Here’s How Disney Has Been Changing Pirates of the Caribbean

in Disneyland Resort, Walt Disney World

Jack Sparrow as an animatronic.

Credit: Disney

Over the years, an absolutely legendary Disney attraction has undergone quite a few changes.

Credit: Disney

In the past few months, the Disney Parks have received some amazing new additions. EPCOT in Walt Disney World got a new attraction in the form of Remy’s Ratatouille Adventure, which originally opened in Disneyland Paris.

Possibly the most exciting new ride to open can also be found at EPCOT, with Guardians of the Galaxy: Cosmic Rewind opening today! Guardians of the Galaxy: Cosmic Rewind is a brand-new thrill coaster based at the new Wonders of Xandar pavilion in the World Discovery neighborhood, replacing Ellen’s Energy Adventure starring Ellen DeGeneres and Bill Nye. The Universe of Energy pavilion closed in 2017 with its show building repurposed for the upcoming Guardians of the Galaxy: Cosmic Rewind attraction. The ride was first announced at the D23 Expo all the way back in 2017.

spaceship earth
Credit: Inside the Magic

In the Magic Kingdom, Guests are also eagerly awaiting the release of the new TRON roller coaster in Tomorrowland. However, there are things that Disney fans would rather have the Walt Disney Company not change or even touch. Classic rides like the Haunted Mansion and Peter Pan’s Flight come to mind went thinking about iconic attractions that Disney fans do not want to be changed at all. One classic Disney attraction has changed significantly, however, and it involves Pirates.

Pirates of the Caribbean may be one of the most recognizable attractions not just within the Disney community but in the entire world. It features amazing set pieces, fun animatronics, and some truly catchy music. It is a Disney icon in all senses of the word. But over the years, the ride has been changed several times to make it more friendly and inclusive.

Credit: Disney

Pirates of the Caribbean is a beloved attraction and can be found at Disneyland in Anaheim, California, The Walt Disney World Resort in Orlando, Florida, Tokyo Disney Resort, Disneyland Paris, and Shanghai Disneyland. Despite being found in five Disney Parks, the first one at Disneyland tends to be the most iconic and legendary within the Disney community.

Pirates of the Caribbean at Disneyland opened in 1967 and has been a hit ever since its major debut. So much so that nearly every Disney Park has adapted the attraction in a different way, and a massive film franchise, Pirates of the Caribbean, has made copious amounts of money at the box office starring Johnny Depp as the now-iconic Jack Sparrow. The character was so popular in the films, that the attractions added him into the storyline!

However, despite being classic rides, the Pirates of the Caribbean rides have undergone many changes and alterations over the years. These changes are especially present at both U.S. Disney Parks. We recently covered how Guests had noticed a rather small change at the Disneyland version of the ride, with a noose allegedly going missing. While small, this change was another attempt by Disney to make the ride less dark and more family-friendly.

pirates of the caribbean disneyland paris
Credit: Disney

The first major change didn’t come about until the 1990s when park guests began to complain about the attraction’s displays of lewd and inappropriate behavior on the ride. As many will surely know, the pirates can be seen plundering and pillaging throughout the story of the attraction. This has not changed much except for how the pirates were treating women.

The most scrutinized parts of the older version of the ride were the scenes of pirates chasing women in the town, as well as a pirate searching for a woman who hid in a barrel much like Captain Jack Sparrow does now. While never explicitly stated, it was very clear what these scenes were insinuating.

This was eventually changed, making food the reason the pirates were chasing women. There was also a scene of a pirate holding what appeared to be part of a woman’s clothing. He waved it around smiling, also insinuating something a little more sinister than what is typically seen at the Disney Parks. This was changed into a new scene where the pirate holds the map that Jack Sparrow is looking for throughout the ride.

pirates of the caribbean jack sparrow disneyland
Credit: Disney

Of course, there are many changes made to the ride after the first Pirates of the Caribbean film was released. It may shock some but the ride actually came first, not the movie. Despite being based on an old Disney ride, the film was a huge success and sparked a franchise that continues to this day.

Because of this success, Disney planned a remodeling just in time for the release of the second Pirates film. This renovation added all the famous characters from the film to the ride like Jack Sparrow, Davy Jones, and Captain Barbossa.

One of the biggest changes to this attraction at both Disney World and Disneyland came a few years ago when the infamous “Bride Auction” scene was changed, adding the new character of Red to the scene and removing references to brides being bought.

The scene previously featured a group of women waiting to be sold at auction, which was quite an adult scene for a family ride. While the change made the ride a little less dark, lots of Disney fans voiced their concerns about how the attraction has been changed too much.

Credit: Disney

There once was a parrot that would greet Guests in the queue for the ride as well until it was removed shortly after. A fog machine also used to be present on the ride, having Guests pass through an image of either Davy Jones or Blackbeard.

We also covered another change recently, one that involved a “grotesque” image. A TikTok user recently shared a video talking about one significant modification that had to be made in the ride. In it, he mentions the “animatronic appendages” most characters in the Pirates of the Caribbean attraction had below their belts, giving them a noticeable bulge that had to be removed.

Former Imagineer Kevin Lively (@livelyland) confirmed this fact but corrected some details. In the original video, Mays mentions the appendages were removed with scissors from the Walt Disney World version of the ride due to Guests’ complaints, while Lively comments the following:

That story actually took place before the attraction opened. It was before a costume review with Walt. To solve the issue, Alice Davis used a hacksaw.

Blue bayou Magic key
Credit: Disney

Unfortunately, Disneyland’s version of Pirates of the Caribbean is currently closed as it receives an extended refurbishment. This refurbishment also closed the Blue Bayou restaurant which will be returning in just a few days!

While there are many places to eat in Disneyland, one restaurant, in particular, has become iconic at the Southern California theme Park. Sadly, The Blue Bayou restaurant, which can be found in Disneyland’s New Orleans Square, has remained closed for quite a while as the ongoing Pirates of the Caribbean refurbishment continues.

Disneyland officially describes the restaurant as follows:

Dine Down on the Bayou

Step into perpetual twilight as the nighttime ambiance of the watery setting surrounds you. Spot Guests embarking on a Pirates of the Caribbean adventure, as you enjoy an authentic New Orleans-inspired lunch or dinner. It’s a truly unique setting where the bayou is, literally, by you!

A New Orleans Square Classic

Blue Bayou has been a must-visit destination for many Disneyland Resort Guests since its opening in 1967. Its mystical setting takes you into the heart of the South—overhead strings of colorful balloon lanterns cast an enchanting glow, dotting the darkness while crickets chirp, frogs croak and fireflies wink in the dark.

Big Tastes from the Big Easy

Kick off your memorable meal with Southern-inspired starters. Next, choose from a selection of authentic entrées—including signature dishes such as Jambalaya and Plant-based Cajun Cauliflower.

Favorite dishes include a surf & turf combo of split lobster tail and petite filet mignon with all the fixin’s… and don’t forget the nonalcoholic mint juleps.

New additions to the restaurant’s menu include a New Orleans-inspired signature Hurricane cocktail, along with select wines and beers. And Guests commemorating a special occasion may enhance their experience with a Celebration Finale complete with sparkling wine and a unique shareable dessert. Kids can also take part in the Bayou spirit by creating their own meals, including delicious entrees and sides that cater to every taste.

Be sure to save some room for dessert—and don’t miss the best crème brûlée in New Orleans Square!

pirates of the caribbean disneyland
Credit: Disney

As stated earlier, Pirates of the Caribbean can be found at numerous Disney Parks, most notably at Disneyland and Walt Disney World.

More on Pirates of the Caribbean at Disneyland

A Pirate’s Life for You

Strike yer colors! Your adventure begins in a shadowy bayou, where you’ll board a weathered barge. Plunge down a waterfall in the dark and float through the spectral world of Pirates Grotto. Dead men tell no tales—but they guard their treasure for all eternity.

Navigate cannon fire between a fort and a 12-gun galleon. Glide into port and behold brazen buccaneers drunk on pillaged plunder. Skulk past the well-armed lass who commands a colorful auction of villagers’ goods.

Sing along as sea roving scalawags serenade you with their classic shanty, “Yo Ho (A Pirate’s Life for Me).” Witness flames engulf the town and pass prisoners trapped in their jail cell, doggedly trying to escape.

Keep a spry eye out for sly Captain Jack Sparrow from the Pirates of the Caribbean film series, as he schemes to get his hands on the spoils.

If ye be seekin’ adventure, ay—you’ve come to the proper place!

disney world pirates of the caribbean auction scene
Credit: Disney

More on Pirates of the Caribbean at Walt Disney World

A Pirate’s Life for You

Board a weathered barge for a treacherous voyage to the 17th century, when rowdy rogues and ruthless rapscallions ransacked Caribbean seaport towns. Sing along as pirates serenade you with their anthem, “Yo Ho, Yo Ho (A Pirate’s Life for Me).”

Sail past haunted Dead Man’s Cove. Navigate cannon fire between a Caribbean fort and a striking 12-gun galleon. Behold boisterous buccaneers drunk on the spoils of plunderin’ as flames engulf a seaside town.

Be sure to keep a spry eye out for Captain Jack Sparrow, from The Pirates of the Caribbean movies. Ye beware, mateys: Dead men tell no tales!

Fortunately, Disneyland’s version of Pirates of the Caribbean will be returning soon, meaning Guests can get their fix of pirate adventure this summer!

Which version of Pirates of the Caribbean is your favorite?

in Disneyland Resort, Walt Disney World

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