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Worlds Apart 8 - Walt Disney Studios Paris into the Future

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Last week, I talked about one of the next new attractions to arrive at Walt Disney Studios Paris: The Stars 'n' Cars event. This week, I'm going to have a quick look at what else is coming up in the near future for the Parisian Studios park, and take a glimpse into the future.

The Studios DedicationI briefly mentioned in the sixth article of this series about Stitch Live, which was similar to the Stitch Encounter attraction at Hong Kong Disneyland. This attraction opened in the former Disney Channel Television Studios building and is similar to Turtle Talk With Crush at Epcot. The show is performed alternately is English and French, and appears to be proving very popular with the park guests. Since the attractio opened, the preshow for the attraction has been improved a few times, and is now more themed to the attraction than it was previously.

Playhouse Disney will be moving into Disneyland Resort Paris very soon. The show will occupy the same building as Stitch Live. Recently, the exterior signage has been installed for the attraction, and it's expected to open on the 4th of April to coincide with the Mickey's Magical Party celebration that will take over Disneyland Resort Paris for the next year.

At the front of the park, the Walt Disney Studios Store is being modified to invite more guests into the store. Currently, the store fits in with the theming so well that many guests simply pass by it, not realising it's there. It's expected that when the work is complete, the store will have extra doors and windows to tempt guests inside instead of waling straight through to Studio 1 and the park itself.

Cars billboardAnother change at the front of the park since the original articles were published was the removal of the huge Cars billboard over the entrance to Studio 1. The billboard was originally built for the release of Chicken Little, and featured a huge Chicken Little figure with the sky in the background. When Cars was released, the billboard was changed to reflect this. The billboard wasn't changed again, but was removed in mid 2008. Shortly after, scaffolding was erected on the front of Studio 1, and a replica image of the front of Studio 1 placed over it. The scaffolding and facade remain in place as this article goes to press, although it's expected that some time in the future, the real facade of Studio 1 will once again see the light of day.

The ToonTown backdropRumours have been floating around for a little while now of "Toy Story Playland", which may take the land behind the Art of Disney Animation attraction as a sub-land to the recently opened Toon Studios. It was widely expected that an announcement of such a project would be announced at the EuroDisney SCA annual shareholders meeting earlier in February 2009, however no such announcement was made, and the project remains in the rumour category for the time being. Should the land ever come to be, rumours for its contents include various ride attractions (as oppose to shows, which the Studios park has plenty of) themed to the Toy Story world.

There is some clear evidence to support the rumours of something happening behind the Animation building, though. A fairly sizable section of the woodland behind the Tram Tour has been cleared, which is rumoured to be to enable the Studio Tram Tour to be re-routed further back to allow enough space for attractions to be added to Toon Studios behind the Animation building.

Studios entranceFurther to this, some eagle-eyed fans have spotted that in a video on Disneyland Resort Paris' new Casting website, you can see plans behind one of the Architecture and Urban Planning Cast Members on the wall, which appears to have future development zones highlighted, including a decent sized area tacked onto the Studios Park. A sign of more to come in the future? We'll have to wait and see.

Whatever comes in the future for the park, the Walt Disney Studios Park in Paris certainly isn't standing still. It looks as though EuroDisney is planning on adding more new attractions to tempt guests over to Paris' second gate and make the park even better for the future guests.