Disney fans will have a lot to look forward to at Disneyland and Walt Disney World in the next couple of years.
Josh D’Amaro, chairman of Disney Parks, Experiences, and Products, made a lot of new announcements at Disney’s D23 Expo in Anaheim, California, on Sunday. These included opening dates for highly anticipated attractions like TRON Lightcycle Run and “blue sky” ideas like a place where Disney villains rule.
“We’re always, always in search of Walt’s great big beautiful tomorrows,”
Here are the most important D23 announcements for Disney World, Disneyland, and other Disney properties around the world, which will all be celebrating Disney’s 100th anniversary next year.
What’s on the way to Disney World?
- Next year, “Happily Ever After” will be back at Magic Kingdom with new changes.
- In the spring of 2023, TRON Lightcycle Run will open at Magic Kingdom.
- The Hatbox Ghost, who is a famous part of Disneyland’s Haunted Mansion, will show up at Magic Kingdom’s Haunted Mansion next year.
- EPCOT is making plans for a new nighttime show that will open in 2023.
- Next year, Figment will show up as a character at EPCOT.
- In late 2023, guests will be able to see the changes that have been made to the center of EPCOT. One of them is Journey of Water, which is based on the movie Moana and will be a new experience in the World Nature neighborhood. D’Amaro said, “It’s the story of water on Earth.” “As you walk around the trail, you’ll interact with the water and find that it has a mind of its own.”
- When Tiana’s Bayou Adventure opens at Disney World and Disneyland in late 2024, it will feature the voices of many of the actors who worked on “The Princess and the Frog.” Disney Executive Creative Producer Charita Carter said that the attraction, which will replace Splash Mountain, will use mists “like a painter’s canvas to create this amazing sense of aura, which is going to be different from anything that you have seen in an attraction.”
- D’Amaro said that Disney is thinking about changing the theme of DinoLand at Animal Kingdom. The new theme could be based on “Zootopia” and “Moana,” but it’s still very early in the “blue sky” idea process.
- In the same way, D’Amaro, Walt Disney Animation Chief Creative Officer Jennifer Lee, and Walt Disney Imagineering Creative Portfolio Executive Chris Beatty said they are looking into a land “beyond Big Thunder Mountain” at Magic Kingdom that could include Santa Cecilia’s Day of the Dead celebrations from “Coco,” the Madrigals’ enchanted Casita from “Encanto,” and a place overrun by Disney villains.
What is coming to Disneyland and Disney California Adventure
- Next week, a huge Hulk will start to show up at Avenger’s Campus.
- In the middle of November, Mando and Grogu from “The Mandalorian” will start making appearances at Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge.
- Next spring, the “Magic Happens” parade will be back.
- Every Disney park will start celebrating Disney’s 100th anniversary in January 2019, but D’Amaro said that Disneyland will be the center of the party with decorations made of platinum, new looks for Mickey, Minnie, and their friends, and two new nighttime shows: “Wondrous Journeys” at Disneyland and “World of Color – One” at Disney California Adventure.
- When Mickey & Minnie’s Runaway Railway opens in Mickey’s Toontown early next year, D’Amaro said, “We’re going to make some very special changes to make sure this version fits perfectly into our Toontown story,” compared to the version already at Disney’s Hollywood Studios in Florida. He also said that the changes to Mickey’s Toontown would bring it “into a new era of experiences for everyone.”
- Kevin Feige, the president of Marvel Studios, joined D’Amaro on stage at D23 to talk about a new attraction coming to Disney California Adventure’s Avengers Campus. This attraction will be based on the idea of the multiverse and will let visitors fight alongside all the Avengers against every enemy from every time period. Feige said, “And you’ll meet a new bad guy named King Thanos.” “This is the first time a new version of Thanos is coming into the MCU through this attraction. This is a Thanos who won, and the Avengers are not happy about that. You have to help them.” There is no opening date yet.
- The Pacific Wharf area of California Adventure is being turned into “Big Hero 6’s” San Fransokyo, and guests will have the chance to meet Baymax. D’Amaro said that this is still in its early stages.
- When the changes are done, Disney’s Paradise Pier Hotel will be called the Pixar Place Hotel. D’Amaro said, “You’ll feel like you just walked into a Pixar art gallery.” “There will be new versions of characters like Woody, Buzz, Mike, 22, Miguel, Dante, and any other Disney Pixar character you can think of.” There will also be a splash pad based on “Finding Nemo.” No opening date has been given.
- In 2024, RunDisney races will be back at Disneyland.
What are the plans for other Disney places?
- The 30th anniversary party at Disneyland Paris will go on until September of next year, and a new show called “Pixar: We Belong Together” will open next year. A new attraction based on the movie “Tangled” is also coming to Disneyland Paris.
- In the second half of 2023, World of Frozen will open at Hong Kong Disneyland. Next year, the park will also get a new statue of Walt Disney and Mickey Mouse. It will show the moment when Disney saw his kids on a merry-go-round and got the idea to make Disneyland.
- The changes to Space Mountain at Tokyo Disney will start in 2024, and the new plaza will open in 2027.
- Shanghai Disney Resort didn’t have any new news to share, but D23 members got a sneak peek at the park’s new Zootopia land.
- Disney Treasure will be the name of its sixth cruise ship.
- Late next year, the Disney Wonder will start going to Australia and New Zealand.
- Lighthouse Point is a new island Disney is building in the Bahamas. It will be powered by the sun 90% of the time.
Sid Philips is a father of two and a loving husband. He currently resides in Pennsylvania and has been a fan of Disney since his parents took him there in 1980! Sid has visited multiple Disney parks around the world and loves each one!
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