Park News - (2/21/11) According to Disney and More the small mountain looking structure in the artwork for Shanghai Disneyland may very well be a new version of Pirates of the Caribbean. The popular theory, which I’ve heard elsewhere as well, is that the modernized version of Pirates, based entirely off the film series and not the old classic ride, that was designed once for Hong Kong Disneyland may very well be built in Shanghai as one of the premier E-Ticket rides.
Back when it was being served up for Hong Kong the ride had been nicknamed, “Splash Pirates” by a few insides, since the ride system would feature a few large thrilling drops along the way as well that were more in line with the drops on Splash Mountain that what you would see on the American “Pirates” attractions. The Hong Kong plans also left room for a Louisiana style swamp themed land next door to the ride, which was said to contain an all new version of a Haunted Mansions style ride experience, but with a story that would tap into the Pirates story as well. Could all this now be part of Disneyland Shanghai? It certainly would fit the bill of serving up something quite a bit different in this latest version of the Magic Kingdom. Plus it would only make sense in a way to tie any new ride version of Pirates into the films series and less into the original ride story, which isn’t as familiar to the Chinese people as the new films would be.
(2/18/11) I’m not entirely certain, but this seems to be an early but vague piece of concept artwork for Shanghai Disneyland (see below). With the official groundbreaking getting closer, a few early rumors about the park itself are starting to come in. Though in every case, it has been pointed out that the design is still pretty fluid, with very few things locked down.
What has been made clear to me however is that this will likely not be your standard Magic Kingdom style park. While it is still expected to have a classic “hub” style layout the “Lands” themselves will likely not be what anyone expects. The plan is for this park to act as a complimentary experience to the Hong Kong park and not a copy, so expect Shanghai Disneyland to offer new lands and new experiences.
That said, about the closest thing I have to a near-guarenteed land would be one designed to make use of Disney’s newest license, the Marvel comics universe. I wouldn’t be surprised to see a Marvel Superhero Land take the place of a Tomorrowland. I’ve also got to wonder if the park may still have a Frontierland as one was designed but eventually cut from Hong Kong, but could be brought back for Shanghai. Just some ideas to think about.