In a new video, Disney Imagineers take us behind the scenes of the new Seven Dwarfs Mine Train at the Magic Kingdom to see how they’re bringing to life some of the most advanced Audio-Animatronics ever created.
According to them, the process involved working with Walt Disney Animation Studios and going back to the original film to study each Dwarf’s individual motions and even facial expressions in order to get them just right. The end goal: To make them look as if they just jumped off of the screen and landed in Walt Disney World!
While Walt Disney Imagineers are busy putting the finishing touches on Princess Fairytale Hall in Magic Kingdom Park, they shared some news and a video with us. This exquisitely detailed Disney Princess character greeting location is the next to debut as a part of the New Fantasyland expansion – and Disney Parks Blog was happy to share that the Hall will officially open its doors on Sept. 18.
Walt Disney Imagineering also shared a new sneak peek video with us in honor of today’s announcement. In it, Imagineers Pam Rawlins and Jason Grandt explain just how detailed this new character greeting area will be. In addition to a castle-like entrance, high ceilings and elegant wood-paneled rooms, the space will feature beautiful princess portraits, themed wallpaper, glittering stained glass windows and accessories that have been inspired by props seen in films like “Cinderella” and “Tangled.”
As a reminder, Princess Fairytale Hall will offer two separate character greeting experiences, which means there are two queues to choose from. You can choose to meet either Cinderella or Rapunzel, each of whom will be joined by one fellow Disney princess.
Last week, we shared an image of a portrait that’s a part of a new project our Walt Disney Imagineers are currently working on – and today we’re happy to reveal the identity of that man and share details on the role he’ll play in the enhanced storyline of a certain Magic Kingdom Park attraction, Big Thunder Mountain Railroad.
The fellow’s name is Barnabas T. Bullion, and he’s the gold magnate who rules the Big Thunder Mining Company with a golden fist. Imagineers have already begun working overnight in the park on the attraction’s new interactive queue, where you’ll be able to see this portrait, as well as an additional landscape portrait of the mountain itself.
According to the enhanced backstory: “Barnabas T. Bullion is the founder and president of the Big Thunder Mining Company. The longtime mining magnate comes from a powerful East Coast family and considers gold to be his very birthright by virtue of his oddly appropriate name; in fact, he considers the ultimate gold strike to be his destiny. And that is why he is having so much trouble with Big Thunder Mountain. According to superstitious locals, Big Thunder Mountain is very protective of the gold it holds within, and the unfortunate soul who attempts to mine its riches is destined to fail. And so far that prophecy is coming to pass. The mine has been plagued by mysterious forces and natural disasters ever since. And yet the Big Thunder Mining Co. is still in operation. In fact, Bullion is discovering new veins of gold and digging new shafts every day, offering a closer look at the Big Thunder mining operation than ever before. But a word to the wise for anyone attempting to visit the mountain: watch out for runaway trains.”
Look for these new additions and a number of additional interactive elements in the coming months at Big Thunder Mountain Railroad, the wildest ride in the wilderness!
In honor of the milestone, the park has lined up a few special offerings for guests who wish to mark this special occasion.
Throughout the day on October 1, guests can attend Epcot history presentations in World Showplace courtesy of D23: The Official Disney Fan Club. These presentations are included in park admission and are limited in seating.
1-2 p.m. – Designing the Future – Past and Present: A panel of Disney Imagineers remembers 30 years of building tomorrow!
4:30–6 p.m. – Epcot: How it Changed the World with Marty Sklar
6:30–8 p.m. – Epcot: How it Changed the World with Marty Sklar
Guests can also attend an anniversary moment at the America Gardens Theatre at 3 p.m., which will feature appearances by Disney leaders and include performances by Mariachi Cobre and Voices of Liberty. (Seating for this presentation is also limited.)
That evening, the October 1 presentation of “IllumiNations: Reflections of Earth” will feature a special 30th anniversary tag.
Disney’s Aulani Cast Members love to share the Hawaiian culture, history and language with their guests. This week, meet Hi’ilani, a cultural greeter, who will share the meaning of hana no‘eau – enjoy!
Walt Disney Imagineers worked hand-in-hand with locals to create Aulani, A Disney Resort & Spa in Ko Olina – a place that celebrates Hawaiian culture, history and traditions.
And, our Cast Members want to pass that along to you by sharing Hawaiian words each week.