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D23 Confirms Fantasyland Expansion Rumors

The leaked plans for the Magic Kingdom Fantasyland expansion appear to be mostly, if not totally, true. This based on announcements from Jay Rasulo at the D23 Expo today. There’s some good detail of the plans at my previous post looking at the blueprints. Now we also have some gorgeous concept art to go with it. (click for larger versions)

Update: download 2.5 mb larger version here.

This concept art shows the expanded area from the POV of above Cinderella Castle. In the front left you see the ‘castle walls’ from which you will travel through into the various Princess Realms. Belle, Sleeping Beauty, Ariel all have their own castles (aka meet and greet areas). The Beauty and the Beast realm will also have a new dinner show.

Ariel’s castle will contain the Little Mermaid attraction that’s also being installed at California Adventure.


At this point the Fantasyland Expansion concept art differs a bit from the blue prints we saw. Tinker Bell and the fairies still get their Pixie Hollow (which will be phase two of the expansion), but the Dumbo attraction (see concept drawing below) is moved to the other side where Goofy’s Barstormer and Donald’s boat is now. There is also a coaster in the back that is not on the blue prints. I’ll be curious to see how this all turns out in the final version.


The new Dumbo attraction will have two spinners and, apparently, more of a circus theme. The blue prints specify an ‘interactive queue’ which, based on this art, would appear to be more living character initiative animatronics. Think Mr. Potato Head in the Toy Story Midway Mania queue.

All this, Jay says, will be open in 2012. A year late for the 40th Anniversay of the MK. But not too shabby a schedule. I would like to have seen another solid ‘ride’ type attraction, something aimed at the whole family instead of another meet and greet/mini-show. But the dinner show and the themeing look pretty outstanding.

Follow below the jump for the full press release related to all of Jay’s park announcements:

Re-Imagined “Star Tours” Coming to California and Florida in 2011 and Major Fantasyland Expansion at Walt Disney World Scheduled for 2013

Walt Disney Parks and Resorts Chairman Jay Rasulo detailed plans for future lands, attractions and adventures that will be delighting Disney guests for years to come, at the first D23 Expo. Most notable among the announcements were the confirmation of an all-new Star Tours attraction and the largest expansion in the history of the Magic Kingdom at Walt Disney World.

“Storytelling is the DNA of Disney dreams and we’re always exploring new ways to tell new stories in new places,” Rasulo told a crowd at the Anaheim Convention Center in California before taking them on a “behind-the-magic” tour of their favorite Disney destinations.

Rasulo announced that a new 3-D version of the tremendously-popular “Star Tours” attraction will debut at the Disneyland Resort and Disney’s Hollywood Studios in 2011. Based on the iconic Lucasfilm “Star Wars” films, the attraction will include immersive new elements that will take guests to many familiar places in the Star Wars galaxy.

For Walt Disney World in Florida, Rasulo outlined plans for the largest expansion in the history of the Magic Kingdom, vastly increasing the size of Fantasyland by 2013. Guests will soon be able to:

* Visit their favorite Disney Princess in her castle, cottage, or chateau to share a dance with Cinderella; celebrate Sleeping Beauty’s birthday with the Good Fairies; or join Belle in an enchanting story performance in the Beast’s castle library.
* Be Our Guest and dine in one of three enchanted rooms inside the Beast’s castle.
* Fly with Dumbo high above brand new circus grounds, twice the size of the existing attraction with a new interactive, three-ring circus tent.
* Journey under the sea with Ariel, The Little Mermaid, in her very own attraction – also opening at Disney’s California Adventure in Anaheim in 2011.
* Meet Tinker Bell and her friends in the magical world of Pixie Hollow.

Rasulo provided updates on the multi-year expansion of Disney’s California Adventure including the new “World of Color” attraction slated to open in the spring of 2010 and the addition of the 12-acre Cars Land scheduled to open in 2012 where guests will literally step into the town of Radiator Springs and its six acres of hand-carved rockwork.

Rasulo noted the progress of several other recently-announced projects including the three new lands coming to Hong Kong Disneyland by 2014; the Disney Dream, the new ship being built by Disney Cruise Line; the many diverse itineraries being offered by Adventures by Disney that take guests on 19 unique, once-in-a-lifetime guided vacation experiences; and Disney’s first family destination resort on the island of Oahu in Hawaii.

Rasulo’s keynote presentation was only part of the D23 EXPO experience. Guests were able to discover:

* Never-before-seen models of upcoming Disney attractions.
* Up close and personal visits with Lucky the Dinosaur and Wall-E.
* A preview of the most advanced Audio-Animatronics figures ever created by Walt Disney Imagineering.
* Displays showcasing cutting-edge effects technologies that are being developed for Disney attractions, shows and venues.

17 thoughts on “D23 Confirms Fantasyland Expansion Rumors”

  1. Oh lordy, more princesses. Maybe they should also do something it their other two florida parks, like “hollywood spoilt princesses” (get Paris Hilton signed, stat!) and “animal kingdom princesses” (do I smell the Lion King 4 1/2 – rise of Mufasa’s secret daughter?)

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  5. How about a theme park area for the villans and witches of Disney to compete with the upcoming Harry Potter at Universal?

  6. bring back TOAD! I completely agree… and am glad to see that WDW is going to bring in some more stuff! A villians area would be so much better than a PRINCESS area. No offense to the princesses but it sounds like more retail than adventure. And what will happen with cost of the parks since they are getting us at $65 a day ( I live here in The Orlando area). I wonder what will happen with ticket prices once these new attactions open.
    We have annnual passes to Uniersal since
    a) they have flex pay so it isnt killing us as a family of 4
    b)the cost. Seriously, it is extremely expensive to buy passes at disney these days. So I would ask Disney to look into getting the flex pay started! It allows us to spread out the cost over the year. I mean really, can you drop $1500 for tickets in one payment?

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