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  1. #1

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    Question Question about the early problems of DLRP

    Hi everyone,

    We all know the story of how Disneyland Paris (EuroDisney back then) struggled during its first years of operations. Being in marketing, I was very interested in learning more thoroughly about this (sad) period DLP faced. I rented a book from my university's business school which covered the whole case, and I read a fact I had never heard before. It stated that during the early years, cast members who loaded guests into the rides would charge them extra money before letting them into their ride cars. Has anyone else ever heard this? I couldn't imagine the management nightmare it must have been for Disney, but then again, Europeans have for a long time been used to fairs where you pay a (low) entry price and then pay for each attraction individually, so I guess some "clever" CM's took advantage of this to squeeze some extra money in for themselves if this was true.

    Cheers!

  2. #2

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    Re: Question about the early problems of DLRP

    Hello,

    I have never heard that story about Cast Members at Disneyland Paris before.
    I visited Disneyland Paris the first time in summer 1992 and from then on several times each year, through high season as well as low season, in summer, winter, fall and spring and I NEVER experienced anything like this nor was I told this story from anyone.

    I think its just one of the strange things that are told about the early years of Euro Disney.

    I would really be interested in from which book you have this information.
    There are only a very few books about the struggle of Euro Disney that I would expect to find in the library of a business school and the one that would fit the best is:
    Lainsbury, Andrew: Once upon an American dream. The Story of Euro Disneyland. Lawrence, Kansas 2000
    It's been some years since I read it but I do not remember that something like this was mentioned in it.
    Would be great if you could tell me the source of this info.

    Thank you and best regards,

    Torsten
    dein-dlrp.de - The #1 German Disneyland Paris Guidebook

  3. #3

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    Re: Question about the early problems of DLRP

    Disney generates a lot of rumors since it has a lot of fans.

    I too have never heard of such a thing. I imagine someone took a tiny rumor and repeated it to build up their topic in that book.
    Be Cool Stay in School!
    Next year I'm trying for a summer internship at Stark Industries.

  4. #4

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    Re: Question about the early problems of DLRP

    Quote Originally Posted by torstendlp View Post
    Hello,

    I have never heard that story about Cast Members at Disneyland Paris before.
    I visited Disneyland Paris the first time in summer 1992 and from then on several times each year, through high season as well as low season, in summer, winter, fall and spring and I NEVER experienced anything like this nor was I told this story from anyone.

    I think its just one of the strange things that are told about the early years of Euro Disney.

    I would really be interested in from which book you have this information.
    There are only a very few books about the struggle of Euro Disney that I would expect to find in the library of a business school and the one that would fit the best is:
    Lainsbury, Andrew: Once upon an American dream. The Story of Euro Disneyland. Lawrence, Kansas 2000
    It's been some years since I read it but I do not remember that something like this was mentioned in it.
    Would be great if you could tell me the source of this info.

    Thank you and best regards,

    Torsten
    I checked on the library's catalogue and that seems to be the book indeed! It was not covered in detail, but I recall a sentence such as "...confused guests were charged extra to get into the rides by the cast members who operated them".

    I will try to find it again! I have noticed anyhow that "non-hardcore-Disney-fans books" (and sometimes even these) state rumors as facts"

  5. #5

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    Re: Question about the early problems of DLRP

    Torstendlp, could you also tell me more about how the opening summer was in 1992? I was just 2 at the time, but my uncle wemt that summer and brought me a couple of souvenirs which I still treausre, like a Mickey Mouse wallet and a "EuroDisney" car plaque. I am obsessed with 90's aesthetics and graphic design, and I find these to be the best time for Disney merch there was!

  6. #6

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    Re: Question about the early problems of DLRP

    One problem the park had in the first years was security video not working when it should.

  7. #7

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    Re: Question about the early problems of DLRP

    Quote Originally Posted by mtlchuck View Post
    Torstendlp, could you also tell me more about how the opening summer was in 1992?
    To be honest, I find this question too unspecific to give any good answer.
    What exactly would you like to know?

    As open as the question is now, the answer could be 1 line like "it was great" or an essay of a hundred pages

    I can say that I fell in love with DLP quite instantly even if my first trip was a rather chaotic one together with 2 of my cousins and 3 friends - all of whom wanted to make more of a party trip than to "seriously" explore the Resort...

    I think, to be honest, that even if I still love DLP and, besides all criticism I usually also have, do not see it as dark and bad as many people nowadays do, I must agree that it was better in many terms back in that time.
    That started from a much greater variety of merchandise (incl. serious and good qualtiy clothes for men, too - as you nowadays only find for women) and food to much more streetmosphere and by far better condition of attractions and buildings (we all know about the maintenance problems in the last several years - even if I tend to say that it turns to be better again in the last 2 years).
    And really had many advantages down to the small things - only look at the Park Plans you get for free today and those - almost guidebook-like - park information booklets you got back then etc.

    Still in my opinion DLP hasn't lost its magic, that for me definetly still there, even if I look back longingly to the early years. And I still love to spend about 20 days there year by year.

    If you are interested in design and asthetics of those early years you may want to take a look into the series of articles I wrote about the history of Disney Village (Festival Disney back then). You can find it here in 6 parts in my Blog. The text is in German only, but the different parts also include several photos of the Village like it was intended by Frank Gehry, some concept arts etc.
    In my personal opinion (and I know that most people think different about it than I do) it was an architectural masterpiece and it is a shame what they did about in the later years. It used to be stringent and following a great idea and concept - and nowadays its only conceptless mixture that completly destroyed the ideas of Frank Gehry.
    I am thinking about writing other series about the Hotel architecture etc., too in the future. So maybe there will be something interesting about Euro Disney's design and it's architectural language in my Blog for you to find, soon.

    Best regards,

    Torsten
    dein-dlrp.de - The #1 German Disneyland Paris Guidebook

  8. #8

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    Re: Question about the early problems of DLRP

    I lived in Paris for much of 1993 and worked just one RER stop from the park (it was awfully hard some days to not just stay on the train). During the summer, they had this great program where you could get into the parks after 5pm for 40% off regular admission. The park was so empty, that was still plenty of time to see/do everything. I also remember a nice-skating rink set up outside the park in the late fall.

  9. #9

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    Re: Question about the early problems of DLRP

    I worked at Walt Disney World during that time in a specialized department to track the goings on at EuroDisney. The division I was in tracked the costs the first two years it opened. Yes, they did have a very difficult time but did not have cast members collecting fees from guests.

  10. #10

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    Re: Question about the early problems of DLRP

    The big problem is the loss disneyland paris of Disney values. Initially the park was magical , I remember coffee spoons with faces of the characters, the menus were varied and well suited to the thematic area. Attractions always work at maximum capacity so that visitors do not many queues . All are touched up and painted. In Videopolis could be dinner or lunch and watch classic cartoon . Everything worked perfect. Currently operated attractions fewer cars in order to save on maintenance , menus are almost all burgers or chichen fingers . The utopia is crazy , it opens an hour after opening the advantages park.Open hosperdarse in hotels is that you can have up to 3 attractions in " tomorowland " and 3 in " fantasyland " , from 8am to 9am. The deal is not official and is attentive . They will cost a lot recapture the magic , would have to listen more to the people who have gone many times and take better care of the overnight stays in hotels with extra fastpass or some improvement , people go near other hotels and avoid paying more . The fastpass is for everybody and 6 attractions open from 8am to 9am is not as attractive . Why not open the Hollywood Studios? . A shame, considering that the entry of a day worth € 85.

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