Splash Mountain, the fan-favorite log flume ride, was not operating for Guests this morning when Magic Kingdom opened.
Splash Mountain is currently located at both Walt Disney World Resort and Disneyland Resort. The attraction is based off of the film, Song of the South, which is extremely controversial as many deem it racist.
In fact, the movie considered by many as the most controversial and notorious film in Disney’s history. Because of this, it was never made available on home video in the U.S. and is currently missing from Disney’s streaming service, Disney+.
Song of the South is a mix of live-action and animation and features an older African-American plantation laborer named Uncle Remus who tells stories to a young white boy. Groups including the NAACP protested the film’s initial release.
The official Disney World description reads:
A Hare-Raising Ride
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!
Unfortunately for those wishing to cool off on Splash Mountain today, it seems that the ride is not operating at this time. As you can see in the screenshot below, when Magic Kingdom opened this morning at 9 a.m., Splash Mountain was listed as temporarily closed.
We are unsure why the ride is closed, but it is more than likely due to technical difficulties. If you are visiting Magic Kingdom today, make sure to check the My Disney Experience app for the most up-to-date information.
Within Splash Mountain, you can spot many of the characters from Song of the South, including Br’er Rabbit, Br’er Fox, and Br’er Bear, as well as hear the iconic song “Zip-a-Dee-Doo-Dah”. However, as Disney strives towards diversity and inclusion, the Parks have been removing references to Song of the South.
The first was Disneyland Resort, whom decided to remove “Zip-a-Dee-Doo-Dah” from the esplanade loop. When this occurred, a Disneyland official explained “The removal of the song from Downtown Disney’s background music is part of a continuous process to deliver an environment that features stories that are relevant and inclusive.”
More recently, on the East Coast, “Zip-a-Dee-Doo-Dah”, which originated from Song of the South and is played during the Disney Parks attraction, Splash Mountain, has been removed from the Festival of the Fantasy parade.
More on The Princess and the Frog Splash Mountain Retheme
After a petition coincidentally made its rounds on the internet, Disney Parks announced last summer that the classic theme park attraction Splash Mountain — which opened in the late ’80s and early ’90s at the California and Florida theme parks — would be rethemed to the 2009 Disney Princess animated movie The Princess and the Frog. Again, this retheme will be taking place at both Magic Kingdom in Walt Disney World and Disneyland park in Disneyland Resort.
According to Disney, the story’s attraction will pick up after the final kiss in the movie as Guests 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.”
Are you visiting Magic Kingdom today? Is the Splash Mountain closure affecting your plans? Let us know in the comments below.