23 July 2013

That Part about Not Needing Money in Oz? That’s Off.

The Disney by Mark blog is reporting that the Disney corporation is preparing what a lot of us expected ever since O.Z. Diggs landed in Oz in the middle of a waterpark ride: a theme-park spin-off of Oz the Great and Powerful.

It will reportedly become part of Disneyland in California, replacing an attracton based on old western movies:
DbM has it from reliable sources that our friends at Imagineering are finishing up concept and show design for an Oz land (or area) and Oz attraction based on the movie Oz the Great and Powerful. It will be located where “Big Thunder Ranch” now stands. An alternate location was at the old Motor Boat Cruise next to it’s a small world, but fire-safety issues with the monorail precluded it.

It is anticipated that the area will have one E-ticket ride and two C-ticket attractions. A restaurant similar to the Magic Kingdom’s “Be Our Guest” but placed in the Emerald City, and a Munchkinland-themed retail store will also be included. Show elements will include a hot air balloon, tornado effects, giant bubbles, and Dark Queen Evanora’s army of Winkies and flying baboons. Word is that China Doll will be featured in the ride. The final attraction mix will be decided shortly, and DbM expects that the announcement about Oz land will be made at D23.
I don’t know the Disney jargon or how reliable this source is. Many of the blog’s commenters are skeptical or dismayed by the prospect. There’s plenty of time for plans to change or develop before the threatened sequel.

For now, the Hollywood studios’ biggest Oz attraction remains Sony Studios’ giant arching steel rainbow, shown above. Sony didn’t produce any beloved Oz movie, of course, but decades back it bought the M.G.M. studio lot, which includes some areas involved in producing the 1939 movie.


John Troutman said...

As a Disney park nerd, I'm rather pleased! To translate some of that for you:

* Big Thunder Ranch is an area off the beaten path, in the back corner of Frontierland at Disneyland. It's a wide open space with a BBQ restaurant and a stage for performers. It's loss wouldn't be particularly missed, as most people overlook it now anyway.

* An E-Ticket ride would be the best of the best, top tier ride Disney can make, like Splash Mountain, Pirates of the Caribbean, or Big Thunder Mountain. A C-Ticket would be smaller potatoes: fun, but not as "big" for lack of a better term. C-Tickets are smaller affairs, like the Tea Cups or Dumbo.

* The "Be Our Guest" restaurant just opened in Disney World. It's a large, heavily themed, slightly interactive sit-down restaurant. The comparison is basically implying that you'll be able to dine within the Emerald City, full of all the bells and whistles.

Anyway, I didn't love Great and Powerful, but this news still excites me, as I'm all for two of my favorite things being mushed together.

J. L. Bell said...

I remember E-ticket rides from vistiing Disney Land in the early 1970s. That leaves me disappointed when airlines promise to send me an e-ticket, and it's just an ordinary trip.