Onto Day 2 of DLP Today‘s live reports from the Ratatouille: The Adventure Grand Opening event, Saturday 21st June 2014, and this is when the rats really began to run loose. We were privileged to capture the main opening ceremony with Chairman and CEO of The Walt Disney Company, Bob Iger before riding the attraction itself to share the first live insights.
In fact, there was so much to share — an enormous 71 photos! — that it’s going to be rounded up here for posterity in three parts, beginning with the morning’s press welcome and that picture-perfect opening ceremony, a classic Disney production number dedication.
Here we go again! CONTINUE READING…
DLP Today has returned from the Grand Opening events of Ratatouille: The Adventure! Throughout Saturday and Sunday, I shared live photos and reports from the events and previews direct to the @DLPToday Twitter feed, taking you to Place de Rémy for a first-hand look as if you were there.
Missed the tweets? Don’t follow Twitter? Or maybe just want to see them again? To prevent all those photos and snippets of information disappearing into the never-ending timeline, here they all are gathered together for posterity.
Here we go, live from Disneyland Paris! This is your host Anthony reporting along from the Grand Opening weekend of Ratatouille: The Adventure.
To follow all the events as they happen, head straight to the special LIVE page and you’ll see all the latest live photos and information from the brand new attraction at Walt Disney Studios Park in one place. Or, if you’re reading on a phone, you’re best jumping straight to @DLPToday on Twitter and following the action there.
Highlights of DLP Today‘s Grand Opening schedule include the Inaugural Ceremony and Grand Opening of Place de Rémy at 11:00am on Saturday, tomorrow, and The Making of Ratatouille presentation with Walt Disney Imagineers at 11:00am on Sunday, plus lots more surprises in between.
I’ll also be sharing general previews and pictures of the new development throughout both days, along with other live news and views from around Disneyland Paris.
As you might expect, there are bound to be spoilers aplenty as we discover this brand new, world exclusive attraction for the first time and talk to its creators.
Note that as I’ll also be taking notes and collecting photos and videos for reports, some events may be covered more than others and most will be reported more fully in the weeks ahead — so if you can’t follow everything live, come back soon to relive the entire adventure.
I’d love to hear YOUR thoughts too — please reply, comment, tweet as we go!
So join in, and let DLP Today take you there now..!
The “sixtieth” attraction at Disneyland Paris, by official count, sees its Grand Opening for the press this weekend in Marne-la-Vallée. And Ratatouille: L’Aventure Totalement Toquée de Rémy means a lot more to Disney’s European resort than most of those other 59 attractions.
From the size of the investment to the location inside Disney’s least popular theme park, it’d be easy to think of 60 reasons why this is a really big deal.
But, since there are things to prepare and time’s running out, here are just Six Big Reasons Why Ratatouille Matters…
Space Mountain: De la Terre à la Lune will forever be the addition Disneyland Paris fans regard as the one. Opening in 1995, it arguably saved the resort from financial meltdown — well, until its next restructuring — and provided a big, new version of a Disney classic which Parisian fans could say was all their own. But as a wild thrill ride with height restrictions it wasn’t for everyone and, since the bigger Discovery Mountain project was scrapped, it didn’t have a restaurant or much else to explore around the circular mountain.
In that sense, and even taking the roughly ten new attractions Walt Disney Studios Park brought in 2002, Disneyland Paris has simply never built such a complete and well-rounded expansion. One that everyone can ride, one that has all the necessary theme park infrastructure — dining, shopping, toilets — built in. This is how it should be done.
Since Le Visionarium in Discoveryland saw its all-too-early demise, Disneyland Paris has been lacking a certain French-ness in its parks. That fantastical Circle Vision 360 film was a gem, a real love letter to France; it helped to ground the park and helped the park — and its visitors — relate to its location.
Now, over in Walt Disney Studios Park, visitors can feel like they’re in Paris without ever stepping foot on the RER train to take them into the city.
It might seem mad to build Paris in Paris, but — ah! — this isn’t just any City of Light, it clearly has enough whimsy and “Hidden Rémys” to make it its own place.
This works two ways: it gives the park something very French, which foreign visitors will love, and it gives the park something very French, which the French will love.
Unmistakably connected with Disneyland Paris, it will put the resort on the map both for Disney fans and the general public in a way not seen since Space Mountain in the ’90s.
The Studios’ first and only E-Ticket expansion to date, The Twilight Zone Tower of Terror, was a huge deal at the time and helped give to the park a focal point a feeling of much-needed atmosphere. But coming almost four years after the exact same version of the ride was built in California, and that a full ten years after the Florida original, there wasn’t much new or fresh to actually be excited about. Construction was more about waiting for the next thing, not waiting to see what’s next.
With trackless vehicles, huge 3D projections, plus physical scenery and physical effects, Ratatouille: L’Aventure Totalement Toquée de Rémy is a comparatively unknown mélange like nothing seen in any other Disney park, on a scale to be truly excited about, and there are no plans as yet to reproduce it around the world.
It’d be absolutely right to hesitate to say that Walt Disney Studios Park is now a “full-day park”, but with an extra must-do attraction and a table service restaurant, it is almost getting to the point where you would struggle to do everything in a day.
Combined with Disneyland Park, this could begin to tip the balance towards three days in the parks becoming more of a standard at Disneyland Paris, at least for first-time visitors. That’s good for the parks, good for the hotels, good for everything.
After Disney California Adventure, Disney seems to have rediscovered the motto that “investment pays” — let’s please have that apply to Paris, too.
Indeed, more so than any expansion of the park yet, Ratatouille should encourage more visitors to hop to the Studios in the first place — and to hop back again. More visitors in the park could mean more much-needed investment — or at least you’d hope so, because…
There might be a lot of talk this weekend and further ahead of Walt Disney Studios Park “coming of age” or “being fixed”. Let’s be clear: this relatively tiny pocket of pure, proper Disney theme park magic is still just that.
The original Animation Courtyard still lacks anything to write home about, and Backlot is positively bleak. The park is still just a collection of generally very good but largely disparate attractions, lacking any Disney glue — or even enough money-making restaurants and shops — between them.
What this new Ratatouille mini-land does do, however, with its intricate sets, endless hidden nods and spectacular fountain, is set the benchmark: for a type of immersion in storytelling which should be standard, but has still yet to be seen across the park. Toy Story Playland actually did immersion quite well, but not so much the quality of its attractions.
Even Hollywood Boulevard which surrounds The Twilight Zone Tower of Terror, a beautiful area of the park for almost seven years, lacks any kind of real immersion the second you turn to see the flat Hollywood Hills backdrop or the unrestricted views to the rest of the original backlot-inspired park. Could it finally be completed now?
Now there’s Place de Rémy, there’s no excuse. From Animagique to Studio Tram Tour: Behind the Magic to Armageddon: Les Effets Speciaux, Ratatouille will prove, somewhat painfully, just how under-performing the rest of the park is — both in how it looks, how it works and how it makes money. And that has to mean major changes.
Star Wars Land? Marvel Studios? Animagique 2?! As one new attraction opens, it seems Disneyland Paris always becomes awash with rumour about what’s next. But right now, we just don’t know, and as we’ve seen in a past, these (often very real) plans have a disappointing habit of never making it to reality.
So as Ratatouille: The Adventure prepares to open its doors, enjoy the moment. You never know how long we’ll be waiting for this feeling of simmering excitement again. Savour it.
• Join DLP Today from 11am this Saturday, 21st June for the Inauguration of Place de Rémy, part of our Ratatouille: The Adventure Grand Opening LIVE weekend schedule.
Disney PhotoPass has made its way fully across the Atlantic! The popular, longstanding online photo service offered by Disneyland Resort in California and Walt Disney World Resort in Florida launches this weekend at Disneyland Paris, bringing the latest features of PhotoPass+ and an all-new, exclusive mobile app.
In brief, PhotoPass allows you to link all your official souvenir photos taken by photographers in the parks onto one card, and then access them online when you return home. You can then purchase high quality downloadable versions, or order prints or an array of souvenir applications from mugs to photobooks.
Disneyland Paris already offered this service to a point, but it lacked the online element — you had to go to one of the park’s boutiques to inspect your photos and purchase souvenir prints there and then. It wasn’t ideal.
Now, visitors can go to www.disneyphotopass.eu to register their card and see the memories from the comfort of their own home. Prices for prints and souvenirs supplied by Fujifilm are surprisingly reasonable, although shipping charges are likely to sting.
And there’s more: a brand new mobile app, Disneyland Paris PhotoPass (iOS) (also on Android), will let you see your PhotoPass account on your phone and — here’s the coolest feature — add an on-ride attraction photo by scanning a new QR code now displayed on the photo screens at the exit of rides, or by entering the photo ID. This means for the first time you can save your photo for later, to download or buy prints later.
Like the American resorts, Paris will too offer a special upfront Disney PhotoPass+ package, retailing at €49.99, which lets you view, download and share without limit all the photos you want to collect during your time in the parks (up to 10 days). It includes a special PhotoPass lanyard card plus two extra mini cards, which you show to photographers at character locations. You can also hand them over at attraction photo sales locations to link on-ride photos to your account, if you don’t have access to the QR-scanning app.
Unlike the American packages, however, you won’t get a CD-Rom containing your photos, but aren’t downloads better these days anyway?
Our friends at Mickey Land blog were first to share this press release:
New photo services pack for unforgettable souvenirs.
Disney PhotoPass+: photos taken in the Disney Parks available in HD from this summer!
From 21 June this year, Disneyland® Paris presents Disney PhotoPass+, a new service for accessing photo-souvenir taken in the Parks in HD. Guests will have access to a photo services pack to view, download and share all photos taken with Disney characters or on rides that take ride photos.
From July 2014, Disney PhotoPass+ will allow guests to access all their photo-souvenirs taken on rides or with Disney characters by Park photographers at photo locations in high definition. Guests will be able to access a dedicated website or a mobile app to view, download and share their photos on social networks or to purchase personalized photo products (mugs, calendars, etc.).
The Disney PhotoPass+ service will be on offer at the price of €49.99. Guests will receive a box containing an exclusive lanyard card holder, a main card and two mini cards to use throughout their visit to the Disneyland Paris Parks to link their photos to the service.
From the first activation of the pack, guests could associate unlimited photo souvenirs to the service PhotoPass+ by presenting their card to photographers of Disney PhotoPass, or to the photo desk in the attractions equipped with an image capture system or by flashing the QR code directly from the monitors located at the exit of the attractions.
The photos will be available in high definition at www.disneyphotopass.eu or on the new mobile app. The “Disneyland Paris PhotoPass” app, a first for Disney Parks, is available to download on Apple and Android platforms.
The introduction of the full PhotoPass system is the latest in a series of positive developments for Disneyland Paris, continuing to bring it more closely in line with the American resorts.
Clearly, there is still much to discover about how the system will work at Disneyland Paris and many questions left to answer. Luckily, DLP Today and other fan reporters invited to this weekend’s Ratatouille: The Adventure event will be getting a special preview PhotoPass+ package to test out for ourselves in the parks — so join us soon for a full review to read much more about the service and follow us LIVE to see it in action this weekend!
Pricing details have also been revealed, with a standard set menu starting at €29.90 for a starter and main course, or €39.90 for a starter, main, dessert and drink too. A children’s menu is said to cost roughly 17 euros.
And the menu itself? Mais, bien sûr…
- Mixed leaf salad with cheese and an olive oil, balsamic and sesame vinaigrette
- Cut of grilled beef, homemade ratatouille, French fries and the chef’s sauce
- Roast cod, homemade ratatouille, crushed potatoes and a beurre blanc sauce
- Vegetable, tofu and white bean casserole
- Rum baba
- Chocolate mousse
- Fruit salad
- Apple tart
- Chocolate cake with crème anglaise
- Brie de Meaux from Trente Arpents Farm (Rothschild Estate) with fruit bread and vine peach jelly
A vegetable soup could replace the salad starter in winter.
To book your table, call Disneyland Paris Restaurant Reservations on +33 (0) 1 60 30 40 50 — find more information about Restaurant Reservations on our Planning guides here.
Located next door to and within the same building as the attraction Ratatouille: L’Aventure Totalement Toquée de Rémy, with views through to the ride unload area, the “upscale but light-hearted” new dining location takes the theme not of Gusteau’s or Le Ratatouille but Rémy’s more fun bistrot up in the rafters, as seen at the end of the film itself.
Despite that backstory, this won’t be a character dining location — no appearances by Rémy and Emile are planned. Part of the reason for that will be the quick turnover of tables — as little as 45 minutes is the aspiration. That’s naturally a good thing for Disney, freeing up space for fresh punters in what’s expected to be a hugely popular venue, but also more in line with what most guests actually want: a quick, but “proper” meal, and no hanging around for “l’addition” — the bill — when you want to be getting back to the park.
Bistrot Chez Rémy is the first Table Service restaurant in the whole of Walt Disney Studios Park and — perhaps even more startlingly — the first restaurant of any sort within its biggest land, Toon Studio. A previous Ratatouille “living character” experience at Restaurant des Stars in Production Courtyard, where a miniature animated Rémy figure was presented to tables, has now ended. It remains to be seen what raison d’être that otherwise largely nondescript buffet location may now find for itself.
Join DLP Today at 1pm this Sunday, 22nd June for a LIVE preview of Bistrot Chez Rémy, part of our Ratatouille: The Adventure Grand Opening LIVE weekend schedule.
• Get a taste of the magic before you go: Find Restaurant Menus for every Disneyland Paris location at DLP Guide — look out for a full update of every menu beginning next week!
Here we go — Disneyland Paris launched the official Ratatouille: The Adventure TV spot today online and on television, taking viewers on a simulated 30 second Ratmobile ride through the new attraction. Watch the French version for the first time above now.
Focusing purely on the ride experience of Ratatouille: L’Aventure Totalement Toquée de Rémy, without mention of the land or Bistrot Chez Rémy, the commercial does a fine job of quickly and simply conveying the concept and scale of the attraction – big and small.
Beginning in a live-action Gusteau’s restaurant dining room, we see Rémy invite a family into his world by shrinking them into the Ratmobile. The trackless ride vehicle then careens around the kitchens, encountering several known obstacles and story points from the actual ride such as the serving trolley and a fiery oven. Though relatively faithful to what’s expected of the final experience, it’s worth noting all the footage is simulated and not real ride footage.
Being an advert, it of course takes numerous liberties both with the storyline of Ratatouille and the ride itself — there are no 3D glasses to be seen, for a start.
But from start to finish, this is without doubt one of the most polished and effective TV spots Disneyland Paris has produced in its history.
It’s also refreshing to see that the commercial doesn’t — as yet — finish with any promotional discount offer. Et voilà: an investment like Ratatouille: The Adventure sells itself.
Online registration opened this morning, allowing holders of the highest tier “Dream” pass exclusive access to secure a place at the previews.
An email with the full registration details and the link above was sent to Dream passholders who provided an email address and opted in to email communications.
Hour-long preview slots are available between the following times on each date:
However, many early registrants are reporting problems with the form, such as it not accepting their Passeport Annuel number. Have you tried registering? What was your experience? Tell us below in the comments or @DLPToday.
For passholders outside of France, there is also the slight complication that the form only provides “France” as the option for a country in the address form. That will certainly do nothing to compound complaints that Disneyland Paris attempts to hide these great value passes from foreign visitors, with all communication and advertising only ever made in French.
Holders of the other annual passes, Francilien and Fantasy, are supposed to be getting previews too, but both those passes have blockout days on 28th and 29th June, leaving those weekend days apparently exclusive to Dream passholders.
It has not yet been announced how those non-Dream passholders might gain access to their previews, so watch this space (and your email inbox).
As reported previously, Shareholders Club members can register for their own private event on Saturday, 28th June between 10am and 2.30pm. Online registration is required before 23rd June on your online account space here.
UPDATE – 17/06/2014 16:52
We’ve been asked to pass on the following message from the Annual Passport Team regarding problems encountered with the registration form yesterday. The team are extremely concerned by the issues and are keen to resolve any problems as soon as possible.
Dear Annual Dream Passport Members,
We would like to begin by apologizing for the problems encountered when registrations opened for the Ratatouille preview event. We are fully aware that many of you are enthusiastically awaiting this event, and we are doing everything we can to ensure you have a good time.
Unfortunately, due to technical problems, the registration website failed to work correctly when it initially went live, preventing many of you from registering. We have since been working hard to remediate these issues.
We would like to invite all those who had problems registering yesterday to try again today. If you continue to encounter difficulties, please send an e-mail to the following address: firstname.lastname@example.org (providing the following details: surname, first name, Annual Passport number, the date and at least 2 timeslots for which you would like to register). We will do our utmost to reply to each and every one of you as soon as we possibly can.
Please accept our sincere apologies for any inconvenience caused. Thank you for your patience and understanding.
The Annual Passport Team
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