Tuesday, 16th March 2010

Behind-the-scenes New Gen video, concepts, fun facts

Here’s the video:

And now let’s take a closer look. It begins with Disney Showtime Spectacular, the new Central Plaza show which thankfully appears to be defying its generic name by possessing some interesting ideas.

Of course, this is possibly the first time at Disneyland Paris we’ve seen characters from the likes of Toy Story or The Incredibles taking part in a stage show, and the classic Disney characters are going to welcome them in style. As you can see from the concepts captured below, Mickey and Minnie (and possibly the other VIPs) will have a costume to match each scene of the show, transforming — somehow — from chef outfits for Ratatouille to green army gear for Toy Story, bright Hawaiian colours for Lilo & Stitch and black superhero masks for The Incredibles:

New Generation Festival making of

New Generation Festival making of

New Generation Festival making of

New Generation Festival making of

Insider Poppy the Monkey on magicforum has revealed that the soundtrack of the show is around 70% new to Disneyland Paris, though the entire It’s Party Time score from Mickey’s Magical Party has been thrown out. The It opens with a new song, “We’re the best of friends”, and ends with the catchy “Goin’ down the Bayou” from The Princess and the Frog.

The show is “non-stop, very fast, very fun” and contrary to earlier plans and press releases, won’t just be “an end to the day” with a single performance, but happening 3 or 4 times each day. And some good news for those who disliked the Mickey’s Magical Party event — this time, the large cast of dancers back up the characters, rather than almost stealing the show themselves.

The characters appear in groups, with Sully joined not only by Mike Wazowski (who hasn’t been seen live in Paris for years) for the Monsters Inc segment, but a monster-disguised Boo, who has never made it over here before. Stitch, meanwhile, will be joined by his much less well-known partner: Angel (experiment 624).

Public previews/dress rehearsals are due to begin from next Tuesday, 23rd March, if all goes to plan. These aren’t “official” performances and so cannot be fully confirmed, but if you’re visiting the park in the two weeks leading up to the New Gen launch, you may well get an exclusive preview.

Next up, the new Ratatouille car for Disney’s Stars ‘n’ Cars. After the reveal a couple of weeks ago, the video gives a better look at the some of its features:

New Generation Festival making of

New Generation Festival making of

New Generation Festival making of

New Generation Festival making of

New Generation Festival making of

Here are the official fun facts about the car:

• Adding Ratatouille to the parade involves an additional 1 minute and 40 seconds of music. The Ratatouille car will be accompanied by a medley from Offenbach’s La Vie Parisienne.

• The car includes props, costumes, chef hats and even aprons for the driver-dancers!

• It travelled for 19 days by boat to reach the port of Le Havre, before it was shipped by freight container to Marne la Vallée.

• The car was originally a 1950 Studebaker and it has been fully customised at Disneyland Paris to include special effects and animated kitchen props from the world of Remy and Emile.

• It is powered by electric battery and can drive for 90 minutes on a single charge!

• Take a close look at the tyres as the parade rolls by, as they are not real… they are specially-constructed rubber-covered foam rings, which will never get a puncture!

• The car boasts the film’s famous Ratatouille on its bonnet and a moving pile of pots and pans that gives the impression they are all going to come crashing down!

Though these fun facts for the press wouldn’t have you know it, the car is of course the old Star Wars automobile from the original Florida parade.

The moving pots and pans will be built on top of the circular metal mechanism you can see being tested in the video. The new angles on the concept art reveal the hood (bonnet) of the car will be decorated like a check table cloth with the plate, of course, holding a large helping of ratatouille.

Bringing Princess Tiana and Prince Naveen to Disneyland Park doesn’t just mean shipping over the same costumes as the couple wear in their American park appearances, oh no. Since they’re taking “pride of place” in Disney’s Once Upon a Dream Parade, that means a special crystal, gold-laced gown and suit to match those given to the other royal couples back when the parade launched in 2007:

New Generation Festival making of

New Generation Festival making of

New Generation Festival making of

Official fun facts of Tiana’s dress:

• It takes more than 80 hours to make one dress .

• 20 m of crystal fabric are used.

• 80 m of golden thread are woven through the dress, involving more than 100 hours of embroidery work.

• More than 200 m of iridescent thread shimmer in the 20 m of brocade used.

• For that extra sparkle, there are 80 glistening rhinestones on each dress.

• More than 100 beads and rhinestones adorn Tiana’s magical tiara.

And finally, the video offers a better look at WALL-E, forming part of the Disney All Stars Express:

New Generation Festival making of

He won’t be “animatronic” of course, the cost would be enough to buy 10 new Disney All Star Express trains and rival the RER, but judging by his pose could give a wave of his faux-robotic arm as the train rolls along, in that classic Disney parade style.

Video, concepts, images © Disney.

Tuesday, 2nd March 2010

Two more New Gen TV spots and the ‘Making Of’

As reported with the exclusive posting of the full 40 second TV spot yesterday, there are five different formats for the New Generation Festival television campaign in the UK — including two 30 second adverts and three 10 second spots.

First, we’ll share the 10 second ‘Announcement’ spot that has been played the most heavily so far and actually features the little-seen Incredibles, simply announcing that the New Generation Festival is landing at Disneyland Paris from 2nd April, without a single special offer or call to action at the end:

The idea here is to build interest in the campaign without giving everything away.

Next, Version B of the 30 second spot is worth noting because it’s the only UK advert that features the Lightning McQueen/Cinderella pair-up we saw in the stills posted last week:

Perhaps, now that “cheapquels” like Cinderella 3 have been put to bed, we’ll be seeing Disney branching out with unexpected crossover movies, beginning with the long-awaited “McCindy” (as the gossip rags are calling the couple) romantic comedy. No?

The other 30 second version of the commercial uses the shots of Toy Story Playland where this Lightning McQueen scene is, whilst the two additional 10 second adverts focus on the Kids Under 7 and Save 40% offers respectively, none featuring any real additional or alternate footage.

At the weekend, Disneyland Paris released some ‘Making Of’ photographs from the production of the commercials. Motion Theory, based in California, naturally took to the sun-kissed lands of the original Disneyland Resort in Anaheim to film the outdoor scenes — or rather its second gate, California Adventure.

Here we see the camera set-up to capture the leading float of the park’s Pixar Play Parade (which would have actually been perfect for Paris this year) being paraded through Hollywood Pictures Backlot:

New Generation Festival TV Spot

This photo of the clapperboard confirms Mathew Cullen and Christopher Leone to be the directors:

New Generation Festival TV Spot

Mathew Cullen co-directed the Black Eyed Peas’ recent Grammy award winner for Best Music Video, whilst Christopher Leone tweeted a link to our video of the TV spot yesterday saying “Looks like the UK version of our Disneyland Paris commercial is already on YouTube”. Well, we don’t waste any time!

New Generation Festival TV Spot

Did you spot Nemo falling from the sky? That fishbowl wasn’t animated, it was hung by wire in front of a chroma key bluescreen, with Nemo animated inside to get as realistic a look as possible!

New Generation Festival TV Spot

Finally, the RC Racer scene where Donald Duck rides this new halfpipe attraction required the construction of a giant mock-up of the final vehicle, RC himself. The actors screamed as the camera rose and fell towards them, bluescreen behind, ready for Donald to be animated into the empty seat.

New Generation Festival TV Spot

The ride vehicle of the finished attraction will probably be slightly different in appearance, and will definitely have far more (though still relatively few) seats — 20 compared to the 6 here.

• You can find all the commercials on our YouTube channel. Favourite and share them with friends!

Videos and photos © Disney, © Disney/Pixar.

Monday, 1st March 2010

Watch the full New Generation Festival TV spot!

If those stills from the epic new Disneyland Paris TV spot whet your appetite and you’ve yet to catch the ad on any of the major broadcasters in the UK, we’ve got a treat.

The full, 40 second commercial for the New Generation Festival. Enjoy:

Produced by Motion Theory — whose past credits include Honda, McCain, Nintendo and music videos such as Adele’s Chasing Pavements — for the resort’s agency EuroRSCG, this spectacular advert combines live action footage filmed in California with all-new animation of Disney and Pixar stars.

You’ll be seeing it for the next month across all the major TV networks. As well as this full 40 second version, you’ll see two 30 second versions and three 10 second spots, which we’ll be sharing soon!

In the UK, the commercials are trailing a new ‘Save up to 40% plus Kids under 7 stay and play Free’ offer, a quite unexpected return to such heavy discounting — the validity period even running right up to 8th November. Pushed with such a professional and genuinely exciting TV spot, Disneyland Paris looks set to be making quite a big impression in the UK over the next few months, as it attempts to win back the visitors lost through the credit crisis and poor exchange rates.

TV spots and advertising should launch outside the UK from next week, 8th March.

Video © Disney, Disney/Pixar.

Thursday, 25th February 2010

WALL-E buys a ticket for the All Stars Express!

Show director Christophe Leclercq stands in front of previously unseen concept art for the 2010 redressing of Minnie’s Party Train (née Disney Characters’ Express) in the video on the official event page, revealing a redecorated Casey Jr. train. Before we dive into the screenshots, watch it back:

Previously, we’d been led to believe that the train would remain largely unchanged from its 2009/10 form, as the only piece of imagery published so far showed it retaining Minnie’s polka dots.

However, the concept art revealed here shows the wagon supports and roofs redressed with bright, toy-like multicolours — red, yellow, green and blue — and given New Generation Festival logos, with the engine itself a bright white, its ribbon bearing “All Stars Express” lettering.

Take a look at these large-format stills (click for even larger versions):

Disney All Stars Express

Above, the multicolours and some new flags atop the carriages, carrying the logos of Monsters, Inc., The Incredibles and other ‘New Generation’ films.

The most interesting moment of the video, though, is when Christophe mentions the characters who we’ll find on board the train. Speaking in French, he quite clearly first mentions — yes, WALL-E! The robot from Pixar’s 2008 film of the same name.

So, take another look at the Disney All Stars Express concept art…

Disney All Stars Express

There he is, sitting atop the coal in the engine’s tender!

The following design image even flashes up on screen for a brief moment, with the words “pose reference only” suggesting that Disneyland Paris have been forwarded three-dimensional character models by Pixar in order to build the full-size figure:

Disney All Stars Express

But it gets complicated, at least for us English-speakers. On the UK website, the subtitles provided for Christophe’s French script strangely replace the very clear “WALL-E” with “Sulley”, take a look:

Disney All Stars Express

We’ve mentioned in the past that the gang of ‘New Generation characters’ to be featured heavily this year has been set for some time, and certainly doesn’t include WALL-E anywhere. Could this be a late cover-up of a cancelled plan?

Hopefully not — the familiar character train needs something beyond a few new colours to keep it fresh for yet another guise. This Pixar robot atop the tender would be just the ticket. Ha ha! Just the ticket! ……

Images © Disney.

Wednesday, 24th February 2010

New Generation Festival TV spot in pictures

Launching on 1st March (next Monday) in the UK and around the rest of Europe soon after, the TV commercial opens as the New Generation characters and stars begin falling from the sky (from a Dinoco helicoper!), descending over the classic fairytale worlds of Disneyland Park…

Disneyland Paris New Generation Festival TV spot

The advert is a mix of live action backgrounds with both computer and hand-drawn animation. Some of the characters have a less than perfect landing — Sulley falls straight through the thatched roof of the dwarves’ cottage…

Disneyland Paris New Generation Festival TV spot

Giving Snow White and guests, not to mention the monster himself, a sudden surprise…

Disneyland Paris New Generation Festival TV spot

Lightning McQueen, meanwhile, lands on the parade route, just missing Cinderella’s carriage.

Disneyland Paris New Generation Festival TV spot

The princess seems to take it all in her stride…

Disneyland Paris New Generation Festival TV spot

And watches on as Princess Tiana joins her exclusive circle of friends…

Disneyland Paris New Generation Festival TV spot

And then, what will be the most pored-over image of the whole commercial — a rather “playful” representation of Toy Story Playland. Donald Duck rides a (very oversized!) RC Racer up into the sky with Slinky Dog Zig Zag Spin and Toy Soldiers Parachute Drop in the background, as Buzz Lightyear flies overhead…

Disneyland Paris New Generation Festival TV spot

The final shot shows the new and old joining together in a grand parade…

Disneyland Paris New Generation Festival TV spot

Whilst Goofy is pictured riding atop the opening float from Pixar Play Parade at Disney’s California Adventure (the parade that has been suggested may come to our Studios at some point), there’s little mention of the actual New Generation Festival events mentioned in brochures and press releases, such as Disney Showtime Spectacular on Central Plaza Stage.

There’s a chance that the use of Nemo and Lighting McQueen could make even several year-old attractions like Crush’s Coaster (which wasn’t all that heavily advertised upon opening) seem a part of the “new generation” offerings, for less frequent visitors.

The commercial was produced in California and features original animation of the characters involved. After the uninspiring balloons of Mickey’s Magical Party, the presence of a real narrative here, of the characters landing in the parks amongst classic set pieces, appears to be one of the best-executed campaigns from Disneyland Paris for some time, even in stills.

Keep your eyes peeled on major terrestrial and digital channels in the UK from Monday, with the “heavyweight” campaign running in several time lengths and formats right up to 4th April.

Images © Disney, Disney/Pixar.

Saturday, 16th January 2010

Monsters meet Dixieland – a New Generation roundup

First, an easy one — a new promotional image. Get used to these characters, they’re leading the band this year:

Disney New Generation Festival

It’s quite a brave move for Disneyland Paris to effectively put Mickey in the shadows for a year (at least in terms of advertising), since they’re often so over-reliant on the mouse, but it has to be applauded. The only additions to the line-up here are Mr and Mrs Incredible, who aren’t being used for any other ‘NGF’ promotions but will hopefully be much more visible in the park than recently.

Negatives? No ‘Up’ characters — which means no Dug, who’d be a sure-fire hit. Stitch could really have been given a year off… And let’s not get into the issues of the Castle being that tall from 7 Km away. Or teaching kids to hitch-hike. Moving on…!

The Spring/Summer 2010 brochures featuring the year have been landing on doormats across the UK last week, and most have been very pleasantly surprised to discover a nice foil cover on both the front and back, the first time Disneyland Paris have stretched to such extravagance:

Disney New Generation Festival

It might not show you anything about the resort and parks are actually like (read our thoughts here), but it really does look top notch design-wise. With the internet providing all the information and pictures you could need; if all these brochures now serve to be are shiny things to attract the attention of the public… they’ve got a hit.

Another print appearance of the New Generation Festival (or rather L’Année de la Nouvelle Génération) has come with the latest issue of Annual Passholder magazine Envie de +

Disney New Generation Festival

Disney New Generation Festival

The magazine again features some of the main characters of the year:

Disney New Generation Festival

And looks over the main events (nothing particularly new revealed here):

Disney New Generation Festival

Before having a quick chat with DLP Entertainment’s familiar artistic director Kat de Blois:

Disney New Generation Festival

The interview reads:

How much time have you spent working on this event?

We started the New Generation project in March 2009. So that represents more than a year of work. But for us — and hopefully our guests — it’s a great pleasure.

According to what we’ve heard, this project will be a world-exclusive?

Ah yes, Made In France! You know here, we have a real freedom to do some really unique things. Disney’s Once Upon a Dream Parade, for example, doesn’t exist anywhere else but here. And to celebrate the arrival of this new generation, we’re inviting our new Princess Tiana to join in with the other familiar royalty.

Exclusively for Disneyland Paris, we have revisited the grand cavalcade of Disney’s Stars ‘n’ Cars, originally from Florida, and added the Ratatouille car and its cancan music, which promises a deliciously comic moment.

What are you most proud of on this project?

Probably Disney Showtime Spectacular. Once a day, this show will reunite Mickey and the new generation characters on a 360-degree stage. The audience can therefore move round the way around it. There will be plenty of surprises, which I can’t reveal to you yet…

If you had to summarise the New Generation Festival in three words, what would they be?

“Family, Fun and Friends.” Sharing — with everyone around you and all their differences — is truly at the centre of this brand new experience, which will please the youngest just as much as the oldest.

A final scoop for our readers?

We are already working on your must-anticipated surprises for our 20th Anniversary. But that stays between us, of course… (Smiles)

Steady on! You’ve still got 2011 to figure out yet…

Aaaand finally — those new Monsters and Dixieland details we led with.

Though the texts here and seen previously have all been the usual, wonderfully vague Disney PR puff, there are more detailed press releases still being prepared and held back until just before the festival launches. One such press release posted by Disney and More gives some long-awaited details about two of the new character events being pushed for 2010.

First: Princess Tiana. Though it’s widely publicised that she’ll be joining the crowd on the Dreams of Romance float (with her Prince Naveen), many are asking if she’ll be featured anywhere else, available for meet and greet, autographs… Your answer:

The highlight of each day in Disneyland Park is a grand welcome to Princess Tiana, the newest star to join the Disney Princess family from Walt Disney Pictures’ latest animated movie, The Princess and the Frog. Each day, Princess Tiana and her Prince Naveen will meet ‘n’ greet guests and pose for photographs at Town Square Gazebo, with lively music by the Dixieland Band inspired by the music from the film.

Perfect! It’s not quite Tiana’s Showboat Jubilee but a bit of live music is never a bad thing — especially when it’s apparently scheduled in for “every day”. The band will presumably be made up of familiar faces from the resort’s orchestras, usually playing medleys of Disney songs and often quite rarely seen outside of high season.

Disney New Generation Festival

Second: Monsters Inc. Scream Academy, that now being the official name of this photolocation/meet and greet/character event… well, what actually is it? As we’ve discussed several times before, the Monsters Inc photo location in Walt Disney Studios Park has been there since 2006. What’s suddenly so new that requires it have equal billing with Toy Story Playland?

Everyone gets permission to be as loud as they want, and screams of delight are filling the air several times daily at “Monsters Inc. Scream Academy” at Walt Disney Studios Park. “Top scarer” Sulley from Monsters, Inc. looks for new recruits with his friend named Patty. Guests of all ages get in the action as they test the monster boogie, monster roar and monster scare – with as many laughs as screams. All are invited to participate in this family-friendly, high energy character interaction. Try your hand at being a Monster!

If not a “show”, this at least seems to be shaping up as some kind of new character interaction or event, likely comparable to the Sword in the Stone Ceremony in Fantasyland.

Will Patty be a monster or a human? And will they be joined by any other Monsters — since several others from the film do feature at other Disney parks, notably in DCA’s Pixar Play Parade — or in fact little girl Boo, who has been rumoured on our own comments?

Will the static Mike Wazowski figure stay there throughout the event or be removed? And how will guests actually see anything, since the corner is surely far too small for a proper event, visible only from one side and surrounded by planters? Ahh, an answer just opens up many more questions.

Basing an event around screaming doesn’t seem like the best idea, but you never know — it might be good fun. With High School Musical not due for a return, CinéFolies (the Hollywood street acts) still criminally cancelled and Disney’s Stars ‘n’ Cars not quite up to scratch on either its parade or show aspects (again, hard to see unless you arrive very early), the Studios will be needing all the live entertainment help it can get this year.

Images © Disney.

Sunday, 10th January 2010

Watch the flashy New Generation Festival video trailer

Just published online, the video comes in a similar style to the extended trailers for past theme year events. Where the 15th Anniversary had very restrained, stylish black and white scenes where guests would describe the resort in different European languages, Mickey’s Magical Party had a very cheaply-produced Powerpoint feel.

By comparison, the New Generation Festival trailer seems to aim its sights at being as contemporary as possible: eye-catching video effects, dot-matrix designs and a hip guitar backing track; all joining together a mixture of new and recycled footage.

Watch the English version right here:

Both an English and French version have been published on new preview pages at the official website, though it is still expected that Disneyland Paris will launch its usual (and equally Flash-y) minisites sometime in the run up to the launch on 2nd April 2010. The domain www.newgenerationfestival.com was been purchased by the company last year in preparation.

• Enjoy the trailer? Share it with your friends on YouTube!

Sunday, 22nd November 2009

New Generation of brochures for Summer 2010

What is it about brochures and Disneyland Paris? No other group of Disney fans gets so excited or worked up about their resort’s promotional materials as us, but here are again, about to pour over every page of New Generation Festival detail. Or rather, the Disney new generation festival, as it now has to be written. But more on that later…

We naturally begin with the cover, where the prophecies were correct — it’s the image of Buzz Lightyear parachuting in behind the festival logo, which is far more prominent than even the Disneyland Paris logo, as the other characters are arranged, fridge magnet-like, behind.

Disneyland Paris New Generation Festival Brochure

At the bottom, “Landing from April 2010“, with not only a thin typeface but a mixture of bold and light weights together. It’s all very modern, this.

Disneyland Paris New Generation Festival Brochure

But maybe we should be happy. Look back at the advertising styles from 1992 and they were completely fitting for the period, all colourful shapes and crisp white backgrounds. Maybe it’s a great thing that the resort is being contemporary, rather than continuing the dull fantasy-styles we saw earlier this decade.

And so we see the “Programme of events” above, with the various new additions for this theme year thankfully sorted into neat categories so that prospective guests can see what’s worth bothering with (attractions) and what’s more a load of puff (stars). Indeed, we’ve still yet to find out just how the Monsters Inc. Scream Academy can be considered “new”, given that it was added in 2006.

This is also our first encounter with lower case madness. Normally, it’s the done thing to use capital letters in the name of a show or event — like Toy Soldiers Parachute Drop. But as we’ve touched upon in the past, and is now confirmed here, the ‘Disney new generation festival’ won’t be following those boring old rules, oh no! So, very much helping the grammar of our text messaging generation, we’ll be welcoming not ‘Disney Showtime Spectacular’ but Disney showtime spectacular. Not ‘Disney All Stars Express’ but Disney all stars express.

It wouldn’t be noticeable, but this strange stylistic choice is forced into every instance of these names. It’s probably meant to look fresh and hip, but it ends up looking like they forgot to hire a proofreader, we’re sorry to say…

Disneyland Paris New Generation Festival Brochure

Neurotic grammatical asides complete, the look of this brochure is very pleasing. You’ll see very few actual images of Disneyland Paris in here, but yes it looks very smart — a definite step up from the horribly garish second brochure for Mickey’s Magical Party we’re leaving behind.

Disneyland Paris New Generation Festival Brochure

Nope, no pictures yet…

Disneyland Paris New Generation Festival Brochure

Still waiting…

Disneyland Paris New Generation Festival Brochure

Nice to see the chopped-up image of Tiana and Naveen on the parade float made it through quality control…

Disneyland Paris New Generation Festival Brochure

Ahaa! Pictures!!

Disneyland Paris New Generation Festival Brochure

Yes, we’re spoiled a full three real images from within Disneyland Park (including the Castle background). Surrounding those, a Cinderella picture (from Walt Disney World), a false Space Mountain: Mission 2 promo picture and the doctored Disney all stars express promo image.

You can’t be down about this lack of photography for long though, or worry too much that the brochures continue towards being just catalogues of Disney character stock images, because the next page is rather stunning…

Disneyland Paris New Generation Festival Brochure

Not only is this (mostly) a real photo — and a beautiful photo at that — no, finally the powers that be have discovered Hollywood Boulevard. The gorgeous little street has been there for two years already and now it’s being utilised and advertised for the first time. Normally, you’d see nothing of the Walt Disney Studios Park exteriors in the brochures, only the insides of attractions.

Add to that some character stock images which almost look to be tailored specifically to this page and we’ve got one of the best brochure pages for years. And it might just be the matching colour palettes, but Woody and Slinky feel quite at home next to that logo there.

Alas, with every up, there’s a down. After that terrible use of a real photo, this is the centrepiece of their Toy Story Playland launch…

Disneyland Paris New Generation Festival Brochure

It’s a shame Disneyland Paris don’t appear to want to make concept art public these days, because the ‘TSPL’ artwork is arguably a million times more endearing than this collection of visual junk, inspired by your local crèche.

The second Walt Disney Studios Park page is good enough, with the investment in this park now adding up to a very marketable, colourful set of attractions.

Disneyland Paris New Generation Festival Brochure

Park seasons appear to get a bigger showing this time, with a full double-page detailing everything from Summer Time (finally branded into a proper season) to the, er, British Festival at Disney Village, where you can see, first-hand… a British Mini! No, really!

Disneyland Paris New Generation Festival Brochure

Rearing its head again here, though: the marketeers’ disgust for poor old Sleeping Beauty Castle. Since opening day its been mirrored, warped and chopped up to fit their visions. This must be one of the most drastic yet, covering the entire front window with one of the turrets from the side.

Note here and in the image on page 13, at least, that the Castle is decoration free… or almost decoration-free. When editing the spire tops out of that photo above, Tinkerbell was left in place, along with the piping leading up the main tower. Just the choice of the marketing department, or a sign that this decoration is due to cling on?

Next, Hotels = Aliens.

Disneyland Paris New Generation Festival Brochure

The hotel pages have seen the biggest changes in this new brochure, with the usual format of a white background and one large image replaced by this, “immersive”, style…

Disneyland Paris New Generation Festival Brochure

Colours, designs and furniture from each hotel dress each page fully, attempting to give us a “feel” of the hotels more than accurate pictures. Each page features only two real images — the view of the hotel out the window and a tiny view in a picture frame — but the style is clever.

In any case, these pages are likely only a teaser — anyone really looking into spending vast sums of money on Disney Hotels surely goes online to find more photos anyway, right?

Davy Crockett Ranch is also presented well, with a view of the cabins inside and out…

Disneyland Paris New Generation Festival Brochure

Whilst the Selected and Associated Hotels seem to be given more prominence than usual, with their more discreet design touches used to create the same effect…

Disneyland Paris New Generation Festival Brochure

Maybe they should offer real parachuting lessons beyond the parks…

Disneyland Paris New Generation Festival Brochure

Although lessons may not be necessary, if even an inanimate Starbucks mug can manage it.

Disneyland Paris New Generation Festival Brochure

Yes, the coffee chain is now very much a feature of Disney Village, whilst Mickey and Friends will continue to cameo in Buffalo Bill’s Wild West Show for at least 12 months more (and in fact, there’s no reason to see that this isn’t permanent now).

Much as the constant character clip-art is off-putting for people who’d prefer to see the majesty of Thunder Mesa and the intricate detailing of Fantasyland, at least this “new generation” really has ushered in a refreshingly different set of characters to be featured throughout the brochure.

Disneyland Paris New Generation Festival Brochure

Not only Rémy but Chef Gusteau feature on the restaurants page, whilst little-seen Princess Dot pops up on the leisure and relaxation page, yes really — a character from A Bug’s Life!

Disneyland Paris New Generation Festival Brochure

Paris…

Disneyland Paris New Generation Festival Brochure

And the new resort map, complete with well-placed Google Earth 3D plug.

Disneyland Paris New Generation Festival Brochure

Hamm is a fitting choice for the Price Guide…

Disneyland Paris New Generation Festival Brochure

Whilst the “5 Steps” page attempts to simplify the booking process…

Disneyland Paris New Generation Festival Brochure

…but perhaps the colours make the text a little hard to read.

Disneyland Paris New Generation Festival Brochure

The price guide pages themselves are mostly unchanged…

Disneyland Paris New Generation Festival Brochure

And there we go.

Disneyland Paris New Generation Festival Brochure

It’s a definite step up from the last, very disappointing, off-putting brochure, but say it once, say it again — there’s still not enough “Disneyland Paris” in here. Not enough real photos, real information or real feeling for the place between all the thousands of character images.

Perhaps, with the internet, it doesn’t matter. In a few seconds you can find a great site like Photos Magiques. But picking this clip art catalogue up off the shelf, will most people actually bother to go that far?

We all know the place we visit — the amazing lands, the fantastic rides, the beautiful sights and the escapist themeing. What place are they thinking about?

• Download the full PDF Brochure (16.6Mb).

Images © Disney, Disney/Pixar.

Tuesday, 22nd September 2009

Official text confirms more New Generation details

In the last 2010 update, we learnt the final name for next year’s Disney Characters Party Train Express rehash — Disney All Stars Express. This time, we find out the final names of the reworked Central Plaza show and the four year-old Monsters Inc. corner, plus a few other exclusive snippets.

New Generation Festival

This “official text” will be what you’ll see in holiday brochures and other publications in a few months. Here we go with the first section:

Disney new generation festival

A new generation of Disney stars and stories are landing for one year only at Disneyland® Paris from April 2010.

Join the festival-fun at the all-new generation shows and parades – where new Princess Tiana jazzes up the Once Upon a Dream Parade, and gourmet chef Remy* drives you wild with excitement in Disney’s Stars ‘n’ Cars. Or choo-choo-choose which star to meet first on the Disney all stars express and at Monsters Inc. Scream Academy* –shriek n’ greet like no other!

And, starting from Summer, shrink to the size of a toy in Toy Story Playland* for the BIGGEST new family attractions: Toy Soldiers Parachute Drop, Slinky Dog(1) Zig Zag Spin and RC Racer(2).

Finally, gather in front of Sleeping Beauty Castle for a true Disney showstopper finale – an all-singing, all-dancing, all-together perfect end to the perfect day.

The Disney new generation festival might only last a year but your all-new memories will last a lifetime.

*Inspired by Disney•Pixar films Ratatouille, Monsters, Inc., Toy Story
(1) Slinky®Dog is a registered trademark of Poof-Slinky, Inc. All rights reserved.
(2) Hot Wheels® is a registered trademark of Mattel, Inc. Hot Wheels® Trademark and Track Used With Permission © 2009 Mattel, Inc. All Rights Reserved.

So there we go, all the events officially confirmed. You can notice already the huge amount of legal baggage that has come with the real-life toy themes of Toy Story Playland, with the owner of each element having to be credited on every single piece of promotional material.

Note also that the new Central Plaza show is now definitely set to be a single finale to the day, rather than the current schedule of four shows throughout the afternoon.

New Generation Festival

The second page continues with more on those events being provided by the resort’s Entertainment department:

Shows & Parades

Welcome Princess Tiana to the Disney’s Once Upon a Dream Parade
Princess Tiana from Walt Disney Pictures’ “The Princess and the Frog” brings a little jazz, snazz and pizzazz in the Once Upon a Dream Parade. She is joining the Disney Princesses in their Dreams of Romance. Hop along with your little ones to twist and twirl to the romantic music from each of their worlds and give a warm welcome to this new Princess.

Ratatouille(1) starring in Disney’s Stars ‘n’ Cars
Drive your little ones wild with excitement as Disney’s Stars ‘n’ Cars presents the all-new Ratatouille roadster. It’s a party on wheels that goes into a spin when Remy pulls up alongside you! Get a taste of his cooking capers and the other crazy cars and characters. It’s the perfect recipe for a fun-filled motorcade.

Disney all star express
Get on track with the festivities on the Disney all stars express. This is your ticket to choo-choo-se which of your favourite Disney new generation Characters you want to meet n’ greet first. Will it be Buzz(3) ? A rendez-vous with Remy(3) ? Shootin’ the breeze with Woody(3) ? All aboard! It’s Minnie and her all stars express!

Disney showtime spectacular
It’s Showtime! It’s time to shine. It’s time to gather in front of Sleeping Beauty Castle on Central Plaza stage for an explosion of music from maestro Mickey. Together with an all-new A-list of guest stars it promises to be an all-singing, all-dancing all-new showstopper finale!

Monsters Inc.(2) Scream Academy
All screams are welcome at Disneyland® Paris. Thrill-filled shrieks, surprised yelps and screams of delight! At Monsters Inc. Scream Academy we welcome screams to break the decibel meter! Join in the tonsil-tingling fun as you shriek n’ greet Sulley and scream as loud as monster-possible – it’s ear-popping fun for all the family.

(1)Inspired by Disney•Pixar’s Ratatouille
(2)Inspired by Disney•Pixar’s Monsters, Inc.
(3)Inspired by Disney•Pixar’s movies Toy Story, Ratatouille

Confirmed here are the names of the new Central Plaza show — Disney showtime spectacular — and the Monsters Inc. corner in Toon Studio — Monsters Inc. Scream Academy.

But wait, didn’t the newly-named Monsters Inc. Scream Academy, with its light-up “scream monitor” canisters, already open way back in April 2006? Obviously the wording is clever here — there’s no statement that this is a “new” attraction (because it certainly isn’t), but the inclusion alongside other new events certainly gives that impression.

Will it offer anything more than the scream canisters and Sulley meet ‘n’ greet it’s been hosting for almost four years? Possibly a little something new, at least: A comment by “zanderstarz” on our first article about the festival states it has been confirmed internally that little girl Boo will also make appearances — a character never seen in Paris before.

And now, this could prove to be nothing, but did somebody forget to hold down the Shift key, or press Caps Lock? There’s a huge “FINAL VERSION” stamp across the top of this PDF, but right throughout the entire text the festival is referred to not as “New Generation Festival”, in that boring, grammatically-correct style, but as “Disney new generation festival“. The renamed character train is not “Disney All Stars Express” but “Disney all stars express“, and the bravely-titled Showtime Spectacular is, in fact, typed up as “Disney showtime spectacular“.

It’s not like whoever typed this “final version” doesn’t understand capital letters — they’re used perfectly on every other name. And add this to the mystery — the category for the 2010 events on the official trade website changed on Monday from “New Generation Festival” to the entirely lower case “new generation festival“, something which would surely have to be done manually.

We’re still waiting for confirmation if these lower-case names are for real. Who knows, maybe they’ll release a “txt spk” version in SMS shorthand, to truly capture the new generation!

New Generation Festival

And finally, the part of the celebration we care about the most:

Toy Story Playland

Opening Summer 2010 at Disneyland® Paris

Toy Story Playland has the BIGGEST new family attractions. They’re GIANT – when you’re shrunk to the size of a toy! Join the toys for playtime in Andy’s backyard where everyone can explore this oversized world with its three larger-than-life rides – Toy Soldiers Parachute Drop, Slinky Dog Zig Zag Spin and RC Racer. Andy’s away and the toys are ready to play!

Toy Story Playland is inspired by Disney•Pixar film Toy Story

Toy Soldiers Parachute Drop
Attention! Your mission – join Andy’s troops for a high flying adventure – Toy Soldiers Parachute Drop. When Sarge yells “Go! Go! Go!” , hold on tight as you fall from way up high in a simulated parachute drop. Over and out!!

Slinky Dog Zig Zag Spin
Everyone’s tongues and tails are wagging about the all-new “zigzag-a-coaster” Slinky Dog Zig Zag Spin. Family pups of all sizes will howl with laughter as they join Slinky in a rollicking spin to catch his own tail. It’s barking mad fun in Toy Story Playland.

Slinky®Dog is a registered trademark of Poof-Slinky, Inc. All rights reserved.

RC Racer
Andy’s speediest toy car is sure to get you and your family’s adrenaline pumping. RC Racer is the most thrilling new ride in Toy Story Playland. Race along a 25 metre-high half-pipe coaster, as RC zooms you around at full speed…it’s a real gas.

Hot Wheels® is a registered trademark of Mattel, Inc. Hot Wheels® Trademark and Track Used With Permission © 2009 Mattel, Inc. All Rights Reserved.

Along with plenty of spin about these being the “BIGGEST” new family attractions, we do actually get a long-awaited confirmation of just how big: The RC Racer halfpipe will be 25 metres tall! That’s less than half the size of Tower of Terror and just a touch taller than Disney Studio 1 or the Sorcerer’s Hat.

We also get a date — Summer 2010, which confirms again that all those “new” entertainment events are actually going to be much-needed for the first few months (events begin in April), when this celebration’s centrepiece will still be a building site.

Tuesday, 15th September 2009

All Stars Express and another 2010 preview

In truth, that’s exactly what DLRP Today suggested.

After the Disney Characters’ Express in 2007 and 2008 and Minnie’s Party Train all through the 2009 season, could this continually re-dressed old parade float really make the line-up of new additions being advertised for next year’s New Generation Festival?

And since the resort is receiving a whole new themed land with three new attractions, is there need to pad out the “nouveautés” by renaming and re-advertising the same event again?

The answer: Yes.

Here’s the brand new publicity visual released today:

Disney All Stars Express
Disney All Stars Express (2010)

As you can see, it re-uses the template of the original Disney Characters’ Express image above, but shows the train in its 2009 Minnie’s Party Train guise — recoloured slightly to appear pinker.

On board, the real-life characters are replaced by another collection of generic stock images, showing the “new generation” who’ll lead the event. Well — Stitch, Toy Story and Ratatouille. Despite the year aiming to celebrate the “Ne w Generation”, these stars are already becoming a little repetitive — and there’s no sign of the newest characters, from Bolt and UP, anywhere.

The new name? As given away in the headline, it’s: Disney All Stars Express. Which certainly allows any classic characters to keep their place come April 2010.

If all this repetition’s getting a little dull, take a look at this final new visual:

Disney All Stars Express

Showing a plethora of characters parachuting into the park (with Sully for some reason peering up from a trapdoor instead), it’s a pleasant surprise after the earlier images. Nemo’s chances once he reaches the ground surely don’t look good, but the image overall… does.

Rather than just re-using an existing image, chopping it to pieces and hastily copying and pasting some Disney stock characters in, it appears to also have some actual design work in there, with the parachutes given proper perspective and depth as they fade away into the painterly sky.

Yet still, there’s an apathy for the park it’s meant to be selling: why else would you paste fake Mickey Mouse stickers over the beautiful windows of Sleeping Beauty Castle? Sigh…

Images © Disney.

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