Here we go again, folks. What a great Disney update we have for you.

Denise Preskitt never fails to intrigue with her fabulous updates and this week is no exception. I want to see that castle show!

Rya86n has more pix of his theme park themed honeymoon. This time we have a detailed report from Disney's Hollywood Studios.

Alain Littaye has a photo essay on the Nautilus sub at Disneyland Paris. Talk about your declining by degrees. There is a hopeful note at the end of Alain's report, however.

Finally, MiceChatter OrlandoDude shares his trip to Disney's Hilton Head Resort. I have heard good things about this Disney outpost, but it's nice to see some photos.

Have a super weekend!

Denise Preskitt has been very busy in Orlando

I thought the first month of the year would be nice and calm - but it wasn't. We really haven't been home much, there has been so much to see and do! This is just from the last couple of days.

The Magic, The Memories, and You! Romance Segment was added on February 1st, and is set to go through mid-April. It's a beautiful part of the show, and includes a variety of princesses (with their princes) and the lanterns from Tangled.

Video of the segment:

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Earlier that day, we were at Busch Gardens for their media preview of Iceploration. It's really a great ice show, with puppetry and acrobatics included. The music, the costumes, and the story are all original.

Nancy Hutson, Vice President of Entertainment with concept art:

Here is the full show:

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We didn't realize until after the preview that Tony Orlando was playing this week! It was nearly a one hour show.

His band includes Toni Wine, who wrote "Groovy Kind of Love" and sung the Meow Mix song (among many other songs as a singer/songwriter).

We love Walkabout Way!

This morning, Sorcerer Mickey was in front of Disney's Hollywood Studios (interesting to see the topiary in it's normal spot above!):

I was working on a DHS to Epcot Photo Walk, here is the Tower of Terror:

Pixar's Brave artwork and maquettes have just been added to the Disney's Hollywood Studios Animation Gallery. We'll have more photos and a video next week!

Here is a video I shot today (Jeff edited since my camera goes in and out of focus in dark conditions).

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As always, you can read about all of these stories in more detail at Denise's website:

Here's more honeymoon photos from Rya86n!

As I sort through my photos, trying to narrow down the 50+gb to share with the Weekend Update readers, I realise that there are quite a few of Disney's Hollywood Studios.

Maybe it was my favourite Walt Disney World park? My film obsession does make me partial to movie themed parks.

There was just simply so much to do at DHS whilst we were there.

Whether it stems from Fantasia, or his Fantasmic! appearances, Sorcerer Mickey is my favourite Disney character.

Not quite "Everything" this film fan wanted.

Christmas in Hollywood.

One of my park favourites (and now I can finally compare to the DCA version, as everyone always mentions)

The home of another favourite.

^ Sorry US MiceChatters, I just realised, I'm Aussie, and thus will use the real English spelling.

Midway Mania is always fun!

Why does this poster warrant a photographic mention? Thankfully our time at WDW gave us the opportunity to catch the new Muppets movie a few months before its Australian release.

Making Magic

Indiana Jones lends itself well to a stunt show.

Plenty of scenes to be replicated...

...and this guy getting beat up!

A backlot tour...

...evidently minus the backlot, as aluded to in a recent edition of Orlando Parkhopper.

As a filmmaker myself, I can see the lack of authenticity mentioned here, but the same can be said at any theme park. Even the tours at Universal Studios Hollywood (and the former studio tour attached to MovieWorld in Australia), on working lots are far from the real experience.

That being said, the space, length and performance of this particular attraction did leave a little to be desired.

The next location, however, did not!

I have long waited to see Lights, Motors, Action, and it did not disappoint.
It is clearly the superior inspiration for a stunt show much closer to home.

Disney parades are a nothing thing that rarely disappoint.

And Pixar brings plenty of colour and energy to impress.

I was warned about this show.

But managed to get a few photo opportunities out of it.

I was surprised by this cast member's likeness to Gaston.

There was one thing that determined our first visit to DHS. Fantasmic! is easily my personal favourite live Disney show.

We waited excitedly to see the East Coast version for the first time.

Plenty of familiar scenes...

...and a dragon that reminds me of childhood viewings at Disneyland.

Overall, it has a less impressive finale...

...and a smaller boat!

I'm happy I've seen it, but you just can't beat the original!

Finishing up the day (or multiple days) at DHS.

Lots of tiny lights! Also reminicent of smaller scale events back home.

Alain Littaye: "Vulcania, we have a problem!"

Disnyeland Paris Update - Discoveryland Nautilus

I hate to have to do this kind of article but sometimes it's the right thing to do. For sure an alert is needed about the terrible condition of the Nautilus at DLP Discoveryland, as the submarine is almost falling apart! No kidding, folks. If Captain Nemo were still actually aboard the Nautilus, he would probably send a message to his home base Vulcania Island and ask for some urgent help.

As you will see on the pictures below the Nautilus is in really bad condition, not as bad as was Captain Hook ship in Adventureland, but not far off. I'm talking here only about the exterior part, the one in the middle of Discoveryland lagoon, as the inside of the Nautilus has had regular maintenance and is in good condition, but for a few light effects which are missing.

In defense of Disneyland Paris maintenance, it's true that the maintenance of the exterior part of the submarine is not easy as it is necessary to empty the lagoon to do the needed work, but as we're going to see in the pictures below, now, not in two years is the time to do it. Right now, before it'll be too late!

Let's have a look at all the problems. First, from the bow to the stern, some parts of the hull and paint job are no longer there.

There is also a huge problem of moss all along the ship.

If all this were not enough, there is also another problem which will be harder to resolve. Seagulls! There are more and more seagulls which are coming from the ocean at Paris, and it seems that these seagulls have found home on the Nautilus. After all, it looks like a ship, it's surrounded by water, and no one can catch them, as it is in the middle of a lagoon! Not that the seagulls couldn't fit in fine with the theming, but the problem is not that they stand on the submarine and that they have declared that the Nautilus is their own territory, but also that they spend a big part of their time doing what seagulls do, which you can see in the photos.

So, what can DLP maintenance do? To restore the Nautilus is absolutely technically possible, That's the good news. But to do it they have to empty the lagoon, erect fences all around it to avoid guests "seeing the trick", as many DLP guests still think that they're really entering the submarine that they saw outside when they go inside. Also, they have no other choice than to strip all the paint, restore the missing parts, repaint it, and refill the lagoon. It's not a just a refurbishment it needs. It's a full restoration we're talking about here, and they can't do it in a couple of weeks.

And the bad news? Because of the needed time the job will take, and although i've heard that a maintenance could begin at any time, and it is likely maintenance of the inside of the submarine will be included, there may not be the time to do it before DLP's 20th Anniversary. If they were to begin tomorrow, they might have the time to do it, but i'm afraid this is not going to happen. Which means that the Nautilus will stay in this condition, and probably getting worse during all the 20th Anniversary as i don't see DLP shuttering this attraction for two months during the anniversary year.

Is it a shame? For a DLP fan probably, but to acknowledge the likely view of DLP maintenance, they had a great deal of work this year, all around parks and at the hotels, and they did a masterful job. They also had create a new Captain Hook ship, and this was even more urgent as guests go on the Hook ship, and there were safety problems. Having to make a choice, they did the right thing by putting the Captain Hook ship first. That said, the Nautilus really must be the next one slated for restoration, don't you think?

Update - Late news about the Nautilus: Apparently DLP maintenance has confirmed that the lagoon should be emptied in March, and we can expect that this is being done for a rehab of the Nautilus exterior, since there is no other reason to empty the
lagoon, if not for that. Let's cross our fingers that is their intent, and that we'll have a fresh and new Nautilus for the 20th Anniversary!

As a reminder, Dusty and Alain are releasing a very small number of the famous Disneyland Paris: From Sketch to Reality" books. This is one of the most collectible Disney parks books ever published. It currently goes for $500 used and over $1,200 in new condition on Amazon. However, for a very limited time, you can get it at its original publishing price. Click through for more information:

Collector Alert - Reserve Your Copy Of "Disneyland Paris, From Sketch To Reality"

MiceChatter OrlandoDude shares photos of his family vacation at Disney's Hilton Head Island Resort

My family visited Disney's Hilton Head Island Resort in January. The beach in January? It was quite nice... the temperature was very mild. The town was quiet and it felt like we had the resort to ourselves. The Beach House (on the beach) was under renovation, so no pictures from there. You can also visit Savannah, GA or Beaufort, SC, as they are less than 60 minutes away. I hope you enjoy the photos!

Entrance to the Resort over a bridge.

Check-In Building.

Shadow- the Golden Retriever- is the Resort's Mascot (and occasionally makes appearances).

The Foyer of our Room.

Shadow's footprints in the tile of our room.

Carving on the bench in our foyer.

Our Balcony.

And view from our room out to the Marsh.


Pier out over the Marsh.

Common Area.

Random Tree- My wife thinks there is a hidden Mickey here.

Along the Marina.

Boardwalk at Night.

Game Room and Check in Area.

Pier at Night.

Pool Area.

Kiddie Pool.

Might we also suggest that you visit these fine MiceAge/MiceChat attractions for even more Disney and theme park fun:
  • MiceTube - Introducing MiceChat's new channel on YouTube. Kevin Yee and MiceChat Sarah have been uploading entertaining videos weekly, along with many other of your MiceAge and MiceChat favorites.
  • Dateline Disneyland which is packed with great news and photos from the Disneyland Resort.
  • Orlando Parkhopper featuring news and photos from Disney World and Orlando area theme parks.
  • In The Parks offers news, updates and tips from Disneyland and other Southern California offerings.
  • SAMLAND - Your weekly look at some interesting tales from Disney history.
  • MiceDeals - You won't want to miss out on these great deals for Orlando and Anaheim!
  • Vacationeering - Every Sunday, we feature articles designed to help you create magical family vacation memories!

And that brings us to the end of another week. Our photographers have just enough time to reload their cameras before we see you all again next weekend. Thank you to all of our wonderful readers, and as always, a huge thank you to our amazing team of global photographers, spies, and gossips:

Denise Preskitt
Alain Littaye Disney and More Blog
Your Editor - Rixter

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