Toy Story at WDW: New Shows and New Construction

Despite the disappointment of Jessie still being absent from meet and greets at Walt Disney World, there’s been a lot of exciting news lately relating to the Toy Story franchise in the parks!  Over the past several weeks, we’ve seen two new shows debut that give the characters a greater presence in entertainment offerings, and the construction for Toy Story Land is really starting to kick into gear…

Happily Ever After

On May 12, Happily Ever After – a new castle projection and fireworks spectacular – premiered at the Magic Kingdom.  With clips and music from many Disney films, both contemporary and classic, it replaced the long-standing Wishes fireworks.  While there has been some controversy and upset from loyal Wishes fans who didn’t want the show replaced, I personally find Happily Ever After to be a worthy successor, and look forward to seeing it in person on our next Walt Disney World vacation.  I was thrilled to see that Toy Story was not only included, but given a prominent moment, where the castle transforms into building blocks and many of the toys appear across it!  You can find the Toy Story segment at the 23:05 mark, but the whole show is worth watching:

(Photo and video © Disney Parks)

The Music of Pixar LIVE!

Another new show debuted just this past week at Hollywood Studios.  The Music of Pixar LIVE! is much like the touring Pixar in Concert, where a live orchestra plays selections from the scores of Pixar films while film clips are shown on a screen behind them. I got to see Pixar in Concert a couple years ago, and loved it, so I think it’s fantastic to have something similar available for park guests as well – there’s something very powerful about hearing the music from your favorite films performed live.  The park production features fewer movies than the touring show; however, the addition of characters is a great touch.  Toy Story starts things off with Woody, Buzz, and Jessie, and the show concludes with a sing-along of “You’ve Got a Friend in Me.”  (Can I just add, as a fangirl here, that it makes me so happy to see Buzz and Jessie represented together in the clips selected for the Toy Story segment – and blowing kisses to each other at the end – for the first time ever in anything at Walt Disney World?  Squee.)   It’s been advertised to only run for the summer months, so I’m bummed I won’t get to see it when we’re back in the parks in the fall (extension, please!), but you can watch the full show here:

(Photo and video © DIS)

Toy Story Land

There’s been a lot of work taking place in the future Toy Story Land at Hollywood Studios, and it’s so fun watching the land start to come together!  New construction walls are now up adjacent to the Pixar Place entrance, and the soundstage building and bridge that will come down to make way for the entrance to the land are covered in scrims…

My favorite, though, is all the artwork on the wall, featuring the characters!

(Wall photos © Blog Mickey)

Behind the walls, coaster track, buildings, and other details are really starting to take shape!  You can finally see the outlines of many of the buildings shown in the land’s concept art.

I like the giant picket fence (to the right of the photo below) that’s going to shield the view of the cast parking garage…

And you can really see how big the Slinky Dog Dash coaster will be, as this isn’t even half of it…

Alien Spinning Saucers (blue circles in center) is making progress, too…

The red-frame building  below is the lunchbox-shaped quick service food counter that can be seen in concept art…

And the foundations for the new entrance of Toy Story Mania are in place, as well…

(Aerial photos © @bioreconstruct on Twitter)

The only thing we still don’t know is where other structures like retail and (pretty please?) a meet and greet might be.  Toy Story Land is expected to open sometime next summer – the official opening date will be announced at the D23 Expo in July, which I will be attending!  I’m planning on going to the Parks panel on the afternoon of Saturday, July 15, so be sure to follow me on Instagram and Twitter for real-time news while I’m there!

One nice detail, amongst all three new things mentioned here, is that Jessie is included in all of them.  I hope that this is a sign of good things to come, and that she won’t be neglected in the Walt Disney World parks any longer once Toy Story Land opens.  And now that Pandora has opened at Animal Kingdom, Toy Story Land is the next big thing coming to the Florida parks.  Hopefully we’ll get more construction reports from here on out – I’ll be sure to share as we get new updates, so stay tuned!


2 thoughts on “Toy Story at WDW: New Shows and New Construction

  1. HayLee June 25, 2017 / 7:39 pm

    PLEASE share any info you find out at d23!! Cannot wait to find out about toy story land! I will be checking your twitter that day like crazy haha! Thanks!!!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Heidi June 25, 2017 / 8:52 pm

      I will update as much as possible while I’m there! 🙂 My goals are the Animation and Parks panels, along with anything else Pixar. I’m hoping for more Toy Story Land news, too!


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