Tuesday, August 26, 2014

The Disneyland Paris Book Summer Special Offer Ends in Four Days !


I've got for you a fantastic historical pictures article coming later tonight, but in the meantime i remind to those of you looking for my Disneyland Paris book "From Sketch to Reality" book that the summer special offer is ending in FOUR days on August 31! Thanks to this special offer - for both ENGLISH or FRENCH editions - you will save $50 on the normal price, so if you don't own the book yet i'm sure you don't want to miss it! And yes, the offer include the great surprise gift! Paypal and credit card payments are accepted, so make sure you to place your order now!  

You can use the Paypal buttons below for the english edition, or for the french edition. If you don't have a Paypal account you can also pay directly with your credit card with these buttons without opening a Paypal account. If it don't works please send me an email at: neverlandeditions@gmail.com

Paypal button for ENGLISH Edition : 




Paypal bouton pour Edition FRANCAISE :

Don't know yet the Disneyland Paris book? Have a look at the video below or on the book website HERE.








                         

Fresh News About Paramount Parks Projects In London and Spain From Mike Bartok, EVP Licensing at Paramount Pictures


Blooloop has posted on July 28 a long and interesting interview of Mike Bartok, EVP - Licensing at Paramount Pictures. And Mike Bartok brings us good news about several Paramount Parks projects, including the ones in London and in Murcia, Spain, and even the Star Trek project - The Red Sea Astrarium - in Jordan!

As we know Paramount took the decision to move away from the role of attraction operator, and Mike Bartok is now looking after the licensing of Paramount’s wealth of IP which includes many much loved classics such as Star Trek, The Godfather and Forrest Gump.

Here are some excerpts of the interview in which Mike talks about the parks projects, and you can read it in full on Blooloop HERE.

How is Paramount looking to leverage IP?

Not as an owner anymore - we sold the parks and focussed on IP.  We’ve shifted from being an owner operator to being a licensor, designer and non-financial partner in the projects we’re participating in.
We do get involved in terms of the strategy for the ongoing operations.  We consult with our partners and have varied roles - obviously with our experience of running parks we’re in a different position than many of the other content licensors.  We’re not an operator but we’re a fairly active business partner.


How is the Paramount theme park in Murcia progressing  ( rendering above ) ?

It’s going quite well.  Building a theme park is like building a city and its going to take a bit of time, but our development partner has commenced the infrastructure on the project and we’re anticipating beginning the attraction construction in the next few months.  Hopefully the park will be open to the public sometime in 2016.  We haven’t set an official date yet but the park has been fully designed and we feel the next step is to build it.

We’re really excited about it.  We think of it as the next generation of theme park using all the cutting edge technology that’s available to us as well as putting into our programme a commitment to sustainability and green technology which is something that theme parks haven’t been known for in the past - we’re very committed to incorporating that and being sustainable.

The parks we owned, the ones we sold, we bought them and rebranded then and they were really good.  But we’re really excited to have the opportunity to design and see come to fruition a “ground-up” Paramount park.  When you rebrand you pick and choose, you don’t rebrand everything, and as you add attractions you overlay your brand.  When you build form the ground up every inch of it is Paramount which is cool.

Each land will have its own feel; every place that you walk you’ll have some theming either from the movies or Paramount, or the Southern California lifestyle which we’re trying to incorporate.

And what stage is the UK theme park at ( rendering above ) ?

That’s still in quite an early stage.  We’ve done some early concept work [see header image].  Planning and approval processes in the UK are quite lengthy but our development partner in the UK has made some good progress and we’re anticipating that we’ll receive planning approvals in the near future, and with the design work we’ll be able to move the project forward.

Are there any Star Trek Attractions being developed?

We really only do stand-alone attractions with Star Trek as we have a great history with it.  We have the one in Las Vegas and we’re fairly far along in terms of completing the film for the project in Jordan - The Red Sea Astrarium - with Bad Robot which should be very exciting.  That’s going to be a centrepiece attraction with incredible, state-of-the-art technology.  It’s more than just a film, it will be the first attraction ever made to be 4D with actual freefall mechanisms in there.  It should be fantastic and with Bad Robot involved we will have that authenticity.


Star Trek fans are keen on authenticity.  Does this present special challenges when developing an attraction?

Actually Star Trek is a great and one of our creatives’ favourites because it’s so vast.

The Star Trek universe has been created on both film and TV, so for the attractions that we’ve done every inch has been viewed and has to be authentic.  Some of the other IPs can be a little lighter but for the Star Trek World, it really requires full commitment creatively and financially to pull it off.

Which locations do you think are particularly exciting for the future of IP development?

We’ve looked in many places.  Without being too specific, there’s a lot of great markets in Asia, China especially and the Middle East.  Those are areas that have our significant attention.  We’ve had the good fortune to have a couple of projects in Europe, which is a mature market but were excited about it.  Asia is very great opportunity with growing economies.  We’ve also had some success in the Middle East, particularly with our hotel projects, and we’d like to expand that into successes in the theme park and attraction world as well.

We looked many years ago at Brazil and Argentina but there’s not as much development going on in those markets right now as there is in Asia and the Middle East.  Perhaps after the World Cup is finished.  Like on the UK project, after the Olympics there’s all this infrastructure in place now to be capitalised on.  I think Brazil and Argentina are interesting opportunities.


Again, don't miss the full interview on Blooloop HERE as Mark talks about others Paramount projects including hotels and others attractions!

Sunday, August 24, 2014

Amazing New WDI Patents Shows Quadcopter Drones Used For Flying Screens... or Puppet Masters !

Thanks to Market Watch, the blog of The Wall Street Journal we've learned that Disney Enterprises - WDI - filed three new amazing patents on August 21, just four days ago, and all patents -  applied for by Clifford Wong, James Alexander Stark and Robert Scott
Trowbridge - involve the use of quadcopter drones (UAVs). And these are not the kind of drones firing missiles or spying you, thanks God, as they will be used to deliver more amazement to the guests in Disney parks entertainment productions.

The first two patents cover different methods of producing light shows, either with large, flexible screens lifted by small remote-controlled craft or swarms of drones that are each fitted with a light and act as "flixels" or floating pixels. In one, the screens could be large projection surfaces made of mesh that would allow wind to pass through, or they could actually produce their own images: Disney's application suggests loosely woven strips of LEDs. And thanks to a ground control station they could choreograph repeatable movements.

The first patent called "Optical: systems and elements projection screen moving during projection"  is described as "a system for presenting an aerial display over an audience of spectators. The system includes a plurality of unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) and a plurality of flexible projection screens. Each of the screens is supportable in a display air space by the UAVs. The system includes a ground control system with a processor executing a fleet manager module and with memory storing a different flight plan for each of the UAVs. During operation during a display time period, the UAVs execute the flight plans to move and to position the flexible projection screens within the display air space. The flexible projection screens each may include a mesh body configured to have low wind resistance and to provide a projection surface for reflecting light. The system may include a projector projecting light onto the projection surface of at least one of the flexible projection screens during the display time period."

FIG. 4 illustrates an exemplary aerial display system of the present description during use to provide an aerial light show with a number of UAVs supporting a flexible projection screen or scrim within a display air space;

FIG. 5 is a partial view of a flexible projection screen configured as a emissive display that may be positioned with UAVs in a display air space

The drones would be able to detect each other and work in concert, according to a central program. In two of the images, they're even carrying huge ribbons around a Disney castle!
FIGS. 6A and 6B show an aerial display system of one embodiment at two operating states (or operating at two sequential points in time during an aerial light show or display) showing use of UAVs to move and position flexible projection screens/scrims.


The next patent is described as "a system for performing an aerial display. The system includes a plurality of UAVs each including a propulsion device and a display payload, and the system includes a ground station system with a processor executing a fleet manager module and memory storing a different flight plan and a set of display controls for the UAVs. Then, wherein, during a display time period, the UAVs concurrently execute the flight plans through operation of the propulsion devices and operate the display payloads based on the display controls. The display payloads each include a lighting assembly and a light controller. The output light is one of a two or more colored light streams, and each of the display payloads further may include a light diffuser with the output light being directed onto a surface of the light diffuser. The light diffuser may include a light diffusing screen extending about the lighting assembly."

Here, the patent indicates that drones could even potentially replace fireworks, which can be dangerous and inconsistent. Instead, the patent calls for an aerial display system based on the floating pixel, or “flixel.” Each drone would carry a lighting assembly that could display images or colors, making use of the sky as a screen. The other option would see the drones carrying lights that would change color as needed, letting an operator program them to make pictures or abstract displays that look like fireworks.



FIGS. 4 and 5 illustrate an exemplary aerial display system of the present description during use to provide an aerial light show with numerous flixels (flying pixels assemblies)




FIG. 7 is a perspective view of an exemplary flixel or flying pixel assembly including a multicopter with a display payload providing a lighting assembly and display screen in the form of a light diffusion cylinder



The two first patents looks already great tech but this third one will amaze you as it indicates a use even more amazing of drones that could be used to hold giant puppets during parks entertainment. With the drones, these larger-than-life puppets could be mounted with rods to fly through the air!

Here is its description: "a system for performing an aerial display. The system includes a plurality of unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) and a ground control system with a processor executing a fleet manager module and with memory storing a different flight plan for each of the UAVs. The system further includes a marionette with a body and articulatable appendages attached to the body. The body and appendages are supported with tether lines extending between the marionette and the UAVs. Then, during a display time period, the UAVs concurrently execute the flight plans to position and articulate the marionette within a display air space. In some embodiments, the UAVs each is a multicopter, and each of the multicopters includes a local controller operating to move the multicopter through a series of way points defined by the flight plan associated with the multicopter."



FIG. 4 illustrates an exemplary aerial display system during operation to support and articulate an aerial marionette within a display air space

FIG. 5 illustrates another aerial display system showing UAVs manipulating and supporting an aerial marionette via puppet frame elements in the arms and torso of the marionette



“This is a significant improvement over prior flying characters, which typically were provided in the form of parade or other blimps/balloons filled with hot air or other gases and that had little and/or awkward articulation of any movable parts,” according to the patent.


FIG. 7 illustrates an embodiment of an aerial display system in which each "marionette" is supported and articulated by one or more UAVs is configured to be combined with a one-to-many other "marionettes" to form a larger marionette/display assembly, which can then be further moved about the display air space and/or articulated by the UAVs

All what shows these patents looks indeed technologically amazing and if it can really works in reality it surely will stun Disney theme parks guests. But - and it's a big "but" - the use of these flying quadcopter drones as great as they can be might become a problem when there would be a wind strong enough to destabilize them... And, as Disney points out, the quadcopters could be more flexible than ordinary displays but safer and more predictable than fireworks... as long as they're able to minimize the risk of one accidentally falling out of the sky.

So, what do you think of these mazing new WDI patents?

Pictures: copyright Disney Enterprises

Saturday, August 23, 2014

Don't Miss Disney Avenue's Fantastic Interview of Legendary WDI Imagineer Marty Sklar !



Disney Avenue, after their fantastic interview of Tim Delaney last month, is back with a long podcast interview of legendary WDI Imagineer Marty Sklar! Marty, who had the legendary career that we know, started on Disneyland opening in 1955 and supervised the construction of all Disney theme parks, has a lot of things to share with you and i'm sure you don't want to miss this exclusive Marty Sklar interview!  


You can also see D&M exclusive photo report on Marty Sklar retirement party at WDI in 2009 HERE.

Picture: copyright Disney

Will "Before Tomorrowland" Novel Tell Us More About Brad Bird "Tomorrowland" Mysterious Movie ?



Although we know almost nothing about Brad Bird's mysterious movie "Tomorrowland", a book published by Disney Press and called "Before Tomorrowland" will be released April 2015 and might tell us a bit more about the story - or what happened before the movie story. Here is the book synopsis: "In 1939, at the World Expo. A mother and her son are lead into a conspiration which will go over their wildest dreams". I remind you that he them of the New York 1939 -1940 was "The World of Tomorrow".

The official synopsis for the movie - in which will star George Clooney, Hugh Laurie, Britt Robertson and Raffey Cassidy and is directed, produced and co-written by Brad Bird - is: "Bound by a shared destiny, a bright, optimistic teen bursting with scientific curiosity and a former boy-genius inventor jaded by disillusionment embark on a danger-filled mission to unearth the secrets of an enigmatic place somewhere in time and space that exists in their collective memory as “Tomorrowland.”

Picture: copyright Disney

Friday, August 22, 2014

Disneyland Paris Update !


Let's end the week with a new Disneyland Paris pictorial update, with great pictures thanks to Max Fan, D&M contributor and DLPWelcome webmaster.  We"ll move in a few seconds to the Disneyland Park but first let's have a look to the works on the WDS Earfell Tower, known here as the "chateau d'oreilles". Works should end in September or October and they are supposed to paint at the top new visuals with eventually new colors.


The new entrance arches are finished for the ones on the side of the main parking lot and train station...



...and still in the works for the ones on the side of the Parking Vinci.



In the Fantasia Gardens renovation of the ground continue.



Also in the Fantasia Garden in front of the Disneyland Hotel, two kiosks on four came out of refurbishment ( the two closest to the park entrance ) with surrounding vegetation re-cut for a better showcase.


Nothing special on Town Square where refurbishment is also going on on the Main Street Transportation Co. and Boardwalk Candy Palace.




While we are in Main Street let's stop a few seconds as Max have some news for us about DLP Projects in the next months!

During Christmas season, a Christmas cavalcade should replace the day parade. How this will be achieved? The decision to put cavalcades at the heart of the seasons is DLP's desire to accentuate the festive aspect of the theme that visitors are looking for when coming at the park during these seasonal events. The cavalcade of Christmas which will be enlarged (in other words it will be more a parade, than a cavalcade ) will follow the same logic and will happen several times per day.

Also, during Disney Halloween Party on Friday, October 31, 2014, following numerous complaints from 2013 session on the non-visibility of the shows, performances will happen on Vidéopolis and Castle stages and not at Captain Hook Galion. It took them time to realize that shows stages exist in the park!

About the cast of characters in Disneyland Park during Extra Magic Hours + ( starting normally November 13,  five meeting points were chosen to allow hotels guests to approach their heroes on Main Street USA.

The meeting points are:
- The bandstand in Town Square
- The main entrance of the Emporium shop,
- The gas pump of Main Street Motors
- The Coca Cola vehicle
- The center of Central Plaza with Mickey and Minnie.

Let's end these news by one about the winter season - but this must be confirmed - as apparently you can expect to see many, many more of Frozen characters" whether for meet and greet or  a new segment in the Disney Dreams! night show. In addition, a new version of the show "Welcome to Beautiful season" should be made ​​for the Christmas season.

Let's move now to Fantasyland!


In front of Sir Mickey, the Beanstalk and the mini garden came out of refurbishment. The result is stunning!





The Enchanted Tree near the themed little food house with the same name is back after its renovation. Let's hope it does not deteriorate too quickly. But now it's time they take care of the house to have some repaint because of its paint is peeling.





A Fantasyland near the restaurant Bella Note and Fantasia Gelati a painting refresh of the little wall was conducted, the colors are now more vibrant.




At Frontierland, it's the turn to the Silver Spur Steakhouse facade to have a refurbishment. However, during the works the restaurant is still open for the guests.




At Disney Village in the World of Disney store new plushs animals are totally "kawaii", arriving straight from Disney Store Japan. Named "TSUM TSUM" these little round balls in the Manga spirit intend to be all stacked in a pyramid and have them hold together...




And that's all for today's DLP update. Small news indeed but you can't have big ones each week, and i also remind you DLP Halloween official announcement on next post below. See you soon for a new update and in the meantime don't forget that the summer special offer on the great Disneyland Paris "From Sketch to Reality" book - for both ENGLISH or FRENCH editions is ending in one week, so don't miss it!  Thanks to this special offer you will save $50 on the normal price, so if you don't own the book yet i'm sure you don't want to miss it! Paypal and credit card payments are accepted, so make sure you to place your order now!  

You can use the Paypal buttons below for the english edition, or for the french edition. If you don't have a Paypal account you can also pay directly with your credit card with these buttons without opening a Paypal account. If it don't works please send me an email at: neverlandeditions@gmail.com

Paypal button for ENGLISH Edition : 




Paypal bouton pour Edition FRANCAISE :

Don't know yet the Disneyland Paris book? Have a look at the video below or on the book website HERE.