Inside the Magic brings you the latest top stories, announcements, special events in the words of Disney and theme parks. Read through our featured and most recent articles, reviews, and news items below.
 
Topics: Disney, Movies, PixarTags: , ,

We have about a month left until Inside Out premieres in theaters in the US and we have previously seen a lot of trailers and clips focusing on the characters of the emotions in the movie like Joy and Sadness. All these emotions lives inside the head of a young girl Riley and so far we haven’t seen much from her. In this Japanese trailer  for the movie that changes. We get a lovely clip set to song reminiscent of the UP “marriage” sequence.


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FEATURED STORY

Star Wars Weekends 2015 kicks off at Walt Disney World with new restaurant, Emperor Palpatine appearance

Star Wars Weekends 2015 kicks off at Walt Disney World with new restaurant, Emperor Palpatine appearance

This weekend, Stat Wars Weekends 2015, kicked off with a bang with “Star Wars: The Force Awakens” character appearances and a visit from Emperor Palpatine himself Ian McDiarmid. There was much excitement in the air for this year’s event with the upcoming new movie.

The popular “Stars of the Saga” talk show was back again this year, but with a location change to the “Beauty and the Beast” show stage as the Frozen sing-along is still occupying the normal location. James Arnold Taylor was hosting again and doing a fabulous job of it getting tons of laughter out of the audience. For the first weekend Amy Allen, Aayla Secura (Star Wars: Attack of the Clones, Star Wars: Revenge of the Sith), and Ian McDiarmid, Senator/Emperor Palpatine (Star Wars: The Phantom Menace; Star Wars: Attack of the Clones; Star Wars: Revenge of the Sith, Star Wars: The Empire Strikes Back, Star Wars: Return of the Jedi), joined us to talk about their experience with the Star Wars universe.


“Star of the Saga” Pre-show Stormtrooper, joking Han Solo, Beauty and the Beast and more

Star Wars Weekends 2015 celebrity talk show with Ian McDiarmid and Amy Allen at Walt Disney World


An intro video was played showing J.J. Abrams and thanking the audience and showcasing their regret that they couldn’t be there. No spoilers for the upcoming movie was shown, but it pleased Star Wars fans nonetheless.

Amy Allen was first to take her turn on the stage recounting her history as a Jedi and playing a little Star Wars trivia game.

The most awaited star was, of course, Ian McDiarmid the emperor himself. Ian delighted the audience with tales about both the famous Emperor Palpatine’s voice and makeup process. He even answered the question of how Emperor Palpatine would say the name Yoda.

At the end, both stars got asked some fun Star Wars related questions like “Which character would you not like to play?”.

For the finale Jedi Mickey joined the stars on the stage, all donning Mickey ears, in a “Mickey Mouse Club” sing-along.

For the finale “Symphony in the Stars” fireworks we got to see the same stage show that debuted last year with James Arnold Taylor introducing various Star Wars characters.

But, surprisingly, new for this year was an appearance by the new Stormtroopers from “Star Wars: The Force Awakens”. You could hear the shocked gasp from the audience and it was a real delight to see this addition to the show.

Another new addition to this year’s event is the “Rebel Hangar” lounge experience. Taking place in a newly decorated room at Backlot Express the lounge serves up some themed Star Wars food and drinks from 4 p.m. every weekend. You can find more pictures and information HERE.

Darth’s Mall also did a location switch to the old Backlot Tour location next to Lights, Motors, Action. As usual the line was around 1-3 hours long most of the day. Close to this location LEGO has also set us shop giving guests the opportunity to create their own little Star Wars LEGO figure and check out some LEGO Star Wars characters.

All over the park you could also find meet and greet opportunities with the Star Wars characters.

Star Wars Weekend 2015 is held every Friday, Saturday and Sunday until June 12-14. All the events are included with park admission.


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Topics: Disney, Disney Springs, Downtown Disney, Food, Theme Parks, Walt Disney WorldTags: , , , ,

Disney has announces a bunch of new shops and restaurants coming to the Walt Disney World resort as Downtown Disney continues its expansion into Disney Springs.

13 new tenants were announced some of them being very popular Sprinkles, famous for their cupcakes and restaurant Edison.

Disney Springs will be finished in 2016 and the rest of the tenants will have joined the area by then.
Here is a list of the new tenants coming to Disney Springs:

RETAIL

Zara: Owned by the Inditex Group, one of the world’s largest fashion retail groups. Zara is known for its men’s, women’s and children’s clothing and accessories, and how it expertly interprets current fashion and style trends of the season, delivering original designs to the consumer in a matter of weeks.

Tommy Bahama: Iconic island lifestyle brand Tommy Bahama embodies relaxed sophistication. The hallmarks of this casual collection include island-inspired sportswear, denim, and swimwear for men and women in luxuriously soft silks and cottons, richly woven textures and eclectic prints.

Lilly Pulitzer: The authentic American resort wear brand, Lilly Pulitzer, is landing in the heart of Disney and will be offering their clothing and accessories, optimistic outlook, and happy prints to those who’ve loved the brand for years and new Lilly Girls out there.

UNIQLO: Leading global retailer UNIQLO designs, manufactures, and sells casual apparel that comes from the company’s Japanese values of simplicity, quality and longevity. The simplest design hides the most thoughtful details in clothing that is constantly being innovated to bring more warmth and lightness, better design and comfort to people’s lives.

PANDORA: Building on its existing relationship with Disney Parks, the popular jewelry brand offers classic yet modern charm bracelets, along with necklaces, rings and earrings, as well as a line of exclusive Disney-themed jewelry.

UGG: The UGG® brand is recognized as a premium lifestyle brand offering men’s, women’s and kid’s footwear as well as loungewear, outerwear, home products, cold weather accessories and handbags.

L’Occitane en Provence: L’Occitane en Provence is an international skincare and beauty line celebrating the culture and beauty of Provence, France.

Edward Beiner: A leading eyewear designer, purveyor and retailer, Edward Beiner offers today’s aspiring lifestyle-oriented customer the world’s most original, authentic and innovative designer, fashion and high performance eyewear.

DINING

Edison: Inspired by The Edison venue in Los Angeles, this lavish “Industrial Gothic” -style restaurant, bar and nighttime destination is themed to a 1920s-period power plant, recalling an exuberant era of invention and imagination. It will feature exceptionally good classic American food, craft cocktails and live entertainment including cabaret and music.

Sprinkles: The world’s first cupcake bakery, as named by Food Network and others, serves up handcrafted cupcakes, slow churned ice cream and homemade cookies. Their innovative Cupcake ATM satisfies sweet-toothed epicureans 24/7.

Blaze Fast-Fire’d Pizza: Blaze Fast-Fire’d Pizza is a modern day “pizza joint” known for its custom-built artisanal pizzas, freshly made salads, blood orange lemonade and s’more pies. The fast-casual restaurant features an interactive assembly-line format that allows guests to customize their pizza, choosing from over 40 fresh, artisanal toppings – all for one price. The generously sized, 11-inch pizzas are “fast-fired” in a blazing hot open-flame oven and ready to enjoy in just 180 seconds.

Vivoli Gelateria: Vivoli Gelateria serves expertly crafted gelato made with fresh, seasonal ingredients, panini sandwiches and espresso drinks.

Tea Traders Café by Joffrey’s: Tea Traders Café by Joffrey’s specializes in premium loose-leaf teas (hot, iced, blended) featuring customs blends, accessories and packaged teas from all over the globe; created to go or for a tea experience in the café.


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FEATURED STORY

Knott’s Berry Farm opens new interactive ride “Voyage of the Iron Reef” with special event including Disney imagineer Bob Gurr

Knott’s Berry Farm opens new interactive ride “Voyage of the Iron Reef” with special event including Disney imagineer Bob Gurr

Ahoy there! Early Wednesday morning Knott’s Berry Farm hosted a special event for their latest attraction, Voyage to the Iron Reef. Both press and annual passholders alike were invited to be the first to experience the innovative attraction on its opening day.


New interactive ride “Voyage of the Iron Reef” opens at Knott’s Berry Farm


In what can best be described as a steampunk-meets-Jules-Verne version of the popular Toy Story Midway Mania ride at Disney California Adventure, Voyage to the Iron Reef combines a traditional dark-ride adventure with “4-D” interactive elements and competitive scorekeeping. Players board a familiar ride vehicle (here referred to in-story as a “bathysphere” or submarine) and are armed with 3D glasses and light-sensitive laser guns (“freeze rays”) attached via cable to the dashboard in front of them—which features LED score displays so riders can keep track of their own progress, as well as their competitors’.

The themed story of Iron Reef is a unique one, in that it incorporates the history and mythology of Knott’s Berry Farm and its attractions, enlisting riders in a quest to save the park from mechanical underwater creatures who are intent on harvesting the metal from the supports of Knott’s many steel roller coasters. Fortunately, anyone familiar with rides similar to Iron Reef will not have a difficult time figuring out what to do in order to complete their mission: shoot the monsters! The robo-aquatic enemies vary in design from innocuous-looking jellyfish to sinister squids, to the hideously evil Kraken Queen, who confronts players at the ride’s climax with shrieks and taunts. Also hidden in each scene are hidden medallions that, when destroyed, will add big points to a player’s total score.

According to the reference information provided to press members during the complimentary breakfast buffet (complete with a cool fish-shaped ice sculpture) before the grand opening of the attraction, the inner workings of Voyage to the Iron Reef incorporate forty-four high-definition projectors and network cabling that are a cumulative eighty-five times longer than the Hollywood sign. It’s a big, worthwhile effort for the storied park, which has been operating in some form or another for about seventy-five years. When taken alongside the recent upgrades to the Calico Mine Train and my personal favorite, the Timber Mountain Log Ride, it’s clear that Knott’s is putting in a lot of work to renew interest in the park beyond its month-long “Scary Farm” Halloween Haunt event in October, which is by far its busiest season.

Indeed, as Knott’s vice president and general manager Raffi Kaprelyan noted in his speech during the opening ceremony, Voyage to the Iron Reef is an attraction unlike any other that this particular park has hosted before. However, it’s clear where the influence for this ride (and the updated animatronics in the two above-mentioned mining rides) is derived from: Knott’s closest and oldest competition, the nearby Disneyland Resort. And that influence is not something they’re attempting to hide: in attendance for the ride’s opening was legendary Disney imagineer Bob Gurr, who had helped concoct attractions for Knott’s in the past (some of them previously housed in the same space as Iron Reef), but who was on hand this morning simply to chat with guests and comment on the impressiveness of the new ride’s technology. Another indication that Knott’s is looking to mimic their mousy theme-park neighbors? The Iron Reef’s dock mural contains a “hidden Snoopy” among the coastal rocks.

Voyage to the Iron Reef makes for a fun excursion, but it’s not without its faults. First of all, it’s what those in the biz call a “slow-loader”. The individual cars hold very few people and take a long time for guests to both board and disembark. As I mentioned earlier, access to the ride was limited to press and annual passholders all day, but the wait time was still steadily above thirty minutes throughout the morning and into the afternoon. Extrapolating that to regular attendance, it could mean a lengthy queue for a relatively short affair. There were also a handful of technical problems very early on: I was able to ride Iron Reef three times during my visit, and on two of those occasions it broke down while I was waiting in line. The problems were resolved relatively quickly, but the fact that there were issues that soon after the initial rope-drop does not inspire a tremendous amount of confidence in the ride’s mechanical stability. Thirdly, I have to say the quality of the overall Iron Reef experience still feels a couple notches below something like Midway Mania, its most obvious antecedent. That ride (featuring a series of colorful carnival games starring everyone’s favorite Toy Story characters) always feels like something I could never get tired of. Don’t get me wrong: Voyage to the Iron Reef is definitely something you’ll want to partake in first-hand a few times, but it’s difficult to say how long it will endure. And if you’re in the business of emulating the Disney parks (regardless of which business was around first), endurance seems like the way to go.


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Topics: Disney, Entertainment, Magic Kingdom, Special Events, Theme Parks, Walt Disney WorldTags: , , ,

On May 22nd Magic Kingdom at Walt Disney World will be the host of the popular 24-hour event again. This year’s party is themed to Frozen and ironically named “Coolest Summer Ever” after our buddy Olaf’s obsession with the warmer season.

From 6 a.m. Friday, May 22, to 6 a.m. Saturday, May 23 Olaf is inviting you Show Your Disney Side with whole day and night filled with a bunch of different entertainment offerings. The most popular ones, of course, features our pals from the movie Frozen. In addition to Magic Kingdom’s regular entertainment and character offerings you will be able to experience:

*The morning kicks off with special appearances in the Welcome Show as Anna, Elsa, Kristoff and Olaf join the rest of the gang welcoming everyone into the park.

*There’s even more “Frozen” fun in store, when Olaf, Kristoff, Anna and Elsa put Magic Kingdom Park “on ice” with pre-parade appearances just ahead of the 11 p.m. and 1 a.m. performances of the Main Street Electrical Parade.

*Rockettower Plaza will be the host to sing-along screenings of Disney’s “Frozen” from midnight – 4 a.m.

*You can join some of your Disney pals – all dressed in their PJs – at one of two late-night dance parties. Kick up your heels at the Frontierland Dance Party, near Country Bear Jamboree, from 2 a.m. – 6 a.m. At Cinderella Castle, Disney’s “Up All Night” Dance Party keeps things hopping from 2:00 a.m. – 5:45 a.m. with awesome DJ and  stiltwalkers.

*Over in Tomorrowland, Disney Channel Club Chill takes over Rockettower Plaza Stage from 4 p.m. to 11 p.m., with DJ Frost leading a dance party with music videos from Disney Channel stars and sneak peeks of upcoming Disney Channel Original Movies “Teen Beach 2” and “Descendants.”

*Some of your favorite stars from Disney Channel will be joining us as Grand Marshals for the “Disney Festival of Fantasy Parade” at 3 p.m.

*A Flag Raising ceremony will be held at dawn in Town Square, featuring the Reedy Creek Honor Guard.

*As that 24th hour comes to a close, make your way to Town Square on Main Street, U.S.A., for a special finale moment with Mickey and the gang that you won’t want to miss.

For more information, check out the Disney Parks Blog


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