Very nice update, Al. Thanks so much for your inside scoop on the DCA preview center. I must say, this project promises to be quite interesting over the foreseeable future, and I cannot wait to see how the makeover eventually reaches maturity and we're given a park that is worthy of the Disney name.
A quick grammatical observation. You are clearly intending to be critical of Jay Rasulo (and rightly so) when you wrote:
"We've been very open with our criticism of Rasulo, and most of that stems from his complete disinterest, some even say dislike, for the actual operation of the theme parks he is responsible for."
I think the proper word here is not "disinterest" but rather "uninterest." "Disinterest" really means "objectivity" or "neutrality" (e.g. a disinterested witness to a traffic accident testified in court) and "uninterest" means simply a "lack of interest." Your point, I think, is that, at best, Rasulo has little or no interest in the theme parks; he certainly isn't being objective about them, for if he were, most of your astute observations about their operation wouldn't be happening.
In any event, thanks again for your insight. Readers appreciate that you and Kevin simply don't post articles for the sake of posting them, and while we may not always agree with what you say, at least you have something important to talk about.
I was thinking, what if Bob Igar is smarter then we imagined and purposely kept Jay Rasulao in place. Before people get all mad at me for making such a statement, let me explain. What I am trying to say is that Igar might not be as worried about Jay being out of touch in regards to the needs of a park-goer when they get to Disneyland simply due to John Lasseter off-setting Rasulao in his stupidity of park experience and showmanship.
Igar could be viewing these two as this: Rasulao gets people to the park, Lasseter takes care of them when they get there.
If this is the case, then Rasulao might not be as bad in my opinion as you pointed out that attendence has remained healthy. Why else would Rasulao still be employeed when he clearly has no intention of taking any pride in his product?
I always thought attractions like Pirates of the Carribbean and it's a small world were untouchable. The thought of seeing Pixar's Woody in it's a small world is revolting and an abomination of the original spirit of the ride. That ride did need some freshening up, but at this rate I'd rather them have left it the way it was.
Got that pumpkin spice muffin heated up yet? And that pumpkin latte was picked up at the local java emporium, right? Well let's get going then, I know it's been a bit of a wait for you.
Hello! It's been WAAAY too long Al! But thanks for this great update, and yes it's been worth the wait. I'm still trying to get my brain around the fact that Sea World could become a Disney property. And I'm completely bummed by the changes to IASW. I thought they had given up on the whole USA thing, but I guess not.
And I still can't get over the lack of planning with the new monorails. With all of that imagineering running amok, can't they design an air conditioning system for the entire vehicle? If I can walk onto any subway in New York and get some great AC in July, I can't fathom why Disney can't include AC on their NEW line of monorails. It makes absolutely no sense to me. If they need to change something about the overhead clearance to make this happen, then...pay for it! But to skimp on AC in a climate that will often put temps near 100 with humidity in July and August is completely insane. Now they're having to re-design the windows, but to me, it's all moot. The OLD monorails were uncomfortable on hot days. They had a chance to add AC, and they skimped. I just don't get it.
Al: Thanks for the update. Don't worry about the long waits between reports.
First, I'd rather have news that is correct than rumors that come from sketchy sources. Second, I think it's a sign that the company is better run than it was 10 years ago.
We got frequent updates "back in the day" because it was so easy for the Presslerites to "improve" the park's bottom line by ripping stuff out quickly, almost on a monthly basis. The damage was easy to see and easy to report on cause it was all done in public.
Today Disney is building up and enriching. And that takes much longer - these projects take years to come to fruition and the work is largely done in private. In my mind that accounts for the long gaps between your reports.
That being said, I am still very apprehensive about the new "Americana" scene and additional Disney Characters for It's a Small World. Others have already spoken well why both of these additions are mis-conceived. I will just be contented to mention that the art direction from the Paris Small World is completely at odds with Mary Blair's stylization. I hope somebody has realized this and I hope money was set aside to harmonize any new work with the existing classic. I hope, anyway.
Last edited by Katella Gate; 10-07-2008 at 07:36 AM.
The Little Mermaid ride sounds SO promising! The music in the film is really uplifting and inspiring, I could only imagine how amazing it's going to look in real life. Usually I am totally against using a film to base a ride on, but Little Mermaid is the perfect film to use and I couldn't be happier.
I am also thrilled that Disney is actually building an E-ticket ride without a drop, launch, height restriction or health warning. It has been SO long since Disney built an E-ticket like that! If they can make the ride as great as Al is claiming it will be, it truly will be an E-ticket ride, regardless of the lack of drops and health warnings.
To me, it sounds like the Little Mermaid ride is the type of attraction that Walt himself would've built if he was still alive today. I am so excited about this ride, I can't wait until 2011!
Yes, the Little Mermaid attraction sounds spectacular! It really will be the POTC of DCA. Too bad it has nothing to do with the California theme. Just as Kentucky Fried Chicken decided that they did not want to be associated with "fried" food so changed their name to KFC. It is time to permanently change Disney's California Advdenture to DCA. Maybe make the C stand for "continued."
Jiminy Cricket Fan
Great update, Al. It was worth the wait. I'm so looking forward to the Little Mermaid ride! Bring on the audio-animatronics! Also, I certainly hope they know what they're doing with the retheme of IASW. As (I hope) they've learned with things such as DCA, it can take a while to un-do a shouldn't-have. Finally, I do hope things can improve for the hourly CMs. My good thoughts will be with them (since I'm not actually there right now).
Wonderful update! Can't wait for the DCA revamp! Still horrified that they are proceeding with the IASW stuff (the rainforest could've been spared IMO- we live in America, we don't need to be reminded), but I must say they did a nice job with the DLHK version... We'll see! Hopefully the monorail fiasco will be fixed promptly & I can't begin to voice my disgust with the employee treatment. Disgusting! All of TDA should be fired & replaced by actual people who know how to handle employees properly (and with respect) IMO.