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5 Endangered Walt Disney World Attractions You Should See Before They Disappear

American Idol Experience

Walt Disney World is constantly updating its attraction line-up - building new rides, and removing or updating old ones. We've taken a detailed look at the resort's "lost" rides in this series of articles.

Inevitably, some of the current rides, attractions and other elements at Walt Disney World's four theme parks are in line for the chop over the next few years. Some might survive in an updated form, while others will be removed altogether.

Though we don't have many official announcements to go on (yet), we can make some fairly strong guesses as to which attractions might be set for the axe. Let's take a look at five endangered Walt Disney World attractions.

5. Soarin' (Over California)

Soarin'

Image © Disney

We love Soarin', the flight simulator attraction at Epcot that is a clone of the original (Soarin' Over California) at Disney California Adventure. The ride system is unique to Disney, and provides an amazing sensation of flight. Unfortunately, the frequent, jarring cuts in the ride movie undercut the feeling of immersion - and the California-focused ride video makes a lot less sense as part of Epcot's The Land pavilion.

That's why we're excited about the planned replacement of the original, California-themed footage with a new movie that takes in scenes across the globe. If Disney can ensure that the edits are smoother, this could take the ride to a whole new level - just as Universal's HD makeover for The Amazing Adventures of Spider-Man breathed new life into that classic attraction.

The latest rumors suggest that the updated Soarin' Over the Horizon could open as soon as 2016.

4. Captain EO

Captain EO

We understand Disney's decision to bring back Michael Jackson's 3-D extravaganza Captain EO in the wake of the singer's death. Not only was it a fitting tribute to the late star, but it also solved the problem of what to do with one of Epcot's aging attractions - Honey, I Shrunk the Audience.

However, it only postponed the inevitable task for Disney of replacing Epcot's 3-D movie with something more modern. At present, it is not all clear what might happen to Captain EO. There have been rumors of Disneyland's version being replaced by a 3-D Star Wars movie - although that would be need to be clearly differentiated from Star Tours: The Adventures Continue (which itself is in 3-D). But Disney's Hollywood Studios would be a more fitting home for any Star Wars-themed shows.

There have also been rumors that the entire Imagination Pavilion, which hosts Captain EO and the much-maligned Journey into Imagination with Figment, could be closed altogether. Even given the gaping gap in quality between the pavilion's attractions and the rest of Epcot's line-up, we find that hard to believe - but we do think that a major shake-up is in order, and will happen sooner rather than later.

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There are 15 comments.

I WANT SOARIN to stay!!---It was one of the MOST enjoyable at Epcot!! Please keep it :(!!!

All they are doing is changing up the movie...most time itll take is less than a month to close n update...

Hi,Connie! They are keeping Soarin, just updating it.
The California background is being changed to WORLDS! That actually seems fitting being that it is in EPCOT! The original ride is in Disneyland, which is why it has the California backgrounds.... :)

Soarin' isn't going anywhere, it's just getting an update but I freaked out and was in shock that it was first on the list of "leaving" attractions lol. To get rid of it would be a grave mistake as it's the most popular ride in all of Epcot!

Soarin' is not going any where. They merely are shooting a new movie not tied to California. It is being shot for all the other parks except DCA. It is most likely to be an around the world in theme, especially since Soarin' is found in some of the internationally Disneylands. Plus it make sense for Epcot's Soarin' since you have the Worldshow case part.

This is the first I have heard about maelstrom being replaced by FROZEN. I know the hype surrounding frozen has been huge-but getting rid of Maelstrom?? That's terrible! I LOVE that ride! Its as bad as the Main Street Bakery being replaced with Starbucks :'(

Instead of closing the Imagination Pavilion - how about bringing back the ORIGINAL Figment & Dreamfinder? Figment is my favorite Disney character, but even I have a hard time getting enthused over the revised experience. Figment is so uniquely Disney, it would be a terrible loss to just dump him!

The problem lies in that they couldn't make the dream finder portion work well, which is why the ride has changed so many times. It's not the most reliable concept or design. But I would love to see them at least try Dream Finder again, if for nothing more than nostalgia.

the legend of captain jack sparrow, where the heck is that? we go every year to Disney and have never seen it, must me hidden somewhere.

The Legend of Captain Jack Sparrow is in DHS, right next to Toy Story Midway Mania. If you are facing TSMM, Legend is to your right. It's right across from the bathrooms there. It's very easy to miss!

Phew, SO glad you will be keeping Soaring. It is an Amazing experience for all ages and one of our very favorites. Thank You!

Captain EO must go. Even choreography very outdated. And Michael Jackson 'superstar' though talented, had zero acting ability.

Kudos...I think that changing Soarin' to an attraction where we can experience the world "at our feet" is the best decision Disney has made in a long time. I love this attraction, but after seeing it 100 times, California needs to go. Thank you to Disney imagineers.

Love Soarin and Maelstrom!!!!!!they need to leave both of them

Do you know the dates of closure for Soarin? I hope it's not a time when I am visiting Disney. That is the highlight of my whole trip.

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