In the past we’ve taken notice of Disney’s recent trend of replacing original experiences with those based on popular characters from TV and movies. The biggest example of this has been the transformation of Epcot, with original experiences like Maelstrom and the Universe of Energy being turned into Frozen Ever After and as-yet untitled Guardians of the Galaxy Ride. However, this has extended to other parks as well. For instance, though Disney’s Hollywood Studios has always featured plenty of characters, the Streets of America, which had no direct association with characters, was demolished in 2016 to make way for Star Wars Land. And now it looks like this trend is spreading to Disney’s Animal Kingdom
Though this park has always featured some characters, and their nighttime spectacular Rivers of Light features an original story with no ties to Disney IP whatsoever, it was announced earlier this week that one of the park’s oldest original attractions was being discontinued very soon to make way for a movie tie-in.
After twenty years, it is time to say goodbye to Flights of Wonder
Though Flights of Wonder isn’t exactly the most popular show at Disney’s Animal Kingdom, it is the only one that really focuses on nature and education. Though we love Festival of the Lion King as well as Finding Nemo: The Musical, these shows would fit in just as well at the Magic Kingdom or even Disney’s Hollywood Studios. However, Flights of Wonder was a unique entertainment offering at this park that would only fit in at a park that aims to educate guests about conservation and the natural world.
But unfortunately now it looks like after almost 20 years of performances, this show will say goodbye forever in just a few weeks, with its final performance happening on December 31. And perhaps, unsurprisingly, the show’s replacement will be one that involves characters….
A new show featuring the characters of Up is coming early next year
After Flights of Wonder’s final performance on New Year’s Eve, the Caravan Theater will close for several months to make way for an as-yet untitled show featuring characters from the 2009 film Up. Though there is no opening date just yet, Disney has announced that this new show will premiere sometime in the early spring, just in time for the 20th anniversary of Disney’s Animal Kingdom.
This new experience will offer guests the chance to see Senior Wilderness Explorer Russell and his furry friend Dug discover species of birds from around the world in their newest adventure. It is unknown how much this show will tie in to the movie, but at least, as of right now, it seems like there will still be some educational component preserved in the new show.