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  1. #1

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    A Mickey Mouse-themed land at DHS (open brainstorming)

    I've been thinking of ways for a Toontown-type land to return to WDW after Toontown Fair left as a way to add in a Mickey-themed area that would be more permanent than something like Toontown Fair or Camp Minnie-Mickey, which is likely to be wiped out for Avatarland; they've already relocated Mickey and Minnie someplace else at DAK and there's even plans to relocate the Lion King stage show elsewhere, too. Thus, I felt that there had to be something Mickey-related that would be permanent.

    But I was just really confused as to what I wanted, because I'm used to having areas like Toontown in castle parks and no place else. Everyone seemed to think that a Toontown would work perfectly in Disney's Hollywood Studios. But I was not so sure. Granted, the theme of Toontown seemed appropriate at first blush; in "Who Framed Roger Rabbit", it was located in Hollywood, the theme of the Studio obviously.

    But Disneyland, which has a Toontown, is also located in Southern California, where the real Hollywood is located. And I really thought that cartoon shorts, the theme of Toontown, didn't really seem to work as well in a park such as the Studios as it does in a castle park. To me, Mickey's House, as it exists in Disneyland, doesn't really fit the Studios theme. I also didn't think that cartoon-like, balloony architecture really seemed to fit the Studios, either. I thought that anything regarding a Toon Studio would work against the park's move to drift away from an actual working studio. Setting up a studio theme for an area like this, to my way of thinking, just seems to serve as a reminder of the park's past, and was a cop-out to boot, similar to the setup of Star Tours in Florida (which, of course, is located in the Studios). I agree with a website about the Studios (http://www.studioscentral.com/column...ending-studios), when they said that introducing the "working set" idea creates a whole extra layer of stuff to get between the guest and the experience. And, of course, DHS isn't located in California, but in Florida.

    Then, I discovered this one article on Passport 2 Dreams: http://passport2dreams.blogspot.com/...ok-circus.html. Here, it seemed to dislike Mickey's Toontown for the balloony, cartoon-like architecture it had, thinking it was themed to one thing and one thing only, "Roger Rabbit", and that it didn't feel very Disney-like (I personally think it does, but I digress). Meanwhile, the article seems to show some praise for Mickey's Birthdayland/Starland, even though it was always considered a temporary area, albeit done on a big scale. Here's what the article said:

    [T]he area did have a classic "Disney" feel appropriate to the Magic Kingdom, even if the "Disney" feel was decidedly... low rent. [...] [T]he best thing about Mickey's Birthdayland is that, by getting out the door just before the Roger Rabbit craze hit, it managed to realize Disney cartoons in a classically Disney way. It really did look like Mickey's house, the way you always imagined it[.]

    I explain all this because when Birthdayland/Starland became Toontown Fair, it was in 1996, three years after Toontown in Disneyland opened. And so, I feel that the Disney feel here can work again in Mickey Avenue, a section at the Studios to be expanded greatly and improved on. The article stated that the Disney feel in Birthdayland/Starland was decided low rent, but that can probably be rectified here.

    Okay, now we can start brainstorming.
    My top favorite Disneyland attractions:

    1. Big Thunder Mountain Railroad
    2. Pirates of the Caribbean
    3. Splash Mountain
    4. Mad Tea Party
    5. Peter Pan's Flight
    6. Roger Rabbit's Car Toon Spin

  2. #2

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    Re: A Mickey Mouse-themed land at DHS (open brainstorming)

    For the location, I'm thinking somewhere in this area:


    Two things I would like to include here are a gas station and a hotel. The reason I want to have those here is because of some articles of both on Yesterland. Here's the article for gas stations: Disney Gas Stations At Which You Havenít Bought Gas -- a side trip from Yesterland. And here's the article for hotels: Disney Hotels At Which You Haven't Stayed -- a side trip from Yesterland.

    As far as the hotel is concerned, that's actually going to be where Mickey and the gang will do meet-n-greets. They will be in separate rooms, like in a hotel. I have two questions, though. First, I want to make the hotel look tall without actually being tall (I don't want it to compete with the Tower of Terror), so how can I do that? Second, based on that, how can the elevator be done? I don't think I would like the guests actually go up or down different floors to get to the characters. I was told that the only way to make the hotel appear tall without actually being tall (like I said, I don't think the Tower of Terror would like the competition) was to use forced perspective. As for an elevator (because a hotel should have an elevator), the only alternative would be to do what they did with the Haunted Mansion's stretching room of the Living Seas' former hydrolators, and have the elevators not actually travel anywhere and deposit guests on the same floor they started in. Like I said, I did not think of these ideas myself. I was told these ideas by others.

    The thing is, I'm really confused as to what can be done. I'm used to doing things in the castle parks and Epcot. Anything else is confusing for me, especially when you consider what a mess the Studios currently is.
    My top favorite Disneyland attractions:

    1. Big Thunder Mountain Railroad
    2. Pirates of the Caribbean
    3. Splash Mountain
    4. Mad Tea Party
    5. Peter Pan's Flight
    6. Roger Rabbit's Car Toon Spin

  3. #3

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    Re: A Mickey Mouse-themed land at DHS (open brainstorming)

    I like your overall idea of having a Mickey Mouse themed town at WDW. I personally think there should be more and greater references to Mickey and the world he and his friends (Minnie, Donald, Daisy, Goofy, Pluto, etc) live in; more recreations and nods to the original cartoon shorts. I like walking through Mickey's home in Toontown in Disneyland, and love the balloon architecture of Toontown in general. Even though I don't think it's thematically appropriate for DHS (I personally think it'd be better in MK, as you alluded to), I'd be happy to see it anywhere in WDW!

  4. #4

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    Re: A Mickey Mouse-themed land at DHS (open brainstorming)

    I have been pondering taking some inspiration from Starland (so as to not make it balloon-like, as DL's Toontown is), but not making it so low-rent. Here's an overhead shot (notice how very temporary some of the facades look?):


    Here's another shot of Mickey's Starland, showing some closeups of some of the buildings:


    That's kind of the basic look I'm leaning towards for Mickey Avenue, but a lot less temporary-looking. But I have no idea how to do this section in something not so low-rent and be able to fit the Studios (beyond making the buildings bigger and the colors darker and less rainbow-like). Has anyone got any ideas for to do this?
    My top favorite Disneyland attractions:

    1. Big Thunder Mountain Railroad
    2. Pirates of the Caribbean
    3. Splash Mountain
    4. Mad Tea Party
    5. Peter Pan's Flight
    6. Roger Rabbit's Car Toon Spin

  5. #5

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    Re: A Mickey Mouse-themed land at DHS (open brainstorming)

    ^ great idea!

  6. #6

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    Re: A Mickey Mouse-themed land at DHS (open brainstorming)

    I have always thought it would be fun to have a land like this at DHS... my idea would be that you enter through an area that looks like the Disney Studios on Hyperion, with a recreation of the iconic old Mickey Mouse / Silly Symphonies sign, it would give way to a black and white area where you could meet some of the REAL long lost friends, preferably in greyscale, Clarabelle, Horace, Oswald, Clara Cluck... maybe even Dippy Dawg, Pie Eyed Mickey and Minnie, etc. This could potentially be a fun area to board a dark ride that takes you on a trip through the Disney cartoons from Steamboat Willie through the end of the classic Mickey in Technicolor area...maybe you board a mini Steamboat and begin travelling through the countryside, a barnyard, etc... then a tornado "sweeps you into technicolor" (it's the tornado from The Band Concert...the first Technicolor Mickey short)... through a funhouse room with mirrors (based on the old Pluto cartoon), on a quick adventure with Donald Duck, maybe through the Lonseome Ghosts house - though Lonseome Ghosts might make a good dark ride all on its own- Mystic Manor/Haunted Mansion meets Mickey!) then the ride would let you out in the later era of ToonTown where you could meet the real Sensational 6. In my own world this would also house a Roger Rabbit ride (my favorite character) which would take the current idea of Car-Toon Spin but using a combination of AA figures and projections, like Spiderman/Transformers, but in 2D - This is a 'toon, of course!

    Obviously the obligatory Toon Town Main Street would be there - I would love it if it had the ToonTown Hollywood Hills style sign, and if that backdrop could be built in such a way that the reverse side could be a realistic Hollywood Hills sign that could serve as a great backdrop for the rest of the park!

  7. #7

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    Re: A Mickey Mouse-themed land at DHS (open brainstorming)

    Quote Originally Posted by Razor Roman View Post
    I have always thought it would be fun to have a land like this at DHS... my idea would be that you enter through an area that looks like the Disney Studios on Hyperion, with a recreation of the iconic old Mickey Mouse / Silly Symphonies sign, it would give way to a black and white area where you could meet some of the REAL long lost friends, preferably in greyscale, Clarabelle, Horace, Oswald, Clara Cluck... maybe even Dippy Dawg, Pie Eyed Mickey and Minnie, etc. This could potentially be a fun area to board a dark ride that takes you on a trip through the Disney cartoons from Steamboat Willie through the end of the classic Mickey in Technicolor area...maybe you board a mini Steamboat and begin travelling through the countryside, a barnyard, etc... then a tornado "sweeps you into technicolor" (it's the tornado from The Band Concert...the first Technicolor Mickey short)... through a funhouse room with mirrors (based on the old Pluto cartoon), on a quick adventure with Donald Duck, maybe through the Lonseome Ghosts house - though Lonseome Ghosts might make a good dark ride all on its own- Mystic Manor/Haunted Mansion meets Mickey!) then the ride would let you out in the later era of ToonTown where you could meet the real Sensational 6. In my own world this would also house a Roger Rabbit ride (my favorite character) which would take the current idea of Car-Toon Spin but using a combination of AA figures and projections, like Spiderman/Transformers, but in 2D - This is a 'toon, of course!

    Obviously the obligatory Toon Town Main Street would be there - I would love it if it had the ToonTown Hollywood Hills style sign, and if that backdrop could be built in such a way that the reverse side could be a realistic Hollywood Hills sign that could serve as a great backdrop for the rest of the park!
    I reiterate: this take will not be a Toontown, it will not have any free-flowing architecture. I do like the idea of your Mickey and Friends dark ride, though, especially putting it in the Hyperion Studio building. But I have one concern: the theme of the Hyperion studio would clash with the land because it involves animated characters coming to life from ink and paint, when the theme of the land should involve Mickey and the gang as real people. Wouldn't that be sort of contradictory?
    My top favorite Disneyland attractions:

    1. Big Thunder Mountain Railroad
    2. Pirates of the Caribbean
    3. Splash Mountain
    4. Mad Tea Party
    5. Peter Pan's Flight
    6. Roger Rabbit's Car Toon Spin

  8. #8

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    Re: A Mickey Mouse-themed land at DHS (open brainstorming)

    Are they real people who's cartoons are "documentaries" or are they real actors who make movies? If so, the studio would still work. (And in my own way if thinking, why would thy live at the Hollywood studios then anyway? They would "work" there). It kind of is reminiscent to me of the idea WDI had for the Epcot movie pavilion that would be a dark ride with the disney characters working on the crew at the studio as they "filmed" the Rescuers.

  9. #9

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    Re: A Mickey Mouse-themed land at DHS (open brainstorming)

    Quote Originally Posted by Razor Roman View Post
    Are they real people who's cartoons are "documentaries" or are they real actors who make movies? If so, the studio would still work.
    Well, in this case, I was having the characters be like the Toons of Toontown in Roger Rabbit, but have Mickey Avenue be somewhat more real-life (something like Mickey's Birthdayland/Starland, but bigger) than the free-flowing style at Mickey's Toontown in Disneyland. So that's where my concern with the Hyperion studio had come in: are they "real" actors or ink-and-paint characters? Because in reality, they are, obviously, ink-and-paint characters.
    My top favorite Disneyland attractions:

    1. Big Thunder Mountain Railroad
    2. Pirates of the Caribbean
    3. Splash Mountain
    4. Mad Tea Party
    5. Peter Pan's Flight
    6. Roger Rabbit's Car Toon Spin

  10. #10

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    Re: A Mickey Mouse-themed land at DHS (open brainstorming)

    I guess my approach would be more Roger Rabbit-ish, where the Hyperion Studio would be akin to visiting Maroon Cartoons... almost like going to an "open house". I personally like the ToonTown concept, if you just have a problem with the architectural style, I understand that, but I guess the problem I see with trying to make something look Toony it ends up just looking kind of cheap, because you've painted it with large swaths of bright colors. To me, Disneyland's ToonTown is much more visually appealing than that picture up above. Another idea could be to keep the idea that we're not visiting a place where the characters live, but a cartoon studio with a backlot - of course then it would end up just being unthemed buildings with 2D facades stuck on them..bleh.

  11. #11

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    Re: A Mickey Mouse-themed land at DHS (open brainstorming)

    Quote Originally Posted by Razor Roman View Post
    I guess my approach would be more Roger Rabbit-ish, where the Hyperion Studio would be akin to visiting Maroon Cartoons... almost like going to an "open house". I personally like the ToonTown concept, if you just have a problem with the architectural style, I understand that, but I guess the problem I see with trying to make something look Toony it ends up just looking kind of cheap, because you've painted it with large swaths of bright colors. To me, Disneyland's ToonTown is much more visually appealing than that picture up above. Another idea could be to keep the idea that we're not visiting a place where the characters live, but a cartoon studio with a backlot - of course then it would end up just being unthemed buildings with 2D facades stuck on them..bleh.
    Well, that's my thing, to base the setup on Starland but improve on it to make it less cheap. One way to do this is discard the rainbow of bright colors in favor of darker tones. I also desperately want to avoid the studio theme because it does seem like a copout.

    I also thought of some ideas for cartoon-like gags, based in part on Mickey's Toontown, but applied to real-live objects. In one description of the aborted Roger Rabbit's Hollywood concept, they mention this:

    It would look like the cartoon studio buildings featured in the film with all the cartoon peculiarities - boxes of TNT, grand piano's hanging above the sidewalk, Roger shaped hopes in the walls.

    One idea I had was based on the grand piano and the fallen safe at Mickey's Toontown. A piano would have fallen into the sidewalk, at a cockeyed angle, with a shredded rope hanging above, as if indicating they tried, but failed, to hoist the piano into the window above. But here's the other thing: instead of being cartoon-like, as the safe was at Disneyland, the piano here will be a real one (that is, far less cartoon-like). I actually got this idea from a positive review of Storybook Circus from Passport 2 Dreams. Here's what it says:

    [An] example of Storybook Circus' superior attention to detail may be seen in their treatment of the old "Goofy-crashes-through-things" sight gag [at the Barnstormer roller coaster]. Toontown Fair had perfectly sharp Goofy-shaped holes:


    Storybook Circus' holes are equally absurdly shaped, but they actually look like damage has been caused to real, tangible objects:


    That sort of stuff tends to add up to a lot in the mind. One of these looks like somebody put care and thought into the presentation of the gag with room left for fine texture, and the other looks like a bunch of Imagineers getting jiggy with a band saw.


    So I was thinking of taking some kid of an old cartoon peculiarity (a fallen heavy object) and making it a real one (or at least far less cartoon-like).

    What do you think about that?
    Attached Images Attached Images  
    My top favorite Disneyland attractions:

    1. Big Thunder Mountain Railroad
    2. Pirates of the Caribbean
    3. Splash Mountain
    4. Mad Tea Party
    5. Peter Pan's Flight
    6. Roger Rabbit's Car Toon Spin

  12. #12

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    Re: A Mickey Mouse-themed land at DHS (open brainstorming)

    Quote Originally Posted by Razor Roman View Post
    I have always thought it would be fun to have a land like this at DHS... my idea would be that you enter through an area that looks like the Disney Studios on Hyperion, with a recreation of the iconic old Mickey Mouse / Silly Symphonies sign, it would give way to a black and white area where you could meet some of the REAL long lost friends, preferably in greyscale, Clarabelle, Horace, Oswald, Clara Cluck... maybe even Dippy Dawg, Pie Eyed Mickey and Minnie, etc. This could potentially be a fun area to board a dark ride that takes you on a trip through the Disney cartoons from Steamboat Willie through the end of the classic Mickey in Technicolor area...maybe you board a mini Steamboat and begin travelling through the countryside, a barnyard, etc... then a tornado "sweeps you into technicolor" (it's the tornado from The Band Concert...the first Technicolor Mickey short)... through a funhouse room with mirrors (based on the old Pluto cartoon), on a quick adventure with Donald Duck, maybe through the Lonseome Ghosts house - though Lonseome Ghosts might make a good dark ride all on its own- Mystic Manor/Haunted Mansion meets Mickey!) then the ride would let you out in the later era of ToonTown where you could meet the real Sensational 6. In my own world this would also house a Roger Rabbit ride (my favorite character) which would take the current idea of Car-Toon Spin but using a combination of AA figures and projections, like Spiderman/Transformers, but in 2D - This is a 'toon, of course!

    Obviously the obligatory Toon Town Main Street would be there - I would love it if it had the ToonTown Hollywood Hills style sign, and if that backdrop could be built in such a way that the reverse side could be a realistic Hollywood Hills sign that could serve as a great backdrop for the rest of the park!

    Love your ideas Roman! I think there needs to be more nods at Disney parks to the ORIGINAL cartoons and their characters, the original characters of Walt Disney.

    Great references to Steamboat and Lonesome Ghosts. I would really love to see more presence of many of these classic Disney cartoon shorts. To me they are the foundation of Disney animation, and unfortunately seem to be so underappreciated these days.

  13. #13

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    Re: A Mickey Mouse-themed land at DHS (open brainstorming)

    What did you think of my concept for to incorporate cartoon peculiarities into real-world objects? For example, as I said before, there is a safe in Mickey's Toontown that has fallen and crashed into the ground at a cockeyed angle:


    What if there was a similar kind of a thing with a less-cartoon-like piano?
    My top favorite Disneyland attractions:

    1. Big Thunder Mountain Railroad
    2. Pirates of the Caribbean
    3. Splash Mountain
    4. Mad Tea Party
    5. Peter Pan's Flight
    6. Roger Rabbit's Car Toon Spin

  14. #14

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    Re: A Mickey Mouse-themed land at DHS (open brainstorming)

    Here's an attraction that I would put into Mickey Avenue: it will be a huge E-ticket water thrill ride to rival Splash Mountain (and taking roller coaster technology from nearby Sea World's Journey To Atlantis). It's themed to "Fantasia" and its exterior and queue will be housed inside a fancy movie palace only slightly Toon-like in appearance (remember, the architecture is more like Mickey's Birthdayland/Starland than Mickey's Toontown, albeit fancier). Maybe the queue could be adorned with various posters of the film's various releases over the years.

    Of course, that would mean the "Fantasia" scene (such as it is) should be removed from the Great Movie Ride, because that would be cannibalizing things there. Mind you, there is just a screen of Mickey as the Sorcerer's Apprentice there, but still, it's there, and "Fantasia" is one of the films featured in the loop of trailers for movies in the ride. So what about that?
    My top favorite Disneyland attractions:

    1. Big Thunder Mountain Railroad
    2. Pirates of the Caribbean
    3. Splash Mountain
    4. Mad Tea Party
    5. Peter Pan's Flight
    6. Roger Rabbit's Car Toon Spin

  15. #15

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    Re: A Mickey Mouse-themed land at DHS (open brainstorming)

    A Sorcerors apprentice flume ride fully of AA brooms? I'm in. Hahha

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