Posts Tagged ‘construction’

Ratatouille – Brick by Brick

Friday, June 14th, 2013


The new Parisian area of the Walt Disney Studios is taking shape faster and faster. The concrete walls have gone up and are now hiding the main show building from the sight of guests approaching the construction zone through the Barrel of Monkeys inside Toy Story Playland. In fact, the scaffolding has already gone up in front of the walls and work has started on the themeing details.

In addition work is now underway to transform parts of the costumeing building and add a themed facade to it.

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Layering the Ratatouille

Sunday, February 24th, 2013

Ratatouille 2013-02-21

The constructions crews at the Walt Disney Studios Paris continue to add layer by layer to the upcoming new dark ride based on the Disney Pixar hit “Ratatouille” – and that is just based on the progress concerning the facades of the building(s).

With the current streak of sub-zero temperatures and repeated days during which the resort is covered by snow progress on the facades is limited – however, the level already constructed so far gives a good impression of the facades that will ring the new plaza in front of the attraction.


World of Disney & the future of the Disney Village

Saturday, July 7th, 2012

While our photos here still show the World of Disney Store behind construction walls the new anchor store of the Disney Village today opened its doors (the official grand opening will take place on July 12). According to our sources at the same time as its doors officially open other doors will close – to be specific: the doors of the main area of the Disney Store in the Disney Village.

During a two week period the store is supposed to be re-invented as a kids  store. Instead of the general selection of Disney products and resort merchandise the former Disney Store will then limit itself on kids related products. To enhance the experience the store will be divided into several sections / themed areas: Star Wars, Cars, Candy, Bedtime, Duffy, Boys, and finally Girls.

The smaller extension room of the Disney Store next to the currency exchange office already switched over to Christmas merchandise in the past days. It is supposed to remain open during the transformation of the Disney Store into a kids’s store. No word yet whether it will remain a Christmas shop year round or whether it will be altering between the various seasons / seasonal merchandise as it has in the past years.

The transformation of the former Disney Stores would leave only one store in the Disney Village that stuck to its original concept and themeing since opening day in 1992: Hollywood Pictures. However, as our sources inform us, the remaining days of Hollywood Pictures seem limited as well. It’s replacement isn’t ready to be officially revealed – yet, we have been told that currently the resort is in negotiations with LEGO to transform the space into a LEGO Store. Both at Walt Disney World and at Disneyland Anaheim LEGO operates popular stores in the Downtown Disney areas already, adorned with giant Disney characters recreated out of LEGO that are popular photo spots. However, it should be noted that the negotiations seem to be rather difficult and no dates have been set yet for such addition to the Disney Village.

The Rat Is Busy

Monday, May 28th, 2012

Buzz Lightyear is all the strong willed space ranger – he won’t be distracted by the work going on to its left, instead he keeps his eyes focused straight ahead and greets the guests walking from Toon Plaza toward ToyStory Playland as if nothing would be happening.

However, guests will surely notice the changes as the Parisian street to the right of Buzz Lightyear has been closed off. Already two cranes are turning busily over the construction site behind the resort’s costuming workshop where the park’s next big addition is about to go vertical: the Ratatouille dark ride.

The actual roadway part of the Parisian street is separated by a blue construction fence from the sidewalk with the benches, detailed lighting fixtures and trees. A look over the blue gates erected as part of the construction fence shows that the cobble stone surface of the roadway has been covered with wood planks to prevent any damage from heavy equipment that might drive over it during the construction phase of the dark ride and surrounding area.

World of Disney Store – turning, turning, turning

Sunday, May 27th, 2012

The World of Disney Store at the entrance of the Disney Village is inching closer and closer to its officially announced July 12, 2012 opening. Over the recent weeks more and more details have been added to the exterior of the facade and the light effects have been turned on. This past week guests could for the first time spot a new and unexpected feature of the shop: the giant top half of the globe above the entrance rotunda is not only featuring the maps of the northern hemisphere (complete with stars indicating the locations of the Disney resorts). It also … turns – as can be seen in the long-time exposure above.

On top of the globe a golden statue of Tinkerbell has been placed several weeks ago already which long-time fans of the resort might remember from her previous location at the top of the Sleep Beauty Castle where she was part of the 15th Anniversary decorations. Also last week the “World of Disney” signage was installed above the main entrance facing toward the Disney Hotel / the Fantasia Gardens. Just as the whole exterior of the new store the signage is sporting an art deco style in a nod to the grand department stores of Paris.

The night time shot also allows for a first glimpse into the entrance rotunda as lights are up to allow the work crews to continue the preparations for the opening. This makes visible the walls and roof featuring stars forming constellations in the shape of Disney characters. A decorative feature that similar in style had been used in the original “Constellations” boutique at the entrance of Discoveryland before it was rethemed for the arrival of Buzz Liughtyear Laser Blast (even so the constellations in this original opening day shop were the actual signs just depicted by Disney characters).

Also in the night time shot of the facade above note the Mickey Mouse statue placed on top of the stairs leading up from the resort’s hub to the new store. A fitting Minnie Mouse statue is placed to the right of the entrance (just outside this photo, but visible in the wider shot of the daytime facade to the left. Again long-time fans might remember these – but this time not from Disneyland Paris but from the original World of Disney store on the 5th Avenue at New York City. There these two statues greeted guests till the shop closed on December 31, 2009 to move into a new Times Square location and received a new design in this process.

P.S.: we are looking for Pluto! Any help is welcome!! When still in place above the entrance of the World of Disney store on 5th Avenue a statue of Pluto was placed between Mickey and Minnie on the marquee above the store’s entrance. So far, only Mickey and Minnie have been spotted at the new store location at Disneyland Paris. Any clues??

Ratatouille UPDATE – via Brad Bird (updated!)

Wednesday, May 2nd, 2012

With the construction crane visible from inside both parks and the Parisian street that functions as the exit / back entrance for guests into Toy Story Playland closed off with a blue wooden gate the construction of the park’s next addition has entered a serious phase. That the new attraction would be based on the Disney Pixar feature Ratatouille had been rumored since the Toy Story Playland construction phase and had been confirmed most recently repeatedly by the resort and by Brad Bird, director of the 2007 hit movie.

Now Brad Bird has taken to Twitter once again to provide his followers with an update on the progress at Disneyland Paris. His exact words: “$ limitations made theater build not viable. 3D version of RATATOUILLE done and waiting. Ride in works.

So the dark ride (which will be the first dark ride for the Walt Disney Studios) is still “in works” – which reflects the construction that can be witnessed by guests every day inside the park and confirms that there was no change to the general idea on short notice.

However, Brad Bird confirmed also via Twitter that the Ratatouille dark ride which will open at the Walt Disney Studios was just one of two attractions that had been planned based on the hit movie for the resort. The other one was the theater (mentioned in his earlier tweet of last night) that was cancelled for financial reasons. A 3D conversion of Ratatouille apparently already has been created for this (now cancelled) theater attraction.

UPDATE: Brad Bird seems to be rather upbeat about what the Walt Disney Studios will get – the ride – as he stated via Twitter last night as well: “The ride will be cool.”

Happy Birthday … from Remy

Thursday, April 12th, 2012

Happy Birthday Disneyland Paris – 20 years of magic and wonder … certainly today’s anniversary saw many unique celebrations at Disneyland Paris which regular guests enjoyed just as much as the thousands of fans that had made sure to be at “their park” for the anniversary day. However, for many the greatest birthday surprise was a sight that could be seen from nearly all across the Walt Disney Studios (and unfortunately even from inside Disneyland’s Frontierland): a construction crane!

After the area had been cleared and leveled during the past weeks now a construction crane has been set up next to the resort’s costuming building at the site of the next big expansion of the Walt Disney Studios Park – the long rumored Ratatouille dark ride that will expand the Toon Studio section of the park next to the Toy Story Playland. While the construction had been confirmed by construction notices at the back of the park the crane is a visible confirmation for fans that finally the Studios will receive their first true dark ride.

World of Disney Store – Progress Report

Thursday, February 16th, 2012

It is time for another update on the progress of the large construction side at the front of the Disney Village, right next to the Gaumont multiplex cinema – the future World of Disney Store that is to open during the resort’s 20th anniversary season. In the meantime the large scale reliefs above the shop windows on both side of the store building have been revealed as the scaffolding has come down.

One of the panels facing toward the main street of the Disney Village features the Eiffel Tower with a second relief to the right showing Peter Pan soaring in the sky. On the side facing toward the Walt Disney Studios Park panels include one showing Buzz Light Year, another one with Mickey riding in a cabriolet as well as Ariel sitting on a rock in the open sea with a classic steamliner (one of the Disney Cruise Liners ?) in the back.

While the glass of the shop windows have been installed the doors of the main entrance (which can be expected to be glass doors as well) are not yet in place. Speaking of glass elements to be installed. The photos from the past weekend show the steel framework of the grand cupola above the rotunda of the store’s main entrance in place. In the meantime (during the past two days) the first glass panels have been installed onto that steel framework.

Fantasy Festival Stage Construction

Thursday, February 16th, 2012

Construction continues at the far end of Fantasyland where the Fantasy Festival Stage underneath the Fantasyland Station of the Disneyland Railroad is still blocked off with construction walls and has scaffolding around it. Only a small path to the side of the construction area remains open to allow access to the train station.

Interestingly this is the first major exterior rehab of a building inside the Disneyland Park in a long time that happens out in the open, without being hidden behind tarps with special designs (e.g. a recreation of the building’s facade) printed on. On the other hand this allows us to see the progress at least of the exterior part of the work. So far the building has received a new color scheme and the “Fantasy Festival Stage” sign has been taken down.

However, the more interesting part of the construction happens behind the walls of the former theater as it is transformed into a permanent Meet’n’Greet location for Mickey to open later this year as part of the 20th Anniversary celebration. Recent reports indicate that the opening will delayed and not happen in time for the kick-off of the celebrations on April 1st, though.

Castle Stage Construction

Tuesday, February 14th, 2012

What’s going on at the Castle Stage? That is the question that has been popping up over the last couple of days in many discussions among fans of Disneyland Paris.

Earlier word had spread that the entertainment department was looking into finally utilizing the stage once again for a production after a Halloween spectacular on the stage proofed popular with guests – especially the younger ones thanks to its interactivity with most of guests standing right in front of the stage (a necessity since the majority of the benches that formed the original auditorium have been removed when the floors was repaved).

Then another rumor popped up: supposedly one of the water screens for the nightly spectacular “DREAMS” for the 20th anniversary might be placed right behind the stage transforming the space in front of it into another main viewing area for the show. However, the projectors for the central projections have been placed on top of the Main Street buildings, so would not cover this side of the castle.

While neither the first nor the second rumor have been official debunked or confirmed suddenly another construction project has popped up at the Castle Stage recently. Or to be more correct: on respectively in the stage. At the back of the stage, right in the middle a rectangular hole was cut into the stage floor. In the meantime a temporary tent has been erected over this construction site as well to allow the work crews to continue their job despite the punishing temperatures. However, this still leaves the question open what is going on there … is it connected to “DREAMS”? Or maybe to a different entertainment production??

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