Does it sound a little far-fetched? The rumours certainly did when they appeared out of nowhere just a few weeks ago.
Proving Walt Disney Imagineering really can still throw us a curveball once in a while, when member La Rouquine on Disney Central Plaza announced that you could be enjoying your meal at Rendez-Vous Stars Restaurant only for an animatronic Rémy to pop out from under a serving platter and interact with you, he wasn’t wrong.
The set-up relates to the original teaser trailer for Pixar’s Oscar-winning film Ratatouille, in which a waiter stops at a table in the classy Gusteau’s restaurant and offers the diners some cheese — only to lift the lid on the platter and reveal Rémy the rat, chomping away on a piece of Emmental.
Though the rumours for this unexpected exclusive ‘Living Character’ suggested Rémy would be making appearances at Rendez-Vous des Stars — which recently took on the name of his film to attract more guests — and more particularly the restaurants of Disneyland Hotel, it was in the streets of Walt Disney Studios Park, outside that first restaurant, that he was first spotted just yesterday.
Here it is, the first video:
Rémy wears his miniature chef’s hat just like at the end of the film, sitting on a platter with some cheese and grapes, looking upwards in a slightly hesitant way to the guests around him. The accompanying human chef plays up to the crowds, uses little words and presents the rat to his public.
Though the video cuts away after a few seconds, you get the idea. You might also have a few new questions, such as — will he speak? Well, in the world of Ratatouille as imagined by the wizards at Pixar, no humans can understand the rats. The film handles this fact beautifully through the great interactions between Linguini and Rémy, introducing a squeak for Rémy only in a single scene. But, when you’ve got Rémy right there on a platter… shouldn’t he say something?
Secondly, as Maarten on our partner website magicforum questioned straight away — is he really an animatronic? Certainly his movements and the positioning above a covered trolley could suggest that this little rat is merely a puppet controlled by a human beneath the cloth.
Either way, this is now the park’s second ‘Living Character’ after Stitch Live! and thus far a complete world-exclusive — not to mention a more accurate depiction of the furry movie star than the slightly oversized Toon Studio version, which will continue to meet and greet fans.
So, when we said you won’t meet Rémy in any way other than that oversized character until the rumoured Walt Disney Studios Park attraction opens for the resort’s 20th Anniversary in 2012, we were wrong. DLRP Today eats humble pie. Or some cheese…
[Video: Novastarbuzz, YouTube]