2012/2013 - Tron / New Tomorrowland
- Rumor - (4/4/10) Though the concept is still years away, the rumor mill is buzzing with rumors about Disney Imagineers dreaming up wild new ride concepts for a Tron themed attraction for Tomorrowland that could see the light of day as early as 2012 or 2013. And yes Programs… the Light Cycles are said to be the most likely experience to get the green light so far, as Tron Light Cycles are pretty much the visual iconic representation of the Tron universe.
Disney knows that Tomorrowland is in need is a big “fix” once again, to undo some of the damage done during the last one as well as bring new life to the area… the bring it up to speed with today’s vision of The Future once again. They’ve been busy addressing these issues one by one over the past few years with the introduction of Buzz Lightyear, the relaunch of Space Mountain and the return of the Submarines fleet now on a new quest to “Find Nemo”. Even Star Tours 2 will finally launch in the near future.
That said however… there remains the sore spot in the middle of Tomorrowland… rotting away at the core of the land much like a cancer is the hulking remains of the old Rocket Jets / PeopleMover tower. The idea of turning the leftover mechnical bits of the Rocket Jets into a spinning animated light and music show died horribly long ago. Beyond anything else in Tomorrowland, I’ve always felt that this central tower was really the true heart of Tomorrowland. When the Pressler era management decided to close down the Rocket Jets and installed the “Meh!” Astro Orbiters at the ground level of their “New Tomorrowland” back in 1998, the core of Tomorrowland died.
And if the Rocket Jets Tower was the heart of tomrrowland, then the rotting leftover Rocket Rods / PeopleMover attraction below it could have been considered the life blood of the land. Much like a system of arteries and veins, the old PeopleMover track system thread itself in, out and through virtually every single attraction in Tomorrowland and back again to the pumping central heart.
The Rocket Rods briefly kept this track system alive for about 18 months or so before being deemed as a failure and shut down for good. The track however, still remains as a constant reminder and ‘eyesore’ of the dying land. There really isn’t a spot you can go anywhere in Tomorrowland and not see a section of this once thriving ride system. Knowing this, WDI has apparently focused much attention on linking this network of infrastructure up with different new attraction concepts over the years to bring it back to life, as well as proposals to move the Astro Orbiters back to the top of the tower where it belongs. Much speculation has been placed on replacing the Innoventions structure as a major part of a possible new Tron attraction. Even new concepts to put something “fresh” into the Magic Eye 4D Theater to replace Captiain EO / Honey, I Shrunk The Audience are being looked into. All said and done, this could put Tomorrowland back on stable ground once again, and much like it’s Florida counter part, Tomorrowland’s new theme may be a bit more immune to the age of time by becoming a sort of SciFi themed Fantasyland for Boys concept.
Again, this is all just still just a “blue sky” dream right now, but from what I’ve been told, the push from those involved is very passionate as everyone wants to bring Tomorrowland back to life, and Tron may be the key to opening up the checkbook. As always however, the key factor as to the success of failure of these efforts will lie entirely upon the box office reception the new Tron Legacy film receives. Disney is now poised to view this Tron revival on the same level as their very successful Pirates of the Caribbean films. Poised to turn this one film into a new tent-pole series of films, video games and all the marketing and merchandise opportunities that go along with it. Cross your digits Programs…
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