Welcome to the February edition of Disney Rumor Round Up for 2019! You can check out the January 2019 installment here. Let’s get right to it! Disclaimer: Any rumors mentioned in this article are not confirmed by Disney and may not ever happen.
Magic Kingdom continues to work its way towards the 50th anniversary. It may seem Epcot is getting a lot of attention but in terms of the 50th anniversary the focus is on Magic Kingdom, as that’s the park that opened in 1971. A tower crane has appeared now over in Tomorrowland as the Tron coaster track will soon go up, as recent permits indicate. The Casey Jr Splash Pad area is now behind walls for a much needed refurbishment and more refurbishments will be coming to Magic Kingdom the closer we get to 2021 and the 50th celebration.
Major news for Epcot this month. We have confirmation that the entrance to Epcot will be getting a bit of an overhaul. The Leave a Legacy stones will be removed and placed outside the park entrance. The new entrance features more foliage and pays homage to the park’s original 1982 entrance. This change has been rumored for quite some time now and seems to be welcomed by most. According to Disney, this is only the beginning of changes for Epcot and rumors show that seems to be the case.
In addition to the new entrance plaza, Disney has announced a new purpose for the Wonders of Life Pavilion in the new Play Pavilion, which will act as a playful, innovative city under the dome with Disney characters and hands-on activities. This also means the Festival Center aspect will take on a new home in the Odyssey building over near Test Track and World Showcase. Disney says that additional changes will come between Spaceship Earth and World Showcase that will be announced at a later date.
Rumors from WDWMagic point to Innoventions West being removed completely and East getting some significant work. If you look at the concept art for the new plaza, Innoventions West does appear to be gone. It is also rumored that recently the United Kingdom attraction got approval. This attraction would be something small like a carousel or flat ride, not a major dark ride or E-Ticket type. Also according to rumors, Brazil got the green light and will be built as Epcot’s 12th World Showcase country. Spaceship Earth would be part of all this change at Epcot, with a nearly three-year refurbishment including the removal of the Project Tomorrow exit area and an updated ride experience. Finally, rumors say that Disney has approved a new film for the old Circle of Life theater in The Land which closed a while ago. Disney is sure to announced more on Epcot as the year goes on and especially at the 2019 D23 Expo later this year.
WDWNT is reporting that due to a drop in the Rise of the Resistance attraction the height restriction will be 40 inches. This would be the first trackless ride from Disney with a height restriction at all, so this could present a problem for those with smaller children; the other attraction in Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge, the simulator experience Millennium Falcon: Smuggler’s Run, will surely have a height restriction as well. WDWMagic sources say the drop won’t be Tower of Terror level but will give you a sense of thrill. Cast members at Disneyland get the first peak at costumes for the new land in late February and the public should see them soon after. More and more marketing pushes for the land will soon appear as Disneyland gets ready to open in June.
Permits were filed recently that sparked some speculation on a possible new ride in Africa at Animal Kingdom; however, this is more than likely for Club 33. The fourth and final Club 33 venue at Walt Disney World has yet to open and will soon begin construction in Harambe. These permits were filed by the Buena Vista Construction Company, which is Disney’s internal construction company which tends to do smaller projects.
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The Disney Skyliner has begun major testing, mainly on the Hollywood Studios-to-Caribbean Beach line. Numerous cabins have been spotted on the line at varying speeds. The speed they will travel at when the transportation service opens will be roughly 11.7 MPH. Not all of the cabins feature characters, but a good amount will. In total there will be around 300 cabins for the service, each cabin holding up to 10 people. Disney is saying fall is when this service will open; however, guests could be riding this as early as late spring according to sources. Disney’s Riviera Resort won’t open until the fall so that could be why Disney is saying such. These cabins will operate in most weather, including storms, and if something were to happen the lines have backups and can be manually pulled into the station. This would prevent an evacuation being needed. Each cabin does have a battery on board for lighting and possible on-board announcements; however, there will be no air conditioning.
Disneyland is still rumored to get Mickey and Minnie’s Runaway Railway in the Toontown area. Also, recently Disney and More reported that Disneyland Paris may also be getting this attraction. Jim Hill states this attraction, first opening at Walt Disney World, could be the newest attraction to make its way around the world, much like Pirates of the Caribbean, “it’s a small world,” or Peter Pan.