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A World of Characters A World of Characters
A World of Characters A World of Characters
Discover the 25th Anniversary Celebrations at Disneyland Paris! (Updated 1st Feb!)
DisneyDan  Tuesday, January 31, 2017 1:00:59 PM
Hello everyone,

As always, I have been pressed for time to write updates recently, but I am here today to share with you some things that I thought worth mentioning regarding the imminent arrival of the 25th anniversary celebrations at Disneyland Paris. Over the past week or two a lot more information about the celebrations has been coming to light, with various sites and pages leaking information, and of course Disneyland Paris revealing a little more themselves, too.

During the 25th anniversary celebrations, you will be able to experience two brand new stage shows, a brand new parade, meet and greets, and other offerings such as the new versions of Space Mountain (Hyperspace Mountain), and Star Tours (Star Tours - The Adventures Continue), and the new nighttime spectacular, Disney Illuminations. Of course, being Character Central, I am going to share with you the character based offerings in this article.

To begin, let's take a look at the parade.   [ Read More... ]
News - Disneyland Paris' 25th Anniversary, Princess Elena coming to WDW and Halloween in Shanghai
DisneyDan  Thursday, October 20, 2016 10:16:30 AM
Hello everyone,

A few days ago the Disney Parks Blog announced that following her August debut in her welcome show at the Magic Kingdom, Princess Elena of Avalor will greet guests at the Princess Fairytale Hall from 24th November. Princess Elena will feature on the Cinderella-side of the Hall, with FastPass reservations already available from the start date.

In an unexpected move, Shanghai Disney Resort are currently celebrating Halloween season - but only at Disneytown (their equivalent of Downtown Disney). From just a few days ago until 31st October, you can see Mickey and Minnie in a special show, wearing Halloween costumes, for free at Disneytown. It is great to see that Shanghai Disney Resort have decided to take a seasonal direction, since it was unclear up until now (because the park is still so new) whether they would follow what the other parks around the world do.

The big news of the week is the announcements from Disneyland Paris regarding its upcoming 25th anniversary. In non-character related revelations, there was confirmation of everything that had been pretty much anticipated for months now: a new nighttime spectacular, titled Disney Illuminations; Star Tours - The Adventures Continue; and Star Wars Hyperspace Mountain.
On the character front we also got confirmation of the very-much anticipated parade. Rather simply titled Disney Stars on Parade, it will feature a fire breathing dragon (much like the one from Festival of Fantasy at the Magic Kingdom), as well as using two floats from the old Jubilation parade, from Tokyo Disneyland. These floats are expected to be the Peter Pan and Jungle Book ones. While it was expected that there would probably be a new stage show, they actually surprised us all with announcing two! Very few details are known right now about either, but we do know that the first one, Mickey presents: "Happy Anniversary Disneyland Paris", will feature Mickey, Goofy, Chip and Dale and other Disney stars as they celebrate the 25th anniversary. It is not known at which theatre or in what capacity the show will be held. The second show will be titled The Starlit Princess Waltz, and will feature the Disney Princesses, including Belle, Cinderella, Aurora and Snow White, throwing a majestic ball to celebrate the 25th Anniversary.
Interestingly, the Disney Parks Blog reported a slightly different version of the announcements, and also mentioned decorations, new meet and greets (though unspecified as to what), hotel renovations, a new version of Peter Pan's Flight, and something they name as Mickey's Goodnight Kiss. What this will involve is anybody's guess, but it was included in the section that read, "we will have many opportunities for our guests to see their favorite Princesses and Characters throughout their time at the park", so it sounds as though it will be a character based offering. Finally, the DPB version also appeared to confirm that Mickey and the Magician - the brand new show at the Walt Disney Studios that was billed to end before the 25th started - will indeed remain in place through the 25th anniversary. This will make many fans happy, as the show has been widely praised and is already well loved.

In case you missed them, I recently wrote my trip report for Shanghai Disney Resort, and a guide to Tokyo Disney Resort's 2016 Halloween season, here on Character Central. Click the highlighted text to go to those pages!

Ok, that's all for today! Have a great day everyone,

Dan.
News - Brand new Halloween parade coming to DL, Halloween Dine outfits revealed, and Star Wars event coming to DLP
DisneyDan  Monday, August 29, 2016 12:50:01 PM
Hello everyone,

Today the Disney Parks Blog revealed that a brand new parade (although it's more of a cavalcade) will feature at Mickey's Halloween Party at Disneyland park in California. The parade, titled the "Frightfully Fun Parade", will feature the Headless Horseman, and characters from The Nightmare Before Christmas, the Haunted Mansion, Princess and the Frog, the Disney Villains and "beyond". Characters specifically mentioned in the article are the Headless Horseman, Jack Skellington, the Hitchhiking Ghosts, Dr Facilier, Hades, the Queen, Jafar and Cruella. It is not yet known how this new parade will affect the character greetings around the park during the event evenings, or whether having the characters in the parade will mean those ones will not be greeting (up until last year nearly all of those, save for the Horseman, met during the parties).

On Friday the DPB also gave us a sneak peek at two of the costumes that the characters will be wearing at the next Minnie's Seasonal Dine at Hollywood and Vine.


Image taken from the Disney Parks Blog. (C) Disney.

It is interesting that they chose to go with a Halloween theme over a fall/harvest theme, given that the Halloween Dine will run from the 12th September until well past Halloween - 6th November in fact. We look forward to seeing what Goofy, Donald and Daisy are wearing, too!

Finally, last week Disneyland Paris announced that they would be filling their early 2017 low season with a brand new star Wars themed event, titled Season of the Force. The event will run from 14th January until 26th March, and will primarily run at the Walt Disney Studios Park. There will be Stormtroopers patrolling the streets, a March of the First Order, featuring Captain Phasma and Stormtroopers, and a brand new light projection show at the Tower of Terror at night, that will also include - as of yet unspecified - characters. The new official landing page for the event also mentions something in Production Courtyard, but it really gives no details at all; "Let the Force guide you to Production Courtyard in Walt Disney Studios Park for an extraordinary example of galactic might." Whatever it means, it'll be yet another cool and welcome addition to the park and this already awesome sounding line-up.

Ok, that's all for today. Have a great day everyone.

Dan.
News - Disney's Electrical Parade leaving WDW, coming to DL, DLP Halloween announcements and Christmas in TDR!
DisneyDan  Thursday, August 11, 2016 9:30:18 AM
Hello everyone,

Yesterday the Disney Parks Blog made the surprising announcement that Disney's Electrical Parade (fondly known as the Main Street Electrical Parade to fans) would be coming to an end after a final performance on 9th October. In an odd twist, they also announced that it would be moving to Disneyland in California for a "limited engagement", "early next year". As always, Disney are completely vague as to what they mean exactly - "early" could mean anywhere from January to April, and of course "limited engagement" could mean a month or six months! Even stranger still, just last week as I reported here on the blog, Disneyland are ending their popular Paint the Night parade, but instead of that moving somewhere else, the most recent update from the DPB suggests that Paint the Night will actually remain at the DLR and return for holiday events! Having two electrical parades at one park, that could potentially switch out depending on the day/season/event is quite odd, especially since it leaves WDW without a nighttime parade.

Disneyland Paris yesterday released its Halloween press release, and everything sounds just about the same as it has for the past couple of years. That isn't altogether a bad thing since the Halloween season there has been quite strong and reasonably successful in recent years, so there isn't much need to change the formula I suppose. Returning to Parc Disneyland this Halloween season will be Mickey's Halloween Celebration, which is their daily Halloween cavalcade (not quite a full parade, for those wondering). It’s Good to Be Bad with the Disney Villains!, which stars Jafar, Cruella, the Queen of Hearts, Captain Hook, The Witch, Frollo and Dr Facilier, will also be returning to the Castle Stage. Daisy and Stitch will appear at Costume Corner (Daisy replacing Minnie this year), and Maleficent will return to the Castle Courtyard. Rumours have gone around the internet of other character appearances, such as Marie and even Cheshire Cat - but I'll say what I always say: nothing is certain until Disney says otherwise, and even then, things can change on a daily basis! All we know right now is what I have mentioned above. Disney's Halloween will run from 1st October until 2nd November, with Disney's Halloween Soiree ticketed event featuring on 31st October, as per usual.

Tokyo Disney Resort revealed its Christmas offerings yesterday, and since much of it was new last year (TDR tend to have a three-to-five year life cycle of its seasonal entertainment), it wasn't much of a surprise that it will all be pretty much the same. At Tokyo Disneyland we can expect the return of the Disney Christmas Stories parade, the Christmas version of Dreamlights, and the seasonal overlays to the bands, Haunted Mansion and the Country Bears, and other minor entertainment. At Tokyo DisneySea we can expect to see the return of A Perfect Christmas, Colors of Christmas, and again, the overlays to regular entertainment such as A Table is Waiting and the bands. We were lucky enough to be in Tokyo Disney Resort for Christmas season last year, and you can read my report about it here on the blog!

That's everything for today. Have a great day everyone.

Dan.
NEWS - Brand new Disney On Ice show to star Inside Out, Moana coming to DLP, and more!
DisneyDan  Wednesday, June 22, 2016 8:56:22 AM
Hello everyone,

Today Disneyland Paris sent out a press release announcing that Moana - or Vaiana as she will be known in France - will feature at the resort during their Enchanted Christmas season, which begins on the 11th November. The press release was actually a little vague, giving no more details other than she will be at the resort during the season, so whether that means she will be greeting, feature in a new Christmas show, or in the parade, is yet to be seen. Disneyland Paris are notoriously bad at providing clear information, and are even worse at holding fast to what they have said - so we shall see what happens. At least, for now, we can say that Moana will feature this Christmas in some capacity at the French resort! The movie is released on 30th November in many places in Europe, including France, and the week before in the US, so it will also be interesting to see whether she debuts at the start of the season (starting 11th November), or if she will only appear once her movie premiers at the end of the month.

Disney On Ice this week announced another brand new show, "Follow Your Heart", and while much of it is once again a rehash of previous shows, there are two really cool new scenes of note. A Finding Dory scene will be added, which, if the image and text on their main website is to be believed, should feature Dory, Hank and Nemo. Of course Dory and Nemo have featured before, but the Finding Dory characters, such as Hank, and story will be new to Disney On Ice. Additionally - and the most exciting part of all - characters from the blockbuster PIXAR movie Inside Out will be added! After waiting for an eternity for them to come to the US parks, we are now also going to see them in this new show. Again, things are a little vague, but from what the images depict, and what the text on the website says, at very least we should expect Joy, Sadness and Anger, and most likely Fear and Disgust, too! The new show starts in the Washington DC/Baltimore region at the end of October. You can buy pre-sale tickets on Ticketmaster now, using the code "BUBBLES".

As always, Character Central has been receiving continual updates. This week I added Constance Purchase (Main Street Citizen), Captain Phasma, the March of the First Order, The Jungle Book: Alive with Magic, and Star Wars: A Galaxy Far, Far Away.

Also, you can find out about our latest trip to Walt Disney World in part one of my most recent trip report, here on the blog. In this part I share with you our adventures at the Magic Kingdom, Animal Kingdom, Disney Springs, the Boardwalk and the three separate Disney resort hotels that we stayed in during our trip.

This weekend we will be in Disneyland Paris, so be sure to follow us on Instagram and Facebook to see our live updates from the resort.

Have a great day everyone,

Dan.
NEWS - New Star Wars characters at the parks, characters return to DLP Hotels, changes at DHS, and much more!
DisneyDan  Saturday, January 2, 2016 2:06:01 PM
Hello everyone,

We have been exceptionally busy over the holiday season, so I have been a bit behind on the news front, but I finally have time today to provide a few small updates.

Earlier last month the new Star Wars Launch Bay opened at both Disneyland and Walt Disney World. They feature meet 'n' greets with Darth Vader and Chewbacca, as well as random appearances by some roaming characters such as Greedo and the Jawas. With the opening of the Launch Bay and preparations for Star Wars Land, we now know that Star Wars Weekends will not be returning, which is a huge shame.

Captain Phasma made her Disney parks debut at the Christmas parade taping during Christmas season at the Magic Kingdom, and subsequently appeared at a special post-premier event at Disney's Hollywood Studios. She has since appeared on the Star Wars float during the Rose Parade in California, where Kylo Ren also appeared, marking his Disney debut, albeit not in the parks.

Along similar lines, the Seventh Sister now appears during the new version of the Jedi Training Academy in both Disneyland and Walt Disney World.

Finally for Star Wars, the First Order Stormtroopers now appear randomly, not just at Disney's Hollywood Studios outside the Launch Bay, but also in Tomorrowland at Hong Kong Disneyland.

Baymax made a welcomed return to Epcot last month, at Innoventions, and it is strongly rumoured that Joy and Sadness might be appearing there soon, too - although that is purely rumour and unconfirmed right now.

Tow Mater, Lightning McQueen, Phineas and Ferb are leaving Disney's Hollywood Studios next week, according to various internet reports. This will mark the end of an era for the Disney Channel superstars, and their final appearance at DHS will be the last time they will be seen regularly at any Disney park.

At Disneyland Paris, the sorely missed hotel greetings have returned for a limited time, until the first week of March, 2016. The hotel characters were a staple of on-site stays for twenty years, and there was much uproar when Disney ended them last year. It is unclear as to why there has been a sudden, if only temporary, change of heart, but we can only speculate that the in-park greetings haven't been as well received as they'd anticipated (with many complaints about the long lines, limited numbers of characters out, etc).

Disneyland Paris also recently confirmed that there would be an increased character presence in Disneyland Park until the spring. Of course, what was really confirmed was the characters that already appear "randomly" (not on the schedule), but are actually always there, will now be made more available and easier to find, with (hopefully) longer hours, a queue line and some sort of schedule listing.

Finally, DLP has been working on a new show for the Chaparral Theatre, "The Forest of Enchantment", which is due to start on 10th February. Sadly it looks to only be a temporary show (ending 8th May), which is weird since they appear to be putting a lot of effort into it. We can hope that it'll run past the official end date and will be more permanent, as the park definitely needs some more permanent stage entertainment.

Ok, that's everything for now!

Have a great weekend everyone,

Dan.
Character Central Advent Calendar - 16th December
DisneyDan  Wednesday, December 16, 2015 3:34:39 PM
Hello everyone,

Today is the 16th December, so it's time to find out who is behind the next door of our very special Character Central advent calendar!

  [ Read More... ]
Character Central Advent Calendar - 14th December
DisneyDan  Monday, December 14, 2015 6:15:42 PM
Hello everyone,

Today is the 14th December, so it's time to find out who is behind today's very special Character Central Advent Calendar door!

Today it is...

  [ Read More... ]
NEWS - New seasonal character dining coming to Hollywood and Vine!
DisneyDan  Tuesday, October 20, 2015 8:21:23 AM
Hello everyone,

Today the Disney Parks Blog announced that a brand new rotational seasonal dining experience, titled "Minnie's Seasonal Dine at Hollywood and Vine", will take place at the Hollywood and Vine at Disney's Hollywood Studios.

A little while ago Walt Disney World shocked fans by announcing a brand new Christmas meal there this year, which I talked about in detail here on the blog. Now, it would appear that Walt Disney World have decided that along with the former Star Wars meal, there was enough interest in seasonal dining that they would offer it year round!

To quote the Disney Parks Blog, the restaurant will now offer "cheerful togetherness of the holidays, the glamour of Hollywood, the delight of spring, the excitement of summer and the frightening fun of Halloween. With each new season, look for unique music, décor, all-new costumes, menu items and interactive musical moments."

In the comments section, it was confirmed by Rachel Brent of the Disney Parks Blog, that the Disney Junior meal that currently takes place there will continue for breakfast and lunch, before Minnie and friends arrive in the early evening.

The first meal, which will run from January 4th to March 20th, 2016, will "a dinner party celebrating the magic of the movies and the glamour of Hollywood."

For those of you who have ever been to Disneyland Paris, and are aware of Inventions there, you will know that themed dining is something that fans who visit both Walt Disney World and Disneyland Paris have wanted to transplant from the Parisian resort for a long time. Inventions has a weekly themed Sunday Brunch, which always offers special characters and special costumes. While expensive, it is a great way to meet some rare and cool characters, and see your favorite characters in special outfits. Obviously, this new seasonal dining at Hollywood Studios doesn't quite go to that extent, but it's a refreshing change, and one that we very much welcome.

Reservations for the new meal, starting January 4th, will open from October 27th this year.

Have a great day everyone,

Dan.
News - Christmas around the world, TONS of new Tokyo entertainment announced for next year, and more!
DisneyDan  Friday, September 18, 2015 12:06:13 PM
Hello everyone,

Today I have a round up of the latest character news out of the Disney Parks around the world, including Tokyo Disney Resort where is there is a huge amount of information about the coming 18 months at the resort.

Let's start with Walt Disney World in Florida, where this week saw the first of the Mickey's Not So Scary Halloween Parties. This year there is a new stage show, titled "Hocus Pocus Villain Spelltacular", featuring the Sanderson Sisters, and other Disney Villains, including   [ Read More... ]
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