Disney World summer

When it comes to corporate synergy, it’s hard to beat The Walt Disney Company. The media giant is a king of cross-promotion among its ever-growing number of properties, and while that in and of itself isn’t something we’d normally care about, it just so happens that this latest piece of synergy involves properties that fans are deeply invested in.

If you’re in or around Orlando, Florida this summer and are planning a trip to Walt Disney World, you’re in luck: the Incredibles, the Guardians of the Galaxy, and more will be coming to that park in new ways later this year. Read about the Disney World summer plans below, including the opening of Toy Story Land.
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In this edition of Theme Park Bits:

  • Find out about a new interactive element in the Guardians of the Galaxy – Mission: BREAKOUT! line.
  • See aerial imagery of Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge and Toy Story Land.
  • Are you ready to shoot ice out of your hands at Disney parks?
  • A Celebration of Harry Potter is upon us. Get last-minute details.
  • Pagan doughnut-eaters have reason to rejoice in the newest shop coming to Universal Orlando.
  • And more!

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Disney Theme Park in the Snow

The recent North American cold wave may have finally dissipated, but just because the blizzard is over in the U.S. and Canada doesn’t mean other parts of the world are safe from disruptive weather. In some places, shirtless and pantsless theme park denizens like Mickey Mouse and Donald Duck still find themselves retreating indoors to escape the ravages of cold weather.

Until the next ice age comes, one thing Floridians and Californians will likely never get the chance to see in their own backyard is what a Disney park looks like in snow. This week, Tokyo was hit by its heaviest snowstorm in years and while Tokyo Disneyland already has a seasonal event going on right now called “Anna and Elsa’s Frozen Fantasy,” the park was blanketed in real snow on Monday.

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In this edition of Theme Park Bits:

  • What possible downside could there be to a $1,000 bonus for Universal employees?
  • Find out more about the new projection-mapping experience coming to Florida’s Harry Potter castle.
  • Are monorails running through Future World at Epcot about to become a thing of the past?
  • Get the lowdown on what the dining situation in Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge could be.
  • Are you ready to kick it with Kung Fu Panda at Universal Studios Hollywood?
  • And more!

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Star Wars Galaxy's Edge images

We’re one year closer to the official opening of Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge, Disney’s upcoming Star Wars theme park land that opens at Walt Disney World and Disneyland in 2019. And while we’ve seen some concept art for the park and some of its attractions already, there’s still plenty of information yet to be revealed.

Now we have some new Star Wars Galaxy’s Edge images and a few other details courtesy of a batch of trading cards that were handed out at Star Wars Launch Bay at Walt Disney World’s Hollywood Studios park. Take a closer look below.
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Cool Posts From Around the Web:

star wars galaxy's edge planet

In this edition of Theme Park Bits:

  • What’s it like to ride the monorail at Disney World with the door hanging wide open?
  • Find out about the connection between Disney Springs and Prohibition-era rum-runners.
  • See time-lapse satellite imagery of the Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge construction site.
  • A new patent would seem to indicate lightsaber-wielding could be in the future for Disney parkgoers.
  • Calling all Dick Tracy fans. Come in, Dick Tracy fans …
  • And more!

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Walt's Frozen Head trailer

In 2013, a low-budget independent movie called Escape From Tomorrow made headlines as the first feature film to shoot at Walt Disney World without getting the proper approval from Disney beforehand. You can read Peter Sciretta’s full review here, but it’s a trippy, disorienting, disturbing piece of experimental filmmaking, showing a dark side to the “Happiest Place on Earth” that a family-friendly company like The Mouse House couldn’t have been pleased about (even though they ultimately didn’t sue to stop the movie’s limited release).

Now comes The Further Adventures of Walt’s Frozen Head, another indie movie shot “illegally” inside Disney World without permission, and this one actually features Walt himself as a character – or at least his floating and talking head, anyway. Watch the trailer below.
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peter pan

Remember the ’90s? It was a golden age where almost anything was possible, including a Michael Jackson Peter Pan theme park. Jackson commissioned a Disneyland-like theme park that was entirely devoted to Peter Pan, and several designs were drawn up, but the idea eventually faded away. More details on the Michael Jackson Peter Pan theme park are below.

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disney world fastpass magicband

Walt Disney World Resort is testing a new program that will give higher level hotel guests the option to purchase additional FastPass reservations, which signals a huge change to Disney’s theme park system. Is this a good thing? Certainly if you have the large disposable income required to stay on the Club Level at one of the couple the Walt Disney World Deluxe Resorts, but it creates a class system that puts average Disney World guests at a disadvantage.

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The Wicker Man roller coaster

Understandably, many of you might primarily know of The Wicker Man thanks to Neil LaBute’s 2006 remake starring Nicolas Cage, in which Cage’s character punches a woman in the face while dressed like a bear, and spends the movie furiously screaming things like “How’d it get burned?!” and “Not the bees!” But while it’s admittedly not nearly as meme-worthy, director Robin Hardy‘s 1973 original is a far superior and even more disturbing piece of filmmaking.

So naturally, it’s a perfect fit for a theme park ride! Wait…what?
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