7 Secrets About Disney Rides Direct From the Imagineers Who Designed Them

TravelandLeisurePublished: March 26, 2018
Published: March 26, 2018

From Space Mountain’s backward architecture to Tinker Bell’s secrets of flying, there are plenty of insider tidbits to know about Disney’s parks:

1. Disney can now create audio-animatronics using only a photograph.

2. California Screamin’ really lives up to its name, with tunnels serving as sound barriers.

3. Different Disneyland rides often re-use the same characters. For example, the guy dunked in Pirates of the Caribbean also appears in the Haunted Mansion. Dressing up and putting smiles on children’s faces can be hard work. You have to wear a giant fluffy costume in boiling heat, and also to go through intensive training. This includes hours of practicing the moves and gestures of a character, learning how that specific character articulates certain emotions and being able to perfectly copy their autograph.

4. The Snow White’s figurine in her grotto is actually the same size as the dwarves. In 1961, the major features of the scene were scaled to create the illusion of distance and height and Snow White was placed at the top of the plain, where she stands to this day grandly above the scene. This creates a forced perspective: from the adjacent footbridge, Snow White appears flawlessly proportioned in relation to her friends.

5. When Disney develops attractions based on Pixar movies, the artists themselves are pulled in to help.

6. Disney attractions value telling a story above all.

7. The “Incredicoaster” is an Incredibles-themed roller coaster located in the Pixar Pier section of Disney California Adventure. It was one of the park's original rides and was the only roller coaster at the Disneyland Resort to feature an inversion debuting in June 2018: one portion of the revamped version will be infused with the scent of cookies.

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