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New Epcot Shows (The Land, Canada, China, France)

Legacy

Veteran Member
Jul 27, 2015
8,427
The other thing that kills me is, if we had to throw some IP show in there, do something with Hunchback. It has no park presence and it fits in with the France pavilion much better than a fairy tale with a loose connection to France.
Now I’m sad the Hunchback show is gone...
 

ChristopherSE

V.I.P.
Jul 12, 2009
2,052
NJ -> Orlando
I didn’t despise BATB sing along but my expectations were rock bottom so I wasn’t surprised when it wasn’t, like, good lol. Making LeFou the hero is truly bonkers but it’s kind of campy fun. The best parts of the film by a wide margin were the newly animated sequences that showed LeFou meddling in the story. It actually got a few laughs out of me, and the animation style was very well matched to the original film, so it was surprisingly seamless. And correct me if I’m wrong, but i think it had new narration by Angela Lansbury, which was a nice touch.

Its 100% cheaped out version of Frozen sing-along (which, despite its strengths, is already a cheaped out stage show). Saw it once, may never see it again and that’s fine.
 

Nick

Staff member
Moderator
Sep 22, 2011
24,851
Orlando
I wonder how much they spent on this and if they could have just done a new 4D short with special effects
A film to replace IDF is what should’ve happened. I like IDF, but it’s footage from the early 80’s. Both Awesome Planet and Canada: Far and Wide turned out really well so I would’ve liked to see a modern version of IDF.

The thing is the theater is huge and it was pretty empty a lot of the time. Supposedly the theater has been pretty packed since the sing-along debuted (albeit it still has the new car smell), but it’s an easy way for families to entertain kids while the parents rest out of the sun. IDF wasn’t doing that which is why they wanted an IP.

Personally, I think we’re lucky we got two original films and China coming up (although I’ve heard a Mulan tie-in may happen there...)
 
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Magic Feather

Member
Apr 19, 2019
674
A film to replace IDF is what should’ve happened. I like IDF, but it’s footage from the early 80’s. Both Awesome Planet and Canada: Far and Wide turned out really well so I would’ve liked to see a modern version of IDF.

The thing is the theater is huge and it was pretty empty a lot of the time. Supposedly the theater has been pretty packed since the sing-along debuted (albeit it still has the new car smell), but it’s an easy way for families to entertain kids while the parents rest out of the sun. IDF wasn’t doing that which is why they wanted an IP.

Personally, I think we’re lucky we got two original films and China coming up (although I’ve heard a Mulan tie-in may happen there...)
Awesome Planet and CFW were also playing to full houses yesterday (which both have much bigger theaters). I’m not willing to call anything’s actual popularity yet.
 

Nick

Staff member
Moderator
Sep 22, 2011
24,851
Orlando
Great evening at Epcot. Saw Awesome Planet and Far and Wide (as well as seeing a performance of the Disney on Broadway series!). Perfect weather, great night for a stroll around the park.

As far as the new shows go - I really, really enjoyed both. The in-theater effects for Awesome Planet were subtle but really added to the show. Both shows are very “Epcot Center” in the best ways. It’s inconceivable how they got Awesome Planet and Canada Far and Wide so right and yet the BatB sing-a-long exists when they had the chance to update Impressions de France.
 

belloq87

Veteran Member
Dec 7, 2009
5,278
Universal Exports
I was also in the park tonight and also took in Awesome Planet and Canada: Far and Wide.

I appreciated both of them, and I really think it's kind of amazing that these projects happened under the current Disney mindset for Epcot. Both are very "Epcot-worthy," and are the types of experiences that flesh out and fill out a complete day at the park, while also speaking to the park's original thematic concerns.

And I didn't even mind waiting until 7:30 to see Impressions, because that show is still pretty much a masterpiece of its kind. The digital projection looked terrific, too. Yes, an updated version would be nice, but it's quite a beautiful time capsule.
 

Nick

Staff member
Moderator
Sep 22, 2011
24,851
Orlando
I was also in the park tonight and also took in Awesome Planet and Canada: Far and Wide.

I appreciated both of them, and I really think it's kind of amazing that these projects happened under the current Disney mindset for Epcot. Both are very "Epcot-worthy," and are the types of experiences that flesh out and fill out a complete day at the park, while also speaking to the park's original thematic concerns.

And I didn't even mind waiting until 7:30 to see Impressions, because that show is still pretty much a masterpiece of its kind. The digital projection looked terrific, too. Yes, an updated version would be nice, but it's quite a beautiful time capsule.
I appreciate the beauty of IDF, but definitely think it’s just time for an update.

Also - yeah, definitely is amazing/refreshing to see things like this still get made in Disney Parks.
 

Nick

Staff member
Moderator
Sep 22, 2011
24,851
Orlando
Granted this was on MLK Jr. day, but BatB sing along looks like it's here to stay based on this - IdF certainly wasn't pulling these types of crowds. Unfortunately, the general public is a sucker for things like this, quality aside.
 
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shiekra38

Legendary Member
Dec 13, 2009
13,869
Florida
Granted this was on MLK Jr. day, but BatB sing along looks like it's here to stay based on this - IdF certainly wasn't pulling these types of crowds. Unfortunately, the general public is a sucker for things like this, quality aside.
Isn't Test Track closed right now?

Not saying it's one to one, but maybe capacity is down park wide?

Or people think it's a ride?

Someone help haha
 
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Joe

aka TestTrack321
Staff member
Moderator
Feb 15, 2012
14,199
Pittsburgh, PA
Granted this was on MLK Jr. day, but BatB sing along looks like it's here to stay based on this - IdF certainly wasn't pulling these types of crowds. Unfortunately, the general public is a sucker for things like this, quality aside.
I mean it's new, a popular weekend, and there's a festival. I wouldn't read too much into it.
 
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Nick

Staff member
Moderator
Sep 22, 2011
24,851
Orlando
I mean it's new, a popular weekend, and there's a festival. I wouldn't read too much into it.
All of that is true. But I can guarantee a BatB show will perform better even on the slower days and get more butts into seats. The Frozen Sing-a-long has been around for 6 years now and remains popular. The quality difference between Frozen and BatB is definitely noticeable, but when there's so few attractions around world showcase and you want to get out of the sun while still entertaining your kid, this is the ticket. Kids hated IdF - they got bored and restless.

I just have little hope now that it's hear and most certainly will continue to see a higher number of guests in the theater than IdF was pulling. Martin says that an update was planned to happen. Unknown if still happening though.
 
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SeventyOne

V.I.P.
Jul 1, 2010
3,056
Orlando
Saw B&tB tonight. Fairly packed theater for an otherwise slow night in EPCOT.

Show didn't work for me at all. The new footage stands out like a sore thumb (granted I'm an animation junkie), and basically made me want to go home and watch the original on Disney+. Moreover, the script just isn't half as clever as it seems to think it is, and other than "Be Our Guest," none of the songs lend themselves naturally to a sing-along like Frozen's. Also, as I think Nick said, the lack of live actors makes it feel less socially acceptable to sing. Not saying live actors could salvage this, but their absence really hurts it.

[For the record, prior to Slinky Dog opening, I unironically argued Frozen was the best attraction in DHS. So I'm not predisposed to hating sing-along shows.]

Awesome Planet -- well, even my left-leaning g/f said, "Soarin;' .... but with a guilt trip at the end." I'm not trying to get political (and will ignore any attempt here to debate the underlying subject) but I will say offering an overt warning over global warming then brushing it off with the moral equivalent of "thoughts and prayers will solve everything" likely won't satisfy either side of that debate. I suspect we see a reworking before too long.

Prior to the ending, this was classic EPCOT for good and bad. Beautiful scenery captured on a large screen, with a marginally famous TV comedic talent making cheesy jokes. Which anywhere else in the park would be fine -- an underwater-only version could've revitalized Living Seas -- but when 90% of guests will see this immediately before or after Soarin', I don't think it will hold up well by comparison.

Neither attraction would make me feel better about dropping on $120 for a 1-day ticket then having to walk a mile through a dead mall. Bluntly, neither attraction is a "ride." These feel like desperate attempts to keep daily capacity up to avoid phased closings come Spring Break.
 
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Nick

Staff member
Moderator
Sep 22, 2011
24,851
Orlando
Saw B&tB tonight. Fairly packed theater for an otherwise slow night in EPCOT.

Show didn't work for me at all. The new footage stands out like a sore thumb (granted I'm an animation junkie), and basically made me want to go home and watch the original on Disney+. Moreover, the script just isn't half as clever as it seems to think it is, and other than "Be Our Guest," none of the songs lend themselves naturally to a sing-along like Frozen's. Also, as I think Nick said, the lack of live actors makes it feel less socially acceptable to sing. Not saying live actors could salvage this, but their absence really hurts it.

[For the record, prior to Slinky Dog opening, I unironically argued Frozen was the best attraction in DHS. So I'm not predisposed to hating sing-along shows.]

Awesome Planet -- well, even my left-leaning g/f said, "Soarin;' .... but with a guilt trip at the end." I'm not trying to get political (and will ignore any attempt here to debate the underlying subject) but I will say offering an overt warning over global warming then brushing it off with the moral equivalent of "thoughts and prayers will solve everything" likely won't satisfy either side of that debate. I suspect we see a reworking before too long.

Prior to the ending, this was classic EPCOT for good and bad. Beautiful scenery captured on a large screen, with a marginally famous TV comedic talent making cheesy jokes. Which anywhere else in the park would be fine -- an underwater-only version could've revitalized Living Seas -- but when 90% of guests will see this immediately before or after Soarin', I don't think it will hold up well by comparison.

Neither attraction would make me feel better about dropping on $120 for a 1-day ticket then having to walk a mile through a dead mall. Bluntly, neither attraction is a "ride." These feel like desperate attempts to keep daily capacity up to avoid phased closings come Spring Break.
There was nothing playing for about 2 years before Awesome Planet. Canada: Far And Wide replaced a 13 year old film. Nothing about any of that is good so them being updated is inherently a good thing.

Also, I didn’t feel any similarities between Soarin’ and Awesome Planet.
 
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Joe

aka TestTrack321
Staff member
Moderator
Feb 15, 2012
14,199
Pittsburgh, PA
There was nothing playing for about 2 years before Awesome Planet. Canada: Far And Wide replaced a 13 year old film. Nothing about any of that is bad.

Also, I didn’t feel any similarities between Soarin’ and Awesome Planet.
Some things are value adds to a park, like this. It’s the small additions that have been missing from Disney parks that are desperately needed. It’s not like this is the only addition this year or even the next few years.
 

Nick

Staff member
Moderator
Sep 22, 2011
24,851
Orlando
Some things are value adds to a park, like this. It’s the small additions that have been missing from Disney parks that are desperately needed. It’s not like this is the only addition this year or even the next few years.
I agree totally. These are welcome updates imo, but they’re just sort of an appetizer and that’s all they’re meant to be.