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Chinese elements for Disneyland
2015-07-16
By Yang Jian

THE Walt Disney Co yesterday released details of the Shanghai Disney Resort which, it said, will incorporate Chinese elements while adding new attractions not seen in five other resorts across the world.

The newest Disney resort, covering 3.9 square kilometers in Pudong’s Chuansha Area, will include the world’s tallest Disney castle in the center, two hotels and six theme parks based on Disney movies such as the Pirates of the Caribbean and animated films, Disney Chairman and CEO Robert Iger said yesterday.

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“We are building something truly special here in Shanghai that not only showcases the best of Disney’s storytelling but also celebrates and incorporates China’s incredibly rich heritage,” Iger said.

The blend of Disney and Chinese cultures will be visible in many classic Chinese designs, such as a teahouse named Wandering Moon, a garden mosaic depicting the 12 animals of the Chinese zodiac using images of Disney characters and local Shikumen architecture, said Robert Weis, executive vice president of Walt Disney Imagineering.

Celebrations of seasonal festivals and stage shows will also incorporate Chinese language, performers, theatrics and acrobatics, he said.

Food and beverages will reflect the Chinese visitors’ diversity of flavor and traditional favorites. All the exotic trees and shrubs across the resort have been collected from all over China.

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One of the highlights will be the first-ever Mandarin production of the Broadway musical “The Lion King” that will be staged at the Walt Disney Grand Theater in the Disneytown.

Disney’s designers have sought out local talents and hired renowned Chinese designers, engineers, artists and cultural advisers since the groundbreaking in 2011. The team also solicited from hundreds of online Chinese consumers, according to the company.

The US company said some of the attractions have never been seen elsewhere, such as the iconic Enchanted Storybook Castle, which will be the tallest, largest and the first castle in a Disney theme park to include all the Disney princesses.

Other first-time attractions include the Adventure Isle, a mysterious land with a legend about a native tribe, a giant, reptilian creature, and the Roaring Mountain — the tallest Disney mountain as well as in Pudong.

Treasure Cove, the first pirate-themed attraction at a Disney park, will leverage innovative technologies in the new Pirates of the Caribbean – Battle for the Sunken Treasure and a stunt show spectacular featuring Captain Jack Sparrow.

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Visitors will also have many opportunities to meet Disney characters and enjoy street performers at Shanghai Disneyland. Tomorrowland will present Star Wars Launch Bay and Marvel Universe, created especially for the Shanghai Disneyland.

In a celebration of the Star Wars Galaxy, guests will meet heroes and villains of the saga, watch iconic scenes from the movie, view props from the most recent movie episode, and be immersed in the Skywalker story in a state-of-the-art cinema, the company announced.

There is also a Marvel Universe, packed with popular characters.

“Shanghai Disney is the most technological advanced resort we ever built,” Iger said.

There was no dates yet on the opening of the resort and neither did they give any indications of the ticket prices.

But Iger did say the resort will open next year.

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