Saturday, December 28, 2013

That's it, folks, it's the end of the year in three days! I always enjoy to post daily articles on Disney and more and on the Facebook page but it takes more time and energy than you can think to do it each day, and do it right. So, if Disney and more has contributed to make the year 2013 better for you, why not doing a little donation which will be really appreciated.
Whether it'll be 5, 10, or even more, dollars or euros you can send to me your donation easily with Paypal by asking Paypal to send your amount at:
As you know, i rarely ask for a donation but i thought that the end of the year was the right time for that and i thank you by advance for your kind and much appreciated generosity!

France Futuroscope : Green Light For a 46 Million Euros Investment Plan !

The Futuroscope, one of the most interesting french theme park located at only 90 minutes by train from Paris, announced yesterday an important news for the park which might also be a not-so-good news for Disneyland Paris. The park announced that the Futuroscope Supervisory Board gave its green light to a investment plan of 46 million euros for the renewal of the contents in the next four years of five of the park pavilions: the Image Studio, the Kinemax, the Solido, Imax 3D and the Magic Carpet. 

From the start Futuroscope pavilions architecture always looked great ( see above and below )  some looking like giant crystal rocks in which the sky reflects, wonderfully... and some of them could even make jealous the architects of Epcot’s future world. But the problem has always been with what was shown inside. At the start the Futuroscope was a huge "IMAX show room" where all the different IMAX techniques were shown to the visitors. Back in the 1990's it worked great, but now guests are asking more than a simple movie as good as it can be, and these 46M € surely will help the Futuroscope to do these enhancements and bring to the original pavilions something more exciting.

To come back to the announcement the agreement for the 46M € were discussed in a public meeting last Friday, December 20, and was vote unanimously by the majority and the opposition. The region general council, as owner of the park, agreed to support 8M Euros. Dominique Hummel, CEO of the park, stressed the importance of the commitment of the Compagnie des Alpes: "The air hole that we had in 2013 has lead us to build a multi-year plan. The contractual commitment of Compagnie des Alpes was 10 million euros. With this plan of 46 million euros in four years, it goes beyond. " 

The Magic Carpet attraction "will be transformed in a new major thrill ride" and they have plenty of room in this one to create something great. So far the “magic carpet” pavilion was inviting  its audience on a poetic and ecological odyssey that couldn't be seen anywhere in the world but at the Futuroscope, in a theatre that boasts the Double Imax format. In the upper area, nearly 250 seats in tiered rows face a giant 672 m2 screen. In the lower area, a second inclined screen, 748 m2 large, stretches out beneath the spectators' feet. Two films were projected simultaneously from two projection rooms equipped with IMAX technology, one in front and one underfoot, that let the audience fly with the birds above the whales and dolphins. 

But the theatre itself is huge and for instance they could easily built a "Soarin'" attraction in it if they want. It's even surprising that the Futuroscope don't have yet a Soarin' ride as it would fit perfectly with the rest of the park. Disneyland Paris always has the project to bring Soarin' to the Walt Disney Studios and they're lucky that no other competitor in France didn't built yet a ride with the same technology. But it may not last forever...

However the biggest danger for DLP comes from the 46M € investment amount. At DLP, considering WDI prices they almost can't built nothing with 46M € but at the Futuroscope where the budget for a new attraction is around 10M € they can build easily three or four rides, one per year, and for this amount they even can build great rides. Next year DLP will have the opening of the long awaited Ratatouille ride but so far nothing new is scheduled for the years after 2014 and the fact that the Futuroscope, DLP biggest competitor in France, will have the funds to build new rides each year is no good news... all this relative speaking as the Futuroscope had last year 1.7M visitors only, so they won't take a lot of guests to DLP anyway.

Pictures: copyright Futuroscope

Friday, December 27, 2013

Du 27 Décembre au 3 Janvier, 20 exemplaires de l'édition Collector FRANCAISE en version Dédicacée du livre "Disneyland Paris, De L'Esquisse à la Création" en vente au prix de 75€ - au lieu de 100€ !

Editor's Note: The message below is for my french readers, so in french:

Du 27 Décembre au 3 Janvier, 20 exemplaires de l'édition collector FRANCAISE en version dédicacée ( à votre nom ou à la personne de votre choix ) du livre "Disneyland Paris, De L'Esquisse à la Création" sont mis en vente au prix de 75€ ( au lieu de 100€ ) + 15€ frais d'envois en colissimo recommandé assuré pour la valeur!

Pour commander, envoyer un email avec votre adresse d'expédition à:
Pour effectuer le règlement, vous pouvez soit envoyer le montant total par Paypal à:
ou régler par chèque, ou par carte bancaire via Paypal, même si vous n'avez pas de compte Paypal ( me spécifier dans votre email votre préférence de règlement et je vous donnerais les infos nécessaires ).
Ce sont les derniers exemplaires dédicacés disponibles de l'édition collector, donc n'hésitez pas!

1955 Article Introducing Disneyland Reveal Snow White Dark Ride First Design

Here is a short post but with something really cool as it is a document published in a non-Disney American magazine before Disneyland opening in 1955. What's really interesting in it - click on the image to see it in big size is of course these WED Enterprises renderings drawn by Disney artist Bruce Bushman, but more specifically the one about the Snow White dark ride showing how the ride was envisioned back in 1955.

As you can see, a lot of scenes still  now exist in the Snow White dark ride but here they're shown not in the same order. What is interesting about this sketch is that it ends with the warmth of the movie, not the witch falling of a rock. You have a long time to approach the Castle and see them heading off together with the Dwarves. A better, happier ending. 

You'll note also the difference of design on the ride vehicle itself as at that time they envisioned to have a sculpted dwarf on the front of the vehicle.

The rendering showing the Dumbo ride also prove if needed that the elephants were originally imagined to be in pink color.

But the other artwork interesting on this double page is the flume ride with Monstro, the whale from Pinnochio. We've seen this artwork before and know that it is one showing "a ride that never was" but obviously the magazine, specially in 1955, got all these artworks from Disney which means that the ride was really envisioned to be built at that time and may be even shortly after Disneyland opening day. This Monstro sketch showing a straight flume was likely in reaction to the most popular ride at Coney Island that every operator told Walt he'd have to have "Chutes the Chutes". Finally the Monstro ride was never built but who knows, may be it will be one day?

Pictures: copyright Disney

Thursday, December 26, 2013

Walt Disney Imagineering Invents a Roller Coaster System With Reclining Seats !

A faithful Disney and more reader sent me the link to an amazing WDI patent filed on July 26, 2011 by Disney Enterprises, and this invention is all about a new kind of roller coaster in which seats can be articulated between vertical and reclined position! Basically it'll be like you do when you're in a plane and recline your seat to be able to lean back. What it means is that the point of view will change dramatically and instead to look in front of you - and be aware of the coming roller coaster turns and twists and be able to anticipate them - you'll have an upward point of view during the ride.

Here is more about this incredible invention with excerpts of the the description and some
of the sketches from the patent titled "Roller coaster with articulable seat backs" : 

"A roller coaster with seats articulated between vertical and reclined positions. The roller coaster includes a track with a load/unload portion and a ride portion. The coaster includes a vehicle with a body supported on the track and a passenger seat positioned in the body mounted for articulation between a first position and a second position. The roller coaster includes a seat positioning mechanism coupled to the passenger seat operating while the vehicle is in the load/unload portion to articulate the seat into the first position and operating, prior to the vehicle traveling into the ride portion of the ride path, to articulate the seat into the second position. The passenger seat includes a seat back that is substantially vertical in the first position and is at an obtuse angle in the second position or horizontal position, such that a passenger has an upward point of view during the ride."

"By leaning the seat backs from vertical to an obtuse angle, a completely new ride experience can he achieved in a roller coaster even using an existing or a traditional rollercoaster track...  In the load/unload position, the seat back is in a "normal" position such as substantially vertical (e.g., 90 to 110 degrees or the like from horizontal), which allows passengers to load and unload the vehicle comfortably either in the station or during an evacuation. In the ride position, though, the seat back would be leaned or rotated backwards (e.g., away from the "front" of the vehicle and its direction of travel (DOT)) to a more horizontal position such as to an obtuse angle of 120 to 180 degrees as measured from horizontal...

In the ride position, the passenger's sightlines and point of view (POV) are substantially blocked in the vehicle's DOT, and the passenger can no longer see what is coming as the vehicle moves through the ride portions of the track or see when the track is going to turn or drop/rise. Such unexpected moves of the vehicle increase the thrill, excitement, and unpredictability of the ride experience. The passenger's POV is largely directed upward (in contrast to a passenger seated in a conventional upright/vertical position) such that parts of a roller coaster ride that would not be seen by a conventional seat arrangement are easily observed. The thrill, excitement, and unpredictability of the experience are significantly increased as objects cross quickly in and out of the passenger's field of view. For example, overhead rockwork may open into expansive caverns in a mountain-themed ride and then quickly return to close-in rockwork. This serves to enhance the sense of speed and excitement as the riders are unaware of what lies ahead along the track...."

"A roller coaster was tested by the inventors that included a passenger seat with a seat back positioned in a reclined or "horizontal" position. This test, on an old and existing coaster, showed that the experience provided was fun, unique, and substantially different than that provide by a vertical seat back on the exact same track. A number of experiential, operational, and marketing benefits have been identified by the inventors for this type of roller coaster ride. The ride provides an articulated seat that allows for easy and familiar load/unload of the vehicle in the station or during evacuation, as well as delivering a new and unique ride experience to the passengers. The experience is more disorienting and thrilling because the passenger does not know where he is or what is going to happen next. There are no fixed visualization points, and this even proved true for attraction-operator passengers that know the ride extremely well (e.g., their comments were along the vein of "feels like I'm riding this coaster for the first time again"). Not being able to see the track or upcoming path through the sets prevents the passenger from preparing themselves and/or expecting what is coming next.

The articulable seat coasters heighten the sense of speed especially in low roof or tunnel areas of the ride. This allows for slower coasters and shorter tracks to be used while still delivering on demands for high levels of rider thrill. The coasters provide passengers with new and interesting view points of the show and ride environment. Test passengers commented on seeing things in the old and existing coaster attraction that they had never seen before even though they had ridden the original coaster many, many times. The passenger POV and perspective on the ride set/environment (or "show") was new and exciting and set pieces/structure may appear larger from the reclined perspective. The lift hill feels like a vertical lift since the combination of vehicle body/frame tilt and seat back horizontal position tilts the passenger even farther back, and this was found by the passengers to be fun and interesting. The roller coaster provides fun transitions between tight tunnels and low ceiling portions to portions of the track in which the nearby structure is more wide open and may have higher ceiling rooms or be outdoors. Overhangs or "bridges" were very surprising, exciting, and/or frightening to the test coaster passengers as they could not see them approaching, and twists, turns, and drops had a heightened sense of thrill since the rider was unprepared for the dynamic experience."

You can read the full description on the patent page HERE and i have to say that this new invention could make the coaster ride more comfortable as your center of gravity will be lower. Of course, the remaining question is: on what kind of ride will WDI use this invention? Any ideas?

Pictures and Patent text: copyright Disney Enterprises

Monday, December 23, 2013

Merry Christmas to All my Disney and more Readers !

That's it, it's Christmas tonight and i send to all of you, dear Disney and more readers, my best Christmas wishes! Have all a Merry Christmas tonight, wherever you live on the planet i wish to all of you and the ones you love a magical evening!

Christmas Update ! Disneyland Paris Park and WDS Ratatouille Ride Pictorial Report !

Here is a huge Disneyland Paris update for this Christmas day and, yes, it includes also an update about the Ratatouille construction site, thanks to Max Fan D&M contributor and DLPWelcome webmaster. Let's start by the Disneyland Park where most of the Christmas events are located.

Skies are grey with winter temperatures right ow in Paris but apparently it doesn't stop the guests to come to the parks!

Here comes the great Christmas cavalcade!

Max also did a new video of the Disney Dreams! Christmas show and here it is.

All-right, time to move to the Walt Disney Studios to have a look at the Ratatouille construction site where facades are for a big part finished on the show building.

Let's have a closer look at the facades in details as the painters did really a great job of theming!

Works is also going on on the facades on the path leading to the entrance of the ride but a few days after Max shot the pictures below...

...they put a canvas, hiding now the facades, probably to protect the painters of the cold winter temperatures.

Let's move to the Disney Village shopping and dining area as Max has the first pictures showing the new Lego shop which will open in a few weeks, probably. Works on the inside decor is not over yet but let's have a look anyway.

That's it for today DLP update and i wish you a magical Christmas evening tonight! And if you want to make - to yourself or anyone you love - a great gift don't miss the Disneyland Paris "From Sketch to Reality" book which will tell you all about the creation of Disneyland Paris with 320 pages including 500 pictures of the park and 250 WDI renderings! The book have currently a special offer and is now available with immediate shipping! Reviews from all who have already received the book are "over the top", so place your order now for the new gorgeous updated edition copy while it's available at the pre-order price!

The new and updated ENGLISH regular edition is now available for immediate shipping, and until January 1st you can always order it at the pre-order price of 55€ + 15€ shipping worldwide.

You can order the book by sending me an email at: or send directly your Paypal payment of the 70 euros either by the Paypal button below or directly from your Paypal account at the same email address.

A full description of the book can be find HERE.

Disneyland Paris From Sketch to Reality - Include shipping

Artwork: copyright Max Fan, DLPWelcome