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  1. #106

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    Re: Tom Sawyer Island - Time for a Change

    Quote Originally Posted by Meville View Post
    Point taken, but I think it could be fair to say that the Disney Company was still in it's infancy and really did not have much Tie-in material to work with. For example, The Swiss Family Treehouse opened as a tie-in for the Movie in 1962, nothing more than Carland in a tree for the time I'd expect.
    I do see this point as well. It would be quite interesting to see what Walt would have done in 1955 should he have had the portfolio that the Walt Disney Company has today.

  2. #107

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    Re: Tom Sawyer Island - Time for a Change

    Quote Originally Posted by Steve DeGaetano View Post
    No, but it does give people from certain ages or generations the experience, and therefore the perspective, that is factually impossible for other people from younger generations to possess.
    Well, it's a good thing we have all those books, museum exhibits, and essays on cultural importance you intellectuals created for us commoners. Thank god someone back then was looking out for the dummies of the future! Where would all of us Fantasmic! loving cretins be without y'all?

  3. #108

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    Re: Tom Sawyer Island - Time for a Change

    Quote Originally Posted by explodingboy View Post
    It's clear that he was talking about present day Disneyland due to the fact that his post sums up what's wrong with the park today.

    I could have highlighted his whole post, because it was that good. It sums up exactly what's wrong. Just because he mentioned early Disneyland doesn't mean that is what his whole post was about. No one said that the park didn't ever have tie-ins and references, either. Of course it did. It's a great business model, and it would be silly not to. The issue that is at hand is that they are depending on these tie-ins to get people in the park, which isn't how it was done before.
    As I understand it, walt built the park for two reasons
    1. A place where parents and kids could have fun together.
    2. A place where fans of the cartoons could visit. From Wikipedia:

    While many people wrote letters to Disney about visiting the Disney Studio, he realized that a functional movie studio had little to offer to the visiting fans. This began to foster ideas of building a site near his Burbank studios for tourists to visit. His ideas then evolved to a small play park with a boat ride and other themed areas. Disney's initial concept, his "Mickey Mouse Park", started with an 8-acre (3.2 ha) plot across Riverside Drive.

    The entire idea of Disneyland was a tie-in to get people in park.

    What made it popular was everything else that was not a tie-in and I will agree that lost are the days when you will find something somewhat new and origional to the Parks.
    Perhaps that is why I liked many aspects of DCA 1.0.

  4. #109

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    Re: Tom Sawyer Island - Time for a Change

    Quote Originally Posted by DoctorQ9 View Post
    I have been marveling at the counterpart to Tom Sawyer's Island at Disneyland Paris. It functions as a beautiful esthetic to the Rivers of America yet houses an E-Ticket attraction.

    Attachment 23513

    While the original Tom Sawyer Island was once a very popular spot (a deluxe children's playground). The concept has not aged well. If DLP can establish a great attraction on an island, then why can't the talented Imagineers work their magic and transform Tom Sawyer's Island into a something notable?
    How about Phineas and Ferb's greatest summer day ever? Complete with roller coaster that goes UNDER the Rivers of America north to backstage area.
    "Here You Leave the World of California Today and Enter the World of, um, er, California Today."

  5. #110

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    Re: Tom Sawyer Island - Time for a Change

    Quote Originally Posted by Meville View Post
    The entire idea of Disneyland was a tie-in to get people in park.
    Of course, but let's take a look at how many original ideas and lands there were as compared to now. That's the point I am trying to make here. I am not disputing that tie-ins weren't used back in the early days of the park. It's almost all that is used now.

    What made it popular was everything else that was not a tie-in and I will agree that lost are the days when you will find something somewhat new and origional to the Parks.
    Perhaps that is why I liked many aspects of DCA 1.0.
    Exactly.

  6. #111

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    Re: Tom Sawyer Island - Time for a Change

    Quote Originally Posted by Bruce Bergman View Post
    Ahh, but that's part of the problem - It isn't "broke" per se, but it's worn out and falling apart around the edges and needs a lot of fixing, like everything does eventually - and everybody keeps changing it while they're fixing.

    They used the Pirates Overlay as an excuse to do a lot of upgrades, that is polluting the original idea and impetus behind the island. But unfortunately that's the only way to get that kind of money budgeted for the work, the Marketing folks have to get "something New and Exciting!" to put in the ads and draw people in.

    Fort Wilderness is essentially totally Broken - it's rotten to the point they can't let guests in there anymore for safety reasons, so they bolted the gates and blocked off the escape tunnel. It's a storage yard for Fantasmic! stuff. That has to get changed, it needs to be torn down and rebuilt properly, and upgraded to more closely follow the Theme. It doesn't have to be totally timber framed straight from 1750, it just has to look like it is - and to more than just casual scrutiny. Just use treated lumber and hide the steel where you have to use it above ground. (Backstage doesn't count.)

    Make a proper Basement where it meets the secret tunnel, the restaurant can use the prep space and Cast restrooms. Upgrade the food service from just pickles and root beer. They can have Big Thunder BBQ or Hungry Bear be their prep kitchen, and have a little grill to heat and serve BBQ and perhaps a Broaster for Fried Chicken, Cold Sandwiches, salads and Slaw. Picnic food.

    Add a small Elevator for HCA access to one Fort turret, the Parapet level, Ground floor, B1 with the "escape tunnel" to make ADA happy, and B2 (restricted access) for the Service Tunnel. And finally break down and add that Tunnel to the mainland as Backstage and emergency access to the island, land it in the fort basement and behind Hungry Bear.

    Next time the river is drained for maintenance it's easy to dig a ~180' - 200' trench below the Twain Twack pour cement for a bed and drop in precast concrete tunnel segments, more cement for a cap, Done in a few weeks. You can dawdle doing the elevator and stairs at the Hungry Bear end until after the river is refilled.

    Then they can whisk a Wheelchair or Gurney on and off the island quickly and quietly, and supply the restaurant without wheeling a cart onto a raft. And they can eliminate the raft drivers shuttling the Fantasmic! cast and techs back and forth after the Island closes for the day.

    Gee, when was the last time they drained the River? It's been 10 years or more, hasn't it? Start planning it now, so you're ready.

    The Commander's Office scene at the fort needs to be re-thought, IMHO it was stuck there to fill the space and always had an inch of dust on everything - Now if that was a smaller and actual working office you were peeking into the window of they would have a reason to keep it properly clean and buffed up. And to add to the realism the Commander and a Sergeant or two need to be there in uniform (DL Security CM) and working the island in character too...

    --<< Bruce >>--
    I like the ideas. My concern was tearing out what make the island so much fun for all ages to put in a ride. I feel would not be a good move.
    Dave

  7. #112

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    Re: Tom Sawyer Island - Time for a Change

    I might be alone here, but I happen to enjoy Tom Sawyers Island with all it's piratey goodness. It gives a story to an island that has been lost in literary history (sadly). Breathing new life into something older is sometimes necessary to keep the constantly shifting masses happy. I think more could be done with the island and it would be wonderful to have more characters there to interact with guests. I would visit the island a lot more if there were pirates about.

    The more interactive bits and pieces are fun! I do have to admit that I'm glad they brought the little cemetery back... I missed it!
    <3 There are a million cupcakes in the world but only one is Cupcake Terror. <3

    I AM THE REBEL SPY.



  8. #113

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    Re: Tom Sawyer Island - Time for a Change

    Quote Originally Posted by Meville View Post
    As I understand it, walt built the park for two reasons
    1. A place where parents and kids could have fun together.
    2. A place where fans of the cartoons could visit....

    The entire idea of Disneyland was a tie-in to get people in park.
    Walt's very first written description of the park, written in 1948, references absolutely ZERO Disney "tie-ins," character or otherwise.

  9. #114

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    Re: Tom Sawyer Island - Time for a Change

    Pirates of the Caribbean, Haunted Mansion, Tom Sawyer Island, Submarine Voyage, Swiss Family Treehouse, Motor Boat Cruise and PeopleMover all had movie tie-ins added on to them, years after the original attraction opened. In the case of Haunted Mansion it's only seasonal, and in the case of Swiss Family Treehouse it was changed from one movie to a different one. But in any of these cases, did the movie tie-in result in an improved attraction? I would argue that only the Tron speed tunnel on PeopleMover actually made the attraction better - and even that was just a change in the films shown. My whole point on tie-ins is that the attraction has to be able to stand on its own, without the movie. If you remove the movie title and characters from an attraction, is it still a memorable experience even without them?

  10. #115

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    Re: Tom Sawyer Island - Time for a Change

    Quote Originally Posted by Steve DeGaetano View Post
    Walt's very first written description of the park, written in 1948, references absolutely ZERO Disney "tie-ins," character or otherwise.
    Exactly. Disneyland was conceived and built as its own entertainment entity, its own "brand." In its first 30 years, movie tie-in rides were in the vast minority compared to the world-famous Disneyland originals. After the Eisner takeover in 1985, Disneyland's operating philosophy changed to be primarily a marketing platform for movie franchises, and has remained so since. From Caribbean pirates on Tom Sawyer Island to cartoon fish in Tomorrowland, it's become a brand marketing mall -- a living testament to Eisner's edict, "Disneyland is all about turning movies into rides."
    "With the acquisition of Marvel and now of Lucasfilm,
    Disney may have finally found the grail. You don't need
    imagination or art. All you need is a brand."

    - Neil Gabler


  11. #116

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    Re: Tom Sawyer Island - Time for a Change

    My apologies for bringing this up, but this is from a somewhat controversial (and closed) thread started not too long ago. It is arguably a quote from Walt in regards to alcohol at Disneyland (bold mine):

    "No liquor, no beer, nothing. Because that brings in a rowdy element. That brings people that we don't want and I feel they don't need it. I feel when I go down to the park I don't need a drink. I work around that place all day and I don't have one. After I come out of a heavy day at the studio sometimes I want a drink to relax."

    Now, I do not want to stir up a debate on alcohol at Disneyland. That is not my point so please do not turn this into a debate on Disneyland's alcohol policy.

    My point is to show that if you read into this quote it becomes apparent that Disneyland is a place that Walt escaped to. That the movie business is not what made him happy but apparently was a place that gave him stress and not happiness and relaxation. So why would he want to build Disneyland as a place where fans of the cartoons could visit? By catering to this crowd wouldn't that be going against his own feelings towards Disneyland being a place of escape from the studio that created those cartoons? And by catering to this crowd would this also force him to continue to build attractions that only reference his movies, and force him to work with the stuido more closely than he would have cared to otherwise?

  12. #117

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    Re: Tom Sawyer Island - Time for a Change

    Quote Originally Posted by DisneyIPresume View Post
    ...My point is to show that if you read into this quote it becomes apparent that Disneyland is a place that Walt escaped to. That the movie business is not what made him happy but apparently was a place that gave him stress and not happiness and relaxation. So why would he want to build Disneyland as a place where fans of the cartoons could visit? By catering to this crowd wouldn't that be going against his own feelings towards Disneyland being a place of escape from the studio that created those cartoons? And by catering to this crowd would this also force him to continue to build attractions that only reference his movies, and force him to work with the stuido more closely than he would have cared to otherwise?
    Good point. Walt definitely made use of marketing, merchandising and tying in a minority of Disneyland rides to his movies. But he was notoriously anti-sequel. Disneyland was a place for him and his imagineers to exercise their creativity with new lands, new attractions and new technology, not a marketing mall to slavishly promote cartoon brand after cartoon brand, as has the Eisger regime. Under Eisger, Disneyland's last quarter century has been a monument to the same case of chronic sequelitis that has affected much of Hollywood: the inability of executives to greenlight big bucks for anything that isn't an already-known, proven-successful brand.
    "With the acquisition of Marvel and now of Lucasfilm,
    Disney may have finally found the grail. You don't need
    imagination or art. All you need is a brand."

    - Neil Gabler


  13. #118

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    Re: Tom Sawyer Island - Time for a Change

    Quote Originally Posted by Mr Wiggins View Post
    Disneyland was a place for him and his imagineers to exercise their creativity with new lands, new attractions and new technology, not a marketing mall to slavishly promote cartoon brand after cartoon brand, as has the Eisger regime.
    Bingo.

    Except for Fantasyland. Pretty much the entire thing.

    Oh! And he did promote his new Swiss Family Robinson movie in Adventureland...

    ...and oh yeah True-Life Adventures got a tie-in with Jungle Cruise.

    And all of those costumed characters, right.

    There were Disney characters on the merch back then too...

    But yeah besides that bingo!

  14. #119

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    Re: Tom Sawyer Island - Time for a Change

    Quote Originally Posted by Steve DeGaetano View Post
    Walt's very first written description of the park, written in 1948, references absolutely ZERO Disney "tie-ins," character or otherwise.

    Wasn't the original Burbank park initially known as the Mickey Mouse Park?

    Also, are we to believe that there has been nothing good about the Disney company post 1985?

  15. #120

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    Re: Tom Sawyer Island - Time for a Change

    I also detest the insinuation that there's nothing good to be found in the Indiana Jones or Star Wars franchises. Because they didn't exist in 1955, and weren't originally created in-house by WDI, then that means the fantastic attractions they spawned have no right to exist, at least in Disneyland itself?

    Walt Disney died before the summer blockbuster even existed and he recognized the strength of a "brand", with fantastic characters... why that just seems to be the very topic this thread was created to discuss. Tom Sawyer and Huck Finn may have been public domain in the 50's, but by no means they were original. They were from a book Walt Disney cherished, and thus as valid as Indiana Jones and Star Wars in that prospect.

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