Guests at the Disneyland Park celebrated the reopening of the “it’s a small world” attraction. The refurbished attraction now features new dolls, boats and enhanced music.
A total of 29 new dolls (from Disney and Disney-Pixar films) have been added to the attraction, placed in the countries in which their stories take place. For example, dolls dressed in Aladdin and Jasmine costumes play in the Middle East scene, and a doll dressed as Alice from Alice and Wonderland appears in the Great Britain scene. Some appear as child dolls and some are playful-looking toys, such as the White Rabbit who accompanies Alice. The new doll costumes and toys are fashioned in the same artistic style that has made ‘it’s a small world’ an icon around the globe. ‘it’s a small world’ style was created by art director, color stylist and Disney Legend Mary Blair. Mary Blair’s sense of design shaped ‘it’s a small world’ from the very beginning.
Music from Disney films also has been added to the attraction’s soundtrack. The original song, written by Academy Award-winning composers Richard M. and Robert B. Sherman (Mary Poppins), will still play throughout the attraction but now will feature some subtle film music woven into the soundtrack, fitting the characters and scenes. The attraction also features new boats designed to evoke the look and feel of watercraft that children anywhere in the world might play with.
Disneyland’s attraction ‘it’s a small world’ is a classic Walt Disney attraction, which imaginears have updated. I can only imagine some of the complaints from traditional Disney theme park guests who will not enjoy the changes.
The Walt Disney Theme Parks are a tricky business when it comes to updating, removing, or even painting any original Disney attraction. These attractions to some are childhood memories of magic and whimsy; to others they are old relics for little kids. However, when you’re in the business of making dreams come true, you will always have some who will disagree.
I personally never understood some of the rhetoric over changes that have been made at Disney Theme Parks. Guests want the tradition, saying it’s what Walt would want. However, I always saw Walt’s dream as always moving forward, always evolving, and striving only to be the best. These classic rides and Disney attractions were cutting edge for the time. Walt was always pushing the boundaries of what many called impossible. So, it blows me away when today, the company bearing this man’s name cannot do the same. Because, once they evolve someone is blowing a whistle calling foul.
I love the Disney-Pixar characters, I think finding a way to blend them in and reviving a old classic is the right thinking.