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Its been a while so I think its about time we catch up on the backlog of theme park news with a new edition of Theme Park Bits. In this edition:

  • Guardians of the Galaxy costumed characters appeared at Walt Disney World
  • Disneyland to open Frozen themed boutique
  • Disney filed patents for a drone-powered ariel display system that could replace fireworks with animatronic flying characters.
  • John Carpenter’s Halloween comes to Universal’s Halloween Horror Nights
  • Walk-Around Oswald The Lucky Rabbit Coming to Disneyland
  • Halloween Carnival Returns to Disneyland’s Big Thunder Ranch
  • Universal Orlando announces another new hotel resort Sapphire Falls

All this and more, after the jump.

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new Frozen short

The ABC special The Story of Frozen: Making a Disney Animated Classic is airing right now on the east coast of the US, and the show features a big announcement. The spring of 2015 will see the release of a new Frozen short called Frozen Fever. The short film will be directed by returning directors Jennifer Lee and Chris Buck, and will feature the core characters Anna, Elsa, Kristoff and Olaf. The short will also come complete with a new song from Robert Lopez and Kristen Anderson-Lopez.

More details on the new Frozen short are after the jump. Read More »

Frozen Once

Update from Editor Peter Sciretta: ABC has released television spots offering us our first teaser of Disney’s Frozen which will be entering the world of ABC’s Once Upon A TimeHit the jump to watch it now.

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Frozen Royal Welcome Disney World

In this Disney centric edition of Theme Park Bits, read about the following:

  • The stars of Big Hero 6 will do meet and greets at Disney parks.
  • Check out a possible photo of the castle at Shanghai Disneyland, which you can access via high speed train.
  • See some concepts for a potential Dubai Disneyland.
  • Check out video of the new Ratatouille restaurant.
  • Monsters University and A Nightmare Before Christmas take over Disneyland for Halloween.
  • Frozen has taken over Disney Hollywood Studios through September 1.
  • John Rhys-Davies returned to the Indiana Jones ride at Disneyland.
  • Watch a crash at a Disney World stunt show.

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Elsa Frozen

Two years ago, I was at Disney Animation Studios to learn about Wreck It Ralph. At the same time, there were some photos on the wall from this little movie called Frozen. When I asked about them, everyone was very coy. They mentioned the film would be about two princesses and set in the snow, but that was about it. How could I know that behind those walls, animators were making what would become a multiple Oscar-winner and the biggest animated film of all-time?

Now, you too can step into Disney Animation Studios and learn about Frozen. Disney will air The Story of Frozen: Making a Disney Animated Classic on Tuesday September 2 at 8 p.m. on ABC. It’s all new hour of behind the scenes footage about the film, which will also include a sneak preview of their latest, Big Hero 6, and promises to “include some exciting announcements about the next chapter of Frozen and a never-before-seen preview of “Frozen” characters Anna, Elsa and Kristoff on an upcoming episode of ABC’s smash-hit Once Upon a Time.” Does that just mean the upcoming books? Or could it possibly refer to a movie? Read more about the Frozen TV special below. Read More »

Frozen sequel books

Disney’s box office juggernaut Frozen is finally getting a follow-up, but not in the form you’d expect. Random House has announced that it will release a series of Frozen sequel books, with the first two entries set to hit shelves in 2015. Hit the jump for all the details.

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Cool Posts From Around the Web:

Elsa in Once Upon a Time

The animated film Frozen is moving to live-action thanks to the show Once Upon a Time, and we’ve got a batch of official images of Elsa (Georgina Haig) and Kristoff (Scott Michael Foster), along with (perhaps) Sven as they’ll appear in the show.  Read More »

Legends of Fronteirland

In today’s edition of Theme Park Bits, I take a look at:

  • A Peek Inside ‘Frozen Fireworks’ at Disney’s Hollywood Studios
  • Universal’s Halloween Horror Nights Adds ‘From Dusk till Dawn: The Series’ Maze
  • Disneyland’s new Legends of Frontierland: Gold Rush interactive game experience
  • Alice In Wonderland Dark Ride Updated With New Effects

Read more about all these things after the jump.

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Frozen Concept Art

Walt Disney Animation’s Frozen was in development for many years. In fact, even Walt Disney had trouble bringing the character to life. The adaptation of Hans Christian Andersen’s 1845 fairytale The Snow Queen has gone through many versions over the decades. Disney was developing a hand-drawn version of The Snow Queen before The Princess and The Frog failed to ignite the box office, and thus killed hand drawn animated feature film projects at the mouse house, at least for a good while.

The latest computer-animated take, Frozen, was the one to finally make it to the big screen, and has since become one of Disney’s biggest financial and critical successes. And as much as I liked the film, the classic fairytale elements left me wondering how it would have looked as a hand-drawn animated film. We will never get that version, and sadly its unlikely that a 2D hand-drawn version would have done as well as the computer animated feature has. But I still wonder.

Today we can see some of the hand-drawn Frozen concept art, which gives a glimpse at what a classically animated version might have looked like.

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