I was shocked this morning to read that a planned refurbishment of Carousel of Progress will eliminate audio-animatronics, relying instead on live actors to continue presenting this long-running Disney fan favorite. Disney Creative Entertainment (DCE) will take responsibility for the show, and is rumored to be planning auditions soon. The revised, live-action production will be a collaboration between DCE and They Might Be Giants, following up on their cover version of “There’s a Great Big Beautiful Tomorrow” on the soundtrack to Meet the Robinsons.
It’s hard to imagine anybody but Jean Shepherd walking us through the decades, musing that things just can’t get any better than this. There are some rumors that Janet Waldo might make a rare personal appearance from time to time, but for the most part these beloved characters will now be performed by a variety of Cast Members, rotating responsibilities in short shifts, given the huge number of performances made necessary by the constantly-spinning theatre.
Clearly the fan community is going to have a thing or two to say about this . . . there’s going to be an uproar bigger than when they removed Dole Whip from Adventureland, closed DisneyQuest, or extended the Monorail to serve Universal Studios. I for one will be adding my name to this online petition to keep the show audio-animatronic.
Heading out to see “Meet the Robinsons?” Watch for a hidden Mickey! Shortly after you meet Uncle Art, he’ll be timing Uncle Gaston being shot out of a cannon against a locomotive. Notice the shape of the timer Art pulls out!
And by the way, if you’re a Disney Visa holder, you probably want to go take the MTR trivia quiz, and see if you win a free CD. They Might Be Giants have a cover of There’s A Great Big Beautiful Tomorrow on the Meet the Robinsons Soundtrack, but much to my dismay you don’t get to hear it in the film.
MouseExtra has some good commentary today on reviews for the film. I’m inclined to agree with Dave that there will be a real divide between those who see the film in 3D, and those who don’t. If you’re going to see it at all, you need to see it in digital 3D. Plus, that means you get to see the 1953 Donald Duck cartoon Working for Peanuts in its original 3D — for this Disney geek, that alone was worth the price of admission.
I know the thrill of seeing the PeopleMover transporting citizens through the city of tomorrow will eventually wear off. And when I think back more critically on Meet the Robinsons, once the jet lag and caffeine overdose from this week’s business trip have worn off, I have a hunch it’s not gonna hold up real well. But ya know, I might just go see it again this weekend, have an extra sip of Kool-Aid and try not to let my critical mind spoil the fun too soon.
Just heard today on the MouseGuest Weekly podcast: The soundtrack for the new Disney film Meet the Robinsons will include a cover of There’s a Great Big Beautiful Tomorrow, the main theme from Carousel of Progress, played by They Might Be Giants. Perfect choice, as by definition anybody who loves TMBG or Carousel of Progress is, in fact, a geek (including, of course, yours truly).
Gentle reader, I trust that you already own a copy of TMBG playing Baroque Hoedown? If not, get thee to iTunes. (And I can’t resist adding a link here to an excellent TMBG fan site: This Might Be a Wiki.)
This news came to me right on the heels of seeing yesterday’s post on The Pickle Barrel, featuring an excellent picture from the 1920’s scene.