Update: Mea Culpa. This article is 4 years old. I didn’t noticed the 2007 date on the story. That’s what I get for writing a post after midnight. I’ve updated the story to reflect the fact that this Cinderella Castle still exists according to this picture snapped in March of 2011. The real story is the Chinese gov’t never followed through on their promise to make the park change. I wonder if Disney needs to apply more pressure.
With the Hong Kong Disneyland opened a half-decade ago it looks like Disney has secured a little more pull with China’s central government. According to this story from 2007, that caused the Chinese gov’t to lower the hammer on a Disney ‘look-alike’ theme park that opened outside of Bejing trying to capitalize on Disney’s fame. Apparently “Shijingshan” built attractions based on many of the same classic stories that Disney used to inspire their films and theme parks, which is fine, but the resemblance was too obvious for even the notoriously copyright loose country of China.
As you can see in the picture above ‘Cinderella Castle’ does bear a striking resemblance to Disney’s version. There were also Snow White and Seven Dwarf and EPCOT clones. It even includes an “American Adventure” attraction. Wonder what’s in that? Apparently, it’s the park’s haunted dark ride. )
Update: Check out this photo from Sept 2010 of not-Mickey and not-Minnie near the 2008 Olympics Bird’s Nest pavilion in Beijing. Um, someone’s got some explaining to do. No wonder China’s mainland population is confused about the Disney brand. Someone’s lifted it wholesale and pretending it’s their own.