Exciting Announcements from the D23 Expo

Y’all, I can hardly contain my excitement for the announcements coming out of D23 Expo (the official Disney fan club) yesterday!!  Honey and the kids and I spent about an hour last night gobbling up every tidbit of info we could glean from social media and the internet.  Here are the highlights…

Walt Disney World

  • Toy Story Land is well on its way to coming to life in Hollywood Studios (behind the current Pixar Place street).  Guests will be shrunk to the size of a toy to explore the world of Andy’s backyard.  Two new attractions include Slinky Dog Dash, a family coaster, and Alien Swirling Saucers.  – Timing Summer 2018

  • Mickey and Minnie’s Runaway Railway will replace The Great Movie Ride in Hollywood Studios.  Guests will step through the movie screen and in to the silly world of a Mickey Mouse Cartoon Short.  The attraction features “surprising twists and turns, dazzling visual effects and mind-boggling transformations that happen before your very eyes” in a “2 1/2 D” experience not requiring glasses.

“This is one of the boldest…most impossible things I’ve ever worked on in almost 40 years of being an Imagineer. And you know what? That’s what I love about it. Well, that, and Mickey,” Kevin said. “This is not going to be a small attraction, it’s going to be game-changing.”

After seeing Flight of Passage in Pandora: World of AVATAR, I can’t even wrap my head around what this might be but I’m EXCITED!    – Timing TBD, with The Great Movie Ride closing on August 13, 2017.

  • The new Star Wars lands have a name – Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge.  These lands allow guests to visit a remote trading port on the edge of wild space.  On both coasts, Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge will have two attractions, characters and a cantina.  The first will make guests feel like they are on a Star Destroyer inside a hangar bay. The second attraction gives guests the opportunity to fly the Millenium Falcon.  After seeing what Imagineers did with Pandora, I absolutely positively cannot wait for Star Wars to come to Hollywood Studios!  – Timing 2019, with Disneyland opening first, followed by Walt Disney World later in the year

  • A new theater is coming to Main Street USA!  The design of the world-class entertainment venue will be based on the iconic Willis Wood theater in Kansas City, where Walt lived after leaving Marceline.  There is no word yet as to what types of shows will live here, but I expect it to be similar to what we see today in Hollywood Studios with Frozen Live and Beauty and the Beast.  SO exciting!  – Timing TBD
  • Tron, the highest-rated attraction at Shanghai Disneyland, is coming to Walt Disney World!  Shanghai’s TRON Lightcycle Power Run has guests oard a train of two-wheeled Lightcycles and is recognized as one of the most thrilling adventures at any Disney Park.  The new coaster will be built next to Space Mountain in Tomorrowland.  I am so excited to see this come to our park!  – Timing by 2021
  • A new Space Restaurant is bringing an ‘Out-of-this-World’ dining experience to Epcot.  The table serve restaurant will be located next to Mission: SPACE in Future World and will have guests travel to space for an amazing dining experience in the stars. I love that Future World is getting some love and think having a place in Epcot to see the park from a birds-eye view is a great idea.  – Timing TBD
  • A “Guardians of the Galaxy”-inspired attraction is coming to Future World in Epcot.  Details are unknown at this point but it is expected to be different from the new Guardians of the Galaxy transformation at Disneyland’s Tower of Terror.  – Timing by 2021
  • A Disney•Pixar’s “Ratatouille”-inspired attraction will be added to the France Pavilion in Epcot’s World Showcase. It is expected to be similar to the 4-D Ratatouille: The Adventure in Walt Disney Studios Park in Paris.  Guests shrink to Remy’s size and scurry around Gusteau’s legendary Parisian restaurant.  – Timing by 2021
  • The Disney Skyliner transportation system is coming to the resort!  These enclosed gondolas (they look like sky buckets) will connect Disney’s Art of Animation, Pop Century and Caribbean Beach resorts and other locations with Disney’s Hollywood Studios and the International Gateway at Epcot.  We were at Art of Animation last week and the construction is already under way.  I cannot wait to see this unfold and am thrilled at the idea of an alternate to bus transportation from these resorts.  –  Timing TBD
  • Minnie Vans – actual mini-vans painted red with white polka dots! – are going to offer point-to-point transportation throughout the Walt Disney World resort.  I expect these to operate at an additional fee like an Uber service.  ie. I am at Art of Animation and want to have dinner at Grand Floridian.  Rather than taking the bus to Magic Kingdom and then the monorail to Grand Floridian (an hour long endeavor at least), I can summon a Minnie Van to pick me up and drive me door to door.  I think it’s a great idea by Disney as my family currently pays Uber to do this for us :-)  – Timing TBD but I am guessing pretty soon
  • Okay… deep breath… hold on to your hats… are you ready for this?!?!?!  A Star Wars-inspired resort will debut as part of the new Disney 360 vacation concept.  Whaaaaa????????  Be still my heart!  I cannot wait to hear more about this vacation concept, but it is describing it as a living adventure that immerses guests in an entirely new form of Disney storytelling.  Because I don’t want to miss a detail in summarizing, here is the info…

“It’s unlike anything that exists today.” Bob said. “From the second you arrive, you will become a part of a Star Wars story! You’ll immediately become a citizen of the galaxy and experience all that entails, including dressing up in the proper attire. Once you leave Earth, you will discover a starship alive with characters, stories, and adventures that unfold all around you. It is 100% immersive, and the story will touch every single minute of your day, and it will culminate in a unique journey for every person who visits.”

I am more excited about this than any other announcement coming out of D23.  EEKKKK!!  – Timing TBD

 

Disney Cruise Line

  • Disney Cruise Line is adding THREE new ships to its current fleet of four!!!!  The new additions will be powered by clean-burning liquefied natural gas and will all be bigger than the Dream and the Fantasy.  We can expect that they will bring innovative and unique experiences, and Disney says the three ships will “transform the art -of-cruising and take guests on adventures in a way never dreamed of before.” I absolutely cannot wait to learn more about these ships and am so excited to see what itineraries they will sail!! – Timing 2021-23

 

Disneyland

  • An immersive Super Hero universe experience will let you team up with favorites like Spider-Man, the Avengers and Guardians of the Galaxy like never before – Timing TBD
  • Paradise Pier in Disney California Adventure (DCA) park will be transformed to Pixar Pier.  Whimsical neighborhoods will bring favorite characters to life, including  “The Incredibles,” “Inside Out” and “Toy Story.” –  Timing 2018
  • Pixar Fest is coming in a year long celebration to DCA.  There will be a new fireworks spectacular (which has me curious as to how that will play with World of Color) and the return of the Pixar Play Parade.  – Timing 2018
  • The absolutely amazing “Paint the Night” parade that started in Disneyland for the 60th park anniversary is moving across the esplanade to DCA and might be adding a float.  This is my family’s number one Disney night time event ever!!  – Timing 2018

 

 

You can read more about ALL of these new additions and stay up to date on timing and new details on the Disney Parks Blog.  It is such an exciting time to be a Disney fan!!

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*all photos and info from  Disney Parks Blog*

As an independent consultant with Glass Slipper Concierge, an Authorized Disney Vacation Planner, I offer concierge travel planning for Walt Disney World® Resort, Disney Cruise LineDisneyland® Resort, Adventures by Disney®, Aulani and other delightful destinations.
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9 thoughts on “Exciting Announcements from the D23 Expo

  1. I was refreshing social media all day yesterday!
    We are most excited for Tron and a Ratatouille attraction! I am also super hopeful for a Disney Cruise to depart and return to Quebec City… may have to wait for that one!
    We have though for a while Epcot needed some love and we are so excited to see it come together!

    1. I feel like with 3 new ships they will definitely be expanding their ports!! I agree with Epcot… it was time for some refreshing.

  2. Love the announcements except for The Great Movie Ride leaving! It’s my favorite! We are doing a huge grad trip next June as Miss Brooke will have graduated from grad school in May and my niece will have just graduated from high school. We have a condo off site ( but we are the only non-Disney property to actually back up to a park. We border part of Animal Kingdom. Anyway, we don’t always visit the parks while in Orlando. Last time grad trip (Brooke graduating from undergrad) my husband and I took the 8 girls (13-22) to Magic Kingdom. We made a deal to go to the Studios next year because of the Movie Ride. Oh well, I know Magic Kingdom is on the agenda for next year so we will see if we make it to the studios. The other definite is 2 days at Universal & Islands of Adventures (mainly for Harry Potter but also all the thrill rides. Thanks for the alerts for all the magical Disney updates! Looking forward to checking the majority out the majority of them out over the next few years. I’ll definitely be in touch with you in late winter/early spring to see what special items we can come up with for this special trip!

  3. Seriously, when will you announce that you have been hired by Disney?!! There cannot be a more devoted fan in this world! Your official title could be “Ambassador Amanda!”

  4. Ha! We were at Disneyland/California Adventure on Sunday and go to both parks a lot, yet hadn’t realized the Play Parade was gone!

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