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News and Updates - Mulan and Mushu to appear at DCA, Mulan and Pocahontas get new outfits, and more!
DisneyDan  Friday, June 10, 2016 12:53:53 PM
Hello everyone,

I know it has been a while since I posted here. Life has a way of getting in the way, and I haven't had time to post as many updates as I would like. Having said that, for the eagle eyed among you, and those who regularly visit this site, you will have noticed that I have been updating many pages throughout the site, including changing character categories, moving things around, adding some brand new characters and locations, and other smaller items. So while the blog hasn't had much recently, I have been here, and Character Central still aims to be as on top of character happenings as possible!

Let's begin with some news that was released by the Disney Parks Blog yesterday. Next week, on Thursday 16th June, Shanghai Disneyland officially opens to the public, following its rather extensive soft opening period. To celebrate, Disney California Adventure Park at the Disneyland Resort will be featuring Mulan and Mushu from 10am until 5pm. Mushu rarely gets out at any of the Disney Parks these days, and so it will be great to see him visiting California.

Pocahontas and Mulan got new outfits last week, and we were lucky enough to be at Animal Kingdom and Epcot the day they debuted! Take a look at their new looks below!

Mulan

Pocahontas

Mickey and Minnie Mouse finally got a new permanent greeting location at Disney's Hollywood Studios, after several months of them moving from place to place, following the closure of the Animation Building. The new location is much nicer than anything previously, and Minnie even got a new outfit!

Meeting Mickey and Minnie Mouse

Meeting Mickey and Minnie Mouse

Along similar lines, after what seemed like an eternity, Olaf finally started greeting his fans at Disney's Hollywood Studios, at the new Celebrity Spotlight location.

Meeting Olaf

Some people have asked us about some of the new characters appearing at the parks, and I can happily confirm that last week I was finally able to add Nick and Judy, Captain Phasma and Joy and Sadness to Character Central (click on the names to go to their pages!).

Before I leave you with some of my photos of those brand new characters (there are many more on their respective pages!), I want to just mention that in the next few days I will be making a blog post/guide to the character experiences at the brand new Shanghai Disneyland. While we are not visiting just yet and therefore Character Central won't feature the park until then (since we need photos - we have our trip booked though!), I wanted to gather together all the information we know about character experiences at the new park, in one handy reference guide, until such a time when I can add the park to the website.

In the next week I also will be writing my latest Walt Disney World trip report here on the blog.

So stay tuned for both of those!

Anyway, that's all for today. Be sure to scroll down for the photos of Joy, Sadness, Nick, Judy and Captain Phasma that I promised!

Have a great day everyone,

Dan.

March of the First Order

Move It! Shake It! Dance & Play It! Street Party

Move It! Shake It! Dance & Play It! Street Party

Meeting Joy and Sadness

Meeting Joy and Sadness

Meeting Joy and Sadness
NEWS - Nick Wilde and Judy Hopps coming to the US Parks, Kristoff and Olaf coming to Blizzard Beach
DisneyDan  Wednesday, March 2, 2016 11:42:42 AM
Hello everyone,

Today the Disney Parks Blog made two announcements regarding character offerings coming to Walt Disney World Resort and Disneyland Resort.

In the first, it was announced that Nick Wilde and Judy Hopps from the latest animated movie, 'Zootopia', would be coming to both Disneyland Resort and Walt Disney World Resort. At Disneyland guests will be able to meet the pair on Hollywood Boulevard, at Disney California Adventure. At Walt Disney World, unfortunately, you will only be able to wave to them - and maybe dance, depending on how they use them - from the sidelines, as they appear in Move It! Shake It! Dance and Play It! Street Party at the Magic Kingdom.
While I generally try to remain neutral here on the blog in most cases, I have to say that it is immensely disappointing that, once again, Walt Disney World are getting the bad deal out of new characters. For example, Olaf has been greeting in Disneyland and Hong Kong Disneyland for what seems like forever now, yet he is nowhere to be seen at Walt Disney World. It is very frustrating that guests to Walt Disney World are going to have to suffer watching the street party in order just to see the characters, when guests in California can meet them. In addition, while the movie comes out this week, we will have to wait until "later this spring" to even see them, whenever that may be!

The second announcement is just about as frustrating as the first. It was revealed that during the "summer" (again, with no definitive time frame given), guests will be able to see Kristoff and Olaf at Disney's Blizzard Beach Water Park, hosting "Frozen Games".
To quote the Parks Blog:

"Guests visiting the waterpark can to join "Team Kristoff" or "Team Olaf" and participate in a variety of activities, including Ice Pail Relays, a Snowball Toss to Ski Pole Limbo and Slide Races.
Olaf and Kristoff will join the Winter Games Committee members in the games’ Opening and Closing Ceremonies, and will give updates throughout the games to report on their team’s achievements."

Clearly Disney understand that these characters are popular, so why aren't they out greeting? As I said above, meanwhile at the other parks, guests can meet Olaf.

I have created a poll for this blog post, which you can participate in by logging onto our forum and clicking on this thread, here.

Have a great week everyone,

Dan.
NEWS - Olaf FINALLY coming to DHS, Zootopia characters debut in Hollywood, character cuts and a new show at WDW, and much more!
DisneyDan  Thursday, February 18, 2016 10:20:38 AM
Hello everyone,

Let's start today's news in Walt Disney World, where this week has seen the start of some unfortunate character cutbacks. At Epcot you can no longer meet Chip, Dale, Tigger, Winnie the Pooh or Princess Aurora, while at the Magic Kingdom Lady Tremaine is on her way out, too. The schedules no longer list those characters, and their spots are empty. Hopefully we will see improvements in other areas in the coming months, and these cuts are just temporary in order to bring new experiences to the parks.

Having said that, while there have been definite cut backs, at least one new character   [ Read More... ]
Hong Kong Disneyland Trip Report, November-December 2015 - Part Two
DisneyDan  Monday, January 4, 2016 2:46:53 PM
Hello everyone,

In the first part of this report, I shared our adventures at the Hong Kong Disneyland (HKDL) hotels, resort esplanade area and train, Main Street USA, Flights of Fantasy Parade, Disney Paint the Night Parade, the Disney in the Stars Fireworks, and the Frozen Christmas Tree Lighting Ceremony.

  [ Read More... ]
NEWS - Goodbye Halloween at DLR, WDW to FINALLY welcome Olaf and a new Villains show, Christmas at DLP and MUCH more!
DisneyDan  Tuesday, September 1, 2015 10:57:59 AM
Hello everyone,

It has been a while since I have had chance to make a full news post here on the blog, but today I thought it would be nice to finally share some of the things we have learned recently.

Let's start with Disneyland Resort in California,   [ Read More... ]
Walt Disney World Photo Trip Report, June-July 2015 - Frozen Summer Fun, 4th of July and more!
DisneyDan  Friday, July 10, 2015 5:22:54 PM
Hello everyone,

Last week Jon and I were in Walt Disney World again, where we checked out all the Frozen Summer Fun offerings, and celebrated the 4th of July.

I'll start with Animal Kingdom, since we only went there for a few short hours to get some updated character photos. We stopped by to meet Daisy Duck, Tarzan, Pocahontas, Chip 'n' Dale, Baloo and King Louie.

  [ Read More... ]
NEWS - Summer and 24 hour events announced for US Parks, and Summer at Disneyland Paris
DisneyDan  Thursday, March 12, 2015 10:02:31 AM
Hello everyone,

Yesterday the Disney Parks Blog made two announcements regarding upcoming events at the Walt Disney World Resort and the Disneyland Resort.

At Walt Disney World Resort in Florida, summer is being dubbed the "Coolest Summer Ever", and will feature events based upon the wildly popular movie, Frozen. Kicking off the "Coolest Summer Ever" is the now-traditional 24 hour event over Memorial Day weekend in late May. Although few details have been given about it, the Parks Blog did say the event would launch the summer summer season, and given the name, and the fact they claim Olaf is the "host" of the summer events, it wouldn't be too surprising if the 24 hour event ended up being Frozen themed, at least to a degree. As with previous 24 hour events, you can expect characters, entertainment, food and merchandise offerings. After that event ends, you then have to wait until June 17th for the start of the next summer happening, "Frozen Summer Fun LIVE", which will run until September 7th. Anna, Elsa and Kristoff are returning to the parade route at Disney's Hollywood Studios, and this year will be joined by Olaf (as per the description on this new page on the WDW website). Nighttime at Hollywood Studios will be topped off with the special Frozen fireworks.
In addition to all these "cool" offerings, Hollywood Studios' awesome Star Wars Weekends are of course retuning from May 15th through June 14th.

At the Disneyland Resort in California, the Diamond Anniversary celebrations, which were previously announced to begin on May 22nd, will also begin with a 24 hour event. As with Walt Disney World, very few details have been released, except we can expect to see special characters and entertainment.

Disneyland Paris today officially sent out their press release for information regarding their summer events, and unsurprisingly, they are also Frozen over. They actually provided quite a lot of detail, so I will copy the information below.

"Let it go" this summer with Frozen at Disneyland® Paris

It's official: Disneyland® Paris will celebrate the 5th highest-grossing film ever this summer. Frozen, which has racked up more than 5 million ticket sales in France, will take centre stage from 1 June to 13 September 2015. The famous sisters, Anna and Elsa, will appear on stage with Olaf, their adorable snowman, in a spectacular event that will give guests chills!

New show: "Frozen Sing-along"

After catching a sneak peak of them in the famous Disneyland® Park Parade and meeting them to pose for pictures last Christmas, Disneyland Paris guests will be able to sing along with the stars of Frozen this summer! Enjoy this unique live experience with the heroes of the greatest Disney hit of all time.

Starting June 1st, the world of Frozen will appear in Frontierland in Disneyland Park, with a brand new show. An ice-themed musical production combining singing and dancing with guest participation. The famous sisters, Anna and Elsa, along with their faithful companions, Kristoff and Olaf the funny snowman, will take to the stage to bring the show to life and expand the unique experience of Frozen live. They'll be surrounded by dancers straight out of the Kingdom of Arendelle.

As the show begins, the villagers are preparing to celebrate the Arendelle winter festival. The intrepid Princess Anna appears and welcomes guests to the snowy universe of the Kingdom of Arendelle. She invites them to help her create a surprise for her sister, Elsa, asking them to join together as a choir. The show is a wonderful occasion to experience, relive and participate in the most beautiful musical moments of the greatest Disney success story of all time.

Olaf, renowned as the only snowman in the world capable of dreaming of heat and sunshine, will also join the party live on stage. To celebrate his longed-for summer, guests are encouraged to sing along, while he dreams innocently of sun tans and beaches!

Among the highlights is an emotionally charged performance of the unforgettable song "Let it go" by Elsa. [The French version of "Let it go" ("Libérée, Délivrée", sung by Anaïs Delva) has over 45 million hits on YouTube].

Playlist:
  • Do you wanna build a snowman?
  • In Summer
  • Love is an open door
  • Let it go

The show will take place several times a day, with live performances in French and English, with French and English subtitles on screen.

Venue: Chaparral Theater, Frontierland, Disneyland Park.

June and September: 7 days a week (6 shows a day from Monday until Friday – 12 shows a day at weekends)

July and August: 7 days a week - 12 shows a day

Limited number of seats

A Market Place decked in the colours of Frozen

At Cottonwood Creek Ranch, guests are invited to visit the Market Place, inspired by the universe of the kingdom of Arendelle, and enjoy all the delights that recall one of the greatest Disney hits of all time.

Venue: Cottonwood Creek Ranch, Frontierland, Disneyland Park

Two other magical appearances showcasing Frozen at Disneyland Park

The two heroines of Frozen will appear at Disneyland Park every day, for two special events. On their frosty float, Princess Anna and Queen Elsa will star in "Disney Magic on Parade!" with Olaf. They will also cross the Park several times a day for a special carriage ride, "Frozen: A Royal Welcome", waving to the crowd from their royal carriage.

"Disney Magic on Parade!" Once a day, 7 days a week, Disneyland Park

Frozen: A Royal Welcome, 3 times a day, 7 days a week, Disneyland Park

A special Frozen feature in Disney Dreams®!

Frozen is now part of the traditional version of Disney Dreams®!. A breath-taking night-time show with fountains and pyrotechnics, where famous Characters from the world of Disney come to life through projections onto Sleeping Beauty Castle.

"Disney Dreams®!" tells a magical and moving story. Guided by Peter Pan, guests discover, or re-discover, the greatest Disney stories, from Beauty and the Beast to Aladdin, not forgetting Rapunzel and many others.

Frozen is now part of this amazing night-time show, taking its place among Disney classics such as The Lion King and Peter Pan, as well as the unforgettable Parisian hits Ratatouille and The Hunchback of Notre Dame. This feature is vibrant and full of emotion, thanks to a specially re-orchestrated version of Let it go and the special effects expertise of Disneyland Paris.

Venue: Sleeping Beauty Castle, 7 days a week, Disneyland Park

Come to Disneyland Paris between 1 June and 13 September 2015 and celebrate a superbly snowy summer with Frozen at Disneyland Paris.


What is interesting is that their sing-along sounds completely different from either of the US versions. Although Florida and California both have slight variations from one another, the Parisian one sounds like a whole new concept, with villagers, dancers and even Olaf live on stage! We will be there in August, and look forward to seeing it.
Anna and Elsa featuring in Disney Dreams! is a new addition, and the cavalcade through the park I anticipate will be very similar to what they had at Christmas (perhaps with the addition of Kristoff and Olaf since they will be in the sing-along?). Anna and Elsa featuring in the main day parade however, is not new (just like how the Disney Parks Blog uses existing attractions such as Splash Mountain to advertise the "Coolest Summer Ever").

That's all for new items for today, but I just wanted to point you all towards some other highlights from the past couple of weeks that you may have missed, that are definitely worth reading.

Disney recently announced the dates for their popular Halloween and Christmas parties at the Magic Kingdom. Click here to find out the dates. Tickets will be available April.

The next part of my in-depth Grand Circle Tour of the World's Magic Kingdom's was posted, and covers Fantasyland. You can catch that here.

This past weekend we were in Walt Disney World for Flower and Garden, and of course other Disney fun. I wrote a trip report yesterday, which can be found here.

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

Dan.
NEWS! Olaf and Kristoff to come to Disney Cruise Line this summer!
DisneyDan  Thursday, January 22, 2015 9:23:59 AM
Hello everyone,

Today Disney Parks Blog announced that Kristoff and Olaf would be joining Anna and Elsa aboard the Disney Cruise Line this summer.

The first brand new experience will be the "Freezing the Night Away with Anna, Elsa and Friends" deck party, which will feature the sisters and Kristoff in a "wintry spectacle" to "cool things down". This show will feature on select sailings in Europe and Alaska only, so please check at the time of booking.

The spectacular stage show, "Disney Dreams" will receive a brand new segment, featuring Anna, Elsa and Olaf, and musical numbers from the film, including "Let It Go!", "For the First Time in Forever", and "In Summer". At this time it is only confirmed to be aboard the Disney Magic, and I do not know if this will be an additional sequence, or if it will replace another one.

Finally, you will be able to meet Anna, Elsa and Olaf aboard all four ships for warm hugs, pictures and autographs! Due to anticipated popularity, DCL are expecting to implement a ticketed system for these meet 'n' greet experiences.

Additionally, as well as this exciting character news, Disney Cruise Line have said that select sailings will offer Frozen themed activities such as chocolate scavenger hunts, maypole twirling and Frozen dining experiences. Castaway Cay, Disney's private island in the Bahamas, is also to get a brand new bar, titled Olaf's Summertime Freeze bar.

Have a great day everyone,

Dan.

Some of the news released in this article came from the Disney Travel Professionals release to travel agencies, and therefore is not on the Parks Blog announcement.
Disneyland Resort Photo Trip Report, January 2015 - including "Frozen Fun" and "Disney Viva Navidad"
DisneyDan  Friday, January 9, 2015 7:13:03 PM
Hello everyone,

Last weekend we were in Disneyland to see the end of their holiday offerings and the start of Frozen Fun.

This post is photo heavy so be warned if you have a slow connection speed!

  [ Read More... ]
Christmas at Walt Disney World Photo Trip Report, Part One - Christmas at the Magic Kingdom including "Mickey's Very Merry Christmas Party"
DisneyDan  Friday, December 12, 2014 4:53:06 PM
Hello everyone,

Last week Jon and I were in Walt Disney World, and while there we took in all the wonderful festive offerings at the Magic Kingdom, including three Mickey's Very Merry Christmas Parties.

This is a photo-heavy post, so be prepared in case you have a slow connection speed.

  [ Read More... ]
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