Last year, The Walt Disney Company announced that the popular Splash Mountain log flume attraction would be getting a retheme at both Walt Disney World Resort’s Magic Kingdom Park and Disneyland Resort’s Disneyland Park.
The ride, which is currently themed to Song of the South (1946), will be transformed to include Princess Tiana, Prince Naveen, Louis the Alligator, Ray the Lightning Bug, and other characters from The Princess and the Frog (2009).
Now, Walt Disney World Resort officials have begun prepping the fan-favorite ride for its transformation. As you can see in the photos below, scaffolding has been erected at the Frontierland ride, presumably signaling the start of the Princess and the Frog retheme sooner rather than later!
Even from a bit of a distance, the construction preparations can be seen.
When Disney announced the Splash Mountain retheme, the company issued a statement that read, in part:
Today we are thrilled to share a first glimpse of a project Imagineers have been working on since last year. Splash Mountain – at both Disneyland park in California and Magic Kingdom park in Florida – will soon be completely reimagined. The theme is inspired by an all-time favorite animated Disney film, “The Princess and the Frog.” We pick up this story after the final kiss, and join Princess Tiana and Louis on a musical adventure – featuring some of the powerful music from the film – as they prepare for their first-ever Mardi Gras performance.
Tiana is a modern, courageous, and empowered woman, who pursues her dreams and never loses sight of what’s really important. It’s a great story with a strong lead character, set against the backdrop of New Orleans and the Louisiana bayou. In 1966, Walt himself opened New Orleans Square when it became the first new “land” added to Disneyland park, so it feels natural to link the story and the incredible music of “The Princess and the Frog” to our parks.
The voice of Princess Tiana and Tony Award-winning actress, Anika Noni Rose, also weighed in when the retheme was confirmed. She stated:
“It is really exciting to know that Princess Tiana’s presence in both Disneyland and Magic Kingdom will finally be fully realized! As passionate as I am about what we created, I know the fans are going to be over the moon. The Imagineers are giving us ‘The Princess and the Frog’ Mardi Gras celebration we’ve been waiting for, and I’m here for it!”
At this time, Disney has not announced an official timeline for the Splash Mountain retheme, so it is not known when — or for how long — the ride will close.
It is also imperative to note that Disney has not officially confirmed the scaffolding is for the retheme project. It could also have to do with general maintenance, updates ahead of Walt Disney World Resort’s 50th anniversary, or some type of necessary repair.
More on Splash Mountain
The official description of Splash Mountain reads:
Gently drift through a colorful Southern bayou along with happy-go-lucky Br’er Rabbit as he looks for his “laughing place.” But be warned: Br’er Bear and Br’er Fox are in hot pursuit of this wayward hare.
Glide by over 100 adorable Audio-Animatronics geese, frogs, raccoons, possums, bees, alligators and other down-home critters as they sing classic Disney ditties, including “Zip-a-Dee-Doo-Dah” and “Ev’rybody’s Got a Laughing Place.”
Then hang on to your hats—this delightful musical cruise ends in an exciting 5-story splashdown into a thorny Briar Patch!
What do you think about the Splash Mountain retheme seemingly getting underway?
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