Thursday, 10th July 2014

La Place de Rémy officially opens to the public with blockbuster Ratatouille lines

Ratatouille Disneyland Paris Opening Day Inauguration Ceremony

It’s open! Today was the day, 10th July 2014, that La Place de Rémy and its key attraction, Ratatouille: L’Aventure Totalement Toquée de Rémy, officially opened to the public following several weeks of previews with a special inauguration ceremony shortly after 10am.

Hosted by the Disneyland Paris Ambassadors, Jonathan and Antonella, the opening ceremony welcomed Fleur Pellerin, Secretary of Commerce, of Tourism Promotion and of the French abroad, to Disneyland Paris.

The resort’s new chief operating officer Daniel Delcourt also took to the stage, while several elements of the earlier Grand Opening ceremonies for the press made a return to Walt Disney Studios Park, including that gingham ribbon, Rémy himself and even a surprise reappearance by the real-life Linguini.

Ratatouille Disneyland Paris Opening Day Inauguration Ceremony

Once opened, lines quickly reached blockbuster levels with guests filling the exterior queue, a roped extension area in front of the Fastpass distribution, and lining the full length of Rue Auguste Gusteau, with the queue beginning somewhere back in Toon Studio. Good thing today was also the first day the park remained open until 9pm, extending its operating day by a whole two hours, a milestone in itself.

A 120 minute wait time was posted on the park’s electronic tips board, which now lists the attraction, simply calling it “Ratatouille”. However, at one point temporary signage advised guests that, from the entrance to La Place de Rémy next to Toy Story Playland, a wait time of 190 minutes was possible.

Ratatouille Disneyland Paris Opening Day Inauguration Ceremony

Wait times for other popular Studios attractions appeared unaffected, particularly Crush’s Coaster which continued to offer up to an 80 minute wait. Of course, as much as Ratatouille could draw guests away from those attractions, it will (hopefully) be bringing more people to the park altogether, unfortunately mitigating any dramatic change.

But here’s the important fact: those lines aren’t due to bad planning, at least with this attraction. Ratatouille actually (just about) has the capacity to cope with its popularity on a normal day. It’s not quite a Pirates of the Caribbean juggernaut, but the packs of Ratmobiles were thankfully specced pretty well in their ability to cycle guests through.

As we concluded on Twitter, Ratatouille is officially a “blockbuster” attraction for Walt Disney Studios Park, and that’s down to quality, not poor capacity.

Seeing guests queueing round the block, clamouring to experience La Place de Rémy for themselves, says a lot about the demand for investments of this scale or, perhaps even more so, the rest of the park which those guests are turning their back on.

Complete video: Ratatouille Opening Day Inauguration Ceremony

Fun facts from today’s opening day press release

  • Including the attraction, restaurant and upcoming boutique, the new Ratatouille area has created 200 new and permanent jobs.
  • The project required the skills of more than 4000 craftspeople, 80% of which were French. A total of 44 French companies helped to create the attraction, including 34 from Île-de-France and 11 from Seine-et-Marne.
  • A special ultrasonic cleaning system was developed for the attraction by Fisa, a company based in Essonne, which allows 22,000 pairs of 3D glasses to be cleaned in five hours.
  • With 370 seats, Bistrot Chez Rémy is the largest table-service restaurant at Disneyland Paris. 80% of the produce used is of French origin, and the meat is sourced from within Europe (Scotland or France).
  • Disneyland Paris has generated more than 55,000 direct, indirect and induced jobs since its opening. In 2014, the group signed 8000 employment contracts, of which 1000 are permanent. Almost 15,000 people are currently employed at Disneyland Paris.
  • Disneyland Paris contributes on average 6.2% of the French tourism industry’s foreign currency revenues and contributes €50 billion in added value for the French economy.
  • Disneyland Paris is Europe’s number one tourist destination, with more than 275 million visits since its opening. Within a tourist sector elevated to the ranks of “national priority”, according to François Hollande during the Tourism Forum in June 2014, Disneyland Paris takes pride of place.
  • Over the past five years, investments centred on maintaining and developing Disneyland Paris have amounted to €510 million.

Ratatouille: L'Aventure Totalement Toquée de Rémy Disneyland Paris

Explore all DLP Today’s Ratatouille: The Adventure content and features:

Monday, 7th July 2014

Imagineers talk Ratatouille in new ‘making of’, construction and timelapse videos

With the public opening date now just days away, Disneyland Paris is teasing Ratatouille: L’Aventure Totalement Toquée de Rémy in another new “Making Of” video, filled with backstage construction shots and Imagineer soundbites.

Almost every detail of the land, attraction and restaurant may have been revealed during the Grand Opening Preview, but this video gives a deeper look into the work that went into creating it. An impressive list of creators talk about the project: Tom Fitzgerald, Liz Gazzano, Laurent Cayuela, Beth Clapperton, Bjorn Heerwagen and even composer Michael Giacchino.

“There are two main characters of the attraction: there’s Rémy, the rat and the little chef, and there is Paris, the lovely city” — Liz Gazzano, Executive Producer, Theme Parks, Pixar Animation Studios

“All the sets are big, so all of the imperfections one sees when one is very small we exaggerated”  — Beth Clapperton, Art Director, Euro Disneyland Imagineering

“The music is in touch with the story every step of the way, and that’s what’s really fun about the ride – it really is a lot like the film as far as the story goes. You start off really beautiful – and here’s what I’m dreaming, here’s what a I want – then you get dumped into an environment in which, it could give you what you want – but you’re gonna have to fight for it to get it” — Michael Giacchino, Music Composer, Ratatouille film & attraction

It’s still refreshing to see Disneyland Paris letting the creators of a project talk about it like this, something only really begun recently with Disney Dreams!. Even with sanitised soundbites it often provides the best form of promotion.

• Previously — First Ratatouille interior scenes, props, Ratmobiles revealed in new teaser video

In fact, with such a big E-Ticket, they could have been producing separate featurettes covering each aspect of the attraction, such as the musical score, teasing things over weeks and months, rather than this single 2-minute video a few days before opening.

Still, there’s great footage of the Ratmobiles “waltzing” into the unload station, something it seems impossible to get bored of seeing, so let’s not complain too much.

Want to see more? You’re in luck. Much of the construction footage comes from a longer 6 minute package of “b-roll” shared in full on our YouTube. Watch it all here:

Meanwhile for an overview of the whole construction project, they didn’t forget the traditional Disney timelapse. From a camera positioned steadily atop Toy Soldiers Parachute Drop (unlike the many fans trying to get construction photos from the ride below), this footage covers roughly two years from 2012 to 2014.

The original version lasted only 30 seconds, so here it is slowed down to a more leisurely 2 minutes 30, giving a better look at La Place de Rémy taking shape:

Subscribe to our YouTube channel for more Ratatouille: The Adventure videos

Visit our Ratatouille: The Adventure pages for more about the new attraction

Tuesday, 24th June 2014

Ratatouille: The Adventure Grand Opening LIVE Reports – Day 2 Roundup, Part 2

Ratatouille: The Adventure Grand Opening LIVE Reports

On Saturday 21st June, DLP Today took you live inside Ratatouille: L’Aventure Totalement Toquée de Rémy for the first time. After the morning opening ceremony (covered in Part 1), we were able to share the first impressions of a live ride through the new attraction, before quickly skipping off to meet two important Imagineers behind the project.

Then, it was back to the ride for more updates, revealing the Ratmobiles and their load and unload areas in more detail for the first time.

Keep your hands, arms, feet and legs inside the Ratmobile! (more…)

Friday, 20th June 2014

Ratatouille: The Adventure Grand Opening — LIVE now from Disneyland Paris

Ratatouille Disneyland Paris Press Preview Event LIVE 21st & 22nd June 2014

Here we go, live from Disneyland Paris! This is your host Anthony reporting along from the Grand Opening weekend of Ratatouille: The Adventure.

To follow all the events as they happen, head straight to the special LIVE page and you’ll see all the latest live photos and information from the brand new attraction at Walt Disney Studios Park in one place. Or, if you’re reading on a phone, you’re best jumping straight to @DLPToday on Twitter and following the action there.

Highlights of DLP Today‘s Grand Opening schedule include the Inaugural Ceremony and Grand Opening of Place de Rémy at 11:00am on Saturday, tomorrow, and The Making of Ratatouille presentation with Walt Disney Imagineers at 11:00am on Sunday, plus lots more surprises in between.

I’ll also be sharing general previews and pictures of the new development throughout both days, along with other live news and views from around Disneyland Paris.

As you might expect, there are bound to be spoilers aplenty as we discover this brand new, world exclusive attraction for the first time and talk to its creators.

Note that as I’ll also be taking notes and collecting photos and videos for reports, some events may be covered more than others and most will be reported more fully in the weeks ahead — so if you can’t follow everything live, come back soon to relive the entire adventure.

I’d love to hear YOUR thoughts too — please reply, comment, tweet as we go!

So join in, and let DLP Today take you there now..!

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• Discover Ratatouille: The Adventure on the DLP Guide mini-site!

Friday, 20th June 2014

60 Reasons Ratatouille: The Adventure matters to Disneyland Paris (well, almost)

Ratatouille: The Adventure at Disneyland Paris

The “sixtieth” attraction at Disneyland Paris, by official count, sees its Grand Opening for the press this weekend in Marne-la-Vallée. And Ratatouille: L’Aventure Totalement Toquée de Rémy means a lot more to Disney’s European resort than most of those other 59 attractions.

From the size of the investment to the location inside Disney’s least popular theme park, it’d be easy to think of 60 reasons why this is a really big deal.

But, since there are things to prepare and time’s running out, here are just Six Big Reasons Why Ratatouille Matters

1. It’s new, it’s BIG, it’s for everyone

Space Mountain: De la Terre à la Lune will forever be the addition Disneyland Paris fans regard as the one. Opening in 1995, it arguably saved the resort from financial meltdown — well, until its next restructuring — and provided a big, new version of a Disney classic which Parisian fans could say was all their own. But as a wild thrill ride with height restrictions it wasn’t for everyone and, since the bigger Discovery Mountain project was scrapped, it didn’t have a restaurant or much else to explore around the circular mountain.

In that sense, and even taking the roughly ten new attractions Walt Disney Studios Park brought in 2002, Disneyland Paris has simply never built such a complete and well-rounded expansion. One that everyone can ride, one that has all the necessary theme park infrastructure — dining, shopping, toilets — built in. This is how it should be done.

2. C’est très French

Since Le Visionarium in Discoveryland saw its all-too-early demise, Disneyland Paris has been lacking a certain French-ness in its parks. That fantastical Circle Vision 360 film was a gem, a real love letter to France; it helped to ground the park and helped the park — and its visitors — relate to its location.

Now, over in Walt Disney Studios Park, visitors can feel like they’re in Paris without ever stepping foot on the RER train to take them into the city.

It might seem mad to build Paris in Paris, but — ah! — this isn’t just any City of Light, it clearly has enough whimsy and “Hidden Rémys” to make it its own place.

This works two ways: it gives the park something very French, which foreign visitors will love, and it gives the park something very French, which the French will love.

Unmistakably connected with Disneyland Paris, it will put the resort on the map both for Disney fans and the general public in a way not seen since Space Mountain in the ’90s.

Ratatouille: The Adventure at Disneyland Paris

3. It’s fresh, not reheated

The Studios’ first and only E-Ticket expansion to date, The Twilight Zone Tower of Terror, was a huge deal at the time and helped give to the park a focal point a feeling of much-needed atmosphere. But coming almost four years after the exact same version of the ride was built in California, and that a full ten years after the Florida original, there wasn’t much new or fresh to actually be excited about. Construction was more about waiting for the next thing, not waiting to see what’s next.

With trackless vehicles, huge 3D projections, plus physical scenery and physical effects, Ratatouille: L’Aventure Totalement Toquée de Rémy is a comparatively unknown mélange like nothing seen in any other Disney park, on a scale to be truly excited about, and there are no plans as yet to reproduce it around the world.

4. It tips the balance to three days

It’d be absolutely right to hesitate to say that Walt Disney Studios Park is now a “full-day park”, but with an extra must-do attraction and a table service restaurant, it is almost getting to the point where you would struggle to do everything in a day.

Combined with Disneyland Park, this could begin to tip the balance towards three days in the parks becoming more of a standard at Disneyland Paris, at least for first-time visitors. That’s good for the parks, good for the hotels, good for everything.

After Disney California Adventure, Disney seems to have rediscovered the motto that “investment pays” — let’s please have that apply to Paris, too.

Indeed, more so than any expansion of the park yet, Ratatouille should encourage more visitors to hop to the Studios in the first place — and to hop back again. More visitors in the park could mean more much-needed investment — or at least you’d hope so, because…

Ratatouille – The Adventure Disneyland Paris

5. It doesn’t fix the Studios, but it sets a benchmark

There might be a lot of talk this weekend and further ahead of Walt Disney Studios Park “coming of age” or “being fixed”. Let’s be clear: this relatively tiny pocket of pure, proper Disney theme park magic is still just that.

Unfortunately, stepping out of Place de Rémy, you’ll still be confronted by the soulless walkway behind Art of Disney Animation, the featureless Place de Stars in Production Courtyard.

The original Animation Courtyard still lacks anything to write home about, and Backlot is positively bleak. The park is still just a collection of generally very good but largely disparate attractions, lacking any Disney glue — or even enough money-making restaurants and shops — between them.

What this new Ratatouille mini-land does do, however, with its intricate sets, endless hidden nods and spectacular fountain, is set the benchmark: for a type of immersion in storytelling which should be standard, but has still yet to be seen across the park. Toy Story Playland actually did immersion quite well, but not so much the quality of its attractions.

Even Hollywood Boulevard which surrounds The Twilight Zone Tower of Terror, a beautiful area of the park for almost seven years, lacks any kind of real immersion the second you turn to see the flat Hollywood Hills backdrop or the unrestricted views to the rest of the original backlot-inspired park. Could it finally be completed now?

Now there’s Place de Rémy, there’s no excuse. From Animagique to Studio Tram Tour: Behind the Magic to Armageddon: Les Effets Speciaux, Ratatouille will prove, somewhat painfully, just how under-performing the rest of the park is — both in how it looks, how it works and how it makes money. And that has to mean major changes.

6. We don’t know What’s Next

Star Wars Land? Marvel Studios? Animagique 2?! As one new attraction opens, it seems Disneyland Paris always becomes awash with rumour about what’s next. But right now, we just don’t know, and as we’ve seen in a past, these (often very real) plans have a disappointing habit of never making it to reality.

Even before this year, unless you take Princess Pavilions or Disney Dreams! into account, it’s been a long wait for a genuine expansion since Toy Story Playland.

So as Ratatouille: The Adventure prepares to open its doors, enjoy the moment. You never know how long we’ll be waiting for this feeling of simmering excitement again. Savour it.

• Join DLP Today from 11am this Saturday, 21st June for the Inauguration of Place de Rémy, part of our Ratatouille: The Adventure Grand Opening LIVE weekend schedule.

Discover Ratatouille: The Adventure on the special DLP Guide mini-site!

Monday, 16th June 2014

Watch – Ratatouille: The Adventure TV spot launches with thrilling Ratmobile ride

Here we go — Disneyland Paris launched the official Ratatouille: The Adventure TV spot today online and on television, taking viewers on a simulated 30 second Ratmobile ride through the new attraction. Watch the French version for the first time above now.

Focusing purely on the ride experience of Ratatouille: L’Aventure Totalement Toquée de Rémy, without mention of the land or Bistrot Chez Rémy, the commercial does a fine job of quickly and simply conveying the concept and scale of the attraction – big and small.

Beginning in a live-action Gusteau’s restaurant dining room, we see Rémy invite a family into his world by shrinking them into the Ratmobile. The trackless ride vehicle then careens around the kitchens, encountering several known obstacles and story points from the actual ride such as the serving trolley and a fiery oven. Though relatively faithful to what’s expected of the final experience, it’s worth noting all the footage is simulated and not real ride footage.

Ratatouille: The Adventure Disneyland Paris ride TV spot commercial advert
Ratatouille: The Adventure Disneyland Paris ride TV spot commercial advertRatatouille: The Adventure Disneyland Paris ride TV spot commercial advert
Ratatouille: The Adventure Disneyland Paris ride TV spot commercial advertRatatouille: The Adventure Disneyland Paris ride TV spot commercial advert
Ratatouille: The Adventure Disneyland Paris ride TV spot commercial advertRatatouille: The Adventure Disneyland Paris ride TV spot commercial advert
Ratatouille: The Adventure Disneyland Paris ride TV spot commercial advert
Ratatouille: The Adventure Disneyland Paris ride TV spot commercial advertRatatouille: The Adventure Disneyland Paris ride TV spot commercial advert

Being an advert, it of course takes numerous liberties both with the storyline of Ratatouille and the ride itself — there are no 3D glasses to be seen, for a start.

But from start to finish, this is without doubt one of the most polished and effective TV spots Disneyland Paris has produced in its history.

It’s also refreshing to see that the commercial doesn’t — as yet — finish with any promotional discount offer. Et voilà: an investment like Ratatouille: The Adventure sells itself.

• Discover Ratatouille: The Adventure on the DLP Guide mini-site!

Saturday, 14th June 2014

Disneyland Paris launches official online Ratatouille: The Adventure mini-site

Ratatouille: The Adventure official Disneyland Paris mini-site website ride attraction

An official online mini-site promoting Ratatouille: The Adventure can now be found within the Disneyland Paris website, offering a peek at the attraction, an online Rat Booth and a competition to win “complètement toqués” prizes.

The pages don’t reveal anything new to us Ratatouille connoisseurs, but they’re fun to explore with a clever 3D navigation system — like Google Street View for rats! — around the floors of Gusteau’s famous kitchen.

Explore the website for yourself here

At the time of writing, only the French version can be accessed, but a UK edition should also be available shortly at www.ratatouille-attraction.disneylandparis.co.uk and other local versions will no doubt follow.

This sudden flurry of promotional activity comes as the resort prepares to launch the official TV spot for the attraction on this coming Monday, 16th June.

Featuring a family being shrunk down into a Ratmobile from their table at a fancy restaurant, the commercial will premiere on the official Disneyland Paris YouTube channel and be available to watch here on DLP Today too. Having seen a preview, it’s a relief to say that for once, given the patchy history of Disneyland Paris TV adverts, it does a fantastic job at communicating both the concept and scale of the ride, big and small…

Saturday, 14th June 2014

Be Ratatouilled: ‘Rat Booth’ app makes you a rat before you even reach Place de Rémy

Disneyland Paris Rat Booth app, Ratatouille: The Adventure

Disneyland Paris has launched one of the first elements of its Ratatouille: The Adventure advertising campaign with a new “Rat Booth” app designed to turn you into a rat using your phone or portable device’s camera and a range of customisable options.

Available for iOS and Android devices, the app utilises augmented reality to map a rat’s face onto your own. As you look up and down, grin or frown, blink or gaze in wide-eyed wonderment, your Rémy-alike does exactly the same.

You can personalise your RatBooth rodent with a range of fun “accessories” borrowed from humans, and take a photo or even a video of its movements.

Disneyland Paris Rat Booth app, Ratatouille: The Adventure" width="640" height="427" /></a></p>
Disneyland Paris Rat Booth app, Ratatouille: The AdventureDisneyland Paris Rat Booth app, Ratatouille: The Adventure
Disneyland Paris Rat Booth app, Ratatouille: The AdventureDisneyland Paris Rat Booth app, Ratatouille: The Adventure

The app features numerous mentions of the new attraction Ratatouille: L’Aventure Totalement Toquée de Rémy, including on the splash screen and after taking a photo.

A link to “discover the attraction” leads to www.ratatouille-attraction.disneylandparis.co.uk, revealing the location of the promotional website, although this link was inactive at the time of writing. A guess at the French address, www.ratatouille-attraction.disneylandparis.fr, reveals the new mini-site in all its glory, including an online Rat Booth.

• For Apple devices, the 66.3 MB App Store download requires iOS 7.0 or later, while the 44 MB Google Play download requires Android 4.1 and up.

Discover more about Ratatouille: The Adventure on the DLP Guide mini-site

Friday, 6th June 2014

Redesigned Ratatouille attraction entrance marquee signage revealed today

Ratatouille: L’Aventure Totalement Toquée de Rémy entrance marquee Disneyland Paris ©DisneylandBerry

Like any great recipe, it needs a little refinement: A new, redesigned Ratatouille: L’Aventure Totalement Toquée de Rémy entrance marquee has been installed at Walt Disney Studios Park this morning, pictured above by DisneylandBerry. The final signage design features just the blue ellipse of the movie’s logo with the subtitle included, far more subtly, inside.

This replaces the original design of the entrance marquee, which was installed some time ago only to disappear again shortly after, leaving an empty space. A giant copper cooking pot was designed to hold the lengthy subtitle, L’Aventure Totalement Toquée de Rémy, with the Ratatouille logo above.

But once this appeared on La Place de Rémy, many fans were immediately honest that it just wasn’t quite they expected. Wasn’t the pot going to be 3D? And isn’t it all a bit ostentatious and yet, dare it be said, “cheap-looking” for such a classy new mini-land? It seems between the Imagineers and management, someone agreed.

Ratatouille: The Ride - Tom Fitzgerland Walt Disney Imagineering - Disneyland Paris Entrance Marquee
Tom Fitzgerald introduces the original marquee at the Shareholders preview presentation

Ratatouille: L’Aventure Totalement Toquée de Rémy entrance marquee Disneyland Paris ©InsideDLParis
Original entrance marquee (Photo: InsideDLParis)

The compromise on the new marquee is to drop the 2D cooking pot altogether, losing some of the city advertisement billboard aesthetic which jarred with the decoration around it. The subtitle is now placed somewhat awkwardly on the logo itself, but the general impression is better and seems more in-keeping with the surroundings.

Close-up, the marquee still has a glitzy, LED “popcorn” light display to light up the square at night, reminiscent of Meet Mickey Mouse. On the whole, it’s remarkably similar to the very first concept art we saw. Sometimes, the first ideas are the best.

Ratatouille: L’Aventure Totalement Toquée de Rémy entrance marquee Disneyland Paris ©DLPWelcome
Ratatouille: L’Aventure Totalement Toquée de Rémy entrance marquee Disneyland Paris ©DLPWelcome

• More photos — DLP Welcome: New sign on Ratatouille and more

PHOTOS @DisneylandBerry, @InsideDLParis, DLP Welcome

Friday, 6th June 2014

Listen in: First Ratatouille background area music loop tested on Place de Rémy

Residents of La Place de Rémy — and a few fans peeking over the construction walls — heard the first sounds of the new mini-land’s background area music loop a few weeks ago. Radio Disney Club captured it on video, above.

This will be conclusion of Michael Giacchino’s scoring of the new attraction and its environs. The composer, who of course composed the original Ratatouille film soundtrack, shared numerous photos and snippets of the new music in production on his personal Instagram account earlier this year, while recording at Capitol Records in Hollywood.

• Previously — Michael Giacchino shares more Ratatouille ride soundtrack previews, first audio, Director Brad Bird tweets from Michael Giacchino’s Ratatouille ride scoring session

Comprising familiar themes and instrumentation from the movie, on first listen the music sounds just as you’d hope and expect: calmer and warmer but richer, and fuller, too.

Filling the space outside Ratatouille: L’Adventure Totalement Toquée de Rémy, Bistrot Chez Rémy and Chez Marianne Souvenirs de Paris, these pleasing sounds only make you want to be there more; sitting on a bench, soaking up the atmosphere.

We now have perhaps the first genuinely immersive, escapist area of Walt Disney Studios Park… and the irony is, it’s themed to Paris!

VIA Radio Disney Club (YouTube)

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