Friday, October 24, 2014

Disney will remove Sorcerer's Hat from Hollywood Studios next year

The centerpiece and icon of Hollywood Studios, the Sorcerer's Hat, will be coming down next year, Disney confirmed to the Orlando Sentinel. 

Magic Hat
© Steven Liebman
The 122-foot-tall hat was built at Hollywood Studios in September 2001 as part of the 100 Years of Magic celebration at Disney World. When the celebration ended in 2003 many thought the hat would be history, but it remained.

The hat has been controversial over the years, with many complaining that it blocked the front entrance to The Chinese Theater which houses The Great Movie Ride.

Hollywood Studios is now going through a major transformation. The American Idol Experience closed earlier this year, The Studio Backlot Tour closed earlier this month and The Legend of Captain Jack Sparrow is scheduled to close Nov. 6.

There is much speculation as to what might happen at this park. Many are banking on the creation of a "Star Wars" area next to the Star Tours ride, and/or the addition of another Pixar ride (maybe Monster's University) near the Pixar Place area which houses the popular Toy Story Mania.



Thursday, October 23, 2014

Pangani Forest Exploration Trail at Animal Kingdom may re-open with more animals after Thanksgiving

The Pangani Forest Exploration Trail, closed since September for renovation, may be open sometime after Thanksgiving.
© Steven Liebman
The meerkat exhibit on the Pangani Forest Trail at Animal Kingdom.

Some cast members have said the renovation, which no one would go into detail about, should be open after Thanksgiving. They did say the path is being expanded and there are some hints that "every animal needs a place."  Hopefully, something official will come from Disney soon.

The trail, which is next to the popular Kilimanjaro Safaris is usually where one walks to get closer looks at the animals seen on the safari ride. Guests have been asked to enter via the exit, where you can see the gorillas and then to the meerkats and and zebras.

Closed is the underwater hippo area, the aviary and the research outpost.

So could this expansion mean a larger hippo viewing area, are the birds staying, or is there something else we might get a better view -maybe the  lions? What would you like to see?

Revamped Move It! Shake It! Dance & Play! parade to debut Oct. 24 at Disney World

Ryan Wendler/© Disney
The revamped Move It! Shake It! Celebrate It! Street Party parade debuts tomorrow, Oct. 24, 2014 at the Magic Kingdom, according to the Disney Parks Blog.

The five-year-old parade has been updated with new characters and the new name - Move It! Shake It! Dance & Play It. The parade routs remains from the start of Main Street, to Cinderella Castle and then returns. Guests are encouraged to dance with Mickey, Minnie and friends in front of Cinderella Castle.

In addition, Disney touts that guests will be able to vote on the music playlist and share their photos with #MoveItShakeItPics for a special finale moment.

We are expected to be at the park on Friday, so check back to see the photos!

Wednesday, October 22, 2014

Photos: Construction update of Downtown Disney Marketplace area at Disney World

Construction continues with the transformation of Downtown Disney at Disney World to the newly themed Disney Springs.

The work is causing major disruption all around Downtown Disney. The Marketplace area is now isolated from the remainder of the other sections as new walkways and bridges are being built. The over the water causeway is shaping up and looking good.

The first portion of the new area is expected to open in 2015. The project should be complete by 2016.

© Steven Liebman

© Steven Liebman

© Steven Liebman

© Steven Liebman

© Steven Liebman

© Steven Liebman

© Steven Liebman


'Guardians of the Galaxy' soundtrack now being released on cassette tape

We have mentioned before how much we love the "Guardians of the Galaxy Awesome Mix Vol. 1" soundtrack.

The collection of 12 songs include "Hooked on a Feeling," "I'm Not in Love" by 10cc, Redbone's "Come and Get Your Love," and The Runaways' "Cherry Bomb."

One of the main story points in the movie is that he lead character -- Peter Quill --l has this compilation tape that he got from his mother before she died that she made for him. "It was of songs that she loved, all songs from the 1970s," according to director James Gunn, "and that's the only thing he has left of his mother and that's the only thing he has left of his home on Earth. He uses that as a connection to his past and to the sadness that he feels of having left all that and lost all that."

It only took eight weeks after being released for the album to sell 500,000 copies and be certified gold. Now, the popular album will be released on a cassette tape, according to marvel.com. Who still has a cassette tape player? We don't know, but the cassette tape version will be available starting Nov. 28, 2014 at these record stores.

The songs on the Awesome Mix Tape, Vol. 1 includes:

1. "Hooked on a Feeling" Performed by Blue Swede
2. "Go All the Way" Performed by Raspberries
3. "Spirit in the Sky"* Performed by Norman Greenbaum
4. "Moonage Daydream" Performed by David Bowie
5. "Fooled Around and Fell in Love" Performed by Elvin Bishop
6. "I'm Not in Love" Performed by 10cc
7. "I Want You Back" Performed by Jackson 5
8. "Come and Get Your Love" Performed by Redbone
9. "Cherry Bomb" Performed by The Runaways
10. "Escape (The PiƱa Colada Song)" Performed by Rupert Holmes
11. "O-O-H Child" Performed by The Five Stairsteps
12. "Ain't No Mountain High Enough" Performed by Marvin Gaye and Tammi Terrell

Photos: Minnie Mouse at Toronto Fashion Week

Minnie Mouse, as well all know, is a fashion icon. She has been on the cover of Love and featured in Barneys New York window display.

Now, she showed up at Toronto Fashion Week featuring the new line of Pandora Jewelry with bloggers/designer twins Caillianne and Samantha Beckman.

"Minnie is quite the fashion darling herself! We all recognize her signature look and have seen her inspiration everywhere from high fashion to high street. She is a true fashion icon," they write on their blog.

Here are some photos of the three during Fashion Week:


(L to R) Disney Fashion Ambassadors Samantha Beckerman and Caillianne Beckerman, and Minnie Mouse attend the Minnie Mouse Presentation during World MasterCard Fashion Week Spring 2015 at David Pecaut Square on October 21, 2014 in Toronto, Canada. (Photo by George Pimentel/Getty Images for IMG)


(L to R) Samantha Beckerman, Minnie Mouse and Caillianne Beckerman speak at the Minnie Mouse Presentation during World MasterCard Fashion Week Spring 2015 at David Pecaut Square on October 21, 2014 in Toronto, Canada. (Photo by George Pimentel/Getty Images for IMG)
Minnie Mouse attends the Minnie Mouse Presentation during World MasterCard Fashion Week Spring 2015 at David Pecaut Square on October 21, 2014 in Toronto, Canada. (Photo by George Pimentel/Getty Images for IMG)
Caillianne Beckerman, Minnie Mouse and Samantha Beckerman attend the Minnie Mouse Presentation during PANDORA Jewellery At World MasterCard Fashion Week In Toronto - Day 1 at David Pecaut Square on October 21, 2014 in Toronto, Canada. (Photo by Sonia Recchia/Getty Images for PANDORA)