Disney’s biannual convention D23 Expo will be in full swing in Anaheim in a few short weeks. We expect to get much news surrounding all facets of The Walt Disney Company. We’ll be onsite from August 23 through the 25th, covering and sharing all the information here at Inside The Magic!
Before the D23 Expo, we will predict what we expect (or hope) to hear at the event. We’re not going to go over every panel scheduled for the event; instead, we’ll dive into the more extensive discussions and what they may reveal. Keep in mind these are not things that have been formally announced; these are simply predictions for news I think (and hope) we may hear at D23.
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D23 Expo Day 1
Disney+ Showcase Panel
First up, on Friday, August 23, there is the “Disney+ Showcase Panel” from 3:30 pm to 5 pm in Hall D23. During this panel, one of my D23 Expo predictions is that we will get a full trailer for the highly anticipated Star Wars live-action show “The Mandalorian.” We may even get a first look at the “Cassian Andor” series, another live-action Star Wars show based on the character from Rogue One.
Aside from Star Wars shows, I’d assume we will get more information on upcoming series, such as “Monsters Inc,” “Loki,” or even the Imagineering Docuseries. We’ve already seen the pricing structure and the user interface, so I think this panel will be more content-focused than anything.
D23 Expo Day 2
“The Simpson” Panel
“The Simpsons” will also have its panel on Saturday morning from 10 am to 11 am at the D23 Expo Arena. While I don’t know what Disney will do with this panel, my D23 prediction is that “The Simpsons” will be pulled from TV and moved exclusively to Disney+ (BOLD Prediction).
Haunted Mansion: Celebrating 50 Years” Panel
Later that day, in the D23 Expo Arena, there will also be the “Haunted Mansion: Celebrating 50 Years” panel. Here is where I predict they will announce the addition of the Hatbox Ghost to Walt Disney World’s Haunted Mansion as he embodies the entire 50 years of the attraction for many fans.
Secret Walt Disney Company Project
On Saturday, August 24, from 1:30 pm to 2:30 pm is the “Secret Walt Disney Company Project” panel following the announcement on what exactly it is on August 22. I don’t think it will be anything significant based on where it falls in the schedule and the stage it’s been placed on. Therefore, it’s not an essential focus of the Expo. My D23 Expo prediction for this panel is that there will be some “going green” or environmental-focused initiatives. What do you think this will be?
D23 Expo Day 3
Sneak Peek! Disney Parks, Experiences & Products Panel
The event’s last day, Sunday, August 25, will be the big news day for all Disney theme Park fans. In Hall D23, the “Sneak Peek! Disney Parks, Experiences & Products” panel will be from 10:30 am to 12:00 pm, the large panel of the entire weekend. I would assume this will again be hosted by Bob Chapek, as he is the Chairman of Parks, Experiences, and Products, just as the panel is called. Let’s break it down by parks in the United States and guess what will be announced for each.
Related: Disney CEO Bob Chapek Booed After Walking on Stage at D23 Expo
Magic Kingdom, Walt Disney World
As we all know, Magic Kingdom’s 50th Anniversary is right around the corner in 2021, and I think this panel will focus heavily on the upcoming Golden Anniversary. I don’t imagine we’ll hear much more about Tron as construction is already underway, and we know what to expect with the Tron attraction as it is over in Shanghai. As it’s been a few years since we’ve had a nighttime parade at Magic Kingdom, I think the announcement of a new one will come. They may also announce a 50th Anniversary edition of Happily Ever After for the year-long celebration; this would be neat to see!
EPCOT, Walt Disney World
Moving over to EPCOT, we will get an updated piece of concept art showing more details on the Future World overhaul. We will likely see and hear more information about the Guardians of the Galaxy rollercoaster as it’s quickly coming along, maybe even an opening timeframe. We would also get our first official look at some renderings as they did for Slinky Dog Dash at D23 Expo 2017.
Another bold D23 Expo prediction, I think we will finally get our first new pavilion addition to World Showcase in a very long time. I’m putting my money on it being a Brazilian pavilion. With the number of Brazilian tourists visiting Walt Disney World, it is a no-brainer.
Also, we may get our first look inside the space-themed restaurant as this is set to open later this year…maybe even an opening date! We may also hear more information regarding the Ratatouille attraction, but much like Tron, I don’t think we’ll receive too many details as it already exists in Disneyland Paris. Lastly, I think some details about the Play Pavilion are very likely at EPCOT. I am interested in that project in particular.
Hollywood Studios, Walt Disney World
Now to Hollywood Studios, I’m hoping this panel piece focuses a lot on Mickey and Minnie’s Runaway Railway, including an in-depth look into this attraction. At this point, we know the interest will open in 2020. But hopefully, they will give us a better timeframe. I wouldn’t be surprised if we also saw some ride footage since this attraction should be nearing testing and completion.
We also may hear more detail on the Toy Story full-service restaurant and what that will entail. Though Galaxy’s Edge at Hollywood Studios isn’t open yet, I’m hoping they announce a full-service restaurant to come to the land. Another bold D23 Expo prediction for Hollywood Studios…Muppets will be closing, and we will get a retheming of the Rock’ n’ Roller coaster. I know you probably thought I would mention Rise of the Resistance, and yes, I was going to add that. However, a TV special about it will be hosted by Neil Patrick Harris.
Animal Kingdom, Walt Disney World
I don’t think there will be much announced for Animal Kingdom. But, if anything, we may hear of a retheming for Dinoland USA or even the announcement of a Wakanda area or even Zootopia (BOLD D23 Expo predictions). Perhaps we will hear more about the Christmas Celebration coming to the Park or fixing the Yeti over at Expedition Everest for the 50th.
Walt Disney World Resorts
I think there is a solid chance that a new Disney Vacation Club (DVC) Resort gets announced. But, the safe bet here is more information on the new Star Wars Hotel. I am eagerly awaiting details on this Resort. I think we will get our first look at what the story will be during your stay. Also, we could get a look at the construction progress, as well as what the interactive elements will look like. Who knows, we could even get more up-to-date concept art.
Hopping over to the West Coast, Disneyland will be relatively quiet during this panel, in my opinion. I think there is a chance that something small will get announced, like a new daytime parade. Besides that, I don’t think we will get much news from Disneyland. However, we will get some vital information from Disney’s California Adventure. I would guess we will get the name of the Spider-Man attraction and the Marvel area coming to Disney’s California Adventure. They will probably also discuss some new technology that Imagineering has been working on for the Spider-Man appeal.
I think that’s about it; stay tuned to Inside the Magic for updates on all the news coming from D23.