Walt Disney once said Epcot “would always be in a state of becoming” – it is a place that changes with the times. Over the next several years, the Walt Disney World Resort theme park will live up to that promise in a whole new way as it continues the biggest transformation of any Disney park in history, bringing the next generation of immersive storytelling to life through a plethora of new attractions and experiences.
Today we got another look at the amazing transformation, as Disney invited us out to experience and give some sneak peaks into the new things that are going to be taking place at Epcot over the next few years. I know that I cannot wait to see all the exciting new lands and attractions that will be coming to life and of course, you will be right along for the ride ‘through the lens of this livestreamer.’
When I arrived at Epcot this morning, very early for this livestreamer I might add, it was amazing!! I was greeted by my Disney rep who was awesome in making sure that I was able to experience and get information that I will be bringing to the Mayne Mafia. It was a true whirlwind of a day but it was so exciting and I can’t wait to bring it all to you through videos, Instagram and the blogs.
Some of the first things that I was able to do was to interview and talk with some of the soux chefs that create the amazing food for both the Festival of the Holidays that is currently happening as well as the Epcot International Festival of the Arts that will be starting January 17th. Felipe, one of the chefs, explained how they are inspired every year to create new and tasty menus and still keep some of the tried and true items that everyone looks forward to. It was super cool being able to spend some time with them and really learn about the creation of the food items here during the festivals. Of course, we know what is my favorite, the roasted turkey dinner in the American Pavilion.
I then was able to interview Micheal, the Head Imagineer for the upcoming Epcot Transformation. This experience was beyond incredible and when they handed me a microphone I was almost speechless. But Michael was very easy to talk with and he has so much enthusiasm and excitement about the new things coming to Epcot it was almost infectious. All I can say is this day was off to an incredible start and this was just the beginning. Here are some of the new lands and attractions that will be coming to Epcot.
Epcot will be unified with four neighborhoods that each speak to important aspects of the world and its people: World Showcase, World Celebration, World Nature and World Discovery. These neighborhoods will be filled with new experiences rooted in authenticity and innovation that take guests to new destinations, where the real is made fantastic in a celebration of curiosity, hands-on wonder and the magic of possibility.
World Showcase • World Showcase will continue to be a celebration of culture, cuisine, architecture and traditions – infused with new magic.
• The United Kingdom pavilion will welcome the first attraction inspired by Mary Poppins. Guests will step in time down Cherry Tree Lane past Admiral Boom’s house, then enter Number 17, home of the Banks family, where their adventure will begin.
• In 2020, following the limited-time run of “Epcot Forever,” the new “HarmonioUS” will debut as the largest nighttime spectacular ever created for a Disney park. It will celebrate how the music of Disney inspires people the world over, carrying them away harmoniously on a stream of familiar Disney tunes reinterpreted by a diverse group of artists from around the globe. “HarmonioUS” will feature massive floating set pieces, custom-built LED panels, choreographed moving fountains, lights, pyrotechnics, lasers and more.
We did get to walk around for a little bit but I have to say that the energy and hype in the air was almost overwhelming. It is something to be able to be a part of some of the first guest to see and experience the new attractions, sights and sounds of the new Epcot.
One of the coolest things that I was able to do was to go through the upcoming Remy’s Ratatouille Adventure attraction. As I made my way into the entrance, we had to gear up with construction vest, hard hat even work boots. This was the real deal, people!! We got to go into the first section which will be the loading station and we were the first group of people to actually get to see the ride vehicles and they are super cute! From the second that you come into this attraction you are transported into a world of a being a rat. Everything is super sized and you are “shrunk” down to the size of our furry little friend. You look out and you are standing on a rooftop looking out at the city-scape of Paris. There is a humongous rain gutter and the images are on point. We were accompanied by the head creator of the attraction (as well as the Beauty and the Beast Sing-a-long) and he explained to us that they worked very closely with the people at Pixar to make sure that everything was perfect. He talked about how they use “crookedism” (hope that is correct) for things like the rain gutter, to make it look as real as possible.
We then went through the second area of the attraction which is representative of the pantry in the kitchen. -I have to say, it was also very strange walking on a smooth floor throughout this attraction, as it is a trackless ride-. All I have to say is this was incredible! When you looked up there were sausages hanging and all kinds of meat, just like in a real freezer and even a huge fish! In the pantry were vegetables and olives, all super sized (or maybe we really did shrink). As we walked along, we could see little eyeballs peeking out at us from the dark. We could not go any further but I have to say, this attraction is on point! I cannot wait to be able to ride it and take you guys along with me!!
• In summer 2020, the France pavilion will offer even more for guests to discover, including the much-anticipated attraction Remy’s Ratatouille Adventure, where guests will shrink to the size of Chef Remy and race through Gusteau’s restaurant on a wild adventure. Summer 2020 will also see the debut of a delicious new restaurant in the France pavilion, La Crêperie de Paris, offering both table- and quick-service options featuring a menu from celebrity chef Jérôme Bocuse.
• Also in the France pavilion, the classic Impressions de France film will be joined by the new “Beauty and the Beast Sing-Along,” debuting in January 2020 and directed by Don Hahn, producer of both the animated and live-action versions of this tale as old as time. • “Canada Far and Wide in Circle-Vision 360” will debut in January 2020 in the Canada pavilion with new scenes and a new story. •
In the China pavilion, “Wondrous China” will take guests on a spectacular journey across the country, filmed and presented in a completely seamless 360-degree digital format.
More information just kept coming as we were hosted for dinner and a presentation. The food was awesome but the information that we were given was the star of the dinner. From opening dates of Mickey and Minnie’s Runaway Railroad to previews of the new Space 2020 resort and restaurant, it was more than just this one livestreamer could take in at one time. Be sure and check out some of the breaking news blogs as I was trying my hardest to get the information out to you guys as quickly as I could. They are also posted in our Facebook group as well. Here is even more information to share.
• The iconic Spaceship Earth will remain a voyage through time as the journey transforms to reflect the power of storytelling to unite the human experience. New narration and an entirely new musical score will focus on the moments and ideas that define the story of humanity. Guests will follow a magical “story light” that brings the entire experience to life in dynamic ways, giving each scene energy and beauty that ties the entire journey together.
• A new pavilion will be the perfect place for live events, and the home base for Epcot’s signature festivals. It will provide a stunning elevated view of the entire park and an ideal spot to witness Epcot’s nighttime spectacular. This beautiful three-level structure will have one of the most remarkable architectural designs at any Disney park, featuring a plaza level, a middle expo level, and a park that sits in the sky on the top level.
• Epcot’s entrance plaza will be transformed with new experiences that connect guests with the world around them, welcoming them with a reimagined fountain, new pathways and sweeping green spaces that beautify the entryway. The design will pay homage to the origins of Epcot.
• As guests exit Spaceship Earth, they will discover a breathtaking new view of World Showcase from Dreamers Point. World Celebration will also feature a new statue celebrating the legacy of the original dreamer, Walt Disney, plus beautiful natural environments and global design elements filled with Disney magic and surprises, including a wishing tree in an enchanted forest and a story fountain celebrating the power and music of iconic Disney storytelling. World Nature
• World Nature is dedicated to understanding and preserving the beauty, awe and balance of the natural world. It will include The Land and The Seas with Nemo & Friends pavilions.
• Journey of Water, Inspired by “Moana” will be the first experience inspired by the hit Walt Disney Animation Studios film. This lush exploration trail will invite guests to meet and play with magical, living water. The water will have a life of its own – just like Moana’s friend, the ocean – and guests will learn about the importance of the natural water cycle.
• The Land pavilion’s new film, “Awesome Planet,” which showcases the beauty, diversity and dynamic story of the planet, will begin welcoming guests in January 2020. World Discovery • In World Discovery, stories about science, technology and intergalactic adventure come to life.
• Guardians of the Galaxy: Cosmic Rewind will be the first “other-world” showcase pavilion at Epcot. The adventure starts in the “Galaxarium,” a planetarium-like exhibition that explores the similarities and mysteries of the formation of Earth’s galaxy and Xandar. Guests will be invited to learn more about the treasures Xandar has to share – until the moment when the Guardians of the Galaxy arrive, and adventures across the cosmos ensue. The attraction will feature a new innovation from Walt Disney Imagineering – a storytelling coaster that rotates 360 degrees to focus guests on the action, including the first reverse launch on a Disney coaster.
• An expansion of the Mission: SPACE pavilion, the new restaurant Space 220 will be a culinary experience featuring the celestial panorama of a space station, including daytime and nighttime views of Earth from 220 miles up. Guests will board a special elevator for a journey to a space station that is home to an incredible dining experience. Along the way, viewports will give guests real-time perspective as they travel high above the planet. Once they arrive, guests will enjoy fantastic meals and drinks while taking in views that are truly out of this world. Opening this winter, Space 220 will be operated by the Patina Restaurant Group.
• The PLAY! pavilion will open in time for the 50th anniversary of Walt Disney World. In this digital metropolis, guests will discover an interactive city bursting with games, activities and experiences that connect them with friends, family and beloved Disney characters – both real and virtual – like never before. As part of this new pavilion, guests will have the chance to help legendary fashion icon Edna Mode on her quest to rid the world of uninspired style, or make a splash competing in a water-balloon fight hosted by Huey, Dewey, Louie and Webby. Guests can visualize these exciting plans for Epcot at Walt Disney Imagineering presents the Epcot Experience in the Odyssey Events Pavilion. Here they discover engaging and interactive exhibits that showcase the relentless innovation, energy and excitement driving the park’s future throughout this unprecedented period of transformation.
We were then treated after the overwhelming presentation to the Epcot Forever dessert party and the amazing laser and fireworks show itself. I really do love this show, especially how it brings the young at heart, Walt’s vision and graceful beauty and music all together.
Words cannot express what an incredible day this was! It was full of excitement, anticipation for things to come, amazing imagineers that we got to talk with and tour with and so much more. Cannot wait for tomorrow and the new things in Hollywood Studios and of course, the most exciting thing ever, riding the Rise of the Resistance!!
WOW!! There are so many exciting changes coming to Epcot in the future!! Be sure and follow Spokesmayne on Facebook, Instagram and Youtube, making sure that you are subscribed so you don’t miss a single update or stream. Keep following along on spokesmayne.co to get all of the information about the fun and openings that we will be covering!