the Holiday Season!
The Walt Disney feature animators who originally occupied the Magic of Disney Animation attraction at WDW’s Disney’s Hollywood Studios park were furloughed well over a decade ago. But, for one next week at least, a member of Disney’s animation team will appear at the sister attraction across the country.
On Thursday, October 24, Annual Passholders can attend a free session with Dave Bossert, Producer, Creative Director and Head of Special Projects for for Walt Disney Animation Studios. Bossert will tell behind-the-scenes tales and give “a close-up look at the new Disney Animated app.”
Walt was desperately trying to fill space in Tomorrowland, and an employee suggested that he bring some of the sets and props from the popular 1954 film 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea down to the park. Ken Anderson was pulled away from his work in Fantasyland in the last two weeks before the park opening to work on the show. He said, “I was up all night with two other studio artists just before opening day painting the giant squid. Walt was supposed to be at a party his wife, Lillian, was giving for some VIPs at the park, but he was too nervous about everything being ready on time to stay there. He went around from ride to ride and exhibit to exhibit, checking work, helping out. He even came into where we were painting the squid, put on a mask, and did a little painting himself.” John Hench also joined in.
The walk-through display opened on August 5, 1955. Guests entered the exhibit through a 40-foot mural of the Nautilus and the giant squid. Originally, costumed guides would have provided a tour but that idea was scrapped in favor of a prerecorded narration track voiced by Thurl Ravenscroft (possibly best-known for Tony the Tiger’s, “They’re grrrreat!” for Frosted Flakes). As the guests entered the exhibit, the movie’s theme song, “Whale of a Tale” played in the background while they peered through portholes to see a model of the Nautilus in its final resting place. The guest’s point of view was from the stern window of a sunken ship with treasure chests spilled out in the sand in the foreground and the upper deck of the submarine in the distance.
Welcome to Disneyland! We’re at that point of the year where weekdays see mid-level crowds and weekend see crowds at the upper end of the scale. For example, this last weekend saw a 9 out of 10 crowd on Saturday, and an 8 out of 10 on Sunday. This weekend will see similar crowds, with an 8 out of 10 on Saturday and a 6 out of 10 on a Sunday.
We predicted today (Monday, October 14) as a 7. Even though a 7 seems high the attraction wait times were actually quite manageable. Some queue lengths can be deceptively long on days like this. For example here is the Pirates of the Caribbean extended queue. It extends out of the regular queue and under the New Orleans Square bridge and to the right. It looks long but…
More than virtually any other attraction in the park, it was Fantasyland’s dark rides that set Disneyland apart from other parks. Before Disneyland, the typical dark ride would be something like the Tunnel of Love, where boats followed each other through a canal. Coats felt “the big improvement we made over what had been done before was the way we left people with a little two-minute experience within a certain story that they had known from our animated films. Now they got to see it in a more dimensional way, and these were interesting ways of doing it.” Walt wanted each ride to represent a different emotional experience. He wanted drama, humor, and beauty.
The process started with the source material, the animated films. The Imagineers used the original 4-by-8-inch storyboards and concept sketches. Claude Coats credits Ken Anderson with finding a way to make it work. Anderson drafted storyboards that highlighted key elements of the story but focused more on creating the right mood. Then Ken Anderson and Claude Coats designed the interior sets. Fortunately, both Anderson and Coats worked on the films and knew the material well. Once they finished, Bill Martin would make modifications to fit the shows inside the buildings.