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Thread: World View: Frozen in Norway

  1. #1
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    World View: Frozen in Norway

    Frozen in Norway by Jeff Kober

    Will the popular Disney film help give an old attraction a new look?

    Read it here!

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  3. #2

    I think turning Maelstrom into a Frozen-themed ride has its good points and its bad points. The attraction does need to be updated. It feels stale and outdated. That said, I absolutely love the movie. I'll sit and watch it several times when possible.

    On the negative side, the World Showcase doesn't seem the appropriate place for an attraction based on an animated film. The point of the attractions in the World Showcase is to educate guests about each country. I hate what they did to the Rio de Tiempo in Mexico, even though I was never a big fan of that attraction to begin with. It just doesn't seem right for the World Showcase. If they could combine elements of Frozen with some cultural/historical information about Norway, I might be OK with a Frozen-themed update, but it still seems like something that just won't work.

    Other problems I see include the fact that, by retrofitting Frozen into the existing attraction, they won't be able to do anything that will be truly AMAZING. It will always feel like a half-hearted attempt to capitalize on the popularity of a movie, rather than being a true Disney experience. This is the feeling I get every time I ride the Gran Fiesta Tour. Other attempts to "update" existing attractions have been pretty poor -- Imagination and Test Track being two big examples. They're really better off tearing down an old attraction and building an entirely new on, like with Soarin'.

    Disney might surprise me and do something really spectacular, but their track record for "updating" attractions at Epcot has been really bad throughout the years, so I'm not setting my expectations very high.

  4. #3

    I totally agree about how much you can do at Norway with Frozen. If they want to do something really amazing with Frozen, than the footprint of Maelstrom is a difficult place to make it happen. I always felt the original attraction was woefully too short.

    Conversely, I like what they did to Rio del Tiempo next door by adding the Three Caballeros. It was really not that good before. The adult-size puppet dancers were kind of creepy--and made it feel like the people of Mexico were being manipulated by their government. I only wish they had added the audio-animatronics of the Three Caballeros from the Mickey Mouse Revue in at the end where they are on the concert stage. I think that would have been great.

    My wife also mentioned to me when we were at Norway last night that the Legos used to be in the stores. Legos is really from Denmark, but they were there forever. Again, it's a testament to the fact that not everything in a World Showcase pavilion really aligns with the country. It's more about the surrounding region.

    While we were there, they were playing the film, while letting those who didn't want to see it just walk by. Other times, they've just not played the film, so I was glad to see it. Yes the later part was outdated. But it was great photography, and really great music for that final portion.

  5. #4

    Actually I'm not a huge fan of Frozen. I enjoyed the movie but my interest hasn't gone beyond that. However, I think that adding Frozen to Norway is a great idea. I think with careful planning and attention to the little details a Frozen ride could enhance the area. I love the way that Disney used the 3 Caballeros movie to introduce us to Latin America. And I feel that the Nemo ride accomplished this beautifully for The Living Seas pavilion. I don't think that a Frozen ride needs to be a history lesson, but it can help to peak our interest about Scandinavian countries, just as Nemo peaks your interest in the sea. The Norway area is where I would look around and find out more about the country. And hopefully a wonderfully successful ride could direct some extra money and exhibits into that area.


  6. #5

    I'm with Davidgra... I think the Norway Pavilion would make sense as a place for a meet and greet, but that a Frozen attraction (and make no doubt you need a Frozen attraction given that it is arguably the biggest Disney success since Lion King) should not be in the World Showcase. While the Norway pavilion was always nebulous at best, a Frozen ride wouldn't do anything to help educate/edutain people about the Nordic Countries. You may as well include the Marvel Universe in there, since Marvel decided that the Norse gods were really just Asgaardians.

    That being said, I do agree with the idea that Maelstrom could use some updating, but not as a Frozen attraction.

  7. #6
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    Putting Frozen in Maelstrom totally makes sense....unless Disney waits too long. Then it doesn't make sense. Do it know and capitalize and Frozen's momentum. Take a look at the Mexico Rio del Tiempo - they added Donald and his pals without really ruining the feel of the ride. It became more of a kid attraction, unless you're a Donald fan like me, but all the Mexican architecture and cultural feel stayed the same. And the music vastly improved.

    As for Akershus, say it ain't so! Please tell me that all the cold board is still there, with Jarlsberg cheese, smoked salmon, and peppered mackerel. That was my favorite eating establishment at Epcot because of that cold board. I hope some of that is still there as it was back in 2012.

    Working for Disney. No, no. Working (in a Modesto office) for (the money to take a trip to) Disney (World/Land)

    WDW Trips: June 2002, Feb 2004, Dec 2006, Dec 2008, Jan 2010, Feb 2011, Dec 2012
    Disneyland Trips: Feb 2006, Nov 2013, Nov 2014, Feb, March, June 2015 (x2), Nov 2015

  8. #7

    I really appreciate this article but I am not at all a fan of changing Maelstrom. I think the ride is terrific, albeit short, and does not need character plussing. Also, there seems to be a tone from the author that would imply that the pavilion is stale; personally I find it to be one of the most popular and well visited of all of them.

    If the plan is really just to swap animatronics, I can handle it. It's a full Frozen ride that I am against in this space. That belongs in Fantasyland. Much has been done to remove the edutainment aspect of Epcot already and I'd hate to see it watered down even further.

  9. #8

    Thanks for an interesting article!
    Whatever they do, I hope the Imagineers give the Norway pavilion a respectable upgrade, worthy of Epcot, that corner of the globe and Frozen. Spend some money--the film made a billion! Do it right and it will last another 25 years.



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