Trusted sources are confirming that the very popular Carsland from Disney California Adventure has been Green Lit for Disney’s Hollywood Studios. The full details have not been revealed, but it’s reasonable to assume the following:
- Carsland will reside in the area currently housing the Studio Backlot Tour and Lights, Motors, Action, Extreme Stunt Show
- The Radiator Springs Racers and Tow Mater’s Junkyard Jamboree will be included as part of Carsland
- It is expected that the shops (Sarge’s Surplus Hut, Ramone’s Body Art, etc) and restaurants (Flo’s V8, and Cozy Cone) will be included.
- The shop intended to house the RideMakerz shop will probably not be included, or will have a new theme.
- Luigi’s Flying Tires will probably be modified or removed entirely due to the capacity issues with the California version
At this point in time, it is unclear what this means for other projects in Hollywood Studios and/or James Cameron’s World of Avatar in the Animal Kingdom. It seems that all of the other rumors that have been circulating are very fluid right now and could change at any moment. The other items currently being discussed for Hollywood Studios are as follows:
- The Monster’s Inc Coaster, first rumored in 2008 by Jim Hill, would be placed in Soundstage 1
- Indiana Jones Adventure from Disneyland or another Indiana Jones based attraction would replace the Indiana Jones Epic Stunt Spectacular. For years this was more of a Disney fan wish as opposed to something being realistically considered, however it does seem like things have changed. Even still, I wouldn’t expect this to be built at the same time as Carsland which still puts the likelihood as relatively low. While the replacement and timeframe are unclear, there does seem to be a consensus that Disney would like to close the Indiana Jones Epic Stunt Spectacular show.
In the Animal Kingdom, Camp Minnie Mickey is being cleared out for World of Avatar, but it doesn’t mean that the project is any closer to construction. The clearing out of Camp Minnie Mickey began in 2008 when the Pocahontas and her Forest Friends stage show was removed. At the time, this was to make way for another project (a version of Tokyo Disney Sea’s Mysterious Island), but as the economy struggled Disney suspended those plans. After the September 20, 2011 announcement of the World of Avatar, Disney has continued to clear out Camp Minnie Mickey. In August of this year, the closed Beastly Bazaar in Discovery Island and it will be reopened as an indoor character meet and greet area. This is widely assumed to pick up some of the slack once the Character Trails go away from Camp Minnie Mickey. In January of 2013, Festival of the Lion King is expected to close for 6 months before re-opening in it’s new area behind the Tusker House in Africa.
All of this relocation seems to indicate that Avatar is still happening as a project, but multiple outlets have reported that the project is either dead or dying. As of right now, it seems that the point of contention is the budget. Initially, the budget was $500 million, but Disney is looking to cut that down to $400 million. The result of this would be the cut of a major attraction that James Cameron is excited about. Cameron is evidently upset by this potential cut as well as Disney’s suggestion that they sell Disney themed Avatar merchandise. To further clarify, this would be classic Disney characters made up to look like N’Avi. Disney has previously done similar things with Star Wars characters such as Goofy as Jar Jar Binks, Donald as Darth Maul, Jedi Mickey and Minnie as Princess Leia.
Little information has come out publicly on the Avatar project, but right now the attractions being discussed are as follows:
- Flora and Fauna of Pandora walk through: This would be a family attraction, and possibly the entrance to the land.
- Soarin’ over Pandora: This would use a simulator similar to the existing Soarin’ simulator but with 3D components
- Motorbike Coaster: Designed by ride manufacturer Vekoma, the Motorbike design was proposed for Shanghai Disneyland for a Tron attraction. The vehicle seating is similar to that of a motor cycle (guests leaning forward with their feet back) and would face potential capacity issues. The theming of this ride would be elaborate, and it is the likeliest thing to be cut if they’re trying to reduce the budget. It also seems this is the project that James Cameron is most enthusiastic about.
While Carsland has been given the green light, the other projects are still very much up in the air at this point in time. It’s unlikely that Disney would construct additional major projects at the same time as Carsland, so if these other options happen, it’s safe to assume that their time frame is further out than Carsland.
Author’s note: Our original report referenced the Indiana Jones Adventure in Disneyland being considered as a replacement for the Indiana Jones Epic Stunt Spectacular. While this was considered at one point in time, as of 9/21/2012 it remains unclear what the replacement for the Indiana Jones Epic Stunt Spectacular will be. That section of the article has been modified to eliminate any confusion.
WDWMagic users Lee and M.rudolf, as well as Jim Hill of JimHillMedia.com helped contribute to the content of this article.
FanBoy Loyalty Program For every $1000+ in combined purchases you spend per calendar year through our Amazon link, we will give you a t-shirt of your choice. Our new shop is up and running, and we have t-shirts available with our current and classic, regular and uncensored logos. All you need to do is send us a list of the items that you purchased, we’ll verify it against our records and then we’ll send you the t-shirt of your choice.
Project Fan Boy Contest Win a chance to appear on our show in a short segment where you can talk about a topic of your choosing with us. Winners will also receive WDW Fan Boys swag, and Brett will record a custom outgoing voice mail message for you. To enter the contest send us an e-mail, video, or audio file explaining why you should be on the show. The funnier the better. All entries should be submitted to email@example.com.