WORLDS OF WONDER
Lately, I’ve been drawing a number of plans for Disneyland-style parks (i.e. based on yesterday, fantasy, and tomorrow) that steer away – in layout & content – from the traditional, existing parks, while retaining the ‘Disney’ spirit. This park, which I’ve called Walt Disney’s Worlds of Wonder, is big – over twice the acreage of the original Disneyland – and I imagine it would best fit in Europe (perhaps in place of EuroDisneyland or as potential second gate). To change things up, I've gone with the Central Lagoon layout as opposed to the Hub & Spoke, and each land represents a different time period and geography.
The entrance land is Hollywood – a 1930s recreation of art deco, golden age L.A., similar to what exists in Orlando’s MGM, but on a larger, more urban scale. On the west is the Chinese Theatre (same size as at MGM for scale) housing an attraction akin to the Great Movie Ride but showcasing an entirely new set of classic films (e.g., Gone with the Wind, Citizen Kane, Ghostbusters, Predator, etc.) within a similar genre-by-genre context. A red car trolley travels the boulevards.
There is an Autopia attraction featuring famous filmic cars (i.e., The Batmobile, Herbie, Chitty Bang Bang, Delorean, etc.). At the other end of Sunset is the Hollywood Tower Hotel – the early, never built incarnation. Theatres and exhibits round out the land’s attractions.
The next land going clockwise is Pointe d’Aventure – which covers the many great French (his)stories from the 18th & 19th centuries. The Napoleonic era, one of my favorite periods, features in a few of the attractions. His Majesty’s Dragon is a major coaster on the lagoon (track supports are disguised as ships’ masts over water, trees over land) based on the Temeraire stories. The dragon trains dive among a naval battle between French & English man-o-wars.
The Paris Opera House is the basis for the central theatrical presentation, possibly an abbreviated version of Phantom of the Opera musical. A building based on the original Palais Royale houses an AA dark ride themed to the “The Three Musketeers” (book, not film(s)). A canal boat ride takes guests on a slow, yet ominous, journey through the famed sewers and catacombs of Paris. Napoleon’s War College is a mountaintop, interactive walkthrough adventure (a la DaVinci Code) – following the clues left by the Emperor regarding his death/disappearance and the vast treasures he hid. The biggest ride in the land is the super flume designed like the Chateau d’If and letting guests experience the adventure of “The Count of Monte Cristo” (book, not film(s)).
On the opposite side of the park axis from Pointe d’Aventure, is a land representing the other great European power (oft-feuding) that helped to shape much of western civilization over the past millennium: Britannia. Like its French counterpart, there is an urban (London/Paris) section and more rural section. Unlike the French side, however, this British area features some lighter, Disney-based attractions, such as Mary Poppins & 101 Dalmatians dark rides. It also has some darker subject matter, such as League of Extraordinary Gentleman, Sherlock Holmes and Charles Dickens (all original interpretations, i.e., not based on films). On the city square (patterned on the Union Jack), the Globe Theatre houses abbreviated, comical versions of several of The Bard’s famous plays – starring perhaps the Muppets or Disney characters in AA form.
Growing up, my favorite Disney film, by far, was “Bedknobs & Broomsticks.” As London gives way to the rural village of Pepperinge Eye, the ruins of the castle rising on a hillside beyond mark an elaborate dark ride (aboard beds, of course) that follows the adventures of Eglantine Pryce & Professor Emelius Brown. The rural section is also home to a dark ride (LPS) themed to the Wind and the Willows (show building is Toad Hall). On the point, sitting atop the White Cliffs, is a fine dining venue featuring poisoned dragon’s liver.
Bedknobs & Broomsticks is set during World War II, which is eases the transition to City of Heroes, as the first area encountered is a WWII-era military base where Steve Rogers is being transformed into Captain America (EMV ride) to battle Red Skull & HYDRA.
Beyond is a 20th C. American cityscape where guests can experience an aerial stunt show based on Spiderman (under a paned dome modeled on the original Penn Station’s ceiling). There is a diner that has been ripped out of its original location and deposited here (as seen in the Dubai Marvel theme park concept art). A standing coaster is based on the Silver Surfer (not the film) and there is a spinner themed to The Incredibles. The final attraction uses IOA’s Spiderman technology and centers on the X-Men (Xavier’s School being the show building).
Galaxyland – based on adventures in space or future cities – sits at the top of the park. It is here where the park’s central icon is, not a castle, but a 300ft, needle-nosed Galaxy Tower (an observation deck themed as futuristic launching pad). There is a Tron simulator (each guests boards his/her own lightcycle), a suspended dark ride marked by the space docks from Treasure Planet, and a dueling indoor coaster, among other attractions.
The final land, Enchanted Forest, is based on medieval fairy tales (mostly Disney). While the transition from Pionte d’Aventure features a lengthy, indoor flume based on the French/Disney tale of Sleeping Beauty, the Germans also get some representation here with a Rapunzel spinner (swings attached to her hair) and a Snow White Seven Dwarfs coaster. The Fairy Ring amphitheatre features live productions and is marked by Stonehenge-like earthworks.
I’ve written a lot so I’ll stop there and continue discussing it in the comments section if anyone has anything to say. Aside from Megatron85, my most loyal reader, I’m not sure if I’m “talking” to thin air in these posts, so please take a second to leave a comment. The more comments I get, the more frequently I will put up new theme park plans and artwork.