Though plans are currently underway to transform Disney's Hollywood Studios from a half-day park to a full-day destination (thanks to Star Wars Land and Toy Story Land), after years of rumors and speculation it looks like the park with the next big update coming will indeed be Epcot. It seems like the new energy injected into this park by the opening of Frozen Ever After in the World Showcase's Norway Pavilion last year has given Disney decision-makers the confidence to go ahead and completely re-work Epcot in an effort to move away from science, technology, and cultural experiences, and instead inject familiar characters and IPs that will draw bigger crowds to the park (the way Frozen has done).
There will be several steps to this plan, and Disney has yet to commit to a specific timeline for all of these developments, telling the D23 crowd in attendance that these projects will “take time”, and will be open in time for Walt Disney World's 50th anniversary in 2021. However, though we don’t exactly know the “when”, now we have confirmation of the what and how of two new projects that will change even more of the DNA of Epcot and turn it into something more recognizable to fans of Disney’s film division.
1 Ratatouille ride confirmed for France
Just a few weeks ago a rumor surfaced that seemed to indicate that Disney was planning on cloning one of the most popular attractions at the Disneyland Paris Resort and bringing it to Epcot: the Ratatouille: L'Aventure Totalement Toquée de Rémy ride. And now it has been confirmed that this Ratatouille-themed 3-D dark ride, which uses trackless technology to "shrink" guests down to the size of a rat, will indeed be coming to Epcot sometime in the next few years.
While Disney didn’t share many details on this project, based on what we saw during the D23 Parks and Resorts panel, it looks like this ride will be exactly the same as the attraction at Disneyland Paris Resort, without any major changes. You can check out a full video of this attraction here. While Ratatouille hasn’t exactly had the cultural relevance that other Pixar films like Toy Story or Up have had in the past decade, this addition does make sense in the context of the France pavilion, and since the attraction already exists at the Disneyland Paris Resort, Disney is likely thinking they save time and money by building a copy of a pre-existing attraction here, which hopefully means that we’ll hopefully be able to experience this attraction at Epcot sooner rather than later.